IKEA Bekant adjustable table repair and hacking

happen to own IKEA Bekant motor adjustable table. It worked nicely for around years, and served well as my working table. Though there are only simple “Up” and “Down” buttons installed by default, it works OK. But one day I found out that some day moving the table up and down did not work anymore. Here is a picture of the table from IKEA product page:

I did some fault finding and contacted IKEA. Anyways this product was supposed to have 10 years guarantee. Nothing in the manual helped to solve the issue.

When contacting IKEA I got this tip: First, try resetting to factory settings:

* Check that the pin / key is properly seated. The pin / key is located on the front panel of the table top. Unplug the power cord for at least a minute, preferably several hours, and then plug it in again
* Press and hold both adjustment buttons for at least 10 seconds to reset the base to the factory settings.
* If the stand does not work as it should, please contact our customer service.

That did not solve the issue. I tried to do this few times but nothing. I tried disconnecting and re-connecting the cables but it did not help.

I did some measurements try to find what is wrong. The table base has a mains power supply (looks quite much like laptop power supply) that is supposed to output 35V DC at few amperes to power the motors that move the table. I measured the output voltage and the transformer was putting out slightly less than 24V DC. This is not right.

After few contacting IKEA they sent me a new power supply (and also new control buttons), but it did not solve the problem. :-(  Finally IKEA swapped the motor base to a new one, and that made the table to work again.

When I had to fiddle with the board, I also looked around what information about this able is available. Here is what I found:

IKEA Bekant Table Hacking project page shows how to add memory functions and make it controllable with serial cable. The reason why this was done because the project developer thought that only simple “Up” and “Down” buttons installed by default pretty much sucks. There is IKEA Hackant Github page with more details.

Smarkant page shows how to convert your IKEA Bekant table into a smart IoT device. The ESP8266 can give us WiFi and quite some processing power to implement a REST interface to control our table remotely.

Hacking an office desk page is a project description in Finnish on controlling this desk with Arduino. This project connects Arduino to the existing control button electronics so that Arduino emulated up and down key pressing. This project uses the ultrasonic sensor to get the current height (could be read from LIN bus).

IKEA Bekant Älypöytä Arduinolla page is a project description in Finnish on controlling this desk with Arduino. This project connects Arduino to the existing control button electronics so that Arduino emulated up and down key pressing. This project page has nice picture on what is inside the slight hard to open control buttons case:


On Github there are pages: https://github.com/robin7331/IKEA-Hackant and https://github.com/trainman419/bekant and https://github.com/robertaramar/bekant

More project pages: https://www.henrirantanen.fi/2015/03/10/ikea-bekant-arduino-alypoyta/

There are also two interesting videos on this topic:

That IKEA Bekant Table Hacking page has interestgin information that Robert Nixdorf had found out that the used the LIN protocol for control buttons to communicate with the motors. Here is a nice video on hacking the LIN bus of this table:

Let’s look on that a little bit more on LIN bus:

LIN (Local Interconnect Network) is a serial network protocol designed to be used for communication between components in vehicles. The need for a cheap serial network arose as the technologies and the facilities implemented in the car grew, while the CAN bus was too expensive to implement for every component in the car. In the late 1990s, the LIN Consortium was founded by five automakers (BMW, Volkswagen Group, Audi, Volvo Cars, Mercedes-Benz).LIN is a broadcast serial network comprising typically of one master and up to 15 slaves. The master and slaves are typically microcontrollers. LIN uses single wire communications up to 19.2 kbit/s @ 40 meter bus length. It is designed for typical 12V operating voltage. It is a low-cost, single-wire network based on ISO 9141.



  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Comparing Linear Servos & Linear Actuators – with Kyle and Jason
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