FAQ:Is a non-DCC install locomotive affected by running on a DCC power track?

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DCC Categories Beginner, Power

It is not recommended that you leave locomotives not equipped with a digital decoder on track powered by a digital command control signal for extended periods of time. Since the signal has an average DC level of zero (unless you are using analog compatibility mode - see the previous question), the locomotive will not move. However, the motors will make some noise. If the amplitude of the digital signal is greater than the maximum stall rating of the motor, the motor may experience permanent damage. We have found that common open frame motors, and many common can motors are not damaged by the digital signal even after extended exposure. Iron-less core type motors can be damaged by extended exposure to a digital command control signals that are greater than 12 volts due to excessive heat build-up.