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Old 07-07-2019, 04:29 PM   #1
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Check your high draw blue sea switch connections now and again

One of my Blue Sea 6006 switches (feeds my victron multiplus inverter) failed under continual high load draw after 1 year in service. Cables were rock solid bolted to the switch connections.... it was the Internal connection inside the blue sea that melted / failed.

Was drawing only 150amps or so running the AC off lithium batts, which I do all the time... switch is rated to 300 amps continuous. Once and a while I’ll pull 250amps or so but not that often.

Fortunately the Victron system automatically shut down the multiplus on low voltage alarm so nothing melted or caught fire. Cables were warm for sure due to the bad connection inside the switch. Happy that system automation did its job! Few!

I’ll be replacing the switch and checking other blue sea switches in the system!
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Old 07-07-2019, 06:56 PM   #2
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i have those also.

did you contact the oem and ask for a replacement
if so, did they say anything like, bad batch, 1st every issue or sorry customer?
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Old 07-07-2019, 07:19 PM   #3
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Check your high draw blue sea switch connections now and again

Lew Farber did my install and stepped right up and is sending a new switch.

My hypothesis is that the inverter was switched to “on” and I then connected the power causing instant current to be present at the terminals, which affected the contact. But that’s just a theory. Going forward I’ll ensure the inverter is “off” before giving it life via the blue sea switch.
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Old 07-08-2019, 04:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wulfraat View Post
Lew Farber did my install and stepped right up and is sending a new switch.

My hypothesis is that the inverter was switched to “on” and I then connected the power causing instant current to be present at the terminals, which affected the contact. But that’s just a theory. Going forward I’ll ensure the inverter is “off” before giving it life via the blue sea switch.
I have actually scoured the internet looking for information regarding voltage drop of these type of switches. I didn't find anything but I know from experience that it "could" be an issue.

I have a old harbor freight switch installed on my trailer when I got it just to disconnect the batteries. I didn't realize it but it had failed open circuit and I had no idea until I installed the solar and the charge voltage/current was all over the place on the Victron App.

I hopefully you just got a lemon but it does concern me that the switch could be dumping off .010's of volts as heat when I am trying to maximize input/output.

For those that want to test your switches, put a heavy load on them and using the volt meter test from one post to the other, not to ground or power but directly across the switch. Any voltage read on the meter in this way will be the amount of voltage or current that is being lost across the contacts. For this test 0.00 volts would be ideal.
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Old 07-13-2019, 12:07 PM   #5
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Check your high draw blue sea switch connections now and again

The Blue Sea 6006 switch is rated for 48v/300A continuous, but casing cracked / melted and the press-fit post came loose causing a poor connection / failure.

Replacement / New 6006 switch (still rated for 300A) has an updated / more robust design (Blue Sea updated design mid 2017 from what I understand).

After replacing the switch I ran the AC / fridge via the multiplus for 30 min to warm things up and the mechanical connections sure do get hot to the touch under continuous 200A+ DC load.

We’ll see. May need to consider a 350A or even 600A continuous load rated switch for the long run.
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Old 07-13-2019, 07:48 PM   #6
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Mr. Rat.

Get a switch with a higher rating.

I accidentally cracked the same switch so I took it apart for fun and it was hard to justify the 300A rating.
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Old 07-13-2019, 08:43 PM   #7
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Check your high draw blue sea switch connections now and again

Yeah I’m thinking I should upgrade to the Blue Sea HD series switch with support for 600A continuous load. I only have two switches in the system that are exposed to 200A+ continuous loads....
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Old 07-13-2019, 09:07 PM   #8
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Wulf
Man that’s a impressive system. 200 amps running is pushing done DC current for sure.
I’ve admired your system for awhile. My next trailers solar system will be bigger for sure.
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Old 07-13-2019, 10:42 PM   #9
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Check your high draw blue sea switch connections now and again

The system is working out well. Victron make some wonderful, high quality and reliable system components. You get what you pay for and the approach of total system integration saved my skin when things automatically shut down when the imminent switch failure was detected. 800w of solar is great and we typically yield between 4kwh and 7kwh of energy production per day. Enough to keep a few lights on

If I were to do it over again, the only thing I’d do differently would be to install the very latest generation of high energy density victron Lithium Nickel Magnesium Cobalt Oxide 24v batts.

These are amazing - two 24v / 200ah batts give you 800 amp hours @ 12v equivalent at just 55kg combined weight (~120lbs).

My two 300ah 12v batts give me 600ah and weigh 225lbs combined. 25% less energy storage at almost double the weight.

This next generation lithium chemistry is impressive....

https://www.victronenergy.com/upload...Ion-BMS-EN.pdf

24v straight into the multiplus then add an Orion DC-DC converter supply for 12v house loads. Done! And less heat under load into the Multiplus too! Hahah.
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Old 07-13-2019, 11:19 PM   #10
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And I was so impressed with myself finally switching to 6v Trojans and finishing up tonight getting 400 watts on the roof :-/. You got it goin on!
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Old 07-14-2019, 08:33 AM   #11
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Wulf,
I know this is a loaded question probably best suited for its on thread, but I wanted your view on it.
How much solar is really needed to be 100% off grid. AC and all. Or how off grid can you be with 800 watts and your lithium batteries.
I have thought of a way to get 1500 watts of solar on the roof of a 27’ trailer and just was curious about the need for that many panels
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Old 07-14-2019, 10:00 AM   #12
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Check your high draw blue sea switch connections now and again

Planning on some suitcase panels up top? 2-for-1 on a given footprint ? that would be cool.

Without air conditioning I strongly believe that one can be 100% off grid with 400w of solar and 400ah of lithium if you do not keep your inverter on 24/7 and work with 12v house systems (fantastic fan, furnace, fridge on LP, lights, etc).. the multiplus alone consumes ~50ah in a 24h period based on its own power consumption needs.

800w/600ah provides some additional overhead whereby you can run full residential power with hybrid inverter turned on 24/7 no problems - fully sustainable if you have sun during the day of course. It also allows you to lean in and use the air conditioner for a couple hours a day if needed which is really nice to have that flexibility. Or, like us, you can also keep the sonic ice machine in full ice making production tilt all day long

If you want to have the ability to run the AC like you are on shore power you’d need substantially more solar than you can fit on the roof of an airstream or even a bus.

Here is an example (image) of a 24 hour period (well 22hrs before I shut down systems), in “warm” (not hot) conditions at 8,000 feet elevation in June running the AC on shore power. I set the thermostat, turned it on and left. Lots of power consumption for a single 15k AC - almost 32kwh of energy used! And this does not include running a second air conditioner.

On a great sunny day I get ~7kwh of energy production with 800w of solar. I would need more than 4 times as much generation capability to cover the AC needs in this example of a 22hr period of running the AC without regard, and that is with almost no usage over night. With air conditioning overnight in a hot climate the energy needs of the air conditioning could easily double again. This is for 1 air con unit, not two....

So back of the envelop - warm climate (AC in the day, cool evenings so open windows at night) you’d need maybe 3,000-3,500w of solar and a LOT of energy storage. Hot climate where AC runs at night you’d need more like 8,000-10,000w as you’d need to make up for overnight energy drain from the batts during the next day, on top of running the air conditioner again.

Obviously a willingness to crank up a genset to supplement the panels / batteries would offset the need so many panels. I carry a small propane honda 2000 “just in case” I want to really crank on the air conditioner / recover energy usage faster.
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Old 07-14-2019, 10:33 AM   #13
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However this is moved to its own thread, I'd like to see that done, too, because I think there could be useful information in the diverse views.
My own input is as follows. I have 300 on the roof and 100 in a suitcase to follow the sun. I have 200 ah of lithium and 3k multi. But, I do not leave it on inverter, I just turn on the inverter when I want it. So boondocking we do normal conservation, everything on propane. I never intended to run A/C from my batteries. I have found what I have to be self-sufficient even if I want to run the furnace, as long as I am not under a tree canopy. Even with full shade trees, I could go almost 4 days before I needed to run my Honda 2k propane generator.
Yeah with more battery and solar, our camping style could be different, but this is how we camped before I did my electrical upgrade and I do not need to run any more AC devices boondocking than we did before, except that now we don't worry about watching a DVD or the Nespresso.
I have a little trouble reconciling the cost to install huge lithium banks so that A/C can be used when AC power is not available. But, obviously the more energy you take out of the battery in a day, the more solar you will need to recharge it reliably.
You gotta know your own needs to really answer the original question.
Larry
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