Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

pjudepjude Registered Users Posts: 9
Hi,

I have a Magnum MS-4024 inverter installed with a MNE-240 Series E-panel. Everything was working fine. Last night suddenly I loose power and the inverter is not working. I followed the instruction manual and factory reset the inverter. Nothing happen! It seems the inverter always remain in search mode. When I start the inverter I could hear the charger starting making a decent noise. Not Anymore!

To troubleshoot it I use one light bold, 15 watts.

Test 1:
=====
1) slide the Inverter Bypass switch to the “INVERTER” position on the epanel
2) I shut down my generator and use the inverter exclusively.
3) Turn the light....Nothing work

Test 2:
=====
1) slide the Inverter Bypass switch to the “INVERTER” position on the epanel
I leave the
2) Turn on the inverter

I hear the inverter starts... the light turns on briefly and turn off. The inverter goes off as well.


Any suggestion what may be wrong with my system.

Thanks,
--Jude

Comments

  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    Since this isn't a grid-tie inverter, I'm going to assume it's used as a battery-based back-up on "critical systems" when the power goes down.

    So the first question is; are the batteries okay? If they've not been receiving charge (for whatever reason) while power is up then they may be too low to power the inverter.

    The second thing I think of is that the 15 Watt bulb may not be enough to keep it out of search mode (although it should be).

    Some more details are needed. Such as how is it wired up for operation? Are there solar panels charging the batteries, or does it rely on grid power through the MS? If the latter, are you sure it's been on in "charge" mode while the power is up?

    It's difficult to diagnose these things "by remote control" as you don't know how it's wired and how it should be functioning under a given set of circumstances. :blush:
  • pjudepjude Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    Cariboocoot,

    I understand how challenging it could be to diagnose these things "by remote control". Unfortunately in Haiti whatever help we could find is truly appreciated. Please ask as many questions you could and hopefully it help me in the end.

    This is a battery-based back-up. We are in Haiti. As it is right we are not using solar panels. I'm sorry we are using a Generator to charge the batteries when they are low. The way it works (I believe) when the Gen comes online, the Inverter auto switch to charge mode. The inverter uses the Gen energy to charge the batter, and gen provides the AC loads. When the Gen turns off, the Inverter takes over. All that happen without having to manually do anything. At least that's how I assume it was working.

    We followed the Nidlite manual to wire the inverter the to the epanel. Our configuration is as followed:

    Gen ----> Main panel ---> Sub Panel ---> Epanel ---> Magnum ---> Battery bank

    From the Main panel we are using 40 (double) amp that feed into the sub panel.

    As far I can tell the batteries are ok. Using a multi-tester the charge is > 20 volt.

    Thanks,
    --Jude
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,433 admin
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    Have you placed a volt meter right on the DC input terminals of the inverter? Then monitor the DC battery voltage as the inverter attempts to start the load?

    On occassion, you can have cable crimps/bolt connections fail (or corrosion damage the cable). Low enough resistance to run the inverter electronics, but not enough current available to supply the loads.

    Double check the AC output connections too--but probably less chance of a failure as you describe the problem.

    If the DC Voltage is stable and within the inverter's input voltage range, then it sounds like the inverter may have failed (:cry:).

    While you are working on getting the inverter working again or a replacement on-site--Check your battery bank specific gravity... If the battery bank is significantly under 80% state of charge--Beg/borrow/buy a temporary AC battery charger to get the batteries back up to 90%+ state of charge.

    You don't want the batteries to sulfate (days/weeks below 75% state of charge) while you are working on inverter / charger problem.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • boBboB Solar Expert Posts: 983 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    Did I read correctly that the inverter won't come out of search mode ?

    If so, did you go to the settings and adjust the search level to "OFF" ??
    (same as zero Watts)

    boB
  • pjudepjude Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    Have you placed a volt meter right on the DC input terminals of the inverter?
    Yes! voltage was normal. it was about 25 volts

    Then monitor the DC battery voltage as the inverter attempts to start the load?
    24 volts

    One thing I observed the AC output from the inverter produces 32 when starts after it drop 4.

    Are you really sure the Inverter mess up?

    BOb,

    Unfortunately I do not have a remote control. It got stolen. Is there another way to adjust the search level to "OFF" without the remote control?

    Thanks,
    --Jude
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,433 admin
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    I am certainly no expert... Perhaps you can email Magnum Support and see if they can help you.

    From page 48 of the MS inverter manual (PDF download):
    4.4 Resetting the Inverter

    Under some fault conditions (i.e., an ‘internal’ fault), the inverter will need to be reset.

    To reset the inverter:
    Press and hold the Power ON/OFF pushbutton (see figure 4-1) for approximately fifteen (15) seconds until the Charging/Inverting Status LED comes on and flashes rapidly; once the rapid flashing has begun, release the Power ON/OFF pushbutton. The Status LED will go off after the push button is released.

    After the inverter reset is completed, press the ON/OFF push button to turn the inverter ON.

    That is about all I have to help.

    Very sorry,
    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 9,247 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem
    pjude wrote: »
    Hi,

    I have a Magnum MS-4024 inverter installed with a MNE-240 Series E-panel. Everything was working fine. Last night suddenly I loose power and the inverter is not working......



    How long was everything working fine ? 2 or 3 days? Months? years ?


    When was water last added to the batteries ?
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    If I'm reading the reply correctly, you're suffering a 1 Volt drop at the inverter when the inverter is switched on? This shouldn't be. The inverter only draws 25 Watts no load - around 1 Amp of current.

    Then there's this:
    One thing I observed the AC output from the inverter produces 32 when starts after it drop 4.

    32 and 4 what? Amps? Watts? Volts? With no load it should show 120 VAC, 0 Amps, 0 Watts. The 15 Watt bulb should pull it out of search mode, as it should only require 7 Watts to do so. Try a 100 Watt incandescent light just in case the search mode has somehow been set to something higher than default.

    The missing remote is a problem, as that's needed for changing programming (if I'm reading the manual correctly).

    So ...

    1). Check batteries. Electrolyte level, SG readings in each cell (if not sealed), resting Voltage.
    2). Check wiring from batteries to inverter for loose connections, corrosion, any signs of failure.
    3). Contact Magnum. There may be some help there (like replacement control unit) or it may be the inverter has fried.

    Maybe Magnums don't like your environment there and you need to buy an Outback. :cry:
  • halfcrazyhalfcrazy Solar Expert Posts: 720 ✭✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    It sure sounds to me like a lack of dc voltage where you say it comes on for a bit than goes away. We need dc voltage readings at the inverter before and during the load start I suspect you may have a bad cable?
  • KeithWHareKeithWHare Solar Expert Posts: 140 ✭✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem
    pjude wrote: »

    I have a Magnum MS-4024 inverter installed with a MNE-240 Series E-panel.

    Is the inverter really a Magnum MS-4024-AE? The MS-4024 (no -AE) outputs 120 volts, while the MS-4024-AE outputs 240 volts. The Midnite Solar MNE250STM-L-240 is a 240 volt panel.
    pjude wrote: »
    Gen ----> Main panel ---> Sub Panel ---> Epanel ---> Magnum ---> Battery bank

    Have you tried the light bulb test after turning off the breaker in the sub panel that connects to the E-Panel? You might get the behavior you describe if something is overloading the inverter.

    Where in Haiti are you located?

    Keith
  • Offgrid MarkOffgrid Mark Registered Users Posts: 1
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    I have issues with the same setup. I have the MS-4024-PAE magnum inverter, also have the MNE-240 series E-Panel, and running a eu2000 honda generator to charge when the panels are'nt putting out. I have a real good battery bank, 12 L16 6 volt batteries. My problem, when I plug the honda in to charge, lights in the house are very dim, bathroom fan won't run, neither will anything larger, as long as the honda is plugged into the system. I think it has something to do with the honda in combination with this system. Not sure though. The honda 2000 will charge the batteries, but while charging or just having the genertator running, power in the house is not normal. Even if I bypass the inverter(which does'nt actually by pass the inverter) on the MNE-240 e-panel things are still not normal. It's got me scratching my head. Any ideas? PS, not sure if I added to this forum properly or not, my first time on a forum.
    pjude wrote: »
    Hi,

    I have a Magnum MS-4024 inverter installed with a MNE-240 Series E-panel. Everything was working fine. Last night suddenly I loose power and the inverter is not working. I followed the instruction manual and factory reset the inverter. Nothing happen! It seems the inverter always remain in search mode. When I start the inverter I could hear the charger starting making a decent noise. Not Anymore!

    To troubleshoot it I use one light bold, 15 watts.

    Test 1:
    =====
    1) slide the Inverter Bypass switch to the “INVERTER” position on the epanel
    2) I shut down my generator and use the inverter exclusively.
    3) Turn the light....Nothing work

    Test 2:
    =====
    1) slide the Inverter Bypass switch to the “INVERTER” position on the epanel
    I leave the
    2) Turn on the inverter

    I hear the inverter starts... the light turns on briefly and turn off. The inverter goes off as well.


    Any suggestion what may be wrong with my system.

    Thanks,
    --Jude
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    Welcome to the forum Mark.

    My guess is you are using the 120 VAC Honda generator across the 240 VAC input to the inverter. The loads will be switched to the generator, but instead of seeing 240 VAC split into two halves they get 120 VAC split into two halves: 60 Volts.

    Get a DVM and measure an outlet's Voltage when you're doing this. See if it isn't closer to 60 than 120. Also measure the Voltage across the two legs of the service. Chances are that is where you'll find your 120 VAC when running the gen. Basically it's incompatible with this set-up.
  • solarvicsolarvic Solar Expert Posts: 1,060 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Magnum MS-4024 + Grid problem

    The MS-4024AE series provides 120/240VACoutput, but the imput can be wired either as a 120/240 vac imput or a 120 VAC imput (to 1 imput omly) depending on your imput source. no mater whether 120 or 240 vac imput you still get 240 vac output. On page 25 of my manual. Solarvic
  • 2002Alarus2002Alarus Registered Users Posts: 5 ✭✭
    I have a new magnum 4024pae. Works nice as an inverter, but when I hooked up my Generac 10KW 220 volt generator to run a test charge of the batteries, the generator ran 20 minutes and then it quit. The controller is burned out on the generator  I went back to the inverter, to check the wire connections (they were fine) and I could see a flashing red light on the control board above three red, yellow, and green LED lights. I show no fault at all, but a flashing red light seems to be something to worry about. I cannot find out what it indicates. The inverter works fine except it does take a couple of pushes of the button to get it to come on as opposed to just one. Is this normal. or do I have a defective unit? Thank you.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,433 admin
    I don't know anything about the inverter... But I would double check your wiring and how many amps you are pulling from the genset.

    Wiring wise, In North America, we have have 120/240 VAC @ 60 Hz split phase power, with the Neutral Bonded to earth ground in a single location.

    In a normal home, this is usually done in the main breaker panel. Neutral is tied to earth/safety ground, then to a ground rod/cold water pipe/etc.

    In an off grid system--You want "single point" grounding between Neutral and Green Wire ground. But you may have several points where the neutral+ground bonds are made. In the main panel; in the AC inverter, and in the genset. It may be done in one location or even (from the factory) done in all three locations.

    Multipoint grounding can cause current flow for your loads to share the parallel Neutral (white) wire and the Green wire safety ground. Safety grounds are not supposed to carry any load currents, only fault currents.

    With gensets, is seems that some gensets have had voltage control boards fail from having shared green+white wire current flow (not positive, but a few debugging threads seem to indicated that failure mode). The solution is to figure out where you want that single point of ground (typically in the main AC panel) and "lift" the factory grounds in the AC inverter output and at the Genset safety/frame ground (smaller that ~3,500 Watt inverters+generators seem to more often come with unbonded N+G, and larger ones default with N+G bonding).

    Mutli-point grounding also could have issues with mixed AC/DC multipoint grounding too (battery bus voltage is lower than AC voltage, and carries 5-10x more current--- I.e., 120 VAC @ 10 amps = 12 VDC @ 100 amps = 1,200 Watts). Battery current in AC wiring/green wire grounding can over current the AC wiring/safety wiring.

    Also, many gensets (and some AC inverters) come with ground fault breakers (GFI)--Ground bonding on "both sides" of the GFI device will cause them to trip too.

    Another thing to look at--Check the AC current draw from the Genset L1 + L2 + Neutral wires... I would suggest that you do not pull >80% of generator rated current... When charging a battery bank, you can draw programmed current for hours as the bank charges from deep cycling. And residential wiring and generator designs can overheat/fail if drawing/carrying 100% of rated current for hours on end. Using 80% derating for wiring and non-commercial gensets keeps things "happier" (gensets don't overheat, wiring stays cooler, no false trips on breakers).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,433 admin
    By the way Alarus,

    Keep the replies in the thread you have created... Making the same/similar posts in different threads/discussions will get hard to follow.

    I will copy my post above to your other thread and delete it here.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • 2002Alarus2002Alarus Registered Users Posts: 5 ✭✭
    Thanks!
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