ION Survival Scout - Frequently Asked Questions

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The ION Survival Scout is a rugged, waterproof, rechargeable speaker that keeps you informed in the toughest situations. The sensitive radio not only receives AM and FM, but also shortwave signals, so you can get updates from all over the world. And with seven NOAA weather bands for emergency alerts, you'll be ready for anything. This guide answers popular questions about more of the features and functionality of the ION Survival Scout. 


Frequently Asked Questions


What's included in the box?

The Survival Scout includes the Survival Scout speaker, power adapter, 1/8" (3.5mm) stereo audio cable, quickstart guide, and safety and warranty manual.


What is the hand crank for, and how does it work?

The hand crank is located on the side of the Survival Scout and can be used to charge the speaker. To use the hand crank to charge the Survival Scout:

  1. Lift the handle up and out from the side of Survival Scout. 
  2. Hold Survival Scout steady with one hand, and grip the handle of the hand crank with the other. 
  3. Rotate the handle at a steady pace, about two revolutions per second. 
  4. When Survival Scout is powered on and the hand crank is providing a charge to Survival Scout, the Hand Crank Icon will light. When Survival Scout is powered off, the Hand Crank Icon will not illuminate, but the unit will still charge. 

Keep in mind that the hand crank is intended for emergency charging and is not ideal as the sole method of charging the speaker. In other words, don't rely on the hand crank to fully charge the speaker while at the beach or on a trip, but it can help if you need to provide a charge enough to keep your phone alive to make a call. For reference:

  • Using the hand crank to charge Survival Scout for 10 minutes yields 1% of battery life. 
  • It can take up to 16 hours to fully recharge the battery using the hand crank.
  • You can use the hand crank to charge the battery at the same time as Solar Panel charging. It can take up to 11 hours to fully recharge the battery using the hand crank and solar panel at the same time. 


How do I pair the Survival Scout with my Bluetooth device?

  1. Turn on your Bluetooth device that you would like to pair with your Survival Scout.
  2. Power on the Survival Scout and it will automatically go into pairing mode to search for Bluetooth devices. You will know you're in pairing mode when the Bluetooth icon is off. If you have previously connected to another Bluetooth device, Survival Scout will reconnect.
  3. Navigate to your Bluetooth device's setup screen, find Survival Scout and connect. Note: If your Bluetooth device prompts for a pairing code, enter "0000".
  4. The Bluetooth icon will be lit solidly when a device is "paired" to Survival Scout. Note: You should consider updating your OS if experiencing trouble with pairing or playing music. 
  5. To disconnect pairing while the Bluetooth icon is lit solid, press and release the Bluetooth button. 
  6. To connect to another Bluetooth device, repeat step 3.  Note: Maximum range will be achieved when using devices with Bluetooth 4.0 or higher.


I'm having trouble pairing my Bluetooth audio device (i.e., phone) to the Survival Scout. What should I do?

Most pairing issues can be quickly resolved by following the suggestions in the following guide:


How far can the Bluetooth connection go? 

The range of Bluetooth connection of a Survival Scout is up to 100 feet - as long as the transmitting audio source is not moving around and there are no obstructions between the audio source and the Survival Scout. The transmitting audio device (phone, tablet) should not be emitting a signal from a pocket, or be covered in any way to achieve the best results. The range can also be affected by the Bluetooth chipset audio source as well.


Can I pair my audio device using NFC?

Yes! To use NFC to pair with Survival Scout, follow these steps:

  1. First, confirm your device is turned on and unlocked. 
  2. Enter your device's Settings menu and check that NFC is turned On.
  3. Power on Survival Scout.
  4. Touch and briefly hold your device to the NFC logo located on Survival Scout's side panel.
  5. Follow the pairing instructions that appear on your phone. If a passcode is required, enter "0000".
  6. To unpair, gently bump your device against the NFC logo.


What are the battery specifications?

The Survival Scout has a 12 V, 2.3 Ah, sealed lead-acid battery.


How long does it take to charge the battery?

The Survival Scout can be charged by using either the solar panel, hand crank, solar panel and hand crank, or by power outlet. See the chart below for a guideline on average time to fully charge the battery:

Charge Type Average Charge Time
Power Outlet 5.5 hours
Hand Crank 16 hours
Solar Panel 40 hours
Hand Crank + Solar 11 hours


How long does the battery last?

A fully-charged Survival Scout battery will last up to 30 hours at a reasonably loud indoor listening volume level. Battery life may vary based on battery temperature, age, and volume usage. 


Is the Survival Scout waterproof?

The Survival Scout is IPX4-certified, and is waterproof up to 3' (1m) of water.


Can the Survival Scout charge my iPod/iPhone?

The Survival Scout has a USB power bank that is powerful enough to charge any type of phone, tablet, or portable music player connected to this port via USB.


Can I connect a device to the USB ports to send audio?

The USB port on the Survival Scout is for charging devices only and does not transfer audio to or from the speaker. 


The sound is coming out distorted. What is happening, and how can I fix it?

If the sound from your Survival Scout is coming out distorted, try lowering the volume control of your sound source - such as your iPod or iPhone. Also, try reducing the overall volume of the Survival Scout.

If you continue to experience sound issues after following the suggested steps above, you may want to contract ION Tech Support.


How do I save a radio preset?

  1. Press the Radio Selector button to choose, FM, AM, or SW and select a radio station that you want to save to a preset location by using the Tune/Track buttons. 
  2. Press and hold Play/Pause for 3 seconds. A preset number will then appear on the screen.
  3. Use the Tune/Track buttons to select which preset you want to save it to. 
  4. Press Play/Pause to confirm. "Save" will then appear on the screen.


How does the Weather Band Radio work?

The weather band radio receives continuous local weather reports issued by the National Weather Service in your region. Additionally, these channels receive alert messages for hazardous weather watches and warnings, as well as civil emergencies, public safety announcements, and other advisories. 


How do I set weather alerts?

  1. Turn the radio on using the Radio Selector button and select Weather Band (WB).
  2. Use the Tune/Track buttons to select the Weather Band channel for your area. The available Weather Band channels are as follows:

    weather bands

    Note: For links to help you find the correct frequency to use for receiving your local weather reports and alerts, visit the Survival Scout product page.

  3. Press and hold the Radio Selector button for 3 seconds. The Weather Alert Icon will appear in the display. 
  4. Press and hold the Power button to put Survival Scout in Alert Mode Standby. The Weather Alert Icon will remain in the display in a dim state to indicate Alert Mode is active. If an alert for your area is received, the Survival Scout will wake up and begin broadcasting it automatically. 
  5. To disable Alert Mode, press and hold the Power button to wake Survival Scout from Alert Mode Standby. Then, press and hold the Radio Selector button for 3 seconds. The Weather Alert icon will disappear from the display. 
    Note: If possible, it is recommended to keep the Survival Scout powered by the power adapter when using Alert Mode.


I am getting poor AM reception. What can I do?

If you have a Bluetooth device connected to the Survival Scout while you are listening to the AM radio, disconnect the Bluetooth device and the AM frequencies will likely clear up. 

To continue to adjust AM reception, move the entire Survival Scout. Sometimes, there is a slight operating noise around the 540 kHz AM frequency, but other than that, re-positioning the unit should provide better AM reception.


Further Technical Support

Whether you are a customer or dealer, if you already own an ION product, or if you just have pre-sales questions, the experienced ION Technical Support Team is available to help!

Visit the link below to connect with any of the following support options: Online Community Support, Phone Support, Email Support:



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