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

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It is not recommended to leave locomotives not equipped with a multifunction 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 rating of the motor, the motor may experience permanent damage.

Experience has shown that common open frame motors, and many commonly used can motors are not damaged by the digital signal even after extended exposure. Iron-less (coreless) type motors can be damaged by extended exposure to a digital command control signals due to excessive heat build-up.