New Inverter

2

Comments

  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    although i wouldn't care if you sold the inverter to solar john and talked of it and made arrangements here on the forum, i do think it would be best done by pm. reiterating that it doesn't matter either way as neither of you are trying to make a business of it here on naws by selling a few personnal items (solar/renewable in nature or related products for such).
    it might be a good idea if you did go to read some of the rules.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,068 admin
    Re: New Inverter

    Forum Rules are here.
    Members may post their private property for sale (but NO eBay links! ). Links to manufacturers and our website is OK (yeah, ok, so maybe links to our site are commercial, but after all we DO pay for this board).

    I will edit my above post to say that EBay links are not allowed. (missed that on my first read through).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • halfcrazyhalfcrazy Solar Expert Posts: 720 ✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    weather you choose the outback or the magnum inverter you will be real happy with either look at www.midnitesolar.com there epanel is great and will make installation of either a breeze.
    if you go with the outback you will need a mate to do certain things. if you go with the magnum you will want there remote. either inverter will serve you well. the magnum does have a better battery charger if thats a issue?
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Moderators:

    Thanks for the wise info.

    SolarJohn:

    If you are still interested, yes, I don't mind selling the inverter. Nevertheless, I would like to fix it, first. The technician who opened it told me there are about 8 diodes burned (part IRF540N) [See message # 6 in this thread]. So, again, if you want to buy it, just let me know via this forum.

    As I said, the inverter was bought at NAWS less than a year ago (I have all the papers and invoices.), and it was very well treated. If you need a picture, I will take it to a photographer friend (Sorry I have no camera; and my old Nokia does not have one, either.)

    Anyway, thanks for your suggestion.
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    Now, I feel inclined to go for the Outback 2425, maybe just because I respect and admire Crewzer knowledge and expertisse.
    Thus, I ask: How easy (or hard) would it be to install that inverter? Keep in mind that in order to istall the Exeltech I just connected the battery cables in the rear end and a power strip in the front end...and violá, that was it
    .
    Jessica,

    I appreciate the kudos. :blush: We're lucky to have so many forum members with significant knowledge and expertise in this field.

    Hooking up the FX2524T for its most basic operational configuration (DC in, AC out) is fairly analogous to wiring up your old XP1100. On the DC side, you’ll need connections from the fuse/circuit breaker and battery bank. There’s a ground lug for the case, and you can hardwire a remote on/off switch to the control terminals (normal connected via a jumper). The inverter is not equipped with an AC output connector, so you’d need external wiring, circuit breaker(s) (in a load sub-panel), and, probably, AC sockets.

    As we discussed earlier, the Magnum and OutBack inverters are big and heavy, so it pays to plan ahead for the installation. OutBack manufactures the FLEXware 250 integrating hardware for a single inverter installation. I installed my inverter with a Midnite Solar E-panel a couple of years ago, and I have no regrets.

    The drawing linked here should provide an introduction to a basic installation (and then some): http://www.outbackpower.com/pdfs/wiring_diagrams/vfx2812.pdf

    The Mate is a useful external programming, control, and monitoring device. However, if you're just looking to replace the XP1100's DC-to-AC inversion functionality with a bigger inverter/charger, then the inverter's default settings are usually satisfactory, and the Mate generally isn't required. Borrowing a Mate is another option for changing settings.

    Please feel free to contact me via the forum or via a PM if you have any other questions.

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Crewzer:

    The fuse I have been using is a Class T, 110 amp. Will that be enough for the fx2524?
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Crewzer (Again!)

    The Specifications Sheet for the FX2524 reads, in row # 4: "Continuous AC RMS Output: 20.8 amps..."

    However, in rows # 11 and 12 it reads: Maximum Output Current: Peak: 56 amps... RMS 50 amps

    Which one is right?

    In addition: How much for the "optional 5 year warranty"?
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Jessica,

    The FX2524T inverter's output current specs are time-dependent. The inverter is rated to supply 20.8 A RMS continuous at 25 C (77 F) ambient, or 120 VAC x 20.8 A = 2,500 VA.

    The other "Maximum Current Output" specs are for short time periods. The 50 A and 70 A values are for very brief power surges. For example, using the 4,800 VA spec, the inverter could supply 40 A for 5 seconds.

    The three year warranty extension (from two years to five years) is $300, according to the latest installation manual. This optional coverage is paid directly to OutBack when the inverter is registered.

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • hillbillyhillbilly Solar Expert Posts: 334 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Ok this is basically a "dito" message, but:
    I too have been VERY happy with the Outback VFX3524, and even more impressed with how slick the Midnite Solar E-panal is. If you're connecting to all household loads rather than just plugging in individual items, I would say this addition is kind of a no-brainer. I have can't really say enough good things about the few Midnite Solar products that I have purchased, for the most part they seem to be well thought out, well built, SIMPLE, and very user friendly. I would highly recomend reading a bit about thier products and how they work, at first I thought that I wouldn't need/want most of the "stuff" that the E-panels came with...the more I read the more I realized that they are a very slick and simple way to mount and connect your inverter to your batteries.
    Good Luck,
  • SolarJohnSolarJohn Solar Expert Posts: 202 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    JESSICA wrote: »
    Moderators:

    Thanks for the wise info.

    SolarJohn:

    If you are still interested, yes, I don't mind selling the inverter. Nevertheless, I would like to fix it, first. The technician who opened it told me there are about 8 diodes burned (part IRF540N) [See message # 6 in this thread]. So, again, if you want to buy it, just let me know via this forum.

    As I said, the inverter was bought at NAWS less than a year ago (I have all the papers and invoices.), and it was very well treated. If you need a picture, I will take it to a photographer friend (Sorry I have no camera; and my old Nokia does not have one, either.)

    Anyway, thanks for your suggestion.

    Jessica,

    IRF540N's are only $1.36 from Digikey. If you're able to fix it, great! But let me know if you still want to sell it after you've attempted the repair.

    John
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    SolarJohn

    I ordered the IRF 540Ns. (I did not find them at Digikey, but at "MOUSER".)They should arrive today. As soon as my technician tells me what happened, I will make a decision.

    If you want, you may reach me at this address: [email protected]

    Thanks, to you and to all the good people participants of this forum.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    good luck with that and let us know what is found.
  • boBboB Solar Expert Posts: 980 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    JESSICA wrote: »
    SolarJohn

    I ordered the IRF 540Ns. (I did not find them at Digikey, but at "MOUSER".)They should arrive today. As soon as my technician tells me what happened, I will make a decision.

    If you want, you may reach me at this address: [email protected]

    Thanks, to you and to all the good people participants of this forum.

    FYI, there are MUCH better MOS FETs out there now days.
    For example, the IRFB4710 isn't really much more and is like, 3 or 4 times better than the IRF540N. The IRFB4710 isn't even the best one from IR...

    boB
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 9,022 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    > IRFB4710 isn't really much more and is like, 3 or 4 times better than the IRF540N

    searching Digikey for them :
    http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?PName?Name=IRFB4710PBF-ND
    10 for $22 100V 75A 14 mOhm @ 45A, 10V Vgs 170nC @ 10V 6160pF @ 25V

    and the old ones
    http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Detail?name=IRF540NPBF-ND
    10 for $13 100V 33A 44 mOhm @ 16A, 10V Vgs 71nC @ 10V 1960pF @ 25V

    (PBF = Lead Free for Europe)

    So I wonder if the higher capacitance at 60Hz is really even noticeable. A lot less series resistance.
    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 ,

  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    boB wrote: »
    FYI, there are MUCH better MOS FETs out there now days.

    boB

    Sorry, I already received de 540Ns.
    Nevertheless: Why, and in what respect are they (B4710) better?
    In addition: Would they perform nicely once istalled in an inverter that was designed to work with 540Ns?
  • Solar GuppySolar Guppy Solar Expert Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    MOSFETS are not plug and play, many factors come into play

    The high capacitance of the newer part without proper gate-drive will have higher switching losses. A new MOSFET will switch faster and will likely not work in an older PCB design and likely self-destruct.

    When MOSFETS fail, 99.9% of the time they short out and take out the gate drive circuitry, so just replacing MOSFETS usually will just result in more smoke and out more dollars

    As boB posted, there are much better FETS out there, the best IRF part in a TO-200 case for ~20khz switch is http://www.irf.com/product-info/datasheets/data/irfb4110qpbf.pdf
    which can almost reduce the non-switching losses to nill ..

    For the OP, if you really want to salvage the inverter, you will have to replace all the gate-drive parts, which could be discrete parts ( transistors ) or chips, possible clamping diodes and resistors as well as the FETS and if its the dsp/controller chip that failed, all it will do is just blow-up again.
  • boBboB Solar Expert Posts: 980 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    MOSFETS are not plug and play, many factors come into play

    The high capacitance of the newer part without proper gate-drive will have higher switching losses. A new MOSFET will switch faster and will likely not work in an older PCB design and likely self-destruct.

    Yes, sometimes this is true. Not always and not necessarily most of the time though.
    When MOSFETS fail, 99.9% of the time they short out and take out the gate drive circuitry, so just replacing MOSFETS usually will just result in more smoke and out more dollars

    I agree that 99.9% of the time the FETs short, but not all that often will it take the driver out. Maybe you need to try a different driver ?

    For the OP, if you really want to salvage the inverter, you will have to replace all the gate-drive parts, which could be discrete parts (transistors) or chips, possible clamping diodes and resistors as well as the FETS and if its the dsp/controller chip that failed, all it will do is just blow-up again.

    Sometimes. If these assumptions are true in Jessica's case, then she may as well not even try the IRF540s.

    I find that around 90% of the time, just replacing FETs fixes the unit and sometimes a gate drive resistor needs replacing. Never had the opportunity to fix an Exeltech though so all bets are off in her case...

    I think we will both agree that it's ALWAYS a pain in the A$$ !

    boB
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    boB wrote: »
    I agree that 99.9% of the time the FETs short, but not all that often will it take the driver out. Maybe you need to try a different driver ?
    Sometimes. If these assumptions are true in Jessica's case, then she may as well not even try the IRF540s.
    I find that around 90% of the time, just replacing FETs fixes the unit and sometimes a gate drive resistor needs replacing. Never had the opportunity to fix an Exeltech though so all bets are off in her case...

    I think we will both agree that it's ALWAYS a pain in the A$$ !
    boB

    Greetings:

    Those IRF540N were replaced, and...no, the inverter does not work. I am sending the unit back to EXELTECH because they agreed to fix it free of charges. (I am really GRATEFUL for their kindness and professionalism.)

    P.S.: It is not "her"case" but "his case"; "Jessica" is my wife's name.
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter
    I am sending the unit back to EXELTECH because they agreed to fix it free of charges.
    Cool! :cool:

    Regards,
    Jim / crewzer
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Crewzer:

    Thanks.
    And don't be sad. It is still my intention to buy the fx2524, and keep the exeltech as a backup.
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    :confused:Question for all of you who have, or have had, EXELTECH inverters:

    When my technician and me were re-arming the unit (remember? xp 1100) in order to send it to the factory, he noticed that two screws thet were supposed to be there were not. Virgin holes were there. They are two screws that, he thinks, should be just below the terminals where battery cables are connected, and, according to him, should be there to transfer the electricity from the terminals to the inside of the inverter.

    Well, I told him that those screws were never there, a fact that is obvious when you look at the holes where they should be.

    Then he said that those missing screws are the real culprit behind the failure of the unit, and the reason why its internal fuses are intact when some other parts blew up.

    Is he right?
    Can anybody throw some light upon this puzzle?

    Thanks.:confused:
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,068 admin
    Re: New Inverter

    Exeltech will probably have to be the one to answer those questions...

    When I designed/laid-out/built computer gear--we frequently had many "extra holes"... Sometimes they are for stuffing options, alternative components, registration holes for fabrication/assembly, etc...

    In general, anything that has "mass" and extends above the circuit board should be solidly mounted--for example, those two and three lead devices (FETs, Transistors, Diodes, etc.) using hardware (screws/nuts/rivets).

    If you see things that are just "floating" above the board--it is possible there is an assembly error--or even a cost/benefit decision that the mounting was not needed.

    For devices that dissipate a lot of heat--they are usually mounted (and heat sinked) if required, to ensure long life.

    The failure you had (high momentary load) and an immediate "pop"--missing heat sinking was probably not the issue. It was likely (from my guess) some other issue (electronic design, assembly, or just a bad part issues that will be covered by warranty).

    But without the product and schematics--it would be difficult to guess from here.

    My two cents worth...
    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Jessica,

    No worries. We'll be happy when you buy the inverter when you need it, and that you'll be happy that you made the right purchase.

    Regards,
    Jim / crewzer
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter/question for CREWZER

    Crewzer:

    Can you tell me if the FX2524 is capable to operate a water pump (Sears, model S48H2EC1581; 9.4 amps.)?

    [It is identical to this one:
    http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_08302509000P?vName=Tools&cName=Plumbing&sName=Jet+Pumps&sbf=Brand&sbv=Craftsman

    Thanks
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Jessica,

    Our pump-sizing rule-of-thumb is it takes a 3500 W or 3600 W inverter to comfortably handle a 3/4 HP pump. 2500 W:1/2 HP is virtually the same ratio, so I'd think you'd be OK with a 2524T inverter and the 1/2 HP pump (wired for 115 VAC).

    The 2524 is a very rugged inverter. Surge capacity (6000 VA) is the same as the 3048 and 3648 models. 5 second surge capacity (4800 VA) is almost as good as the 3048 and 3648 (5,000 VA). 30-min surge is not bad either (3,200 VA vs. 4,000 VA). These excellent specs are partially due to the fact that the 2524 uses the same case and heatsinks as its "big" cousins. :cool:

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    Great!8)
    Is there any real difference between the "vented" (turbo) model and the "sealed" model? Which one would you recommend? Please keep in mind that the inverter will be used in Puerto Rico, high humidity (specially from june to november) and temps. ranging form 90 to 100f in those months.
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    The fundamental difference between the VFX---- (vented) and the sealed FX----T (“turbo”) models is the vented unit draws cooling air through the case, while cooling for the sealed unit is assisted by the external “turbo” fan moving air around outside the case, which acts as the heat exchanger.

    Everything else being equal, the vented model can deliver more power because internal waste heat is more efficiently discharged via the internal fan-assisted venting. Hence the higher power ratings for the vented units.

    On the other hand, its intake filter may require occasional cleaning. The sealed model is intended for harsh environments. I have my FX2524T in my garage/workshop, and I don’t worry about it getting dusty.

    The inverter power specs are based on 77 F (25 C) ambient. I haven’t seen the temperature derating curve. Assuming something in the 1%/degree C range, the 2524T would be good for ~2,000 W at 40 C (104 F).

    If you expect any steady loads to stay below 1,600 W or so (2,000 W x 80%), I’d probably lean towards the sealed unit, as I like to minimize maintenance. But, if you plan to seriously load it down on occasion, then the big vented unit (VFX3524; 3,500 VA, 24 VDC) may make sense.

    HTH,
    Jim / crewzer
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter [URGENT!]

    The old inverter has not been repaired yet (Thumbs down, Exeltech.)

    I bought a new one, but it has not arrived yet.

    I had to return the loaner to my friend (A very good friend, indeed; but he needed the old AIMS.)

    Thus, I NEED TO KNOW:

    Since the system is still "running" (I mean: PV panels are still on the roof, MX60 is on, batteries are been charged.), but without an inverter; Will all this cause any damage to any of those parts?
    The batteries are always on "float", (obviously: there is no load connected!)

    I really need to know if I should turn off the MX60, or cover the panels, or disconnect the batteries.

    Thanks.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,068 admin
    Re: New Inverter

    Use an accurate volt meter to check the float voltage... If it is to the specifications of your batteries (typically around 13.7 volts or so at 77F), then you should not be hurting anything.

    If the batteries are flooded cell--watch the water leve--if it starts going down a lot (in days or weeks, rather than needing water once every month or so)--then there is a sign of overcharging.

    If the batteries are AGM--double checking the float voltage is critical--since you cannot add any water if the batteries do vent (and make sure that your system is not set to equalize the batteries automatically--or that the "equalize" voltage is, at mos, 0.2 volts higher than the absorb charging voltage--per battery's manual).

    On the other hand, if there are no battery loads--disconnecting the charger for a few days at a time should not hurt anything.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • JESSICAJESSICA Solar Expert Posts: 289 ✭✭
    Re: New Inverter

    BB, two questions:

    First: What about the panels (Kyoceras 130)?
    Second: Isn't the MX60 supposed not to overcharge batteries?

    [I cheked the battery bank, with a craftman volt meter, just minutes ago
    (2:00 PM in Puerto Rico). Reading: 28.5 (Four 6 volt golf cart batteries, 24 volts nominal.)]
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