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Orion in RV discharging leisure battery when driving!

I have a 12v Multiplus/Cerbo/SmartSolar/Orion setup in my RV. Everything works fine except when driving.

I have a Thetford 3 way fridge which is supposed to use the alternator when driving (connected to the D+ signal).

What is happening is that the leisure battery (lithium) discharges when driving to power the fridge!

Looking in VRM I can see a draw of 20A when the fridge is on 12v. If I turn the fridge off, this stops.

The Orion has D+ connected to H, so only kicks in when the engine is running, and has Engine shutdown detection turned off. (I tried it turned on and it makes no difference).

The input voltage lockouts are set to 12.2 and 12.5. What happens (if I watch the Orion in VictronConnect), is that the input on the vehicle battery starts at around 12.8v. When I start the engine, it starts outputting at around 14v into the leisure battery. BUT this causes a drop in voltage on the vehicle battery to around 11.8v, so the Orion stops. Because it stops, the vehicle battery then goes back up to over 12.5v so starts again. It is stuck in this cycle.

If I turn the fridge off, I still get this constant cycling.

I am presuming there is a link to the fridge problem and the Orion, but who knows!

Any help very much appreciated.



deangi asked
deangi answered ·

3 Answers

Orion TR Smart and Euro 6 Engines

Hi the collective hive of information.

I am in the middle of commissioning an Orion TR Smart 12/12-30A on a VW T6 Camper van. The system doesn't seem to be triggering that often, and even after a couple of hours driving the Lithium batteries are not full.

All default settings have been used, but the start battery is regularly at 12.3-12.5v.

Are the default settings too aggressive, do they need to be dropped. If so any recomendations. I have done various searches and running second battery charging with Euro 6 engines seems to be a dark art with little information about what a good set of settings should be.

My instincts as opposed to science or knowledge is to:

Drop Input Voltage Lockout to be 12.1v / 12.3v. After starting the engine and idling the starter battery is regularly at 12.2v, so restarting shouldn't be an issue at 12.1v.

Setting Start Voltage to 13.2v

Setting Delayed start to 12.8v

Setting shutdown voltage to 12.7v

Any guidance, are these values too low?

Many Thanks



bathnm asked
kevgermany answered ·

4 Answers

Vehicle setup with comms

Is there a simple way to get information from the following components in a vehicle installation which is then easy to visualize?

- Starter battery with house battery

- MPPT for solar charging

- AC charger (is Phoenix Smart better then BlueSmart)

- Orion DC-DC for charging from starter

- ONLY DC loads - no inverter

So how do we go about assisting the client in understanding where and how their charging is coming from and what their loads are?

The Cerbo makes sense, but both Phoenix Smart and Orion don't have comms to the Cerbo

Would a Smart Shunt positioned a) between batteries and b) on the house battery help? But then can they both relay info the Cerbo screen?

While the Cerbo works well with larger systems with inverters and generators / grid, is there something similar for smaller vehicle installations?

Stuart Bell asked

0 Answers

Orion DC-DC smart 12/12/30 draining lithium battery when engine is running

Hi guys , I have the following issue with an Orion Tr Smart DC-DC NOT isolated 12/12/30 A charger

Problem description :

When the engine is running and the starter battery voltage/alternator voltage is around 14,5 Vdc the DC-DC is charging the Victron 100 A Lithium battery with 60 A ( reading from the Victron Smart Shunt 500 A ) initially , then the current is reduced until the Float state is reached. ( see attached pictures )

When the engine is running and the starter battery voltage/alternator voltage is reduced by the Smart Alternator to 13,26-13.71 Vdc , the 100 A Victron Lithium battery is DISCARGED as I can see from the Victron Smart Shunt. It seems in this case the Lithium battery is CHARGING the Starter Battery instead ( this is very strange since the DC-DC should isolate the Lithium battery ??? see attached pictures )

By the way , the 100 A Lithium battery has an EXTERNAL BMS and the remote H of the DC-DC is connected to BMS "Charge disconnect" .

Question : it may be a setting issue ? The shutdown detection is active , the other values are default vales ( see the attached pictures ) . Do I have to customize the alternator parameters to avoid that ?

In other words , do I have NOT to use the Samrt alternator settings ?

The DC-DC has been connected following the instruction on the manual , we have two 60 A fuses one on IN and another one to OUT . The Ground is connected to the smart shunt "System minus" .

Any suggestion here ? Thanks in advance for your valuable inputs / suggestions.

OscarDC-DC engine shutdown set up.jpgOrion Firmware.jpgOrion Float state.jpgshunt charging 60 A engine batt 14vdc.pngshunt discarging Lion Batt when engine V13.26 Vdc.pngshunt discarging when engine batt 13.6 Vdc.pngshunt SOC at 100 %.png

Oscar asked

0 Answers

Victron smart Orion: voltage too low when charging while driving (Mercedes sprinter)


I'm having a hard time figuring out the right settings for my Victron Orion to charge my Victron 200Ah smart lithium battery. I have a 2013 Sprinter with a smart alternator.

The issue is that when I'm pullings amps to charge the battery while driving (about 28 amps) the voltage is around 12.4 volts. With the engine switched off the voltage is also around 12.4 volts. So in my situation the 'engine shutdown detection' doesn't work. The alternator doesn't kick in, or at least not in a way that makes the voltage go up to 13+ volts.

I have read that the Sprinter keeps the battery charged around 80% (12.4 volt) to leave enough room to charge while braking (the voltage jumps to 14+ volts).

When I switch on the lights while charging the voltage jumps up to around 13.3 volts and remains there, it seems that the ECU decides to let the alternator work harder when the lights are switched on.

While driving without charging and with the lights switched off the voltage is around 12.6/12.7.

One option would be to disable the 'engine shutdown detection' and simply use the inut voltage lockout at around 12.3. This would mean that I will be emptying the starter battery while the engine is switched of. A bit crude..

Another option would be a switch or a D+ cable but I actually want to use the 'engine shutdown defection' but it doesn't seem to work for me.

Another option would be to use the default smart alternator settings in the Victron app and switch on my lights when I want to charge.

Any suggestions? Is this a common issue or am I doing something wrong?

yourithie asked
yourithie commented ·

1 Answer

Orion -Tr Smart DC-DC Charger Isolated vertical installation

Manual says mount on a vertical surface. Is there any reason why I shouldn't mount the unit on a horizontal surface? It would be much more convenient in my situation to mount it horizontally.

stevem asked
stevem answered ·

2 Answers

Orion tr smart 12 12 30 deactivating engine detection

Hi - apologies is this has been asked before but I couldn’t find an answer that I could fathom.

Basically my smart alternator runs as low as 12v when the vehicle battery is full charged - so the engine detection system shuts the charger down so no feed to the leisure battery. The only work around has been to have the full vehicle lights on to load the alternator.

I would like to wire up the override option.

I get that I need a piggy back fuse on the ignition side to provide a switched live.

I am unsure how to wire this into the green remote on/off piggy on the Orion. It looks like I simply make an additional connection of my new switched live feed to L terminal on the green - leaving the existing link in place.

Can anyone confirm if this is correct.

Many thanks


djts asked
djts answered ·

2 Answers

Trouble with Orion Tr 12/12-18a isolated Smart

Car: 2016 Volvo V60 (presume I have a smart alternator)

7-pin is dealer installed

Brake controller is 3rd party installed, although a VERY reputable local chain (Eckharts)

Victron equipment & setup:

Battleborn 100Ah LiFePO4 12v

BMV-712 with temp sensor

SmartSolar MPPT 150/40 (solar panels are ground mount, 400W of '12v' panels)

Orion-Tr Smart 12/12-18 Isolated

63a dual position non-polarity breaker between battery and bus-bars

40a dual position breaker (to isolate for connect/disconnect) between solar incoming and SmartSolar

25a dual position breaker between 7-pin 12v power and input on Orion-Tr

I've had the SmartSolar & BMV-712 working just fine, today I went to hook up the Orion to the junction box on my 7-pin from the tow vehicle, After reading the docs, I isolated my battery from everything else (bus bars, distribution fuses, Orion/SmartSolar), connected my car and turned it on, then went into the trailer and flipped the breaker from the car to the Orion.

Powered up as I'd expect, I hooked up through the Victron app, changed the PIN, set it to Charger mode and put in my battery specs. Made sure everything was saved, looked good, and then flipped the battery breaker. The Orion seemed to see the battery, but wouldn't charge even though the measured voltage (13.NNv if I recall correctly) was well above the 12.5v disconnect threshold.

I start checking the SmartSolar and BMV-712, those seem fine. Go to switch back to the Orion, but I can't connect in the Victron app, and it appears to be off! Very strange. I measure the voltage across the 7-pin side of the breaker, get a weird reading, like 2-3v or something. Very strange.

I go through a few rounds of turning off the car, turning it on, the Orion powers up and I can connect to it, once I see it saying Bulk Charging, but then switches to not-charging, and then disappears again.

So, could this be a bad Orion? Could the brake controller folks installed something wrong? I have one of these cheapo 7-pin tester, and says the 12v is connected fine.

Thoughts? More troubleshooting I can do?

drizzt321 asked
drizzt321 published ·

2 Answers

Wiring Orion Non-Iso, MPPT and BMV712

Hi everyone,

I have had a good look on here and various other places and seem to have come up short about how I should be wiring the Orion-Tr 12/12-30 Non isolated, MPPT 75/15 and the BMV 712 together.

I understand how to wire each of the components individually - as per the diagrams they each provide, but combining them seems to have me questioning myself. I have drawn the attached picture of how I believe it should all go together so the BMV can monitor everything correctly but I am unsure if I have the wiring diagram correct. Can someone please vet this and let me know if I have missed something/got it wrong and it wont work.

Thanks for the help and potentially helping others at the same time :)


br3tto asked
andy13 commented ·

4 Answers

Orion Tr Smart 12/12-30a isolated starts absorption charging too soon

On my yacht i have just fitted an Orion Smart 12/12-30 isolated B2B charger charging a new 150AH lithium battery with a built in BMS for my Domestic power. This is fed by a new 100Ah AGM start battery supplied by a regular 100 Amp alternator. The problem I have is that the Orion charger enters Absoprtion charge too soon (3-5amps) with the Lithium battery at about 55% when it should still be in bulk mode. I have ensured that the charge voltages are as per specification for the battery (14.4v charge, 13.8v float), the charger is close to the start and domestic batteries (50cm) and the cabling is oversized 6mm2 I also have a new Victron Smart Solar 20 amp charger that is connected to the same battery which is in bulk (engine off) mode while the Orion was in Absorption mode. I also have a new victron 30amp 240v mains charger which was bulk charging 20-30amps I would like the Orion to Bulk charge to at least 80%, is the smart solar confusing the Orion? can yo help?

jason-t asked
jason-t commented ·

1 Answer

Fusible Booster 18a


En un Booster Orión tr smart 12/12-18a.

de cuantos seran los fusibles de proteccion?

miEn el de 30a se instalan de 60a,interpretó que en uno de 18a debería de ser de 30a o de 40?

danieljs asked

0 Answers

Orion TR Smart 12 | 12-18 isolated wiring question

I want to install the Orion TR Smart 12 | 12-18 isolated not because it is isolated but because an 18A non isolated version is not available. I am planning to use it to charge my start FLA battery from a LiFePO4 house bank when needed. My question is can the two negatives be combined as shown in the attached drawing.



Orion wiring detail.pdf

tim22 asked
danieljs answered ·

7 Answers

How to setup two Orion TR Smart DC-DC Charger Non-Isolated in Parallel with 2021 Mercedes Sprinter

We have a 2021 Mercedes Sprinter and are installing two Orion TR Smart DC-DC Charger Non-Isolated in Parallel to give us more charge capacity from the van's alternator. I've read several post about how to install these devices but it is still unclear what is the proper way to connect the chargers to the van.

Is it best to connect directly to the alternator, the starter battery, or the fuse location under the drivers seat? Of course, all of these scenarios would be fused. The best information I've found is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01F4QDVJUq0&t=3163s but this is for a singe charger.

adam-good asked
Mike Dorsett answered ·

1 Answer

Internal fuses in Orion-Tr 24/12-70 converter

What type and size are this Orion’s internal fuses?

ranger-rick asked

0 Answers

Orion 12-12 | 30 Non Isolated - Normal Current Draw?

Have this model feeding a 200 AH Lithium battery with Smart BMS. Input is about 12.7v, Output is set to 14.6. When it starts, input is about 50A (600W). Given Ohm's law, the output is somewhere around 40A, less losses in the voltage boost components.

Question: Is it normal to be passing that much power if rated at 30A output?

como asked
como answered ·

11 Answers

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