Generator hookup on Outback VFXR3524A

calebcaleb Registered Users Posts: 25 ✭✭
I have installed a VFXR3524A at my off-grid cabin.  I also purchased the generator relay kit sold by Northern Arizona Wind and Sun.  However, I can't find in any documentation where I'm supposed to install the relay (I'm sure it's there somewhere, but my unit didn;t come with any documentation so I've pulled all the manuals I can find online and have read through them dozens of times).  I also can't figure out where the generator is supposed to wire up to.  Right now I have it wired in to the AC Input and it does provide my cabin with power when I run it but it doesn't seem to charge my batteries.  After a rough winter this year, my batteries are struggling to get a full charge (it also doesn't help that the last time I snow shoed in to my cabin this winter, I accidentally turned off my panels and left the inverter on  :( I meant to turn the inverter off and leave the panels on).  So I'm hoping to finally hook-up my generator the correct way and let it help keep my batteries happy until I can start to get some good sun up there.

Anyways, any advice or documentation you can point me to on where to install the relay and where I should wire the generator in to?  I've read the documentation on configuring my Mate 3 for generator, I think once I can get the physical connection part right, I can figure out the rest but I'm open to any guidance.



  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,520 admin
    Which relay kit? (Link?)

    Generally, NAWS has documentation on their webpage, if nothing shipped with the relay kit.

    And, call NAWS if you have questions (such as missing documentation). They are very happy to help.

    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • EstragonEstragon Registered Users Posts: 4,478 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Is the generator 120vac output only, split phase 120/240v, or ?.  What size (watts)?  Is the start control 2 wire or 3?

    I'd suggest getting the generator working properly without relays or autostarting.  
    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
  • calebcaleb Registered Users Posts: 25 ✭✭
    Thanks guys.  I actually reached out to NAWS support last week and hadn't heard back yet, that's why I posted here.  Oddly enough, I got a return email just after posting this so I'm waiting a callback from them.

    To answer your questions, this is the relay kit I bought

    The generator can output both 120 or 240, it's a 3500W generator with a two wire start.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,520 admin
    Well, not "oddly"... I sent them an email saying you had questions.

    One of the owners, David Lauzon, said he was looking into your email and making sure that it was addressed.

    Take care,
    -Bill "it is good to have friends in low places" B.  o:)
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • calebcaleb Registered Users Posts: 25 ✭✭
    Ha, thanks!
  • wellbuiltwellbuilt Solar Expert Posts: 469 ✭✭✭
    Hi  Caleb , I have a vfxr 36 48 a 
    I don’t use the gen start but to charge the battery’s  my generator wires to the AC in  terminal  
      I have a flex power one outback system with an inverted bypass switch so I can cut the inverter off and just   Power the house with the generator . 
     To charge the batteries  i push the AC in on the mate that allows generator power to the inverter . 
     Then push charging on the mate and scroll down , hit mode   ON to turn on the charging ,  then hit bulk charge . 
     The orange light on the ac button will flash along with the orange light in the inverter it self , when the orange light stop flashing and stays solid you will here the generated start to grunt  .
     If you head back to the main screen  you will see the generator power bar start to ramp up  it will read gen power in and charging power out . 
     Ps you need to program your  gen specs in to the mate   Pass code 141 will get you in settings  , select ac generator not ac grid  also gen watts  then how much power to draw from your generator  example I have a Honda 2800 watt  inverter generator and I am set to draw 20 A from the generator leaving some head room to run the house and charg the battery’s at the same time . 
     My champion generator has a hard time  syncing with the inverter I have to let it get warm then add a small load to the unit , some times it takes a few pushes of the bulk charge button to start the charger . 
     I don’t use the generator start  function  , But I think the relay goes out buy the generator and you need a relay that works with 2 wire or 3 wire depending on the type of wiring in Your generator .
      I’m new to all this but I’ve been working with my system since last August .
      It took me a wail to get my system up and running. Keep at it .   I bet there is a vid on line that will help you . John 
    Out back  flex power one  with out back 3648 inverter fm80 charge controler  flex net  mate 16 gc215 battery’s 4425 Watts solar .
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