Geoff.D

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I think I might have screwed up (my inverter )

OK so batteries finally arrived this am, and after opening the box noticed the terminals were bloody thick, ancient, unwieldy SAE post types...after missioning around finally found a local automotive shop that sold me 2 neg and 2 pos heavy duty battery terminals clamps ( @ 4x R30! )

Got all the cables ends sorted ( which was a PIA as the 16mm^2 cable I had just purchased a few days back( about R90 for 2x 1m - overkill but they didn't sell any thinner cable!) didn't fit snugly into terminal clamps after tightening so had to do a bit of a MacGyver to get it to sit nice and tight.

View attachment 793725 View attachment 793727

Have not attached DC circuit breaker to + cable at this point as I checked online and it's not needed as Inverter has surge protection built in.

So far so good.

Connected up the 2x85Ah batteries in series. Attached the cables to inverter. All ready to go, right? Right.

View attachment 793723

Switched on Inverter at wall and immediately noticed the lcd flickering madly. Tried flicking the online/offline button....no difference! Immediately switched power off at wall socket.
Checked all battery connections and double checked + and - attachments were connected where they should be...and tried powering on one final time.
Same result....lcd flickers wildly.

Taken a few pics, maybe someone can point out what I'm doing wrong here. Bit deflated atm after all the reading and prep I thought it was a relatively simple exercise.
Thought I'd gone through this carefully and prepared everything but seems not.
Inverter was working for last few days on the 2 x7Ah batteries from my UPS.

The best way to use those battery clamps is to terminate the cables on proper cable lugs of the correct size for the cable AND for the small bolts on the cable clamp and clamp the cable luge between the two halves of the cable clamp with one of the bolts going through the cable lug. Clamping the cable between the clamps as you have done is not going to give you a reliable low resistance connection.
 

Dimpie (COMPUTEK)

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The best way to use those battery clamps is to terminate the cables on proper cable lugs of the correct size for the cable AND for the small bolts on the cable clamp and clamp the cable luge between the two halves of the cable clamp with one of the bolts going through the cable lug. Clamping the cable between the clamps as you have done is not going to give you a reliable low resistance connection.

^this

+ a multimeter ... no neighbour around that could borrow you one?

That pic from the top of the batteries > maybe take a closer pic, but to me that inspection hole colour looks black? ... isn't black a sign of a flat battery ?
 

wingnut771

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^this

+ a multimeter ... no neighbour around that could borrow you one?

That pic from the top of the batteries > maybe take a closer pic, but to me that inspection hole colour looks black? ... isn't black a sign of a flat battery ?
good spot, should be green, those batteries are dead.
 

MirageF1

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^this

+ a multimeter ... no neighbour around that could borrow you one?



I'll try that tomorrow.

That pic from the top of the batteries > maybe take a closer pic, but to me that inspection hole colour looks black? ... isn't black a sign of a flat battery ?
Yes, that's why I'm connecting it to the inverter to initially charge them.

Black colour = charge battery

And even if they half dead the inverter LCD should still not flash hysterically.
 

TheChamp

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I'll try that tomorrow.


Yes, that's why I'm connecting it to the inverter to initially charge them.

Black colour = charge battery

And even if they half dead the inverter LCD should still not flash hysterically.
An inverter that probably has a 2amp charger and an almost dead 35ah battery? I have a feeling there's a chance the lcd could go wild, depending on how the whole thing works, can you UPS switch on and work inline without a battery?
 

MirageF1

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UPS??? I'm not referring to one.

No dude, its 2400W inverter with 10/20A charger! Keep focused!

/sigh

I'm almost convinced it's the clamps/connections.... pisses me off as would not have had to spend a few R100 extra and diy a solution if these bloody batteries had a decent terminal!

The inverter came with already crimped 10mm lugs and decent cables. Useless with these batts.
 

TheChamp

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UPS??? I'm not referring to one.

No dude, its 2400W inverter with 10/20A charger! Keep focused!

/sigh

I'm almost convinced it's the clamps/connections.... pisses me off as would not have had to spend a few R100 extra and diy a solution if these bloody batteries had a decent terminal!

The inverter came with already crimped 10mm lugs and decent cables. Useless with these batts.
Okay, I thought I saw something about a UPS and 7ah batteries somewhere.
 

MirageF1

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After another few hours of trying different combinations of seating the cables to the terminals to ensure they make good contact I now believe it must be the batteries at fault.

The heavy duty terminals I purchased at local automaotive supplier today are these ELP.BT4 and BT5 > https://my-catalogue.co.za/autozone-specials/catalogue-16714-143

A thorough online search on MyBB going back a few yrs brought up a post where 2 guys have set up their dual battery/inverter in exactly the same fashion and no problem for them.
Same heavy duty terminals. Their cables are much thinner though I noted....and they using spiral wap to neaten it up which none of the numerous auto/elec shops locally I have visited have in stock! Fuggin S Subs Slaapstad!

Plan to test the batteries down at local battery shop tomorrow and take it from there.
If they kaput then they going back to the online supplier.

Eksdom 1 - 0 MirageF1


 
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MirageF1

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^ But how can an online store send you "flat" batteries in the first place ..... name & shame these MoFos

Trust me....I will if it's indeed the case of them being faulty...I already waited nearly a week to get them although was assured they were at supplier on day of purchase + R300 delivery and then these batteries with their dinosaur 1970s SAE posts that's caused me endless grief.

As far as sending me flat batteries, one would like to think that the batteries would have been charged prior to shipping, as who knows how long they have been sitting with no charge which is sure to have seriously damaged the battery life. Or killed them completely.
 
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Geoff.D

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UPS??? I'm not referring to one.

No dude, its 2400W inverter with 10/20A charger! Keep focused!

/sigh

I'm almost convinced it's the clamps/connections.... pisses me off as would not have had to spend a few R100 extra and diy a solution if these bloody batteries had a decent terminal!

The inverter came with already crimped 10mm lugs and decent cables. Useless with these batts.


That is what happens when you do not specify what you want properly. Need to specify the terminal type you want when purchasing "Deep Cycle" batteries, otherwise, you will get the type normally used in vehicles.

And I hope you never cut off the 10 mm lug? Yes, you did. Bad move that!

This is the sort of thing done when in panic mode.
 

Pineapple Smurf

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^ @MirageF1 your cables are too long. you will get some DC loss. Try and keep your cables as short as possible, mine are 15cm long. Also the cable (the black one) where your 2 batteries connect in series has no fuse, i suggest putting in a 50Amp in line fuse there.
 

Geoff.D

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^ @MirageF1 your cables are too long. you will get some DC loss. Try and keep your cables as short as possible, mine are 15cm long. Also the cable (the black one) where your 2 batteries connect in series has no fuse, i suggest putting in a 50Amp in line fuse there.

Well, that fuse is a debatable point.
Which is better, a single fuse between the batteries or to fuses one on each cable between the batteries and the inverter? Or, all three?
 

Pineapple Smurf

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Well, that fuse is a debatable point.
Which is better, a single fuse between the batteries or to fuses one on each cable between the batteries and the inverter? Or, all three?
all of the above :D i love fuses and have them everywhere
 

Gaz{M}

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Well, that fuse is a debatable point.
Which is better, a single fuse between the batteries or to fuses one on each cable between the batteries and the inverter? Or, all three?
and electricians insulation tape on all the metal terminals to prevent accidents where you drop a metal spanner across them, or a screw driver, or your watch.
 

Ivork

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Well, that fuse is a debatable point.
Which is better, a single fuse between the batteries or to fuses one on each cable between the batteries and the inverter? Or, all three?

From what i've read it's always good practise to have a breaker/fuse between battery banks.
If one battery goes wrong, develops an internal short or something, horrible things can happen. Especially true of banks in parallel.
 

MirageF1

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Update:

Got sold dead batteries ( as i suspected after hours of testing..)

I sent an email last night as well as this 1 just a few minutes ago.
Pretty bad experience all round and depending on response will name and shame the seller.
He also expects me to pay for return shipping according to his websites T+C's - he's got a hope in hell of that!

"
Hi still awaiting a response from my earlier email last night from yourself.

Batteries are dead as a dodo. Kaput.

The battery specialist said he's never seen a battery with a voltage so low, under 9V!! ( see attached photo taken just now)

They must have been sitting uncharged for ages at your supplier.

I have spent a lot of time and money waiting and testing with still no solution, only to find i have paid for 2 dead batteries.

Do you have a local supplier who can replace immediately, as my patience is now starting to wear a bit thin."
thumbnail_IMG_20200303_085840.jpg
 

MirageF1

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This is my unreplied to email to the seller I sent last night:

Hi I finally received the batteries Monday morning, and have been struggling all day to try and figure out why they will not charge from my Mecer 2400W inverter ( which is working fine with other batteries)

The battery inspection holes displayed black upon taking batteries out of their boxing which means they are flat.

That is not something that anyone with an ounce of knowledge would allow to happen with LA batteries as it seriously damages it's life/capacity or kills if left uncharged.

I am going to get them both tested at local battery specialists in the morning and will report back.
 
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