Inverter Issues on Existing System

jackiegibsonjackiegibson Posts: 2Registered Users
I sit on the board of our HOA and we have a solar panel system at the front of the subdivision that runs a small LED light and sprinkler controller. The complete system was installed about 6 years ago.  The original installer is no longer available and we don't have anyone really versed in the system to understand what our problems are. The panel was replaced last year and we replaced the battery 2 years ago.  Personally, I believe the battery may be the culprit, but not real sure.

1 Panel: CanadianSolar CS6P-270P
Pmax: 270W
Vmp: 30.8V
Imp: 8.75A
Voc: 37.9V
Isc: 9.32A

1 Battery: Optima Bluetop Marine Dual Purpose D34M-950
Model: D34M
MCA: 870
CCA: 750
AH: 55
RC: 120

We have a Solar Charge Controller, that I assume is working properly.  The LED light works without issue each night.

Our problem is with the inverter that supplies power to the sprinkler controller.  It was several years old and was not supplying AC power.  We replaced with a like kind PowerStream PST-INV1224-60Hz 24Vac True Sine Wave Inverter.  When connected to the system, we get a solid 12V DC power in, but 0 AC power out.  The inverter does not trigger "on".  When I connect the inverter to my car battery (as requested by PowerStream), the inverter hums and provides AC power out.

I'm at a loss and not real sure where to turn or who to call.  Spoken with a few electricians who claim it's not an electrical issue since we can verify 12V DC in.  It's not an inverter issue since I can verify it works properly when connected to the car.  So that leaves me with wondering if it's an incorrect battery.  One of our homeowners replaced it with the current battery and we are unsure what battery was there to begin with.  Any ideas if the battery could be the problem and what type of battery we need to fix this?

Comments

  • petertearaipetertearai Posts: 348Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    so not the inverter . Measure the  DC voltage into inverter when starting the inverter  it may just collapse the voltage so the inverter wont run . A good fully charged battery should be measuring around 12.6 volts . And if your charging is working the voltage from the PV through the charge controller should start at around 14.8 volts , then eventually drop to a float voltage of  13. something .
    So my pick is the battery is flat ,  .... why  not charging, ....  or  more load than the PV can supply. 
    2225 wattts pv . Outback 2kw  fxr pure sine inverter . fm80 charge controller . victron battery monitor . 24 volts 450 ah surette batterys . off grid  holiday home 
  • EstragonEstragon Posts: 2,838Registered Users ✭✭✭✭✭
    Any chance the polarity was reversed hooking up to the system battery?

    Was the system battery being charged by the solar panel at the time (in which case voltage would normally be higher than 12v - maybe higher than the 14.5v max for the inverter)? Was there a load on the inverter output (in which case maybe the battery has lost enough capacity that voltage sags below ~10.5 min)?
    Off-grid.  
    Main daytime system ~4kw panels into 2xMNClassic150 370ah 48v bank 2xOutback 3548 inverter 120v + 240v autotransformer
    Night system ~1kw panels into 1xMNClassic150 700ah 12v bank morningstar 300w inverter
  • littleharbor2littleharbor2 Posts: 1,027Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Can you give us the make and model of the Charge controller? The solar panel is not a 12 or 24 volt panel. You definitely need an MPPT controller. Also I'm not clear what voltage the inverter is. I see 24 noted twice in the info. Is it a 2400 watt, 12 volt inverter? If a 24 volt system? If so you don't have high enough voltage coming into your charge controller to maintain a 24 volt system. If it is a 12 volt system you need the MPPT controller Without an MPPT controller you are getting a small percentage of the potential charging power.

    2.1 Kw Suntech 175 mono, Classic 200, Trace SW 4024 ( 15 years old  but brand new out of sealed factory box Jan. 2015), Bogart Tri-metric, 700 ah @24 volt AGM battery bank. Plenty of Baja Sea of Cortez sunshine.

  • EstragonEstragon Posts: 2,838Registered Users ✭✭✭✭✭
    FWIW, I looked up what I think is the inverter... 12vdc in, 24vac out ~40w (presumably what the irrigation controller needs).
    Off-grid.  
    Main daytime system ~4kw panels into 2xMNClassic150 370ah 48v bank 2xOutback 3548 inverter 120v + 240v autotransformer
    Night system ~1kw panels into 1xMNClassic150 700ah 12v bank morningstar 300w inverter
  • EstragonEstragon Posts: 2,838Registered Users ✭✭✭✭✭
    My guess is @petertearai is right, and the battery is a goner. 55ah isn't a lot to cover lighting and a 40w inverter for multiple gloomy days, and a "dual purpose" battery likely won't last long sitting at low states of charge. A load test would confirm.
    Off-grid.  
    Main daytime system ~4kw panels into 2xMNClassic150 370ah 48v bank 2xOutback 3548 inverter 120v + 240v autotransformer
    Night system ~1kw panels into 1xMNClassic150 700ah 12v bank morningstar 300w inverter
  • jackiegibsonjackiegibson Posts: 2Registered Users
    Thanks all!  I'll have the battery load tested today. 
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