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Old 16-03-2021, 17:23   #1
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ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

The process of upgrading to lithium has been a real education for me. No regrets but as most reading this have probably figured out by now, itís incredibly expensive and if you have a ProMariner charger with lithium settings you may want to add a new charger to your list of things to purchase.

Anyway, I was having some issues with my 1240P charger turning off and going into standby mode when it should have been in conditioning mode. Seemed kind of odd so I sent an email to them and received this reply...

**At the moment we do not recommend any of our chargers for Lithium batteries. These charger were designed quite a few years ago and they did not anticipate the huge number of manufacturers and the range of quality of the batteries.
The temp sensor should not matter either way. It simply checks the temperature of the negative stud of the battery where it is attached.
From your description, it sounds like there is a conflict between the battery management systems and the charger output. The charger output voltage may be high enough to trigger the BMS to shut off the batteries. I would check with the battery manufacturer to find out what they suggest for charging their batteries. They are so expensive you want the best charge system you can get and they know their products better than anyone. ** end of reply.

So now Iíll be adding a new Victron charger. Not mad about it because mine came with the boat but itís a little disappointing considering they still sell these units with a lithium setting. I thought I was GTG.
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Old 16-03-2021, 17:29   #2
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

Quote:
Originally Posted by docrn View Post
The process of upgrading to lithium has been a real education for me. No regrets but as most reading this have probably figured out by now, itís incredibly expensive and if you have a ProMariner charger with lithium settings you may want to add a new charger to your list of things to purchase.

Anyway, I was having some issues with my 1240P charger turning off and going into standby mode when it should have been in conditioning mode. Seemed kind of odd so I sent an email to them and received this reply...

**At the moment we do not recommend any of our chargers for Lithium batteries. These charger were designed quite a few years ago and they did not anticipate the huge number of manufacturers and the range of quality of the batteries.
The temp sensor should not matter either way. It simply checks the temperature of the negative stud of the battery where it is attached.
From your description, it sounds like there is a conflict between the battery management systems and the charger output. The charger output voltage may be high enough to trigger the BMS to shut off the batteries. I would check with the battery manufacturer to find out what they suggest for charging their batteries. They are so expensive you want the best charge system you can get and they know their products better than anyone. ** end of reply.

So now Iíll be adding a new Victron charger. Not mad about it because mine came with the boat but itís a little disappointing considering they still sell these units with a lithium setting. I thought I was GTG.

I am in the process now - From my reading a Temp sensor is something you should Not use with lithium's.


I have a Mastervolt Charger running off AC and the Generator - To upgrade it so it can have a independent voltage sensor running to it and also program it via a PC is going to cost me just over $900AU or I can buy a New Victron for just under A$1200 which will do what I need it to do.
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Old 16-03-2021, 17:45   #3
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

Hi UFO.

Yeah. I figured that temp sensor was not necessary in this case so thatís why he mentioned it in his response.

I have Victron charge controllers, DC-DC chargers (2 30amps stacked), BMV-712 smart battery monitor so itís really nice to see them all on the same app. Victron all the things IMO!
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Old 18-03-2021, 00:18   #4
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

What is your problem? You should not be using the temp sensor with lithuim. The temp sensor causes the voltage to increase with lower temps. Which may be kicking the bms.

It’s not uncommon to see a battery charger at 15v with a temp sensor in winter. Luituim does not want the temp compensation .

You need to look at the Actulal voltage of all the charger settings and the battery requirements. One of the settings is Likly correct or close. The marketing name of the setting is ilrelivent .


How is the alternator charging the lithuim?

If that is not sorted either. You could run the promariner and alternator to engine bank. Then add dC to dc from engine to house . To solve both of those.
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Old 18-03-2021, 09:39   #5
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

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What is your problem? You should not be using the temp sensor with lithuim. The temp sensor causes the voltage to increase with lower temps. Which may be kicking the bms.

Itís not uncommon to see a battery charger at 15v with a temp sensor in winter. Luituim does not want the temp compensation .

You need to look at the Actulal voltage of all the charger settings and the battery requirements. One of the settings is Likly correct or close. The marketing name of the setting is ilrelivent .


How is the alternator charging the lithuim?

If that is not sorted either. You could run the promariner and alternator to engine bank. Then add dC to dc from engine to house . To solve both of those.
Hi. Thanks. I disconnected the temp sensor when we added the Battleborns. I figured it wasnít necessary thanks to the built in BMS. The mention of it above was just a confirmation that the temp sensor wasnít needed.

I triple checked all the settings and they are within the parameters for the batteries (currently using preset lithium profile #2). I did the same with all the Victron charge controllers for the solar as well as the dc-dc chargers that go from a Firefly AGM (start battery) to charge the BB bank as well.

I have since been back to the boat and the ProMariner seems to be working but itís also been sunny so the solar has been working which makes it tough to tell if the ProMariner has been doing anything wonky. Iíll turn off the charger this morning and fire up the ProMariner later this afternoon and check the voltages and see what she does.
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Old 18-03-2021, 09:46   #6
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

smac I actually didnít consider using the promariner and dc-dc chargers for charging the house bank at the dock. I just set that up because of the different battery chemistries I was dealing with and needed a way for my engine to charge the house bank underway. Really wish there were lithium batteries designed to be start batteries. Could save a ton of expense and hassle. I know some people have done it but BB does not recommend it.
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Old 23-03-2021, 20:46   #7
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

One of the many issues when using drop in lithium batteries and relying on the built in BMS inside the battery to do all the protection. A very expensive lesson if/when it all goes pearshaped because the internal BMS wasn't really up to the job.

A work around would be to use the power supply mode on the charger (if it has one) because that will not try to use clever programming that is suited to lead acid batteries but not lithium batteries. Power supply mode is generally 13.8v and max current is the capabilities of the charger if below 13.8v and tapered to maintain that voltage. 13.8v = 3.45v per cell in a 4 cells in series 12v LFP lithium battery ... well if they are all perfectly balanced that is, it can also have one cell above the damage danger zone of 3.6v and the other at what ever combination makes up a total of 13.8v. Far less likely to damage a cell using the lower voltage and allowing the internal balancer to do its thing over how many days it takes to get the cells top end balanced ..... the best of them balance at 0.5 amps, that means it would take 2 hrs to shift 1Ah imbalance between two cells, many are 0.05 amps capacity, so 20 hrs to shift 1Ah. If the cells have been high voltage charged (above the 3.45v average across all cells) then the out of balance in the top balance will be a lot more than 1Ah.

The next issue is what cell voltage the balancers actually start working, some of them don't kick in until the cell reaches 3.85v ..... because they were originally designed for LiPo cells which have a higher nominal voltage and higher fully charged voltage, 3.45v for LFP and 4.2v for LiPo, charge the LFP cells to 4.2v and you will need new cells real quick, holding the cells at 3.85v just means it takes a while longer to need new cells.

As far as using lithium batteries as start batteries, the heat in the engine compartment would be the only problem with proper lithium batteries, if the drop in lithium doesn't have the current capability to act as a starter battery then the question has to be asked ..... why? A proper 100Ah lithium battery built up from 4 x 100Ah cells in series can deliver over 500 amps and a continuous 300 amps for 20 mins, if it doesn't start after 20 mins of cranking then the battery is the last of your problems :lol: I'll attach a link to the Winston Thundersky 100Ah cell to show you the chart that verifies the 300 amp continuous and still get all 100Ah capacity, multiple the single cell voltage by 4 to get the terminal voltage for a 12v 4 cells in series battery.

http://en.winston-battery.com/index....ategory_id=176

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Old 23-03-2021, 21:04   #8
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

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smac I actually didnít consider using the promariner and dc-dc chargers for charging the house bank at the dock. I just set that up because of the different battery chemistries I was dealing with and needed a way for my engine to charge the house bank underway. Really wish there were lithium batteries designed to be start batteries. Could save a ton of expense and hassle. I know some people have done it but BB does not recommend it.
If you already have the dc to dc from engine battery to house for engine charging. Why not just charge the start battery from shore charger. Set to agm. ans let the dc to dc do all the charging. From engine or shore.
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Old 01-04-2021, 14:48   #9
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

On one of my pronautic 1240 chargers it would charge too high in lithium mode. Tested multiple times and it always went to high. Changed it to Gel and it worked perfect.
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Old 02-04-2021, 23:41   #10
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

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On one of my pronautic 1240 chargers it would charge too high in lithium mode. Tested multiple times and it always went to high. Changed it to Gel and it worked perfect.
Yes, some of the manufacturers have strange ideas about what a lithium charging regime should be, a max charging voltage of 14.1v is a common GEL regime and a float of 13.6v, both good for lithium charging as long as the absorption isn't time based and tries to hold the 14.1v for more than about 30 mins.

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Old 03-04-2021, 06:19   #11
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

I bet this is just a cya by Promariner. I have one of their charger/inverters and haven't been very impressed. It has pretty crappt control and likes to overshoot its programmed voltage on startup and it always drops into float too early
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Old 03-04-2021, 13:12   #12
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

Gel setting is 14v charge and maintain 13.2 - 13.7
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Old 08-04-2021, 21:07   #13
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

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I bet this is just a cya by Promariner. I have one of their charger/inverters and haven't been very impressed. It has pretty crappt control and likes to overshoot its programmed voltage on startup and it always drops into float too early
How could you suggest such a thing, a charger with control parameters that look like a stoner was at the controls ...... the reason for cell level secondary charge control.
The chances of any two of multiple devices reading the same terminal voltage is next to zero so expecting something that measures the battery terminal voltage through the same cables as it pushes out the charge current is expecting a lot. Not something that is particularly critical with lead acid batteries but fatal for lithium batteries, particularly if the output is high current.

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Old 09-04-2021, 04:50   #14
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

I didn't suggest anything thank you!
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Old 09-04-2021, 05:41   #15
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Re: ProMariner suggests not using my charger for LiFePO4

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Originally Posted by T1 Terry View Post
As far as using lithium batteries as start batteries, the heat in the engine compartment would be the only problem with proper lithium batteries, if the drop in lithium doesn't have the current capability to act as a starter battery then the question has to be asked ..... why? A proper 100Ah lithium battery built up from 4 x 100Ah cells in series can deliver over 500 amps and a continuous 300 amps for 20 mins, if it doesn't start after 20 mins of cranking then the battery is the last of your problems :lol: I'll attach a link to the Winston Thundersky 100Ah cell to show you the chart that verifies the 300 amp continuous and still get all 100Ah capacity, multiple the single cell voltage by 4 to get the terminal voltage for a 12v 4 cells in series battery.

Shenzhen Smart Lion Power Battery Limited

T1 Terry

If I understand these drop in batteries correctly the problem is not in the cells but in the BMS. They run all power going into or out of the battery through the BMS and the BMS they supply is not up to the requirements of engine starting. To keep costs down they supply lower capacity components which limits the battery output to 100 amps continuous and maybe twice that for a second or so. Either way, not enough for engine starting.
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