PowMr LVM 48 volt 5000 watt hybrid All-in-One (120 v) does not see my Solar Panels FINALLY flipped the switch today!

Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
9
Location
Timmins Ontario Canada
Hi All! I finally learned enough to flip the switch on my PowMr 5kw 48 volt hybrid all in one (120 v only) system which seems to only partly work so far - in that I can use the batteries to run my loads through the AC out (attached to a power-surge power bar thus far). But this all in one does not seem to see my solar panels and so my batteries are being used up but are not charging on this beautiful sunny day in Northern Ontario! Does anyone have any ideas? Are there any known problems with this inverter not recognizing the solar panels. I have read the manual about a 100 times while learning about electronics and electricity over the last 6 months. I am within the Voc range - happy in the center (of 450 or 500 vdc) around mid 300's using 9 X 230 watt panels @ 24 volts. My panels are all in series (fitting also in the happy center at 8 Amps or so of the 15 Amp limit). The picture of the solar panel does not light up on the panel and there are 0 volts displayed on the PV voltage in reading. I have the solar wires going into the top of a disconnect box that handles 30 amps. I have 2 X 15 volt (resettable) round fuses in this box, with the negative wire going through one of the 15 amp fuses and the positive wire going through the other 15 amp fuse. I think this may be an AC box instead of a DC box, but I am generally just using it as a "disconnect" as there is no need for fusing on this 8 amp solar input. And by the way, who the hell invented 'knock-outs', and what the hell have all the electricians in the world been doing for the last 30 years if NOT inventing a 'knock-out' to replace the current version of this brilliant solution that invariably makes a ragged, sharp and jagged edge of the box, and the nerves of the installer-seemingly perfected for the purpose of cutting through wires while apparently professing to be a reasonable solution to electrical box entry?
 

Bobert

Solar Addict
Joined
Jan 15, 2022
Messages
612
Hi All! I finally learned enough to flip the switch on my PowMr 5kw 48 volt hybrid all in one (120 v only) system which seems to only partly work so far - in that I can use the batteries to run my loads through the AC out (attached to a power-surge power bar thus far). But this all in one does not seem to see my solar panels and so my batteries are being used up but are not charging on this beautiful sunny day in Northern Ontario! Does anyone have any ideas? Are there any known problems with this inverter not recognizing the solar panels. I have read the manual about a 100 times while learning about electronics and electricity over the last 6 months. I am within the Voc range - happy in the center (of 450 or 500 vdc) around mid 300's using 9 X 230 watt panels @ 24 volts. My panels are all in series (fitting also in the happy center at 8 Amps or so of the 15 Amp limit). The picture of the solar panel does not light up on the panel and there are 0 volts displayed on the PV voltage in reading. I have the solar wires going into the top of a disconnect box that handles 30 amps. I have 2 X 15 volt (resettable) round fuses in this box, with the negative wire going through one of the 15 amp fuses and the positive wire going through the other 15 amp fuse. I think this may be an AC box instead of a DC box, but I am generally just using it as a "disconnect" as there is no need for fusing on this 8 amp solar input. And by the way, who the hell invented 'knock-outs', and what the hell have all the electricians in the world been doing for the last 30 years if NOT inventing a 'knock-out' to replace the current version of this brilliant solution that invariably makes a ragged, sharp and jagged edge of the box, and the nerves of the installer-seemingly perfected for the purpose of cutting through wires while apparently professing to be a reasonable solution to electrical box entry?
What is the voltage at the PV connection on the AIO?
 

Bobert

Solar Addict
Joined
Jan 15, 2022
Messages
612
And by the way, who the hell invented 'knock-outs', and what the hell have all the electricians in the world been doing for the last 30 years if NOT inventing a 'knock-out' to replace the current version of this brilliant solution that invariably makes a ragged, sharp and jagged edge of the box, and the nerves of the installer-seemingly perfected for the purpose of cutting through wires while apparently professing to be a reasonable solution to electrical box entry?
I don’t know who invented knock outs but they are not intended for running wires through but as a means of attaching an appropriate connector for the wires you are using. The box is designed to contain sparks should some sort of shorting event occur. You should not run wires through a naked knock out.
 

Checkthisout

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 14, 2021
Messages
227
Hi All! I finally learned enough to flip the switch on my PowMr 5kw 48 volt hybrid all in one (120 v only) system which seems to only partly work so far - in that I can use the batteries to run my loads through the AC out (attached to a power-surge power bar thus far). But this all in one does not seem to see my solar panels and so my batteries are being used up but are not charging on this beautiful sunny day in Northern Ontario! Does anyone have any ideas? Are there any known problems with this inverter not recognizing the solar panels. I have read the manual about a 100 times while learning about electronics and electricity over the last 6 months. I am within the Voc range - happy in the center (of 450 or 500 vdc) around mid 300's using 9 X 230 watt panels @ 24 volts. My panels are all in series (fitting also in the happy center at 8 Amps or so of the 15 Amp limit). The picture of the solar panel does not light up on the panel and there are 0 volts displayed on the PV voltage in reading. I have the solar wires going into the top of a disconnect box that handles 30 amps. I have 2 X 15 volt (resettable) round fuses in this box, with the negative wire going through one of the 15 amp fuses and the positive wire going through the other 15 amp fuse. I think this may be an AC box instead of a DC box, but I am generally just using it as a "disconnect" as there is no need for fusing on this 8 amp solar input. And by the way, who the hell invented 'knock-outs', and what the hell have all the electricians in the world been doing for the last 30 years if NOT inventing a 'knock-out' to replace the current version of this brilliant solution that invariably makes a ragged, sharp and jagged edge of the box, and the nerves of the installer-seemingly perfected for the purpose of cutting through wires while apparently professing to be a reasonable solution to electrical box entry?
You're focused on irrelevance when telling about your disconnects etc.

What is the voltage at the terminal plus and minus screws on unit where the pv wires connect when the sun is up and shining on the panels?

Use appropriate anti-short bushings/retention devices etc at your knockouts especially since you aren't fusing things properly.

PowMr products are garbage but the first thing to check is the pv terminal voltage at the unit.
 
Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
9
Location
Timmins Ontario Canada
Of course I am not running the wires through naked. The point was supposed to be funny and that bushings shouldn't be needed if someone designed these boxes better. Surely there must be a better way! Anyway sorry to distract.

The batteries finally got down to dangerous territory, so I turned the generator on to charge them up (first time testing the charging function) and it ran okay and charged for a couple of minutes and then a big spark seemed to explode out the side of the inverter and also maybe in the surge device. The flash from the inverter seems to have been the 63 amp breaker (don't know how 63 amps got there from a 30 amp generator). I flipped the breaker and the AC seems to be working (at least I have managed to get power out to my internet box and this computer) - but the surgemaster 11 is Screeching a high-pitched sound.

Now I am afraid to put the generator again. The unit did continue to run after the flash for about 15 minutes and charging the batteries, but then when the batteries got to voltage 52 v the charger flicked off. I didn't have anything set at 52 v, though I guess some settings might have been close. Just spent the last 3 hours pouring over the manual trying to figure out what setting I could change so that the unit will charge my batteries and not explode or kill me....still no idea....although I limited the charging current to 15 amps just to be safe (instead of 40 where I think it was defaulted due to the specs of the inverter/charger-I didn't think to change that setting because I didn't think the generator could send over that many amps anyway.
😊Thanks for your suggestions...
 

Britguy

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 29, 2022
Messages
95
Measure voltages at series o/p of solar panels, before breaker, after breaker, at inverter.
My PowMr worked perfectly first time (5k5 VMPlus), early days as it's only been running for 2 months.
For $430 it's great.
 

Checkthisout

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 14, 2021
Messages
227
Measure voltages at series o/p of solar panels, before breaker, after breaker, at inverter.
My PowMr worked perfectly first time (5k5 VMPlus), early days as it's only been running for 2 months.
For $430 it's great.

Happy to hear.

As long as it fails within the 30 day Amazon return window, you're good. After that you're on your own.
 

Checkthisout

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 14, 2021
Messages
227
Of course I am not running the wires through naked. The point was supposed to be funny and that bushings shouldn't be needed if someone designed these boxes better. Surely there must be a better way! Anyway sorry to distract.

The batteries finally got down to dangerous territory, so I turned the generator on to charge them up (first time testing the charging function) and it ran okay and charged for a couple of minutes and then a big spark seemed to explode out the side of the inverter and also maybe in the surge device. The flash from the inverter seems to have been the 63 amp breaker (don't know how 63 amps got there from a 30 amp generator). I flipped the breaker and the AC seems to be working (at least I have managed to get power out to my internet box and this computer) - but the surgemaster 11 is Screeching a high-pitched sound.

Now I am afraid to put the generator again. The unit did continue to run after the flash for about 15 minutes and charging the batteries, but then when the batteries got to voltage 52 v the charger flicked off. I didn't have anything set at 52 v, though I guess some settings might have been close. Just spent the last 3 hours pouring over the manual trying to figure out what setting I could change so that the unit will charge my batteries and not explode or kill me....still no idea....although I limited the charging current to 15 amps just to be safe (instead of 40 where I think it was defaulted due to the specs of the inverter/charger-I didn't think to change that setting because I didn't think the generator could send over that many amps anyway.
😊Thanks for your suggestions...
The wires are supposed to be in conduit. That is why there is no sort of bushing etc at the knockouts. Personally, I wouldn't chastize anyone for that as I don't follow perfect practice either

BUT, please fuse your setup properly. You're up in absolute lethal voltage territory at 300+ volts. Any little pin hole in the wire's insulation, wet connectors etc can result in an arc to ground and possible shock.
 
Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
9
Location
Timmins Ontario Canada
Thanks for the fuse warning - I thought I was being extra careful by fusing the panels even though the regs say that no fuses are needed if amps are under 15....Obviously I am still learning.... I have a T-class 200 (or maybe 150) AND an ANL 120 both on the positive wire between the batteries and inverter (because I put the ANL there before I could get a T-class...took months...).
Batteries are (used) Winston Thundersky 260 Ah (16 cells in series making 48 volts). I made a pre-charge circuit too.
I am not getting anything on the solar wires. I took them out of the 30 amp fused safety switch (with the round fuses, 2x 15amp), and will use this box instead for the line coming in from the generator, (AC-IN) (I am off-grid) or for the line coming out of the inverter (AC-OUT) but I don't know how to wire the boxes - I have a 120 line coming in from the generator with a hot, neutral and ground. But the box doesn't seem to have a place for the ground to go - there is a little bar on the side of the enclosure presumably for the neutral - so I imagine I only use one side of the safety switch?
I also have an old 'entrance' fused safety switch that had 240 coming in (for a hot tub once upon a time). This box is a lot bigger and has cylindrical fuses at 250 amps). Should I use the big fancy box for the AC-IN and the little 30 amp one for the AC-OUT? I couldn't find out how to do this on google. It is harder and harder to actually find things on google these days - just ads after ads...

So I am going to have to go and check every connection between the solar panels. I did those first and I guess I wasn't as good at splicing wires as I thought I was... I tried to charge the batteries again through the inverter but I couldn't get the charger to start again. The screech from the blown Power Bar I was using as the AC-OUT acceptable I was plugging my loads into stopped and only occasionally made a squeek. OBviously that has to go. I was hoping I could use the safety switch box as a distribution box but obviously I didn't think that through. I need to buy a distribution box and then some outlets - I just didn't know how to do the AC wiring stuff so I followed the idea of attaching a power-bar to the AC-OUT. I am using very little of the power - no more than 10 amps (when I used the toaster oven once) - the rest of the time I am down at 1 or 2 amps....I've had no electricity for so many months that I get by with almost nothing - but I do really really want a fridge and I have to run internet and computers 24/7 or I will go crazy - it's been 8 months that I've been living without enough electricity and with extremely limited internet. I will go crazy if I have to do this any longer - I can't learn how to do electrical wiring without the internet. I have hundreds of basic questions and no one to ask and no internet. This is why I started without quite knowing enough...I have been learning (trying to learn) for 8 months without access to information! Thanks for your comments!
 

Checkthisout

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 14, 2021
Messages
227
Thanks for the fuse warning - I thought I was being extra careful by fusing the panels even though the regs say that no fuses are needed if amps are under 15....Obviously I am still learning.... I have a T-class 200 (or maybe 150) AND an ANL 120 both on the positive wire between the batteries and inverter (because I put the ANL there before I could get a T-class...took months...).
Batteries are (used) Winston Thundersky 260 Ah (16 cells in series making 48 volts). I made a pre-charge circuit too.
I am not getting anything on the solar wires. I took them out of the 30 amp fused safety switch (with the round fuses, 2x 15amp), and will use this box instead for the line coming in from the generator, (AC-IN) (I am off-grid) or for the line coming out of the inverter (AC-OUT) but I don't know how to wire the boxes - I have a 120 line coming in from the generator with a hot, neutral and ground. But the box doesn't seem to have a place for the ground to go - there is a little bar on the side of the enclosure presumably for the neutral - so I imagine I only use one side of the safety switch?
I also have an old 'entrance' fused safety switch that had 240 coming in (for a hot tub once upon a time). This box is a lot bigger and has cylindrical fuses at 250 amps). Should I use the big fancy box for the AC-IN and the little 30 amp one for the AC-OUT? I couldn't find out how to do this on google. It is harder and harder to actually find things on google these days - just ads after ads...

So I am going to have to go and check every connection between the solar panels. I did those first and I guess I wasn't as good at splicing wires as I thought I was... I tried to charge the batteries again through the inverter but I couldn't get the charger to start again. The screech from the blown Power Bar I was using as the AC-OUT acceptable I was plugging my loads into stopped and only occasionally made a squeek. OBviously that has to go. I was hoping I could use the safety switch box as a distribution box but obviously I didn't think that through. I need to buy a distribution box and then some outlets - I just didn't know how to do the AC wiring stuff so I followed the idea of attaching a power-bar to the AC-OUT. I am using very little of the power - no more than 10 amps (when I used the toaster oven once) - the rest of the time I am down at 1 or 2 amps....I've had no electricity for so many months that I get by with almost nothing - but I do really really want a fridge and I have to run internet and computers 24/7 or I will go crazy - it's been 8 months that I've been living without enough electricity and with extremely limited internet. I will go crazy if I have to do this any longer - I can't learn how to do electrical wiring without the internet. I have hundreds of basic questions and no one to ask and no internet. This is why I started without quite knowing enough...I have been learning (trying to learn) for 8 months without access to information! Thanks for your comments!
Plenty of help on here.

Cover up the panels with a blanket if you're working in the sun or climb up at night or early morning and disconnect each panel. Then, as the sun comes up, verify voltage at each connector. Start plunging them into each other one at a time and verify a voltage increase each time.

I would actually hook the panels to the controller every time I reconnect a panel and verify charging. This might require a length of jumper to reach your existing panel to controller wire.
 

12VoltInstalls

…myself everything do I…
Joined
Jan 18, 2021
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Location
Vermont
point was supposed to be funny and that bushings shouldn't be needed if someone designed these boxes better. Surely there must be a better way!
Actually those are designed fine.

You can use a connector at the knockouts just like an entrance panel. This protects the wiring AND keeps the weight of the wires off the AIO terminal connectors AND keeps them from moving which will lead to solid conductor wires breaking.

Or conduit with thhn if desired.
don't know how 63 amps got there from a 30 amp generator).
If typical arrangement I’m assuming 63A breaker is for the DC side

30A from the generator is 120VAC amps.
So you are setup to charge at 48V?
The above plus:
then when the batteries got to voltage 52 v the charger flicked off. I didn't have anything set at 52 v,
Makes me think your settings are wrong and / or bms shut down. (LiFePo batteries I’m assuming)
have a 120 line coming in from the generator with a hot, neutral and ground. But the box doesn't seem to have a place for the ground to go -
I assume you mean your glass fuse box. Generator should have breaker(s). Don’t run generator into fuse box, run into the AIO
there is a little bar on the side of the enclosure presumably for the neutral - so I imagine I only use one side of the safety switch?
So the AIO should take generator or ‘grid’ input terminals. White is N or neutral, black is Line or “hot,” green/bare/ground goes to the case or a discriminate terminal with the neutral and hot (it should be that way)

That’s first thing to get right.

Inverter output 120VAC should go to a fuse box and distributed from there.
(after other issues are solved somehow you should ask about N-G bond but ignore that right now)

Next is the panels. See if you have voltage at the wires that should be connected to an appropriately rated disconnect switch but you may not have. Apparently.
>>>>That potential 300VDC will kill you immediately btw. Not might. At best it could disable you for a minute or two and you may be ‘awake’ and confused while you die, or it could kill you immediately<<<<
Start with three panels in series, safer volts while messing around. If you get 60-88 volts you can connect to the inputs and diagnose your settings to see why you aren’t charging. There may be an inverter on/off switch somewhere.

Ask questions and get those two things functional and safe, then other people can help get the other five or six problems fixed I see you might be having.

Basically if something flashed from within powerMR an internal fuse could have blown OR you blew something in it.

My gut says you 1] have things wired not right, 2] have things in the settings wrong, 3] maybe had the bms shut down if LiFePo, and 4] may be confusing what wire goes in what terminal
 
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