DC Converter Recall

I have a used 2002 Gem, and have been reading different posts concerning a DC converter recall. There is no local dealer here that I know of, so could someone point me in the right direction to get the recall process started? To be honest, there is nothing wrong with the current converter, but if I can get a safer, upgraded converter to replace the original one, I will!

First, make sure that you need the recall. GEM kept a list of all VIN numbers that have been updated. The old DC convertor is a printed circuit board. Newer types are either an aluminum housing filled with epoxy or a finned aluminum housing. Call GEM (Polaris) and ask for the closest dealer.


dspikes… call Lee at Beck Chrysler (gemcarpartsdirect) 888-677-4961… like Daniel said have the VIN to give Lee he’ll be able to tell you what has or hasn’t been done to the car… at the same time have him check that you show up as the owner of the car… I found that in my case Chrysler Gem didn’t change the car from the last owner to me although I sent in the form and talked to customer service when I bought my car… I didn’t receive any updates or recalls… Lee can also tell you where the dealer is or if it’s a warranty issue will send you the part, I think… he was going to send me the recalled emergency brake unit but I chose to try the new dealer near me…


Daniel,where is the converter located? I’ve ordered a 12 volt heater (rated at 15 amps) and I need to connect it to the converter (I think) or should I just use one of the batterys (post to post) for the 12 volt power supply?

The converter is under the kick panel on the passenger side. You’ll need to lift the gray cover up (it’s held on by Velcro and I use bungee cords suspended from the mirror to get it out of the way) and then remove the three screws which secure the kick panel to the frame. Remove that and it will be down by the passengers “shins”. Ride 4 Fun has a video on the website showing this process. As noted, the original converter was open-framed and subject to weathering problems. The newer converter is a “potted” (sealed) unit and not subject to the same issues.

I think you’d be better off attaching your heater to the converter if possible since connecting it directly to one of the batteries will draw down that one battery only when it’s in use and thereby create an unbalanced battery pack. Not a healthy situation for battery life over time. Attaching it to the converter OTOH will draw down on ALL the batteries (72v -> 12v) evenly. Not sure about the 15A draw though. If it’s a heater made specifically for a GEM, it should work fine BUT if it’s just a 15A 12v generic heater, that may be a problem for the convertor depending on what else is on and running. Depending on your model year and converter, I THINK they’re rated at either 300 or 500 watts. Your heater in use will pull around half of the rated load and shorten driving range though I have NO first-hand knowledge of that since I don’t have a heater installed.


Do not connect a heater to the DC convertor. The amperage is too much.

While I can’t disagree with your statement regarding the heater and the converter, just curious where does the official Polaris GEM heater tap in for power if not the converter? I’m assuming it’s a 12v device. Perhaps if it is a 72v device, it taps the entire battery string? That would make sense from a design perspective.


The heating element is 72 volt while the fan motor is 12 volt. The factory defroster will considerably reduce battery range.

Perfect, the “high drain” element runs off the whole pack and the “low drain” circulator fan runs off the converter very nicely I’m sure with I’m sure relatively low amp requirements. I would imagine using the heater/defroster would drain the batteries in a hurry and limit the range.

Don’t know if the heater being installed by RonS is third party generic or Polaris GEM OEM heater.

I hope this helps anyone that plans on installing 12volt accessories or the 72v heater. In the diagram of the PSDM you will notice several arrows some red some blue. The red involve hooking up 12v accessories using fuse F8 and the corresponding spade #3 on the left of fuse panel. For the heater, (blue arrows) use fuse F2 10amp 12v and spade 2, for the blower and fuse F12 25amp 72v and spade A for the heater.
the size of the diagrams is limited here on the forum if anyone needs a larger view, please PM me and I’ll email you one.