Alternator charge output control, smart v3

For all issues involving the Smart Alternator Regulators, V1, V2 and V3

Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby grgaz on Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:18 am

I have a yacht with 900ah house bank maintained with two(2) Outback Inverters when supplied by shore AC or Gen. Without AC, they are managed by the V3 and two(2) 200 A alternators.

The alts have no problem supporting the house load of 75 amp at idle(650 rpm) and keeping the batteries at 100%.

I then drained the batteries down to 84% capacity and added the Pilot House AC. This added another 60+ amp load plus a demand to charge the battery. Ran the engines at approx. 1400 rpm and the Outback indicated 42 A feed to the batteries for charge. I think that is about 175 A output from the system although the alts are capable of much more.

I have questions as to the operation of the Ample Regulator and DAC. I assume it limits the charging Amp output based on battery type(Life Line) and some preset parameters regardless of RPM. We noticed that with the batteries at 75 to 80%, there was charging current to the batteries even with the PH AC on. It was only 42 A as noted earlier even though the alts are capable of much more. Therefore i assume the regulator is limiting the output. When we tested the system with the batteries at 90 % or more, the output would only maintain the batteries at their current level while handling the house and AC load. The output would turn on and off between 26.1 v and 26.4. That is, charge current-in would equal current-out, with no excess to build the overall battery capacity back up.

Is there limiting logic in the regulator controlling the alt output based on battery voltage? That is, the voltage is lower when the capacity is at 80% than when it is at 90%.
Does the senerio above seem to be normal operation ?
If I adjust the limit pot, will the 42 A charge output noted above increase with the battery at 80 %?
grgaz
 
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby Coulomb on Sat Oct 01, 2016 1:10 pm

If you haven't activated current limit then the limit potentiometer will have no effect, and the V3 only looks at voltage to determine field drive.

Your issue is unlikely to be a regulator problem.

What is the voltage during these conditions? What are you using to measure alternator Amps? Do you have the ground wires on the V3 wired per drawing with no wire sharing?
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby grgaz on Sat Oct 01, 2016 2:55 pm

Unit was one of the first installed replacing Balmar. Don't know if current limiting is activated or not. Don't think I see anything in the lit about activating, only that it can be adjusted.

As I noted in my post, the battery voltage is 26.2v when the battery is being maintained at its current state, ie. both voltage and capacity, with amps out equal amps in. If the battery bank is discharged to 80% of capacity, the voltage will drop to about 25v and the alternators will begin to charge the batteries with about 42 amps input. The 42 amps is maintained regardless of engine /alt rpm.

Alt amps are measured across a shunt and captured by the Outback Inverter Monitor. It is also measured using a DC clamp at each alt positive output.

V3 is wired per drawing.

I am not inferring there is anything wrong with the V3, only trying to understand how it operates and determine if I can get more output from the system to rebuild the battery capacity.
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby Coulomb on Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:31 pm

Current limiting is enabled with a wire on pin 14 of the terminal block.

Please post the battery voltage when the alternators are producing 42A.
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby grgaz on Sun Oct 02, 2016 7:58 am

As noted in my previous post, the 42 A charge current was with battery voltage at 25v. The 42 a output was over and above house and AC load of 140A.
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby Coulomb on Sun Oct 02, 2016 1:12 pm

You need to fill out the troubleshooting form at: http://www.amplepower.com/trouble/sarv3/index.html

Put it under the AC load to take the running measurements.
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby grgaz on Sun Oct 02, 2016 6:39 pm

Thank you for your responsivenes. I am away from the boat until next week so there will be a delay in providing the info. I will post as soon as possible.

Thanks again
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby grgaz on Sun Oct 09, 2016 12:27 pm

Before I begin to complete the trouble shooting measurement table requested in your previous response, I have question related to the reference ground for the regulator (Term # 3) and the alternator ground (Term # 6). You note "do not jumper this wire to the Ground tab. I have a dual alternator configuration.

Your Installation and operating instuction for the DAC uses the same ND point for Gnd-In (Term #10) on the DAC and then GND-REG (Term # 9) to the Regulator Alt Gnd (Term # 6). Although not shown on the DAC schematic, One assumes that the ND is also connected to the regulator GND tab (Term #3).

This seems contrary to your cautions and I don't see how the actual field current is measured at the alternators.
Your literature explains quite clearly how important this measure is the more accurate the regulator is.

As i explained earlier, I am experiencing cycle I am experiencing cycling as one of my issue and in one of your responses to another similar post, you noted "Cycling is caused by wiring issues such that alternator current shift the battery and ground reference points the regulator sees.
A shortcut that is sometime taken by an installer is to connect Ground and Alt. Ground at the regulator and use one wire to connect the two wires to ground.
A second shortcut is to connect the wire(s) as some intermediate ground instead of taking them to the battery per the wiring diagram."

How is the Alt Gnd referenced with this setup?
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby Coulomb on Sun Oct 09, 2016 1:32 pm

The ALT-GND wire can connect to alternator negative or go to ND. That wire is not so important as the GND wire from Pin 3. That wire must be run separately. Typically that wire gets connected to ND, however, if you have long wires between battery negative and ND, or those wires are too small a gauge, then connecting Pin 3 to battery negative may cure the symptoms.
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Re: Alternator charge output control, smart v3

Postby grgaz on Mon Oct 10, 2016 7:26 am

Term 3 on the regulator is connected to ND point at battery with a 12ga wire. Term 6 "Alt Gnd" on the regulator is also connected to the same ND through Term 9 and 10 on the DAC. The PD feeds B+ through the DAC to the regulator B+. How is the actual battery voltage at the alternators referenced when there is no connection as outlined in the Ground Bounce and Cycling write up ?? I thought the Alt Gnd wire was to be a reference for the actual battery voltage seen by the regulator.
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