Question about Passport 8500 Radar Detector

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False Laser warning when engine RPM goes over 3000.

Every time my engine rev's over 3000 rpm, I get a false laser warning. As the rpm drops below 3000, the alarm goes away. The car is 1.5 years old and this is a problem that has showed up only now after working fine for over a year.

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  • EASYLEI Dec 29, 2007

    FALSE LASER ALARM FROM ACCELERATION. I HAVE MULTIPLE AUTOS...THE 4 CYL CAMRY HAS NO RPM ALARMS, BUT WHEN I DRIVE THE V8 TRUCK AND SUV, LASER ALARMS EVERYTIME I GET ON THE GAS! IT DRIVES ME CRAZY! I WILL TRY BUYING THE LOOP, HARD WIRING IS NOT AN OPTION NOR DOES IT SEEM TO WORK.

  • gstang46 Feb 21, 2008

    About 6 weeks ago my unit kept going into self calibration, then about a week ago I started getting false laser warnings every time I step on the gas. I have two of these detectors, and another problem I have with both of them is when I turn on the windshield washer fluid pump the false laser goes off. Definitely seems like this unit is very sensitive to voltage changes.

  • troy777 May 02, 2008

    I have owned my 8500 for a couple years with no problems until a month ago. The laser started to false alarm constantly. It has been in the same vehicle (2004 F-150) since new, with no additional equipment or aftermarket accessories added. I couldn't figure out what or why it kept going off until I noticed the Laser alarm trip when I hit the throttle wide open. I found it odd, so I tried it again and again. Everytime I quickly raised the RPM's the Laser would go off. I realized that this was obviously a voltage issue. Why it just started now, I do not know. Is it better to just send it in the factory or go with a loop?

  • Anonymous May 13, 2008

    I have the same thing. Out of no where it just started doing that. False laser readings when I accelerate.

  • deadcandance Jun 02, 2008

    I am having the exact literal same problem as Gerry here., My Radar is about 15 months old and seems to go off in acceleration or deceleration at around 3000 rpm and I own a 2001 Nissan maxima. It happens only in Laser mode and just started happening 5 weeks ago and seems to be getting worse.
    Disabling Laser would be a poor solution since it was Laser that I was most wanting to acquire when buying a radar detector. It was also Laser that almost nabbed me twice. If this Escort 8500 appears to have an exact weak spot like this,maybe than I think we should all start passing this information on to warn other buyers of this apparent trait of the Escort Passport.
    How can this be solved?


  • Frenchy007 Jul 18, 2008

    I have also owned my 8500 for a couple years with no problems until yesterday when the laser started to false alarm constantly. It has been in the same vehicle (Dodge Magnum) since I bought it. I have not noticed however that it is triggered by either accelerating or slowing down. I kept unplugging it and replugging it hoping that it would re-boot properly; it worked for a couple of minutes until it started again. It is therefore unusable.

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Hey guys, me again....Deadcandance..... I posted my trouble on a Satellite forum I belong to and I had a suggestion which I tried. And it worked!!!!! No manufacture returns, no cost at all, what I did was tokk it apart gently ...watch how everything comes apart so that you can reassemble again....

Start by getting a couple Q-Tips (Ear Swabs).Leave them dry so they won;t leave any residue on the diodes. Gently clean the horn, than clean/wipe the electronics board, and blow out the diffusion screen (leave the spit in your mouth). After I wiped the unit down, I didn't see any dust persay or dirt on the Q-tip but whatever I did, fixed it....
It worked for me. Took 15 minutes to do and I have been using the Radar for three months and not one false alarm in Laser mode.
Good luck...

Posted on Sep 27, 2008

  • deadcandance Sep 27, 2008

    Hi All,
    I fixed my Radar, No Manufacturer help, no cost to me at all. I got advice from a forum member on a satellite forum I belong to. So what I did was I took apart the radar. Watch carefully how it comes apart so you can reassemble again after. Get a Dry Q-tip (ear swab) leave it dry so you do not end up leaving and residue on the diodes etc. Start by cleaning the horn, wipe the electronic board all over gently with the Qtip , blow ou the diffusion screen (leave the spit in your mouth). After all that I did not see a spec of dirt on the Q tip I used..there was
    no sign of dirt, residue but whatever I did do
    fixed the problem. I have been using it for three months and not one false alarm from the laser mode.

    Good luck all......


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This is a known fault of this detector. After so much time the laser gets out of alignment and starts to give false readings. I've been searching on this myself and have found many other people complaining about the same thing. I also have my unit hardwired into my car and still have the problem. The only DIY fix is to use the expert mode and turn off the laser. The only true fix is to send the unit into passport, pay $60 to have it fixed.

Posted on Sep 28, 2007

  • josh Aug 26, 2010

    I think it is pretty crappy that i paid around $350.00 for my 8500 back in 04 or 05, and have to pay $60 to get it fix every couple years lol no way im gonna go with the Valentine radar i have heard great things about them and hopefuly i won't have to waste more money

  • fluffypeters Mar 24, 2011

    How do I get to the "expert mode" that is mentioned?

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The poster above who states "Laser band is quite useless due to the fact that if it ever goes off in a true alert situation, your might as well get ready to pull over" is incorrect. There is an occasional speed trap in the same place on my way home from work. When the cops are there, they are using laser. I'm never the only car there and my 8500 ALWAYS tells me when they've lasered someone else...everytime. Keep the laser.

Posted on Jul 02, 2009

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Has any aftermarket electronics been installed recenty? Ie amplifier with sub, or do you have lots of things plugged into you cig lighter? Anyway to solve the problem you can hardwire the detector to your fuse panel on an isolated fuse to get rid of any interference, or you can purchase a device called a ground loop isolater, either way it should solve or at least reduce the problem. Good Luck

Posted on Sep 15, 2007

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The cheapest and best thing is to turn the laser band off. Laser band is quite useless due to the fact that if it ever goes off in a true alert situation, your might as well get ready to pull over. It is not like with the K or Ka band where the radar signal is not concentrated and doesn't have to be directly pointed on any one car. The laser beam has to be pointed by a cop to your vehicle to get your speed reading, but that's when (and if) the detector picks it up and it is too late. Therefore, it is as good turned off as it is on. But there are not too many lasers that are in use by the highway patrol. But Escort is great for K or Ka bands, no doubt.

Posted on Sep 27, 2008

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Deadcandance's - YOUR THE BEST. 3 years of this **** and took your advise with the q-tip....works like new. I cant thank you enough.

Posted on Oct 28, 2010

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Good news - I fixed it myself for free by removing three screws! It does NOT require re-calibrating, new capacitors, or sacrificing LASER detection capacity. All you have to do is follow the solution #3 as of now) posted above - it's that simple! It was posted by deadcandance

Posted on Nov 20, 2009

  • highmantnz Oct 28, 2010

    (deadcandance) YOU ARE THE BEST THING EVER. three years of this with my radar. I gave up using it. Everytime I gas it, the fricking laser goes off full blast. Called Passport and they wanted 59.00 to send it in and do some adjustments. I did what you said and it is working like new. I can't thank you enough. I normally would not take the time to type all this, but I am so greatful to those of you who know and share these things.

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I tried the q-tip solution and was tempted to use rubbing alcohol to really clean the unit but held off and to my surprise it worked. Travel 80 miles a day and have had no false alarms in over two weeks.
THANKS

Posted on Apr 15, 2010

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I registered only to say THANK YOU SO MUCH deadcandance!!!

YOU ROCK!

Posted on Jan 20, 2010

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Deadcandance, you are the man. This solution worked great. I first tried contacting Escort, the customer service guy was very short with me and told me it's $59.95 to send back the unit (out of warrenty) for repair. I just took apart the unit, removed the circuit board chassis, wiped it down with a Qtip, blew out the horn, reassembled and retested it. It works fine, problem solved ! Thank you again deadcandance.

Posted on Nov 24, 2009

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I would never run the unit without the laser function on, I have been in several situations where I have gotten laser hits as it was used on other vehicles in front of me. That being said, if your pretty handy with taking things apart and cleaning them, I would try that. My only concern here is that while you have stopped the false alarms, how do you know it is even now working at all? Sending the unit in for repair would be the best approach for a fix in this case, or upgrade to another manufacturers unit. I have both the 8500 and the V-1 and I an on the same V-1 (not considering ugrades) unit for 20 years. One upgrade resulted in a new unit as it added laser and Pop modes, others have been software related

Posted on Oct 23, 2008

It needs re calibrating... send it back to manufacture

Posted on Jul 24, 2008

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