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Grassman

Inverter woes

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My boat is in dry dock being blacked and having other jobs done and has been hooked up to the boat yard's 240v for some of the time. When we moved back on board a few days ago I connected the landline and all the lights on the inverter (Victron 3000) began flashing and no power was getting to the electrics. This happened with both settings ('inverter on' or 'charger only') . Sometimes when I rock the switch from one to the other all the lights stay out (i.e the inverter is 'dead) and occasionally just the temperature light is illuminated.

 

Initially, after rocking the switch to & fro for a minute or so it began working in the 'inverter on' position and continued to work okay until when I changed it to 'charger only' the same thing happened again and now I can't get it to work at all again. They've now told me it has to be sent to Victon to be repaired.

 

I'm a complete dummy regarding electrics so please excuse my naivety but the boatyard said that being as they are close to the power substation they do sometimes get a stronger current. Could this have been a contributory factor? I thought the inverter was designed to cope with this sort of thing, i.e fluctuations in current.

 

The inverter is out of warranty (6 years old) and I fear it's going to cost me, but I'm arguing that it was working fine when we arrived here but the boatyard are saying that it's nothing to do with what they have done.

 

Any ideas/advice please?

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Grassman said:

My boat is in dry dock being blacked and having other jobs done and has been hooked up to the boat yard's 240v for some of the time. When we moved back on board a few days ago I connected the landline and all the lights on the inverter (Victron 3000) began flashing and no power was getting to the electrics. This happened with both settings ('inverter on' or 'charger only') . Sometimes when I rock the switch from one to the other all the lights stay out (i.e the inverter is 'dead) and occasionally just the temperature light is illuminated.

 

Initially, after rocking the switch to & fro for a minute or so it began working in the 'inverter on' position and continued to work okay until when I changed it to 'charger only' the same thing happened again and now I can't get it to work at all again. They've now told me it has to be sent to Victon to be repaired.

 

I'm a complete dummy regarding electrics so please excuse my naivety but the boatyard said that being as they are close to the power substation they do sometimes get a stronger current. Could this have been a contributory factor? I thought the inverter was designed to cope with this sort of thing, i.e fluctuations in current.

 

The inverter is out of warranty (6 years old) and I fear it's going to cost me, but I'm arguing that it was working fine when we arrived here but the boatyard are saying that it's nothing to do with what they have done.

 

Any ideas/advice please?

 

 

If it worked by 'wobbling' the switch then I'd suggest its a faulty switch - you have now wobbled it into a position where it now no longer makes contact.

 

Victrons are very reliable but unless it is something simple, like a switch, they are expensive to repair, I had a Victron battery charger then went 'down' after speaking with them and wiggling all the 'bits'. replacing fuses etc they decided it needed returning to them. It cost a 'fortune' to post it, then got a call it could be repaired at around £600, did I want it repairing or returning (at my cost). I said 'keep-it for spares' and purchased a new Victron charger for £600.

 

I think the yard may have suggested they have VOLTAGE fluctuations NOT current fluctuations.

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My Mastervolt died similarly when an electrician tested  the bollard it was plugged into.  I think you'll have trouble proving someone external caused the failure. It's not uncommon for electrical equipment to be "working fine" before it fails.

12 minutes ago, Grassman said:

Initially, after rocking the switch to & fro for a minute...

Advice?  Don't do that again! It's more likely to cause a failure than fix one.

 

I'd be surprised if it's a simple switch issue, but it's a grain of hope if you can find someone who knows what he's doing to have a look.  Problem is finding someone who can do much more than that with such units, but at least Victron are more forthcoming with technical advice.

 

I replaced my Mastervolt unit (with Victron separates as it happens), as Mastervolt were quite unwilling to provide any form of support other than by returning the unit to the Netherlands at high risk and expense.

 

 

 

 

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Don't think you can blame it on voltage fluctuations. As you say, the Victron, if set up properly, is designed to cope with this. 

In July we plugged in a shoreline in Scarisbrick Marina for a week with no problems. A week later we plugged in again in Salthouse Dock and promptly tripped the RCD on the bollard. Trying it again it blew the main RCD up on shore. It transpired that one of PCBs had developed a fault.

Things happen.

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6 minutes ago, roland elsdon said:

Did the other job involve welding?

I was thinking the same thing. New anodes?

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12 minutes ago, roland elsdon said:

Did the other job involve welding?

 

5 minutes ago, PaulD said:

I was thinking the same thing. New anodes?

 

 

Very good question - it is unbelievable the number of people who do not disconnect the battery 'negative' cable and 'ground' the welder as close as possible to the weld area.

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3 hours ago, Alan de Enfield said:

I think the yard may have suggested they have VOLTAGE fluctuations NOT current fluctuations.

^^^^^ This. 
 

And no, it shouldn’t have caused any problem, as others have said. 

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7 hours ago, roland elsdon said:

Did the other job involve welding?

 

Yes there was some welding done. They had turned the battery isolators off and because we had some food in the 240v fridge freezer they kept the FF on by means of an extension lead straight to it. Because we weren't with the boat for much of the time I do not know whether they forgot to isolate the batteries when they were welding maybe. It's something I cannot prove unfortunately.

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