Setting up my AGS

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mrushmore
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Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

I have recently purchased a generator that will allow me to use the AGS feature of my Mate3. I have hooked everything up as I believe it should be based on the information provided by Outback. That being said, my generator did not kick on when it should have the other day when I was finally able to test it. I'm looking for some assistance in this please.
I know that my inverters are set up as a master/slave, I don't know which is which. If I have the signal to turn the genny on connected to the slave inverter would that cause the signal to not be sent?
Thanks,
Mike
raysun
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by raysun »

Is the AGS Port value in the Mate set to the Hub port the inverter is connected to?
The inverter (and FlexMax) AUX ports are 12V output, rather than simply dry contacts. Is the 2 wire start on the generator expecting a 12V input?
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by JRHill »

Do you have a wiring diagram for how you set up the AGS? Please attach it in a reply. Your master inverter should be plugged into port 1 of the hub. Select this for the source of the AGS output. Press AC INPUT from the Mate3 and select USE. From the Mate3 press GEN > ON. This will provide 12vdc to the AUX port of the Master Inverter plugged into Port 1. Use your voltmeter to verify 12vdc is present at the AUX header. If there is 12v you have set up the AGS correctly.

How does the AGS on your generator work? Is it a 'two wire' circuit that needs to be 'closed' to start the generator? What generator are you using?

BTW, you should have a small (0.5a Max!) in line fuse on the '+' side of the AUX header JIC.
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by sodamo »

Can you do a manual start from Mate3? If not then likely not setup correctly.
David
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

JRHill wrote: Sat Jun 22, 2024 10:01 am Do you have a wiring diagram for how you set up the AGS? Please attach it in a reply. Your master inverter should be plugged into port 1 of the hub. Select this for the source of the AGS output. Press AC INPUT from the Mate3 and select USE. From the Mate3 press GEN > ON. This will provide 12vdc to the AUX port of the Master Inverter plugged into Port 1. Use your voltmeter to verify 12vdc is present at the AUX header. If there is 12v you have set up the AGS correctly.

How does the AGS on your generator work? Is it a 'two wire' circuit that needs to be 'closed' to start the generator? What generator are you using?

BTW, you should have a small (0.5a Max!) in line fuse on the '+' side of the AUX header JIC.
I am running a 10KW Generac with the 2.0 software. I have a relay between the output of the inverter and the 2-wire input of the generator.
I will look into these suggestions and see what I find, thanks
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

sodamo wrote: Sat Jun 22, 2024 10:47 am Can you do a manual start from Mate3? If not then likely not setup correctly.
I just did. And found out the my generator status was in manual mode, not automatic.
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Adding 12 Hyundai 365 (4380) 18460w total
Radians GG8048A/GS4048A w GSLCs
4 FM 80 charge controllers
Hub 10.3
FNDC w/3 shunts
Mate 3s
OpticsRE - MMKL - Ninole Hi
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Charging Only
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by sodamo »

Hmmm, can’t tell you how many times I’ve managed that.
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by raysun »

sodamo wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2024 9:30 am Hmmm, can’t tell you how many times I’ve managed that.
Why can't these systems incorporate AI so I can give it a command like: "Do what I'm thinking."
Wait a minute..., nevermind.
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sodamo
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Posts: 1398
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My RE system: Totally off grid - Hamakua side, Big Island, Hi

36 Trina 280 & 16 Phono 250 in 48 volt array (fixed) 14080w
Adding 12 Hyundai 365 (4380) 18460w total
Radians GG8048A/GS4048A w GSLCs
4 FM 80 charge controllers
Hub 10.3
FNDC w/3 shunts
Mate 3s
OpticsRE - MMKL - Ninole Hi
15 SimpliPhi 3.8 (57kw) (1125 AH)
14Kw Kohler 14RESA Propane

Charging Only
2FX3048T
Hub
FNDC. - shared shunt feeds from Radian FNDC
Mate 3s
EG4 Chargeverter
10Kw MEP 803a Military gen

Honda EU7000i
Starlink w Eero Pro 6e network
Davis VantagePro2 Wx Station
On line at: https://www.wunderground.com/dashboard/pws/KHININOL2
Location: Ninole, Hi

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by sodamo »

raysun wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2024 9:41 am
sodamo wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2024 9:30 am Hmmm, can’t tell you how many times I’ve managed that.
Why can't these systems incorporate AI so I can give it a command like: "Do what I'm thinking."
Wait a minute..., nevermind.
Could be more trouble…. 😁
David
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2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

OK, so my generator started like it was supposed to this morning! Woo Hoo!!
After 1.25 hours, I manually shut it off, I didn't need it running anymore with sunlight on the horizon. The video I'm watching says to set my absorb time to control how long the generator runs for.

Am I supposed to set this absorb time on the inverters? OR on the charge controllers? OR both? both is an option for me.
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sodamo
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Posts: 1398
Joined: Mon Apr 03, 2006 1:55 am
My RE system: Totally off grid - Hamakua side, Big Island, Hi

36 Trina 280 & 16 Phono 250 in 48 volt array (fixed) 14080w
Adding 12 Hyundai 365 (4380) 18460w total
Radians GG8048A/GS4048A w GSLCs
4 FM 80 charge controllers
Hub 10.3
FNDC w/3 shunts
Mate 3s
OpticsRE - MMKL - Ninole Hi
15 SimpliPhi 3.8 (57kw) (1125 AH)
14Kw Kohler 14RESA Propane

Charging Only
2FX3048T
Hub
FNDC. - shared shunt feeds from Radian FNDC
Mate 3s
EG4 Chargeverter
10Kw MEP 803a Military gen

Honda EU7000i
Starlink w Eero Pro 6e network
Davis VantagePro2 Wx Station
On line at: https://www.wunderground.com/dashboard/pws/KHININOL2
Location: Ninole, Hi

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by sodamo »

You are looking to maximize your PV charging via CCs and minimize generator. Generator is controlled by inverter settings.
David
mrushmore
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ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

Hi all, I'm back. My generator is still not shutting off on its own yet. Attached are the current settings for my inverter. Can anyone give me some input on if I need to set things different to trigger the generator to turn off by itself?
I am running a really short charge time intentionally right now until I get this figured out, thx.
Attachments
2024-07-04 - INVERTER SETTINGS-2.JPG
2024-07-04 - INVERTER SETTINGS.JPG
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by JRHill »

How about showing us the settings from Mate3 > AGS? BTW, in OpticsRE on any on the settings displays, go to the bottom and select "Print" and direct it to a PDF. Then upload the pdf or a cut and paste it into a post so ALL the settings are visible.

Your battery settings are a whole different conversation though.
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2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

JRHill wrote: Thu Jul 04, 2024 10:40 am Your battery settings are a whole different conversation though.
I am up for assistance there as well. Both times I've talked to OutBack, they completely rebuild my settings from how they were. And I do believe that due to the house shutting down in the past some of my settings have resorted to defaults and are not how I had them set originally.

Attached should be the PDF of my Mate3>AGS settings
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2024-07-04 - MATE3 AGS SETTINGS.pdf
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mrushmore
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My RE system: SYSTEM SIZE: 7800W DC, 7600AC
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2X INVERTERS/CHARGERS (VFXR3648Ax2)
2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

My AGS system did what it was supposed to this morning! It ran for 45 minutes and turned itself off. Maybe I was just a little impatient yesterday and didn't wait long enough - LOL!
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by JRHill »

"Attached should be the PDF of my Mate3>AGS settings"

Your sidebar says that you have the FlexMax EnergyCell batteries.
You have the FNDC, true?
How old is the battery bank?

A few initial questions: The AGS info you captured showed a system voltage at 47.4v and the PDF header says 6:05pm 7.4.24. So around the longest day of the year and assuming you had a normal day of charging, you were already down this low at 6pm?
You have Voltage start enabled with most everything else disabled (good) so I'm making a guess that it's your Two Minute Start that triggers your generator start happened promptly at 0430 when Quiet Time ends?
Did your generator fire up last night before Quiet Time started?

Then this morning your generator autostarts, presumably at 0430, runs for 45 minutes and shuts itself off? Do I have the above about right?

One of the things that keeps coming to me is how low a voltage the batteries get before the system shuts down or the generator fires up. If you can give the above answers it will sure help to get some context before going further.

BTW, A system shut down 'should' not change any settings.
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by JRHill »

I'm still thinking about this and probably will for some time. One of the other things I have to guess about your system is the demands on it. I have no idea of the power demands it has through the course of a normal day. For example one or two+ of those soft start zone air conditioners, a well pump, microwave/air fryer or even a pot or two of coffee. Then all the little things that add up. Even though you've got a decent amount of solar split between those FM80s, it is unknown how much of the solar you eat up for immediate usage and what is left over for charging batteries. There may be a darn good reason you are under 48vdc at 6pm.

Maybe you would do a screenshot of the OpticsRE dashboard (from a computer not a phone) somewhere around 9:30pm tonight and upload it? By all means crop everything above the weather part for privacy. Use the Summary option and please have the Solar, Gen and Load buttons clicked on for the graph/line chart. I think that would really help.
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2X INVERTERS/CHARGERS (VFXR3648Ax2)
2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

JRHill wrote: Fri Jul 05, 2024 9:16 am Your sidebar says that you have the FlexMax EnergyCell batteries.
You have the FNDC, true?
How old is the battery bank?

A few initial questions: The AGS info you captured showed a system voltage at 47.4v and the PDF header says 6:05pm 7.4.24. So around the longest day of the year and assuming you had a normal day of charging, you were already down this low at 6pm?
You have Voltage start enabled with most everything else disabled (good) so I'm making a guess that it's your Two Minute Start that triggers your generator start happened promptly at 0430 when Quiet Time ends?
Did your generator fire up last night before Quiet Time started?

Then this morning your generator autostarts, presumably at 0430, runs for 45 minutes and shuts itself off? Do I have the above about right?

One of the things that keeps coming to me is how low a voltage the batteries get before the system shuts down or the generator fires up. If you can give the above answers it will sure help to get some context before going further.

BTW, A system shut down 'should' not change any settings.
Sorry for the delay, we've dedicated this weekend to cleaning out and re-organizing the garage. Thanks for all your questions. I don't know the answers to all of them.
I believe I do have the FNDC, it is on my plans. I couldn't tell you what it is, or where it is.
We have lived here just over 5 years. We had the system about 1 year before we got moved in and set it up and got it running. The initial program of the batteries by the company (no longer in business) that assisted with the start up programmed our batteries to carry too much charge, and I was told they were damaged.
Yesterday was a very cloudy day. Normally we don't need the generator much. The summer months are good, very little generator usage. Spring and Fall, are usually good as well, we get more cloudy days, and more genny usage. Late Nov thru early Feb are brutal for us. I need more angle on our solar panels, but we do OK. There's about 3-4 weeks when the sun is at it's lowest that we use the genny a lot. But every year is a little worse than the year before.
All that being said, the genny didn't kick on yesterday until about 9am ish. Between no real sun due to the rain & clouds, and using electric tools in the garage, we over-ran what we were putting into the system. Then we made enough sun to stay alive thru the evening. Then the genny kicked on at 5:53 this morning, and ran until 6:38 or something close to that. As the summer wanes, I will bump up my 30 min absorb time, to about 90 minutes for the depth of winter.
The house is set to shut off when the batteries get to 45V or 75% SOC. The first 18 months, the house would shut down due to the SOC limit. But then it became a voltage thing. That is the first time I contacted Outback directly.
I realize a shut down should not change my settings. However, due to some of the settings, the house would shut down, come back on, immediately shut back down, over and over until the sun came up enough to put charge in the batteries. This probably happened a couple times before I was home to realize what was happening and contacted Outback.
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2X INVERTERS/CHARGERS (VFXR3648Ax2)
2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

JRHill wrote: Fri Jul 05, 2024 11:07 am I'm still thinking about this and probably will for some time. One of the other things I have to guess about your system is the demands on it. I have no idea of the power demands it has through the course of a normal day. For example one or two+ of those soft start zone air conditioners, a well pump, microwave/air fryer or even a pot or two of coffee. Then all the little things that add up. Even though you've got a decent amount of solar split between those FM80s, it is unknown how much of the solar you eat up for immediate usage and what is left over for charging batteries. There may be a darn good reason you are under 48vdc at 6pm.

Maybe you would do a screenshot of the OpticsRE dashboard (from a computer not a phone) somewhere around 9:30pm tonight and upload it? By all means crop everything above the weather part for privacy. Use the Summary option and please have the Solar, Gen and Load buttons clicked on for the graph/line chart. I think that would really help.
We have (2) deep freezers, refrigerator and a soft start well. We have been running window A/C units on digital timers to run during the high sun times of day to help burn up the excess and benefit from cooling the house down. We have a microwave, but only use it when the sun allows. We also have an electric water heating pot that we only use when the sun is up and allows.

I do have about a .2KWH draw that i have tried to locate to eliminate, but have been unable to.

Here are 3 screen grabs of what I think you're looking for. The first is from 7/3, this was a pretty typical day for us this time of year. The 2nd is from 7/4, lots of rain & clouds, I probably should have run the genny before going to bed, but didn't. Then today's screen shot, we started out pretty cloudy, but the sun came out very strong. i was able to plug turn the A/C unit on to help absorb some of the excess electricity.
Attachments
2024-07-05 Capture from 7-5.JPG
2024-07-05 Capture from 7-4.JPG
2024-07-05 Capture from 7-3.JPG
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by JRHill »

Thanks for the graphs and the explanations. You loads aren't that heavy for the system you have in place. My system is half of yours and I'm using about the same amount of power this time of year with the main offender being the well pump and the ceiling fans running on high. I know the fridges and freezers are working extra too with it 104f outside.

So you DO have a FNDC (battery monitor) otherwise you would not have SOC information on your graphs. And it is telling you are always above 80%. I think this may be the source of some misunderstanding and, wow, there has been a lot of conversation about battery monitors on this and other solar forums. I'll tell you this from your graph(s) and that is when the line for your battery voltage drops to or below 48vdc, the line for the SOC should have crossed through it down to 20 or 10% and then started rising back up as the sun or generator was putting some power back into the batteries. But the issue is that your FNDC, which is giving you the SOC, is badly out of calibration. The FNDC drifts over time by its nature and there's nothing you can do about it other than to have your battery settings be set so your batteries are FULLY charged. When each of the values for charging your batteries has been fully met the FNDC resets itself so show the batteries are 100% full. It is this frequent recalibration that makes the FNDC a really cool tool.

You said that you had already been told that the system as installed had caused damage to the batteries by over charging them. I'm guessing now but it seems that in the time since the batteries have not been charged enough and drawn down into the danger zone repeatedly, effectively finishing them off. All the while your FNDC is pointing you down the highway at 80mph towards a cliff. IMHO you are in for a new battery bank. And depending on what batteries you choose ALL your battery charging parameters with correct high and low voltage protections must be PREset for that new battery make and model before the switch is flipped and they are commissioned and 'broken in' for regular use.

Any of my Outback friends care to correct me on anything I wrote? Please do. And I know some of y'all have used the Energycell batteries.
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2 Midnite Solar MNPV6 combiners w/20A DC disconnects.
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by raysun »

Sounds right to me.

The trick with any battery is accommodating the natural (or unnatural) decline in capacity over time. Without rigorous testing, the best that can be done is estimate.
In any event, a battery monitor must be "told the truth" about the battery in order to monitor it properly. On a new battery, we use the manufacturer's specifications, and set the monitor's battery parameters accordingly. In a best case, the battery is properly maintained, and capacity decline follows a rate specified by the manufacturer, or derived for the battery type. A battery may be subject to events that accelerate capacity loss, like over or under charging, or over discharging. If these occur, additional capacity reduction needs to be accounted for. Failing to do so will, at the end of battery service life, leave the monitor with an inaccurate setting of capacity with resultant inaccurate reporting of state of charge.
One major "red flag" of the above is when State of Charge, and battery voltage, disagree.
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Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by JRHill »

@mrushmore : "Sorry for the delay, we've dedicated this weekend to cleaning out and re-organizing the garage"

I wish you were close by. I'd gladly help with your solar tuning in exchange for helping me clean my garage.
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2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

JRHill wrote: Sun Jul 07, 2024 11:16 am I wish you were close by. I'd gladly help with your solar tuning in exchange for helping me clean my garage.
I wish you were closer as well. I feel like I'm living in a local vacuum of knowledge about solar, and I definitely am in need of experienced input.
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2X CHARGE CONTROLLER (FLEXmax 80)
ENERGYCELL 800RE BATTERY BANK

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by mrushmore »

JRHill wrote: Sat Jul 06, 2024 9:23 am I'm guessing now but it seems that in the time since the batteries have not been charged enough and drawn down into the danger zone repeatedly, effectively finishing them off. All the while your FNDC is pointing you down the highway at 80mph towards a cliff. IMHO you are in for a new battery bank. And depending on what batteries you choose ALL your battery charging parameters with correct high and low voltage protections must be PREset for that new battery make and model before the switch is flipped and they are commissioned and 'broken in' for regular use.
Since we found out about the original over programming, we have never been below 45V or probably 80% SOC. I know we need to replace our batteries, but they seem to be holding on for now, so it's difficult to put out that kind of money while they are still doing the job most of the time. I also know that our days are numbered until they don't do the job on a regular basis for us. And from there, it's seems like a monumental feat to pick replacement batteries.
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Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower Two: (2) FXR3048A-01 - Series Stacked, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
6 SimpliPhi 3.8-48 (48v @ 75AH. 450AH total)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
REC Alpha 440W panels - 2 arrays: each of 4 strings of 2 in series
2 Midnite Solar MNPV6 combiners w/20A DC disconnects.
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator
Off-Grid

Re: Setting up my AGS

Post by raysun »

mrushmore wrote: Mon Jul 08, 2024 1:11 pm
JRHill wrote: Sat Jul 06, 2024 9:23 am I'm guessing now but it seems that in the time since the batteries have not been charged enough and drawn down into the danger zone repeatedly, effectively finishing them off. All the while your FNDC is pointing you down the highway at 80mph towards a cliff. IMHO you are in for a new battery bank. And depending on what batteries you choose ALL your battery charging parameters with correct high and low voltage protections must be PREset for that new battery make and model before the switch is flipped and they are commissioned and 'broken in' for regular use.
Since we found out about the original over programming, we have never been below 45V or probably 80% SOC. I know we need to replace our batteries, but they seem to be holding on for now, so it's difficult to put out that kind of money while they are still doing the job most of the time. I also know that our days are numbered until they don't do the job on a regular basis for us. And from there, it's seems like a monumental feat to pick replacement batteries.
A battery that is questionable in the long, easy days of summer will be beyond question in the short, demanding days of winter.
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