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Old 02-27-2010, 09:39 PM   #1
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Inverter / 12 volt problem

Have an inverter problem that I can’t seem to solve, don't know why it's shutting down – hope someone can help.

Background –
Inverter installed in 2007 25’ Safari FB disconnected the original equipment converter.

Inverter – Xantrex Freedom 458 series 2000 watt with Freedom Basic Remote.
Surge Guard Model 34520 hardwired.

The inverter is installed under the front bed – very near the batteries as specified in the installation instructions, the Surge Guard is installed between the power source and the inverter.

The problem – occasionally the entire system will shut down - all the 12 volt lights and furnace, etc go off for a few seconds and then comes back on. This is only on the 12 volt system. This seems to happen when the living room halogen overhead lights are on – 11 lights @ 12.5 watts each = 137.5, and the Furnace 55 watts, and four bulbs in light fixtures over sink and dinette 4 @ 18 watts = 72. I can force it to happen if I have the lights listed above and turn on the bedroom halogen lights.


I assume that this is an overload situation that is connected to the inverter - I don't know what to Just a note – this doesn’t happen when we were on the converter that was installed in the trailer as original equipment.


I am assuming that if there was an overload situation with the standard converter a fuse would blow – is that correct?

As you can tell – my electrical knowledge is lacking – thanks for your input.


mjbear
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Old 02-27-2010, 10:12 PM   #2
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Hi Mjbear,

Having never heard of your inverter brand before, I looked it up on the internet. Interesting beastie there – combination charger and inverter. If I’m reading the user manual and spec sheet right, it looks like you have an overload condition. There are red LEDs on the unit that will tell you if it’s overloaded or not.

You don’t mention if you’re on shore power or not when the system shuts down. If you’re not on shore power, then the inverter function is operating unless you specifically turn it off if I’m reading the manual correctly. So anything that would normally run off of 110 VAC might be running as well as the 12 volt items.

Anyway, it looks like looking at the LEDs on the unit when it shuts down is the first step in troubleshooting it.

Good Luck!

Chris

Ps – the manual also says the unit needs to be configured to match the battery type you have installed (AGM, GEL or Wet). That might be part of it too?
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Old 02-28-2010, 08:17 AM   #3
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Chris,
Thanks for taking the time to check the specs on our inverter, and for your ideas. To answer your question - we are connected to shore power when this happens. I will check the LEDs on the unit - will set up the condition and look at the LEDs. My concern amounts to determining if the unit is operating correctly, that information dosen't seem to be in the manual. I have sent an email to the company to ask the question - will see what comes back.

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Old 02-28-2010, 08:36 AM   #4
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Just a thought, but perhaps it is over heating and shuts down to cool. Check to make sure the fan can and does opperate properly and the space is ventilated.

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Old 02-28-2010, 09:41 AM   #5
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Sounds like the unit has a self resetting barker in it and is kicking out on overload.

My question is the converter should be charging the batteries and even if the converter kicks off your 12 volt system should still remain on and supplied by the batteries. The voltage would drop to battery voltage but should still remain on. How are your batteries?

You did not mention any 120 volt load on the inverter
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Old 03-03-2010, 02:20 PM   #6
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HowieE thanks for taking a look at the problem - I guess it does reset - it only takes a couple of seconds to come back on - I don't really know what is happening with the charging system, the 120 volt system dosn't seem to have any problems - the microwave stays on, as well as the tv when it happens. I'm trying to find out if this is normal operation, and which lights and equipment I can and can not operate.

Thanks
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Old 03-03-2010, 03:29 PM   #7
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When this happens turn off some of the 12 volt load, some of the lights that are on or the heater blower. If the problem stops it was clearly just an over load situation. If the problem repeats itself and there is no other 12 load you can turn off then the problem is in the converter itself.
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Old 03-03-2010, 03:32 PM   #8
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If the lights shut off completely (even for a brief time) then the problem is in your wiring and not in the inverter/charger.

A properly wired system would not depend on the inverter/charger output being present. The house batteries should pick up the load if the inverter/charger goes on holidays.

Look for a tripping automatic circuit breaker between your distribution panel and the battery.
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