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Richard Blaauw avatar image

Is the VE.Bus BMS compatible with a Phoenix Combi 12/1600/75

I'm looking at upgrading our boats electrical system to a LiFePO4-based system. As far as the components go, I'm pretty sure I have the configuration figured out. The only thing I cannot determine, is whether our current Victron Phoenix Combi 12/1600/75 Inverter/Charger is compatible with the VE.Bus BMS. The setup I am thinking about is very similar to the example given in the VE.Bus BMS manual, shown below. Can we use our Phoenix Combi in this setup?


Phoenix InverterBMSchargerVE.Bus
system-schematic.png (252.8 KiB)
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Ur12VMan avatar image
Ur12VMan answered ·

From scanning the phoenix combi manual here: https://www.victronenergy.com/Manuals/phoenix%20combi/PhoenixCombiUKPc00170e-rev01(1).PDF

I see no provisions for the proper charge algorithm for LiFePo4 batteries, without the proper algorithm you are most likely going to damage Li batteries. The combi also does not have a VE Bus provision. Time to upgrade.

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Boekel avatar image
Boekel answered ·

Am I correct in thinking this is a very old unit without VE.bus connection?
if so then no, as far as I know there is no remote input to switch charger / inverter on/off.

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@Boekel: Indeed, it is an older unit. I believe it is from 2004. But it does have a databus for an 8-pin UTP connector, with which it is currently connected to a Phoenix Multi Control panel. The manual refers to this RS485 communication as "Victron Information Protocol".

Furthermore, the manual also suggests that there is a remote switch possibility. Below I have copied an image from the (dutch) manual to clarify. The serial databus is on the top left, the remote switch connector is indicated.

Is there a way to use this unit in the setup I have in mind?


phoenix-combi.png (37.3 KiB)

you could use 2x relay driven by the bms to emulate the remote switch.

a couple of things:
-when inverter is 'on' it still charges, so you'll have to wire so that when 'charge enable' is off, the inverter is switched off.

-your remote control panel probably can't be combined with this

-if the bms shuts down the combi due to low battery, the combi (and bms, and relay) will still use a little power and empty the battery, so make sure you configure the combi in a way that it shuts down on low voltage when there is still enough capacity left in the battery.