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Axpert 5kVa - A 2 year story...


Mark123

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Morning All,

A story on my adventures with Load shedding and WFH (work from home)

It started in Feb 2020 when the COVID pandemic sent us all scurrying for home. Off to local shop and came home with an Axpert 5kVa Inverter/Charger. Needed some batteries, phoned an old mate - 4 by 200 Ah batteries delivered.

Needed some welding cable, lugs, DB, switches etc...All installed and running in March 2020. Load shedding duration was an hour max. Found this forum and used the info to set up the parameters. Fridges, TV, Hifi, Office etc. About 600 W load worked perfectly...

Then in Sept 2022 bravely asked around for quotes to install solar - no takers, all too busy so once again off to the loacal and came ho,e with 6 PV pannels, cable and bits for the combiner. By end of Sept I had the PV running and supplying 1.2 kW

(EL on Inverter output starts to trip - randomly)

Got brave and linked the pool pump in to alternate hourly from the excess 600 W or so. EL still tripping, thought I had mixed neutrals...investigated for many hours. After 2 to 3 months of a random EL trip I decided to replace the fancy EL with a new one - problems vanished. (I know this should have been my starting point, but the sales story and the price convinced me otherwise)

So...come Nov 2022. suns out but PV showing 0, then PV shows 1.2 kw. Then a crackling sound and panic. Switched every conceivable breaker off. Started up later and came up normally. Then Stage 4, 5, 6 hit and 2 hours at a time. Batteries hit low level alarm at 47,5 v after 40 mins. Gradually reduced down to 43. By this time I was fed up. The good old Honda Inverter was hauled from the camping trailer. That kept the 2 hours.

And then on one lovely morning in December - Battery isolator down In and out EL down...and a nothing on. 

What now...just push the switches up - battled with the battery 40 A but third time it stayed up. No smell of burning All up and she complained 09 'Bus soft start failed' mmmm

Bypassed unit, removed and placed on workbench. Screwdriver, multimeter etc Some repair manuals from this forum and I thought it would be back on the wall in an hour or so. (It is off the wall and in bits)

Findings -  A 'geko' somewhat frazzled behind the main board. Lets of black muck and what seems to be a fluid. Corrosion on the PV board - may explain the sun being out and no power. The controller also corroded around the connector to display. And a popped wide open MOSFET - Q32, may explain why batteries were going flat?

 

Help...I need a new one. And some advice please. My max load was maybe 2.2 kw. So do I go with a 3kVa ? Do I stick with 48v or rewire to 24v. or 2 by 2 kva units and split the loads...And lastly for now : where do I source a new unit/s

cheers,

Mark

 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, Mark123 said:

Morning All,

A story on my adventures with Load shedding and WFH (work from home)

It started in Feb 2020 when the COVID pandemic sent us all scurrying for home. Off to local shop and came home with an Axpert 5kVa Inverter/Charger. Needed some batteries, phoned an old mate - 4 by 200 Ah batteries delivered.

Needed some welding cable, lugs, DB, switches etc...All installed and running in March 2020. Load shedding duration was an hour max. Found this forum and used the info to set up the parameters. Fridges, TV, Hifi, Office etc. About 600 W load worked perfectly...

Then in Sept 2022 bravely asked around for quotes to install solar - no takers, all too busy so once again off to the loacal and came ho,e with 6 PV pannels, cable and bits for the combiner. By end of Sept I had the PV running and supplying 1.2 kW

(EL on Inverter output starts to trip - randomly)

Got brave and linked the pool pump in to alternate hourly from the excess 600 W or so. EL still tripping, thought I had mixed neutrals...investigated for many hours. After 2 to 3 months of a random EL trip I decided to replace the fancy EL with a new one - problems vanished. (I know this should have been my starting point, but the sales story and the price convinced me otherwise)

So...come Nov 2022. suns out but PV showing 0, then PV shows 1.2 kw. Then a crackling sound and panic. Switched every conceivable breaker off. Started up later and came up normally. Then Stage 4, 5, 6 hit and 2 hours at a time. Batteries hit low level alarm at 47,5 v after 40 mins. Gradually reduced down to 43. By this time I was fed up. The good old Honda Inverter was hauled from the camping trailer. That kept the 2 hours.

And then on one lovely morning in December - Battery isolator down In and out EL down...and a nothing on. 

What now...just push the switches up - battled with the battery 40 A but third time it stayed up. No smell of burning All up and she complained 09 'Bus soft start failed' mmmm

Bypassed unit, removed and placed on workbench. Screwdriver, multimeter etc Some repair manuals from this forum and I thought it would be back on the wall in an hour or so. (It is off the wall and in bits)

Findings -  A 'geko' somewhat frazzled behind the main board. Lets of black muck and what seems to be a fluid. Corrosion on the PV board - may explain the sun being out and no power. The controller also corroded around the connector to display. And a popped wide open MOSFET - Q32, may explain why batteries were going flat?

 

Help...I need a new one. And some advice please. My max load was maybe 2.2 kw. So do I go with a 3kVa ? Do I stick with 48v or rewire to 24v. or 2 by 2 kva units and split the loads...And lastly for now : where do I source a new unit/s

cheers,

Mark

 

 

 

Sorry to hear about this bad luck. Good to at least hear about things just not packing up and the inverter failed with good reason. 

Not good to have to shop during silly season. All I can suggest is stick to 48V and 5kw than to run a 3KVA at 90% designed capacity of 2.2kW.

Google for the few places open that also have stock. 

Good luck with the search. 

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43 minutes ago, Mark123 said:

Do I stick with 48v or rewire to 24v.

I would also suggest that you stick with 48 V. They do make small 48 V models if necessary. The main reason is that eventually, you will want to go to a lithium battery, and the choices for 24 V are very limited.

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29 minutes ago, Scorp007 said:

Sorry to hear about this bad luck. Good to at least hear about things just not packing up and the inverter failed with good reason. 

Not good to have to shop during silly season. All I can suggest is stick to 48V and 5kw than to run a 3KVA at 90% designed capacity of 2.2kW.

Google for the few places open that also have stock. 

Good luck with the search. 

I agree with 007. Yes , sorry for your upheaval caused. Where are you located ?

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On 2022/12/30 at 9:49 AM, Mark123 said:

- Q32, may explain why batteries were going flat?

@Mark123 Yes, if memory serves its the buck converter IGBT which is primarily for charging from grid/pv. 

You machine may be servicable. If its out of warranty it may still be repairable at reasonable cost. 

As far as corrosion is concerned, there are IP rated inverters, but they are expensive, and wether their rating covers corrosion i dont know. 

Its a pity you are do far, else i could have repaired it for you, so i suggest before you take a long term decision, see if you can get a local repair.  

Bare also in mind that there is only a small chance that ELD tripping is related to inverter. So you may still inherit legacy issues even if you go for a new inverter. 

Spending or saving money on a lithium upgrade, that makes sense. 

Edited by BritishRacingGreen
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