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Hiccup Mode Power Supply

Resolving Power Supply Hiccup Mode

By Tony Green
Jameco Technical Support

What is hiccup mode?

Hiccup Mode On some multiple output power supplies, no load on the primary output channel of a multi-channel power supply is considered a fault condition. The response of these power supplies to a low load on the primary is to drop into something known as "hiccup mode."

In "hiccup mode" the power supply shuts down, then almost immediately powers back up and checks for a proper load on the primary output. If no load is found, or the load is too low, it shuts down again and the cycle repeats until the proper load is established or power to the supply is cut.

How do I resolve hiccup mode?

To solve this problem, a dummy load can be placed on the primary so the power supply secondaries will work. Regardless of fault response (hiccup or shutdown), powering down the power supply, correcting the fault and starting the supply again will reset the fault detection and normal operation will resume.

Some power supplies also switch into hiccup mode on overload or overvoltage as well. As always, do check the datasheet(s) for complete information.


Tony Green majored in Aeronautics and Aerospace Design at San Mateo Community College. Before coming to Jameco in 2011, he was an Electronics Technician / Automation Engineer at Genentech, Inc., in the engineering and product development divisions, supporting drug manufacturing and development. He was also an Electronics Technician at B.Braun AG, in West Germany. His hobbies are restoring classic Corvettes and relentlessly spoiling his grandkids.