My AGS success was short lived

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pioneerMan
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My AGS success was short lived

Post by pioneerMan »

Yesterday I rejoiced that I got everything working as the AGS kicked on like it was supposed to. It ran for about an hour. However, after it shut off, it came back on again about ten minutes later. I know my battery bank doesn't hold a charge like it used to, but I find it nearly impossible that the voltage would have dropped from around 13.6 down to 12.0 all within about ten minutes time.

What is the best way to pinpoint why this happened?

Thanks!
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by raysun »

pioneerMan wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 12:38 pm Yesterday I rejoiced that I got everything working as the AGS kicked on like it was supposed to. It ran for about an hour. However, after it shut off, it came back on again about ten minutes later. I know my battery bank doesn't hold a charge like it used to, but I find it nearly impossible that the voltage would have dropped from around 13.6 down to 12.0 all within about ten minutes time.

What is the best way to pinpoint why this happened?

Thanks!
Do you have a voltmeter? You should be checking the battery voltage as you are setting up the AGS.

Sadly, it's entirely plausible the battery won't hold a charge, and drop from 13.6V (surface charge) to 12V (retained charge) in 10 minutes. This would be the case especially if the system is under load via the inverter, for example.

You might want to let the charger run the battery up to 13.6V, then let it "sit" with no load. After 1, 2, and 3 hours, check the voltage. The "resting charge" should retain a fairly high voltage.

Don't blame AGS, blame the battery. There's every likelihood of more than one dead or shorted cell.

Look back through the copious posts offering guidance on how to "triage" the battery. When you're ready to bite the bullet, we'd be happy to help.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by pioneerMan »

raysun wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 1:29 pm Sadly, it's entirely plausible the battery won't hold a charge, and drop from 13.6V (surface charge) to 12V (retained charge) in 10 minutes. This would be the case especially if the system is under load via the inverter, for example.
Raysun, can you explain the difference between a surface charge and a retained charge?

Thanks!
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by raysun »

pioneerMan wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 2:46 pm
raysun wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 1:29 pm Sadly, it's entirely plausible the battery won't hold a charge, and drop from 13.6V (surface charge) to 12V (retained charge) in 10 minutes. This would be the case especially if the system is under load via the inverter, for example.
Raysun, can you explain the difference between a surface charge and a retained charge?

Thanks!
I can, its a bit complicated in that lead acid battery charging is complicated. We tend to think in terms of electrons getting pushed into the battery (charging) and drawn from the battery (discharging) but internally there's a lot more to it.

Charging is really the act of changing state of lead from an acid salt to a metal (and in the process, sulfate into sulfuric acid.) The electrons we so prize are secondary actors, filling holes in atomic valance rings.

During the end of the charge cycle, some electrons have nowhere to to go, and congregate on the "surface" of the lead plates. This "surface charge" (a misnomer, but that's what its called) raises the apparent voltage of the battery. Left to its own devices, the surface charge eventually "bleeds" into the lead plates or electrolyte, but more commonly, its drawn off by external loads, rapidly dropping the battery voltage to reflect the actual battery charge.

I don't know if "retained charge" is an actual term or one that I made up, but it refers to the charge held in the structure of the battery, represented by the quantity of lead in the plates and sulfuric acid in the electrolyte. It's resultant voltage tends to be "stiffer", dropping less when the battery is under load, and rebounding to a higher resting voltage when the load is removed.

Take as an example a normally healthy battery in a discharged state. The initial Bulk charge will supply a lot of electrons and convert a lot of lead sulfate to lead metal and sulfuric acid. When enough "charge" has accumulated, the battery voltage will rise to the Absorb voltage. If charging stops at that point, the battery voltage is likely to fall fairly rapidly from the Absorb voltage when a good deal of surface charge is drawn off. If the Absorb phase is permitted to proceed, the same voltage is held at the battery terminals, but more "charge" is forced into the battery structure. The declining current during Absorb is testimony to the fact it isn't purely electrons driving the reaction, rather increased pressure (voltage) that forces the last portion of charge into the cells.

When a battery ages, its ability to retain charge declines. If it hasn't received adequate "care and feeding" cell damage can occur, causing a further decline in capacity. The latter can progress to the point little or no charge can be put into the cell. At that point, nearly all the apparent charge is "surface charge" that drains off very quickly.

You mentioned that you thought it nearly impossible that the battery voltage would drop so quickly.

TBH, I find it nearly impossible that the battery doesn't have some severely damaged cells. Those need to be identified and removed from the battery. Not only will they be poor contributors to battery capacity, they will actively degrade healthier cells.

It sounds paradoxical, but IMO, if the 50% of the battery blocks with the weakest cells were weeded out, the overall capacity of the battery may very well increase, provided, that is, that 100% of the battery blocks don't contain damaged cells. Even then, "the best of the worst" will be more manageable from a charging standpoint.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by pss »

I have a question that hopefully those in this thread can answer: Is is possible to simply connect a 12 volt DC relay, like 100 amps capacity to a wifi enabled little board. Then you could simply use the android or apple phone to press the ON button of the wifi board connected to the relay which has the other poles connected to the battery start button of the generator. That should start the generator. Turning it off would be another issue. I also see these little boards with an RF receiver like for garage door and 12 volt DC relay connected to them and then also using a wireless RF remote transmitter like garage door. This too could start a generator, albeit with a shorter range than a wifi board. Of course, again turning it off is a problem. But it could save people having to get out of bed to start their generator or going outside. Just thinking.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by raysun »

There's after-market remote start/stop/control kits for certain generators like the Honda EU7000 series that do just that.

For the other electric start/stop generators, something could be ginned up certainly.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by Greg T Fordan »

@pioneerman please put your Optics system name in your profile.


In Optics' event history, it tells you the kind of AGS generator start for the last start.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by JRHill »

Greg T Fordan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 9:05 am @pioneerman please put your Optics system name in your profile.


In Optics' event history, it tells you the kind of AGS generator start for the last start.
Pioneerman, I think Greg is referring to the User Control Panel not your public profile. It is only visible to you and the gods of the user forum.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by Greg T Fordan »

JRHill wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 11:28 am Pioneerman, I think Greg is referring to the User Control Panel not your public profile. It is only visible to you and the gods of the user forum.
I just simply wants to know his Optics system name, to check on his AUX control settings of the inverter, and his system name is not in his profile
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by provo »

When you login and click on your profile, you see something like this:

Screen Shot 2021-05-10 at 1.37.46 PM.png

When you click on "edit profile", another window opens where you can enter your Optics site name. The site name doesn't display in the profile that everyone else sees to the right of your posts.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by Greg T Fordan »

Yes, fill-up the below field. In the example here, the Optics System name is "My System"
profile1.JPG
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by pioneerMan »

Greg T Fordan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 9:05 am @pioneerman please put your Optics system name in your profile.
Unfortunately I don't have OpticsRE setup yet, just the Mate 3s. I have to come up with a way to dig a 320 foot trench over to the battery shed, so that internet access can be given to the Mate.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by Greg T Fordan »

pioneerMan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 1:58 pm
Unfortunately I don't have OpticsRE setup yet, just the Mate 3s. I have to come up with a way to dig a 320 foot trench over to the battery shed, so that internet access can be given to the Mate.

Now I know.
Back to your AGS issue. From your MATE3s please navigate to LOCK/141/Settings/Inverter/Auxiliary Output and ensure that whatever mode is selected there, it is set to OFF, not AUTO. This is making sure that AGS "owns" and is dedicated to that 12V output.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by raysun »

Unfortunately I don't have OpticsRE setup yet, just the Mate 3s. I have to come up with a way to dig a 320 foot trench over to the battery shed, so that internet access can be given to the Mate.
Yikes! Thats a long trenching effort, and right on the ragged edge of the ethernet cable maximum rated distance.

Lots of us use wireless bridges to span such distances (or even shorter. In my case, I didn't want to dig a 40' trench.)

The "gold standard" in such gear is Ubiquiti. With their success in this technology, there's a plethora of cheap Chinese knockoffs that probably work OK. Like this: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F821KRW?pd ... rd_w=bOcfo

The pair run 24V @ 0.5A from 120V AC, so are fairly low power drain.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by JRHill »

It's not like its going to freeze. Unless you'd hit it with something later you don't have to go so deep, do you? But that's a really long run.

I've thought about a WIFI repeater for other reasons. But I still have to get power to it. Yet another buried conduit and power line. And the RF interference all along that line but maybe you don't deal with that.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by sodamo »

Unfortunately, I isolated my utility area with solid concrete before the thought of getting wired internet access there, so for years I’ve played with a variety of extenders, repeaters, and my signal is kinda weak, but it works.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by pioneerMan »

raysun wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:17 pm The "gold standard" in such gear is Ubiquiti. With their success in this technology, there's a plethora of cheap Chinese knockoffs that probably work OK.
I know wifi would be easier, but I avoid it out here in this pristine location to escape the EMF. I do this for health reasons after reading many articles online, from sources like Mercola.com. If I do accomplish the trench, it will likely be with a trencher machine that I rent from Home Depot, or by hiring someone.
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Trimetric 2030A battery monitor
Mate 3d
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by pioneerMan »

Greg T Fordan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:15 pm From your MATE3s please navigate to LOCK/141/Settings/Inverter/Auxiliary Output and ensure that whatever mode is selected there, it is set to OFF, not AUTO. This is making sure that AGS "owns" and is dedicated to that 12V output.
I checked tonight and verified the following;

Status Manual Off
Aux Mode Remote

Any other ideas?
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by raysun »

pioneerMan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 7:49 pm
raysun wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:17 pm The "gold standard" in such gear is Ubiquiti. With their success in this technology, there's a plethora of cheap Chinese knockoffs that probably work OK.
I know wifi would be easier, but I avoid it out here in this pristine location to escape the EMF. I do this for health reasons after reading many articles online, from sources like Mercola.com. If I do accomplish the trench, it will likely be with a trencher machine that I rent from Home Depot, or by hiring someone.
Be aware the maximum limit of Ethernet cabling is 100 meters (328'). Of that, 296' is the limit for solid wire "backbone" run, and 16' on each end (32' total) for stranded twisted pair cables to connect equipment.

Before digging, you may wish to "dry lay" the cabling to make sure there are no issues with the distance.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by EA6LE-ONE »

pioneerMan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 1:58 pm
Greg T Fordan wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 9:05 am @pioneerman please put your Optics system name in your profile.
Unfortunately I don't have OpticsRE setup yet, just the Mate 3s. I have to come up with a way to dig a 320 foot trench over to the battery shed, so that internet access can be given to the Mate.
you should use fiber on that distance. is always best to use fiber to any connections outside of a building.
pioneerMan
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Outback VFX2812 inverter and two FLEXmax 60 inverters
Trimetric 2030A battery monitor
Mate 3d
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Location: Northern Utah

Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by pioneerMan »

raysun wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 10:58 pm Before digging, you may wish to "dry lay" the cabling to make sure there are no issues with the distance.
Yes, I will plan on doing that. It's a good idea.
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by raysun »

I'm not a You Tube fan. Too much BS to wade through. I have no idea if this is real or not, but it may be worth checking out:
400FT Run: Fiber Or CAT6 Cable?: https://youtu.be/sw6IaGK28QE
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by occamsrazor »

raysun wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:17 pm Yikes! Thats a long trenching effort, and right on the ragged edge of the ethernet cable maximum rated distance.
Lots of us use wireless bridges to span such distances (or even shorter. In my case, I didn't want to dig a 40' trench.)
I was wondering.. am about to get a Mate3S to use with VFX3024E inverter. The problem is the location of the inverter isn't amenable to running ethernet cable, but is within relatively short range of my main WiFi router and could get a cheap wifi bridge. If the bridge was able to run off 12v, do you think I could power the wifi bridge off the AUX+ and AUX- wiring terminals? The inverter manual gives these specs...
Or what other WiFi receiver options have people used?
AUX.png
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Re: My AGS success was short lived

Post by bluespur »

I use an Engenuis ERB300H wifi repeater powered by a wall wart plugged into a socket powered by inverter AC, and wear the minimal drain as an unavoidable overhead, works well.
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