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Old 20-12-2016, 09:05   #1
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Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

Does anybody have experience with the Victron Multiplus? We just put a compact on the boat. The solar hasn't been able to keep up with the house loads here in the marina, so I decided to turn on the charger this morning.

I got out my trusty cable and plugged it in to my notebook (because there is no switch for the charger).

I turned it on, and I had the current limit set at 50A. So I decided to put it to 80A, since that's what the unit is rated for. The box started humming something fierce, so I dropped it back down to 50A, which was much quieter. The house battery was around 50% this morning. The charger cranked for a while, but has since gone into some kinda float mode? It was only putting out 10A or so, same as the solar was. House loads are around 10A, so I was getting about 10A to the batteries, which are at 65%.

Our ProMariner would crank 30A (100%) until the battery topped off, then it would take the house loads and leave the battery at 0. Even when the victron gets the battery to 100%, it's always +/- 1-2A, it never holds it at 0 like the ProMariner.

I was under the impression this was a high end unit? Do I have a setting wrong? Is the solar interfering with the sensing of the victron?
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Old 20-12-2016, 09:15   #2
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

I just installed a Victron Multiplus (the 24/5000/120) last summer. My experience is nothing like yours... it works almost flawlessly (as I would expect).

When you say you're adjusting the current limit, do you mean the total limit that the charger takes from the AC line? Or are you limiting the output of the charger?

If you're limiting the input to the charger, do you know what the charger output current is? It sounds like something isn't right. What is the battery voltage at the batteries? Do you have a battery combiner? Or are you using the secondary DC output of the Victron?

Also, my charger does have a switch -- and the remote for it has a dial too. (I believe there's a fancier remote with multicolor LCD screen, but I haven't used it).
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Old 20-12-2016, 10:07   #3
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

When you say you're adjusting the current limit, do you mean the total limit that the charger takes from the AC line? Or are you limiting the output of the charger?

I'm limiting the output of the charger. When it started pushing 80A this morning it was making a very loud humming noise. At 50A there is a slight hum.

If you're limiting the input to the charger, do you know what the charger output current is? It sounds like something isn't right. What is the battery voltage at the batteries? Do you have a battery combiner? Or are you using the secondary DC output of the Victron?
I have the 12/2000/80 compact. Single LiFePO4 battery. No secondary output on the compact. No battery combiner obviously. Battery voltage is 13.4V. I have a Morningstar MPPT60 that is putting power in, maybe that is throwing the victron off?

I've got the remote with the dial. The dial controls the input power from shorepower, and the switch is on/off/charger only. There's no off switch for the charger unless you power down the unit, which cuts the shore power.
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Old 20-12-2016, 10:32   #4
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

Ahh, LiFePO4. That's a different story.... I plead near-ignorance of LiFePO4.

Have you tried contacting Victron support in the Netherlands?

13.4V is lower than the charger's standard float charge level -- which is temperature dependent. Do you have the battery temperature sensor attached? (I don't, yet)

According to the Victron data, the Multiplus Compact does have a secondary output for a starter battery, btw. -- but it is limited to 4A charge.

Are you using a BMS? How do you have it connected to the charger? The larger Multiplus has 2 wires for BMS communication, but I don't think the compact does.

Have you tried it without the solar charger attached? Our solar charger is attached and the Victron doesn't seem to mind.
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Old 21-12-2016, 06:27   #5
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

I turned the charger off and let the solar work all day.

As the sun was setting, solar putting 0.1A in, I turned the charger back on, set to 60A max charge. It went up to 30A for a brief period, then tapered off until it was carrying the house loads + 10A to the batteries.

It's been running all night, and the battery is at 85% (battery is 400ah)

How do you contact Victron support? I haven't been able to find an email or phone number on their website.
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Old 21-12-2016, 06:42   #6
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

I would call the grneral number on their website: +31 (0)36 5359700.

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Old 21-12-2016, 06:53   #7
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

It sounds as though it may be charging with a LA profile, not LiFePo4. I would guess that it is entering float mode (based on charging current and your reported battery voltage). I know very little about LiFePo4 (others on here are much more knowledgeable), but i understand they want constant current, then bulk charging at around 14.6V, then nothing. Based on you reporting 13.4V, I would guess your charger is in float mode. Absorption usually is 14.4v+.



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Old 21-12-2016, 07:47   #8
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

As I hope you know, 400 amp/hrs of LifePo4 is nothing to fool around with - you can quickly and easily destroy them. this isn't really a question of "premium", I doubt your pro-mariner even has settings for your batteries. There are a lot of threads on this board about managing LifoPo4 batteries that are worth reading.

I am not a LifePo4 expert (nor have them) - hopefully someone will correct any errors in what follows:

- The hum from the Victron is normal - it's a transformer. And you're pushing it at its maximum rating when you go to 80amps so it hums louder. I have the bigger Multiplus that does 120 amps and it hums too when the charge rate is high.

- LifePo4 batteries don't really like to be at 100% charge. It doesn't hurt them at all to be at partial charge. As you approach 100% the voltage can go up very quickly destroying the battery. Many people use a BMS to cut off the charger when the voltage starts to go too high. Another tactic is to go to float at a voltage that's well below the danger level. Or simply cut off charging then.

- How is your Multiplus set up for bulk, absorption, and float charge voltage? It should not be set up like your old batteries. Victron has settings for Lithium. They also have a relay that can be connected to a BMS.

- Whatever is telling you charge percentage is likely wrong. These meters accumulate errors over time even with regular batteries. I'm not sure what happens with Lithium. And the difference between 0 amps and 1-2 amps charging doesn't tell you anything. No load, resting voltage is what you care about.

- It is quite possible that your solar charger is confusing the Victron. And how is it setup? I would disconnect the solar controller while trying to figure out the Victron.

Again, read some of the great threads on this board.
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Old 21-12-2016, 18:44   #9
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

My Phionex charger (only) does this as well with my 540ah lifepo4 bank. I contacted by email Victron and they recommended getting the cable. I have set it up for 13.8v absorption at 30a float is at 13.3v I believe. I don't have the cable so it was setup using the buttons and a multimeter. It will pump 30 amps for a little while then it just carries the house loads. I don't have a voltage sense wire hooked up yet so that may be my problem (and yours if you haven't hooked that up). I haven't been able to hook that up yet so will do it next month. If that doesn't work I'll get the cable and see what's up.

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Old 21-12-2016, 18:49   #10
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

I thought that cable was a battery temp sensor so I didn't hook it up. I guess that could be a problem? I don't see any way to disable temp compensation inside the firmware, at least I don't remember seeing anything.
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Old 21-12-2016, 18:51   #11
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald.Ricca View Post
My Phionex charger (only) does this as well with my 540ah lifepo4 bank. I contacted by email Victron and they recommended getting the cable. I have set it up for 13.8v absorption at 30a float is at 13.3v I believe. I don't have the cable so it was setup using the buttons and a multimeter. It will pump 30 amps for a little while then it just carries the house loads. I don't have a voltage sense wire hooked up yet so that may be my problem (and yours if you haven't hooked that up). I haven't been able to hook that up yet so will do it next month. If that doesn't work I'll get the cable and see what's up.

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Old 21-12-2016, 18:52   #12
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

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Originally Posted by autumnbreeze27 View Post
I thought that cable was a battery temp sensor so I didn't hook it up. I guess that could be a problem? I don't see any way to disable temp compensation inside the firmware, at least I don't remember seeing anything.
Hmm, I think that wire is for temp, but if I remember correctly there was another spot for voltage sense? I don't have the manual with me and I can't find my flash drive with it on there either.
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Old 21-12-2016, 18:55   #13
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

There is a separate cable for hooking up to a computer via VE. Configure.
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Old 01-01-2017, 10:02   #14
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

I raised the float from 13.5 to 13.7 and it is working a lot better now.
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Old 01-01-2017, 12:54   #15
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Re: Victron Multiplus upgrade really a downgrade?

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Originally Posted by autumnbreeze27 View Post
I raised the float from 13.5 to 13.7 and it is working a lot better now.
Glad to hear you got it working. Was Victron support useful, or did you figure it out without?

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