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Mustek trying to get out of a warranty claim


Furbz
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Hi All,

i am looking for some 3rd party advice.

it is my feeling that Mustek is trying to hide behind weak excuses to claim my warranty has been voided.

as i am not knowledgeable in this field i'm looking for some input from members to help me figure if they are full of it or if what they are telling me is true.

First off the unit i have is a Mecer 3Ph 10kw Hybrid Inverter.

the unit has been a real lemon and has had to be fixed by mustek 4 times now (this being the 4th). thats 4 times since April 2019.

the unit has spent more time at Mustek than on my actual wall working.

 

So here is the detail of this last failure.

the unit had been working flawlessly since the 3rd failure at the end of January 2020. 

when it did blow it was a massive bang, complete with black smoke. 

i sent the unit in to Mustek and was contact by a representative who was assessing the unit. 

the below are his comments based on the attached pictures of my install. comments in red are my own

"

Hi Keith,

I had a case of food poisoning and back today. After the review of the installation photos the installation has a lot of problems that could have stopped the inverter from being damaged.

  • There is no protection on the incoming side of the AC from Eskom. 
  • The AC and DC cables are running in the same trunking that is against the regulation. It creates thermal transfer to the inverter.
  • The battery cable was lengthened and probably not the same length that creates a volt drop.

I will send you the quote for repair of the inverter. If there is further questions please don’t hesitate to ask.

 

Kind Regards

<NAME REMOVED>"

 

the above remarks i believe are is insane. for Mustek to hide behind them i feel is unreal as this assessment was done via pictures and assumptions based theron. 

  1. we have surge arrestors on the incoming Eskom side. this is clear from the pictures sent.
  2. the AC and DC cables are very clearly in separate conduit in the pictures. the AC on the left, the DC on the right.
  3. the battery cables may be differing lengths, but has not actually been measured. i will measure them up tomorrow to find out if this indeed the case. if they are how much of an impact could this have? and is this grounds to void a warranty where the damage caused was on the AC side?

 

Here is the second correspondence:

"Hi Keith

To clarify the warranty has been voided on Installation Error.

The Inverter has been in at 4 different occasions and that is way we asked for the installation pictures.

The damage to the main board is so extensive that all three phases is burned. Refer to pictures attached. 

The damage is caused by a surge and is not cover under the warranty.

To repair all the damage to the inverter is not economical and I would suggest a new unit.

Please let me know if you would like an quote for a replacement inverter.

 

Regards

<NAME REMOVED>"

 

what are you thoughts?

This is not a cheap piece of equipment. and i am fully happy to go the legal route if needed - especially as Mustek would then be legally bound to inform their supplier(Mecer).

i'd love to hear Mecers thoughts on this.

 

 

 

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Hello. 

Who did the installation? You?

This inverter feed-in excess energy into the grid.

18 minutes ago, Furbz said:

WhatsApp Image 2020-10-22 at 13.55.55[1].jpeg

Can you induct where is the inverter input and the return from the inverter?

 

19 minutes ago, Furbz said:

20201022_135338.jpg

What breaker are that? AC or DC? I'm I blind or where is the Fuses?

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2 hours ago, Barryv said:

Hello. 

Who did the installation? You?

This inverter feed-in excess energy into the grid.

Can you induct where is the inverter input and the return from the inverter?

 

What breaker are that? AC or DC? I'm I blind or where is the Fuses?

Hi Barry,

i had a reputable company install it for me: My Generation

This inverter can feed into the grid if we wanted it to. as this is illegal, it was setup in a way that used the power first on our backup, then to charge the batteries. when the batteries were full the inverter limited itself to ensure no power returned to Eskom.

The breakers you are showing is a fireman's switch on the outside of the building to isolate the panels(DC side) in the event of a fire. as you can see these lines each have their own set of surge arresters 

the surge arresters are inside the building and shown in the pictures. there are 4x surge arrestors in a separate box just next to our Main DB board linked to Eskom line.

 

i hope the above helps. if needed i am happy to take further pictures to help aid in this

 

Edited by Furbz
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I need more information on the wiring to the BD Board.

Are you base in SA?

30 minutes ago, Furbz said:

The breakers you are showing is a fireman's switch on the outside of the building to isolate the panels(DC side) in the event of a fire. as you can see these lines each have their own set of surge arresters 

Can you take closer photos on the labels of the Isolate switch on the DC side?

 

Capture.thumb.PNG.5e924968306fd57e6179fe2dbd4d8010.PNG

This breaker the mains or the inverter>?


I'm trying to see why you have problems. 

want to help.

 

 

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12 hours ago, Barryv said:

I need more information on the wiring to the BD Board.

Are you base in SA?

Can you take closer photos on the labels of the Isolate switch on the DC side?

 

Capture.thumb.PNG.5e924968306fd57e6179fe2dbd4d8010.PNG

This breaker the mains or the inverter>?


I'm trying to see why you have problems. 

want to help.

 

 

No Problem,

i'm looking for help/feedback of any kind.

i'm not to technical in electrics but i know enough to get the info needed and to understand that pretty much all 3 of their points used to void the warranty are suspect. hence why i am here, to learn and figure out if going legal is a good option.

 

I'm based in RSA, Midrand, Kyalami.

i'm heading to the office today so i will take any additional pictures you want - just list them and i'll make it happen.

 

on the picture.

your higher circle - those lines come off our breaker at the top, go through that energy meter on the right(uses to ensure we do not feed back into eskom), then off to the inverter. 

the lower circle - those thick wires are my incoming COJ power lines.

the breaker is my main breaker 150A breaker into the building and is massive overkill. we use at maximum about 30A.

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I am now getting sent a formal damage report stating that the damage is caused by a surge.

i also believe that Mustek will be responding to this thread. nice to know they are willing to have an open discussion.

 

my question is this, is there any way a surge could get past my AC surge arrestors and cause this type of damage?

surely my arrestors would have popped to?

based on the pictures of the unit it must have been an enormous surge. so i cannot understand how only the inverter failed. and nothing else in my offices failed (surge arrestors, computers, aircons, alarm, irrigation).

 

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15 minutes ago, JustinSchoeman said:

What are the chances of all three phases surging simultaneously?  Do you have large 3 phase equipment?

Personally, I would look at the common point for the 3 phases - the DC bus.  And if it was a DC bus failure, then it is almost certainly a product fault.

we do have an injection molder. it's not massive though. pulls around 2kw when on.

this equipment IS NOT on the backup side so never pulls from the inverter at all.

this equipment is also only run maybe twice a year and was not on when the inverter blew

 

your second point: i'll have to get someone to look at that for me, i am not going to know what i am looking at without substantial help. maybe i can post pictures?

the issue here is if i open the unit to look then that certainly voids the warranty. and i somehow doubt i'd get this info or pictures from Mustek.

 

i have requested that Mustek include on their report how it is possible that nothing else blew at my offices and how this apparent surge got past my surge arrestors without them blowing up.

i just do not see how only the inverter blew. it makes no sense.

Edited by Furbz
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10 minutes ago, Furbz said:

your second point: i'll have to get someone to look at that for me, i am not going to know what i am looking at without substantial help. maybe i can post pictures?

Unfortunately, it would be difficult to tell from pictures. It would need to go for a 3rd party evaluation if this goes to arbitration or a court case.

I would challenge them to:

1) indicate exactly which requirements in the installation manual you violated, and

2) provide written proof, preferably from an independent 3rd party, that the failure was caused by an external power surge.

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I think (Correct me is I'm wrong as I'm learning.) Did you had no power/load-shedding from Eskom, and when the power comeback the inverter pop? 

I think Eskom screwed up and drop the neutral and the voltage when up. 

Yes your inverter is suppose to handle it but been in for so many repairs the people didn't fix it 100% correctly? 

Send photos of the AC surge protecting units?>

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9 minutes ago, JustinSchoeman said:

Unfortunately, it would be difficult to tell from pictures. It would need to go for a 3rd party evaluation if this goes to arbitration or a court case.

I would challenge them to:

1) indicate exactly which requirements in the installation manual you violated, and

2) provide written proof, preferably from an independent 3rd party, that the failure was caused by an external power surge.

Thanks,

i will certainly be taking this further if their report is not substantive.

 

1 minute ago, Barryv said:

I think (Correct me is I'm wrong as I'm learning.) Did you had no power/load-shedding from Eskom, and when the power comeback the inverter pop? 

I think Eskom screwed up and drop the neutral and the voltage when up. 

Yes your inverter is suppose to handle it but been in for so many repairs the people didn't fix it 100% correctly? 

Send photos of the AC surge protecting units?>

Hi,

Nope it was business as usual. no load-shedding or power outage.

surely if COJ did screw up and that did occur, my surge arrestors would have also blown? or at the least show damage?

yeah thats my wonder, who is to say it was repaired correctly. the counterargument to this is it worked perfectly for a good number of months before it blew again.

this is my AC surge arrestors. picture taken after the inverter blew on request of Mustek.

20201022_135251.jpg.92710b707a5810bb6b2d8ddafcab61b5.jpg

 

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it is my belief that they are being difficult as i said i do not want the unit back. i'd rather have a refund. 

it's been in 4 times, each time for rather serious failures.

i'd rather fall back on the CPA and get a refund at this point. and i think it is that makes them want to rather void the warranty.

at this point i would be happy just to accept the repaired/replaced unit and sell it on at a loss. it's clearly not a good unit.

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1 minute ago, Barryv said:

can you take a Close up of them with the labels? need to read the descriptions

sure, i'll be heading to the office later today (i have painters at my home). 

i'll take comprehensive pictures to try aid in this discussion.

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2 minutes ago, Furbz said:

it is my belief that they are being difficult as i said i do not want the unit back. i'd rather have a refund. 

it's been in 4 times, each time for rather serious failures.

i'd rather fall back on the CPA and get a refund at this point. and i think it is that makes them want to rather void the warranty.

at this point i would be happy just to accept the repaired/replaced unit and sell it on at a loss. it's clearly not a good unit.

Do you really need 3 phase power? 

King inverters are amazing and go up to 9 units.

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Just now, Barryv said:

Do you really need 3 phase power? 

King inverters are amazing and go up to 9 units.

i am currently looking at a quote to change to 3x single phase Victron MultiPlus-II 48/5000/70-50 4000W Inverters

it's an expensive exercise to change though

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21 minutes ago, Furbz said:

3x single phase Victron MultiPlus-II 48/5000/70-50 4000W Inverters

I'm don't like them. They are expensive and if not installed correctly they can case more problems, 

Your Pylontech batteries are still good? They are a lekker size, I think together @ 300amph+- .

3x king inverters with it own phase and connected to the same batteries and each has it own pv array will be awesome. 

image.thumb.png.12677f71f7da5f99020e767d86ac185a.png

Edited by Barryv
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4 minutes ago, Barryv said:

I'm don't like them. They are expensive and if not installed correctly they can case more problems, 

Your Pylontech batteries are still good? They are a lekker size, I think together @ 300amph+- .

3x king inverters with it own phase and connected to the same batteries and each has it own pv array will be awesome. 

image.thumb.png.12677f71f7da5f99020e767d86ac185a.png

Thanks,

yep still getting quotes. to rewire the entire setup with the Victron solution with new COC is R133k (eina!) 

the Mecer if not warranted is R68k to repurchase (with its history i'm most certainly not interested in this solution)

i want a setup that can push power to my non-backup side but at the same time not push power to eskom. the Mecer cannot do this and so it's not a very efficient inverter.

the batteries are great, i got enough to run us through a 4 hour load-shedding cycle.

when load-shedding is not happening i then run them down overnight to further reduce our electrical spend.

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1 hour ago, Furbz said:

Thanks,

yep still getting quotes. to rewire the entire setup with the Victron solution with new COC is R133k (eina!) 

the Mecer if not warranted is R68k to repurchase (with its history i'm most certainly not interested in this solution)

i want a setup that can push power to my non-backup side but at the same time not push power to eskom. the Mecer cannot do this and so it's not a very efficient inverter.

the batteries are great, i got enough to run us through a 4 hour load-shedding cycle.

when load-shedding is not happening i then run them down overnight to further reduce our electrical spend.

3x Sunsynks can do this for far less.

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