generator/inverter charging setup...

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Comments

  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    I was wondering if running both the Outback MX60 Solar Controller and a Magnum MS 2012 charger would cause a similar problem of each unit misreading the current coming from the other as a battery SoC reading and possible interfere with the charge. I guess I'll be finding out soon enough as I'll be installing my system in about a week!
  • halfcrazyhalfcrazy Posts: 717Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    I have a pair of iota chargers set up on my 880 ah bank with a pair of sw plus stacked 2524's. I got sick of the household items not enjoying the generator power when passed thru so went with the iota's and the iq smart chargers they will do a bulk eq charge up to 29.6 then ramp down. I have been very happy with them so far here and iota told me i could add a 3rd one ore more if needed later
  • crewzercrewzer Posts: 1,832Registered Users, Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    Phil,

    I don't know about the Magnum charger, but I'll be surprised if your new MX60 has any problems when charging the same battery bank as the Magnum. The MX60 is pretty smart, and if the Magnum is keeping the battery voltage above the MX' settings, the MX' display will likely read "Absorb" (instead of "Absorbing") or "Bat Full". See page 37 of the MX manual, Rev. 6.2.

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • hillbillyhillbilly Posts: 334Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    Thanks for the informative discussion, as well as all your helpful advice. The Iota chargers already arrived and I have them set up, so not much of an issue left there to work out. As far as how they are performing, I am not totally sure yet, as the lowest level that our battery bank has dropped to is probably still close to 90%. While running them in parallel, or just one at a time I seem to get the same amp input (thus far no more than about 17amps, and then dropping lower). I am pretty sure that this is just the full level of the batteries that's causing them to reduce output, but this does sort of raise a question that has sort of bothered me for a while:
    My PV output will drop down dramatically too, when the charge controller reaches float stage (90%charge), but the output from the pv will drop so low that if the batteries are indeed at a 90% charge there is no way that they could reach 100%charge that day. 1400ah battery bank, pv input down from 12or 13amps to sometimes 3 or 4amps (eventually even lower); at 90% there should be somewhere near 100ah left to charge up right (I realize this is not an exact number, and is variable)? In all the percentage of charge rates that I have read over, it seems like I should still be putting a higher charge rate into the batteries for a while longer than any of my chargers seem to want to do (Iota's w/IQ4, and BS 2000E). Am I missing something? Typically my batteries will max out voltage wise at about 14.1 or 14.2 for a long time, and only occasionally will they go up to 14.3 or 14.4 (except while EQ'ing), I just want to make sure that I really am giving my batteries the full charge that I think (hope) I am giving them.
  • hillbillyhillbilly Posts: 334Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    ... oops, I should have finished re-reading the surrette recomendations page before posting that last response... According to Surrette, they recomend 14.2 volts as the correct voltage setting. I think that maybe I was thining that they should be getting a higher voltage due to specs that I had read on Trojan batteries or something. This makes me think that maybe I have indeed been getting a full charge, and that my chargers are working just fine...
    cheers!
  • arcandsparkarcandspark Posts: 63Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    That is great to here about being able to add more than on Iota together to increase the charge current. The Hawker batteries I have take 70 amps minumum to 120 max for factory setting. So 120 time 3 battery banks is 360 amps. Its hard to find a good three stage charger with 28 volt output at 360 amps but I am still looking. So far there are some that has a 28 volt alternator with 300 amp output. I might go that way. Polar Power has some excellent DC generator sets, many the military use that provide up to 600 amps at 28 volts. Polar Power also has a super nice Co-Generation system. That is the path I am taking. Use the wasted heat of the generator for other thngs like heating water for the house. That 1200 degree exhaust temperature is a lot of energy that is wasted to the atmosphere, why not try and use it? Great information on this one, Thanks for everyones input.

    Dave R> (arcandspark)
  • crewzercrewzer Posts: 1,832Registered Users, Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...
    As far as how they are performing, I am not totally sure yet, as the lowest level that our battery bank has dropped to is probably still close to 90%. While running them in parallel, or just one at a time I seem to get the same amp input (thus far no more than about 17amps, and then dropping lower). I am pretty sure that this is just the full level of the batteries that's causing them to reduce output,

    Hillbilly,

    What you're seeing is kind of normal. A three-stage charger holds target voltage(s) when operating in the absorb or float stages by cutting back on charge current.

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • hillbillyhillbilly Posts: 334Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    Charger update:
    Regarding the discussion on parallel Iota chargers; I made sure to use up a bunch of amp hours yesterday and last night (turned on all the lights, played the stereo extra loud for a while, took a LONG hot shower, etc), and with our battery bank down to about 82% SOC I fired up the generator. The 2 chargers in parallel (w/IQ4) are now kicking our full current! So fwiw running Iota chargers in Parallel seems to work great; I have not tried to connect all three chargers at once (I still have my original 30amp charger) but running 2 seems pretty slick...
    Cheers :-D
  • crewzercrewzer Posts: 1,832Registered Users, Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    8-)

    Enjoy!!
    Jim / crewzer
  • BrockBrock Posts: 629Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    Yes I also run 2 DLS 55's in parallel. Since my genset is 240vac I have one on each side of the 240 which is nice to run a smaller line at 240vac to the chargers. Then they just parallel in to the bank. Works like a charm :)
    3kw solar PV, 8 L16's, xw 5548, Honda eu2000i, iota DLS-54-13, Leaf EV, 4 ton horizontal geothermal, grid tied - Green Bay, WI
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    Thanks again Jim for your clarification, re; Magnum/MX60 charging.
  • MangasMangas Posts: 548Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    About desulfator effectiveness. Do they really extend battery life and/or just maintain efficiency?
    Ranch Off Grid System & Custom Home: 2 x pair stacked Schneider XW 5548+ Plus inverters (4), 2 x Schneider MPPT 80-600 Charge Controllers, 2 Xanbus AGS Generator Start and Air Extraction System Controllers, 64 Trojan L16 REB 6v 375 AH Flooded Cel Batteries w/Water Miser Caps, 44 x 185 Sharp Solar Panels, Cummins Onan RS20 KW Propane Water Cooled Genset, ICF House Construction, all appliances, Central A/C, 2 x High Efficiency Variable Speed three ton Central A/C 220v compressors, 2 x Propane furnaces, 2 x Variable Speed Air Handlers, 2 x HD WiFi HVAC Zoned System Controllers
  • nielniel Posts: 10,311Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    simply, that there isn't any evidence that i've seen or heard of that suggests desulphators work in any capacity or in any way. it's a waste.
  • crewzercrewzer Posts: 1,832Registered Users, Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    Mangas,

    I was able to recover some capacity of a single poorly maintained battery using a Battery Tender desulphinator ("pulse charger"). However, if batteries are well maintained to begin with (i.e, three-stage charging, correct charging voltages, temperature correction, EQ for flooded-cell models, etc.), then batteries won't significantly sulphate. So....

    Morningstar swears by their PWM charging technique, which was developed in collaboration with Sandia Lab's PV energy organization. There's a Sandia paper that describes capacity recovery using a PWM charger. Whether this is much benefit to a properly maintained battery is another matter.

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • nielniel Posts: 10,311Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: generator/inverter charging setup...

    i do have to point out that there's a big difference between the stronger, typically around 300hz, pwm charge controller and the meek 1mhz desulphators out there. don't go thinking that a higher powered 1mhz one would make a difference either as i tried that on my old wal mart marine batteries and it made 0 difference. if the desulphators really worked, doesn't everybody think that the controller manufacturers would've upped their pwms to a higher frequency for the pulse charging to take care of the sulphation at those higher claimed desulphating frequencies? standard pulse charging is ok, but beyond that there is no evidence i've seen or heard of on the claims of these desulphators. the desulphators are also sources of radio frequency interference too.
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