Tri-Metric battery monitor - I think mine's toast

I have a small 250 watt off-grid system that I put together in April. Everything has been working fine, including the Tri-metric battery monitor (TM-2020)...until last night. The voltage monitor seems to be OK, but the amp meter seems to have died. All it does now is slowly increase, one milliamp every couple of seconds, even during the night when there couldn't possibly be any energy coming in (confirmed when I shut off the breaker to cut off any input current). Even turning on the inverter and applying a load doesn't alter the slow count-up. I also tried removing the fuse to cut power to the Tri-metric, hoping it would reset or something, but it didn't change anything. My Xantrex C35 still shows input amps correctly (I have the meter option on it). I'm thinking I'm going to have to return it under warranty, but I'm wondering if anyone has seen this sort of thing before?

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,639 admin
    Re: Tri-Metric battery monitor - I think mine's toast

    Double check the wires/connections between the current shunt and the Trimetric... It is possible that one of the connections is "open" (not connected).

    If the sense wires are not connected, it is possible to get the readings you are seeing--the current meter is just a very accurate, low voltage, voltmeter (measures the millivolts across the shunt).

    The other thing I check is to see if there is a way to calibrate "zero" for the current shunt meter... Although, it does not sound like this is your problem.

    End of my guesses...

    Good Luck. :cry:
    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 9,581 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Tri-Metric battery monitor - I think mine's toast

    Also, try using a cotton swab with alcohol, to wipe & clean around all the sense connections, if you have a little bit of leakage - that can be interpreted as power flow too.
    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

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  • LBergmanLBergman Solar Expert Posts: 42
    Re: Tri-Metric battery monitor - I think mine's toast

    Hey guys,

    Thanks for the help. A bad connection actually turned out to be it! Or rather, a broken connection. One of the wires going to the meter had somehow broken off right at the terminal block (the G2 connection specifically). I'm a little mystified how this happened, since all the wiring is in a protected cabinet. But after stripping the wire and hooking it back up, all's good again. 8)
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,639 admin
    Re: Tri-Metric battery monitor - I think mine's toast

    Glad to hear that you got it working! Yea! :D

    Many times, people nick the wires when stripping them--causing a weak point right at where the insulation/jacket ends--and any little movement or vibration over time can cause the wire to fail at that point.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
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