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Axpert 3kva line fault


charl
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Hi guys

I've been running my inverter for a few months and yesterday I noticed there was no eskom power into my inverter.

I found that the braker had tripped. And would not go back up. There is a dead short between the positive and negative. I disconnected the power into the inver and the short is in the inverter.

Has anyone had this problem and is this by any chance a small problem like a fuse. Or do I need to disconnect everything and take the inverter back.

Sent from my C6833 using Tapatalk

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@Coulomb might know a little more, but if you have a dead short on the input, it's probably going to require axpert... I mean expert attention. With some luck, it's only a Varistor that's done its job and got destroyed in the process.

Varistor: It's a device that's normally open circuit, but if the voltage goes too high it breaks down and becomes a low resistance. This usually blows a fuse upstream, and sometimes destroys the varistor itself. Most of your cheaper surge suppressors are no more than a varistor inside a socket.

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Unfortunately, a dead short on the battery terminals sounds like a MOSFET failure. You can actually recover from that by replacing all the MOSFETs and drivers if needed, but it's a big job and no guarantee that it won't blow up again. A friend of mine and I have done a few such repairs, not all ssuccessful. See for example http://forums.aeva.asn.au/forums/pip4048ms-inverter_topic4332_post56103.html#56103. Edit: we've only attempted repair of the 48 V 5 kVA model.

It would be good to know what caused it. Was the battery voltage near the upper limit of the inverter?

Edited by Coulomb
4 kVA -> 5 kVA
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It seems to be just tha ac input. Because the inverter continued to work off the solar and batteries.

I would not have known there was a problem if I did not check solarMon and see there was no AC power coming onto the inverter

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7 hours ago, charl said:

It seems to be just tha ac input. Because the inverter continued to work off the solar and batteries.

Ah. You confused me by talking about a short between negative and positive; AC inputs don't have negative and positive.

If the AC input is shorted but the AC output is good and you can power loads, then indeed it can only be a small part of the circuit that is faulty. It nearly has to be one of three MOVs (MOVISTORs) or a capacitor, or the input breaker, or wiring.

If the inverter is still under warranty, get the main board replaced. If not, you might be able to repair it yourself, perhaps with the help of people on this forum.

Edit: I assume the breaker you are talking about is outside the inverter. The inverter has a breaker with a reset button near the AC input.

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Sorry. Should have said live and neutral.

Yes it the braker on a external DB

It is still under warranty and took it back to the supplier this morning. They said they will contact me on Monday. My worry is it could take ages to get new parts if that's the problem. How available are replacement parts?

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Ja, that is the dinges when the inverters have to be removed for repairs, it kinda brings things to a rather abrupt stop. Seriously inconvenient.

Ps. That goes for all make and models, not just Voltronics. :P

 

I have a Victron controller where the solar panel connection screws stripped. Luckily I had a spare for it took 3 weeks to get the new unit which Victron replaced free of any charges. I did not expect them to do that. My thinking now is to keep the spares around a wee bit longer.

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7 hours ago, charl said:

How available are replacement parts?

They are quite standard parts. I don't know the electronics supply situation in South Africa, but I would think that these would be amongst those locally stocked, at least somewhere..

For example, Mouser have a presence in South Africa; perhaps they have a warehouse there for the commonly ordered parts. That's how it works in Australia. If there is no local stock, it can take 6 days for parts to be delivered in Australia.

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9 hours ago, charl said:

It is still under warranty and took it back to the supplier this morning. They said they will contact me on Monday. My worry is it could take ages to get new parts if that's the problem. How available are replacement parts?

Unfortunately I did not get it straight from the horses mouth but it sounds like Mustek are now assembling Axpert here in RSA so parts should be more freely available.

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Internal fault, but this is strange, because the inverter does have fairly good protection.

You should be able to source all components from RS components.

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  • 10 months later...
On 5/7/2016 at 10:53 PM, Coulomb said:

If the AC input is shorted but the AC output is good and you can power loads, then indeed it can only be a small part of the circuit that is faulty. It nearly has to be one of three MOVs (MOVISTORs) or a capacitor, or the input breaker, or wiring.

Ah. I was thinking about the 5 kVA models, which are the only ones I've worked with. They use the inverter to "suck power" from the mains and hence charge the battery. It seems that the 3 kVA and below models use a separate power supply, as shown in the attached image.

[ Edit: hence, a short on the mains input is much more likely to be in the AC/DC charger, though it could still be a MOV or other protection component near the mains input, before the relay marked "main". ]

There is some good detail in the 1 kVA - 3 kVA service manual. PM me if you can't find it. My file is named "Axpert MKS 1-3KVA Service manual 20130611.pdf". I'm pretty sure I got it from this forum, in "Axpert Service Manuals 1.0.0" (thanks, vandyh!).

I revisited this older thread because of a "like" by @starpk to my post.

 

PIP MS 3kVA block.png

Edited by Coulomb
Forgot to mention the "hence" part.
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