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Invertor woes need advice


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Original invertor died a few months back it was a 2000 watt Zantrex from 2000. So no shame in it wearing out after 16 years.

Replaced with a Zantrex Freedom SW 815-2012

First of all I hate the new control panel. The instruction book requires a degree in electrical engineering to understand so setting it up was a nightmare of mammoth proportions. And in the end I obviously still didn't have it correct

Because we were hooked up to shore power we've not had a reason to use it until now

Last week we moved on from our volunteer gig to an RV park. Hooked up to 50amp shore power and no juice in the rig. Thinking the transfer switch was acting up we tried the usual tap. No good. In the end we called an RV repair service who ended up finding that something on the control panel wasn't set up right. He set it and were good to go

Arrived to drycamp and now more issues.

Couldn't get the invertor to come on. Called Zantrex

So they walked me thru some set ups and discovered that the "search mode" was enabled" when it should not have been. Rep also assured me that to turn it on and off all I needed was to push the up arrow. Well he was half right. That turns it off but to turn it on I need to cycle to the invertor setting and enable it.

I have used the microwave to heat tea, 1 1/2 minutes no issue. Tonight I popped the veggies in, hit auto sense cook. It ran for less than 2 minutes and it shut off and so did the TV. Then the TV came right back on. Obviously the invertor tripped off and right back on.

What on earth is going on???

Ron has checked the batteries and feels sure they are fine They are 4 6volt deep cell marine and less than 3 years old. And Ron is meticulous about their maintenance.

We have no blown fuses and no tripped breakers

I can't believe that this 2000 watt PSW invertor can't run the microwave for less than 10 minutes

 

The only thing different in the new installation was that the old invertor had a dual input, dual output and the new one is a single in dual out. This required the installation of a breaker on the input side. ( The choice of the invertor was based on recommendation from Zantrex, so don't even get me started on that!!!)

 

Oh and just to add icing to the cake the fas furnace stopped working.

I want my old invertor and simple control panel back!!!!!

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What it "sounds" like is that your inverter is hitting it's low voltage shutdown (10vdc) since it cuts off and then immediately resumes once the microwave turns off.. but what DOESN'T track a little with that theory is that you should be getting an alarm from the inverter if the current drops below 11v and prior to an actual shutdown.

 

First question.. what size of wiring do you have on the single set of conductors from the batteries to your inverter? Approximately how long are those conductors?

 

Several things can contribute to a low voltage situation.

 

1. Terminal voltage decreases as your batteries internal resistance increases when a heavy/continuous load is applied (like a microwave). That doesn't necessarily mean that you're batteries don't have an adequate charge.

2. The conductors connecting your batteries and inverter are under sized or too long for the amount of current your inverter is demanding. IOW, you are loosing too much current along the way. Ie., At your battery terminals you might have 12.7v's, but you're inverter is actually getting much less than that by the time the current reaches it.

3. Your batteries capacity has diminished to the point where it is not able to hold an adequate charge.. or they are simply not fully charged.

 

When you mentioned you had deep cell marine 6v's that's a little bit of a red flag for me. If it is indeed a marine battery then it is actually a hybrid (not a true deep cycle) and as such will have a bit shorter of a life span in their current application, and typically, won't have much more than around 180-220ah's of capacity to begin with. (4 x 6v) That really only leaves you with around 90-110ah's of usable battery.. which really isn't much.

 

On top of that, hybrid wet cell batteries are not really well suited to handle a 90-100amp DC load (just an estimate of the microwave).

 

HOWEVER.. I assume the only thing that has changed since you had a previously working setup is the inverter so, while there may be a combination of factors contributing to a low voltage shutdown, the most immediate "suspect" to me is the single set of conductors. My hunch is that, previously, your power systems were struggling, but 'just' getting by enough that it didn't trip anything. Now though.. on such a heavy load and single set of conductors (unless new cabling was run), your inverter isn't able to pull enough juice to keep it above the low voltage cut-off.

 

If that is indeed the problem then it's a fairly easy fix. Recalculate your distance from the batteries to your inverter, load capacity, and increase the cable size as needed.

 

As a side note though.. if you do have hybrid marine deep cycle cells installed.. it might be getting about time to really give them a good look-see and have them load tested.

 

Now the "disclaimer". All of the above is assuming that it is indeed a low voltage shutdown issue. It sure sounds like it. It's also assuming that no one has messed with the default (10v) low voltage shutdown setting. If I remember correctly on a Xantrex.. it can be changed from 10v-12v in .1v increments. Ya might check that. ;)

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I will check the low voltage setting. I didn't think of that.what should it be set at?

 

Sorry, misspoke, the batteries are the regular 6v deep cell Interstate.

 

The invertor is in exactly the same place as the old one and to my knowledge all the same wires ( I assume that is what you mean by conductors) are in place.

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Oh and just to add icing to the cake the fas furnace stopped working.

I want my old invertor and simple control panel back!!!!!

I doubt that the furnace problem is related to the inverter issue, unless the problem is on the 12V side and then it would effect other things as well. I don't think that I'd worry too much about that until you solve the present issues, unless you are needing it.

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Sorry, pouring down rain so can't get out there. However only new wires are on the breaker that had to be installed to accommodate going from dual in to single in and its 8 gauge. The other is the connector from the invertor to the control panel.(old one was phone jack type and even with the adaptor it would not work) Otherwise wires from battery to invertor are same ones as on old ones.

 

I'm beginning to think that there has to be issues in how the control panel is currently set up so while its pouring outside I'm going to get on the phone with Zantrex and make them walk me through the entire thing.

 

I'll get back to you Dave on your question as soon as I can get out there

In the mean time all help is still needed

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