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Phoenix Smart Inverter: very inaccurate VA values?!

SUMMARY: very innacurate VA values (33% less than the real value). How to improve?

I finally pulled the trigger and bought a Victron Phoenix Smart Inverter, exact model 12/2000 and with AC output of 230V. It has been automatically updated to the latest firmware version (v1.25) by the VictronConnect app, the first time I connected to it. I have installed it following the manual directions, and I specifically grounded it to my installation's ground (in my case, my vehicle chassis ground point). It's being fed by a single (so far, during the tests) Pylontech RV12100 12V 100 Ah battery, connected over the recommended 70mm2 battery cables with ~1m each.

I'm having some issues, which is kinda disappointing given Victron's price (about 50% more than the equivalent/comparable EPEver/EPSolar IP-Plus). I will post these issues in separate questions so as not to confuse the subjects.

Here in this post, I will specifically ask re: its VA precision: with a purely resistive load (ie, a 60W incandescent lightbulb with a power factor of exactly 1.00), I measure (using both my Uni-T UT210E DMM and a Poniee PN2000 Electricity Usage Monitor (both of which I have strong reason to believe are very precise), they both register 54W being drawn by the load; the VictronConnect app shows only 36VA (ie, about 33% or 1/3 less).

As the power factor is exactly 1.000 (as measured by the PN2000, and also as expected from a pure resistive load like the aforementioned incandescent lightbulb), the VA value shown by Victron should be exactly the same as the watts value shown by the DMM and the electricity monitor.

I believe the Victron inverter is under-reporting the VA value; as its voltage measurements were very precise (less than 1% difference when compared to the other two instruments), I understand this means its current (ie, A / ampere) measurements are way off.

This is very worrying, as not only I was counting on these VA measurements to be able to follow up on my electricity usage, but also because I understand its measured current values are used by the inverter itself for a series of other things (among them the ECO mode wake/sleep loads, and the Dynamic Cutoff value -- the latter of which I'm also having issues with, coincidence or not -- please see my next post).

Yesterday I went to the local Victron representative where I bought my inverter, and they were very helpful; they weren't aware of the issue, but they immediately pulled a brand new inverter of the exact same model from their inventory and together we were able to almost exactly reproduce the issue with it, with the only difference being that new inverter showed 39VA instead of 36VA (in the exact same test conditions). We also did a quick test (as it was getting late) with a much heavier resistive load (an air heater drawing about 800W/VA) and the VA measurement seemed to be much more precise, even if not exact either.

So, what is the expected accuracy of a Victron Phoenix Smart Inverter VA measurement? Is there any way to improve it (better grounding, parameter configuration, different firmware version, etc), specially with light loads?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help.

EDIT: please see my posts regarding other issues I'm having with those inverters here:

Post #1: This very one.

Post #2: Phoenix Smart Inverter: issues with Dynamic cutoff

Post #3: Phoenix Smart Inverter: very little data being reported in the app


durval asked
durval commented ·

2 Answers

Phoenix smart Inverter 12/3000 Low AC

Hi, please help

I installed a Phoenix smart Inverter 12/3000 and it went straight to a fault condition.

"Low AC output voltage alarm"

Firmware automatically updated to latest but the fault is still there.

Red LED constant on unit and fault in Victron Connect (See Photo)

Battery bank at full capacity (440ah AGM)

Reading with a meter there is no voltage at the ac terminals.

Tested on and off load

Is the unit faulty? or is there something I'm missing in the setup?

The unit has been reset/ re- energised and has been cycled through Off-On-Eco.

Any ideas?

@Johannes Boonstra (Victron Energy Staff)

dean-bow2stern asked
dean-bow2stern answered ·

3 Answers

PHOENIX INVERTER 12/1200 230V SETTING

HELLO

when I connect a 65w class a ++ minibar to the Phoenix 12/1200 230v inverter the inverter immediately switches off and generates the "low battery voltage" alarm but the batteries (2 AGM batteries of 100ah each) are fully charged and are new.

Can someone tell me what the problem can be and especially how to set the inverter parameters via Ve_direct_bluetooth

fabiob asked
Matthias Lange - DE answered ·

1 Answer

Buzzing sound Phoenix 12/1200 inverter

Hi

I have an Phoenix 12/1200 in my motorhome, and it makes a buzzing sound when it`s turned on. And when I put a load on it, when charging our e-bikes with 160w AC, the buzzing gets really high.

I did return it to the seller in Germany, But they said it is like that with Victron inverters… so they sent it back to me and they also send me some rubber ”feets” to put between the inverter and the wall so The sound dont get amplified from the wall

Is this normal?

is there anyone else with similar problem?


//Mikael Trevik

mikael-trevik asked
mikael-trevik edited ·

0 Answers

victron phoenix inverter 12v 1200va

does anyone no what volts is the low volt shut down on the victron phoenix inverter 12v 1200va.....

idunne asked
Thierry Cortassa (Victron Energy Staff) answered ·

2 Answers

Puissance max d'un onduleur Victron ?

Bonjour,

Petite question qui peut vous sembler bête mais j'ai un doute.

Si je prend un onduleur Multi 5000, on est bien d'accord que sa puissance maxi en mode "backup" c'est a dire sur batterie sans réseau est de 5000VA. Mais lorsqu'il est connecté au réseau (grid), est-il également limité à 5000 VA ?

lalluyn asked
me-em answered ·

1 Answer

Phoenix Smart Inverter: issues with Dynamic cutoff

SUMMARY: when "Dynamic Cutoff" feature is turned on, the inverter starts throwing "Low battery" warnings and alarms, in disagreement with the configured load/voltage values.

So, I recently bought a Victron Phoenix Smart 12/2000 230VAC inverter and I'm having some issues with it (more details about my installation on my first post in this series).

When I turn on the "Dynamic cutoff" feature in the Victron app, set the battery type to LiFEPO4 and the battery capacity to 100Ah (which reflects the single Pylontech RV12100 LiFePO4 battery connected to it for these tests) and accept all default values (which are 13.00V for discharge current 1A, ditto 12.50V for 25A, 12.30V for 70A and 12.00V for 200A). When I save this configuration, I immediately start receiving "Low battery" notifications, first as warnings and then as alarms. After a dozen seconds or so, the inverter shuts down.

The problem is, the reported Voltage value in the main app screen while all this is happening is exactly and stably 13.10V, which is far greater than any of the above "Voltage for discharge current" configured voltages.

This happens with a light (~60W real, purely resistive) load (which the Victron incorrectly reports as only 36VA, see my other post referred above), and also with a heavier 800W (also purely resistive) load.

So, what's happening? Could this be somehow related to the large inaccuracy in the measured VA/current values I'm seeing on these inverters?

Thanks in advance for your help.

EDIT: this happens with both my original inverter, and a mint one my Victron reseller pulled from their inventory so we could repeat the tests (again, see my first post which I point to above).

durval asked
durval edited ·

0 Answers

Phoenix Smart Inverter Slow Failure

Can an inverter fail slowly resulting in an inability to power higher AC loads or does an inverter just fail fully resulting in an inability to power any AC loads?

spudgun asked
Alexandra edited ·

1 Answer

Phoenix 500VA 12V-120V shutting down with 150W laptop transformer!!!

I have the Victron Phoenix 12V/500VA 120V AC Pure Sine Wave Inverter (as well as other Victron inverters), and I run into a problem when I try to power/recharge my HP Pavilion laptop off of it: The 12/500 (as well as my other Victrons) immediately shuts down (LEDs indicating overload or short circuit). There are no other loads on the inverter when I do this, either. However, the laptop does not have this issue when plugged into the 120V mains or a 300W Solar Generator.
(The HP's power supply is a basic 150W HP power brick.)
How can I prevent this from happening? Any thoughts?

Thank you!

-C. W. Sayre

cottersay asked
cottersay commented ·

1 Answer

Phoenix Smart inverter grounded to my RV chassis, should the negative of the (dedicated) battery feeding the inverter also be connected to the chassis?

As per the title above. I searched through the excellent Victron Wiring Unlimited guide and here in this forum, but couldn't find an answer.

Just to make it clearer, I say it's a ''dedicated" battery because it's completely separated from the vehicle's pre-existing battery system, and it's connected only to the Victron inverter (with separate 70mm2 cables) and to my PV charge controller.

Thanks in advance for your help.

durval asked
wkirby commented ·

1 Answer

Phoenix and Multiplus sharing the same Neutral

Hello,

I'd like to connect two water pumps on one Phoenix 24/3000 and the rest of the house to a MultiPlus 24/3000. Same battery bank.

So far so good and no problem at all. BUT since Earth, Neutral and battery Negative are connected together anyways, I assume there's no issues having two separate inverters sharing their Neutral connections.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Sincerely, Flow

offroadflow asked
offroadflow commented ·

2 Answers

Phoenix Smart Inverter: very little data being reported in the app

SUMMARY: very little data available on the VictronConnect app, more is needed, how to obtain?

NB: this is part of a series of posts, see the first one describing my setup and reporting the first issue I'm having here, and also my second post (regarding another issue) here.

So, I'm kinda disappointed by the data I'm able to gleam from my Victron Smart Inverter when connected to it via Bluetooth and using the VictronConnect app: it only reports its current output power (in VA), its configured voltage (230V), state ("Inverting", "Off" or "Seaching"), battery voltage, and relay state ("Open" or "Closed").

This is way too little to adequately monitor its operation: I was expecting to have, at the very least, a running total (in VA- or Watt-hours) and its temperature. The temperature specially is really weird not being reported, as the equipment itself must know it (for turning on/off its internal fan, for degrading its maximum output power in high temperatures, for generating "high temperature" warnings/alarms, etc). It's specially glaring when compared with what's available in competing (equally capable electrically-wise, and much cheaper) equipment from EPEver/EPSolar for example, with which I have some experience.

So, is there any way to obtain more data (eg, with some other software either by Victron or custom, via the VE.Direct interface instead of bluetooth, with some other firmware version and/or configuration, etc)?

I searched everywhere and could not find any more data. This is my first equipment from Victron, so this issue (and the two others I've reported) could all be due to my ignorance... if so, please enlighten me! :-)

Thanks in advance for all your help.

durval asked
wkirby commented ·

1 Answer

Internal or External MEN Link - Off-grid residential - Australia

Hi Everybody,

The Victron inverters and inverter chargers come with the internal MEN link set "on" as standard. I'm just wondering how many of you would turn this off and create a hardwired MEN link in the switchboard when installing for an off-grid residence/anything that isn't a vehicle/boat?

If you prefer to use the built-in MEN link, why?

If you provide for an AC generator input plug, how do you deal with the fact that not all come with their own MEN link?

dbx120 asked
Guy Stewart (Victron Community Manager) answered ·

1 Answer

Trying to size a Victron Phoenix for a bad power-factor load, how to proceed?

I'm trying to size a Victron Phoenix inverter to power a refrigerator. My power meter indicates it consumes around 700W peak (immediately after the compressor turns on, lasting less than 2s) then stabilizes at around 70W, *but* with a power factor of only 0.60.

I have two questions:

1) To what power should I size the inverter?

2) Would adding an appropriate capacitor in parallel to the compressor motor terminals (as explained here: https://youtu.be/qf_ZLIYT0Ro) allow me to use a smaller inverter?

Thanks in advance.

EDIT: just keeping everyone posted, I followed the instructions on the video above to calculate and add a capacitor in parallel to the refrigerator, and was able to correct its power factor from 0.60 to 0.98; as a consequence, the VA went way down and is practically identical to the Watts value now, and this made it much easier to size and buy my Victron inverter (and also allowed me to buy a much smaller one than I would have to). Thanks to everyone who contributed.

durval asked
durval edited ·

2 Answers

1200w device on Phoenix 800

I am working away for a few weeks and would like to take my Nespresso machine with me. It draws 1200 watts (assumed from label and to be check with meter) for 2.5 minutes. Will be used 3 times per day, 5 days a week for 4 weeks.

My camper is fitted with an 800watt Phoenix

The spec suggests that the inverter will handle 130% load for 30mins, I assume at 12v.

So, my calculations

Max load @ 12v: 66.6 amps - drawing, at 90% efficiency, 74 amps
130% load @ 12v: 86.6 amps - drawing, at 90% efficiency, 96.25 amps

Engine running = 14.4v
So max load is actually 960 watts
Allowing a 130% load of 1,248 watts for up to 30 minutes.

Opinions on this setup please. Are the safety features sufficient to prevent damage regardless of what we think?

Cheers

Side note in case its bothering anyone, the cables used are more than sufficient, as is the alternator, ambient temps 20c and leisure battery sufficient C rating.

larry365 asked
michelg answered ·

2 Answers

Phoenix 24/3000 Conduit

My Phoenix 24/3000 inverter will power an off-grid system. I would like to use 1/2-inch flex conduit from the inverter to the first electrical box but I can't find a suitable connector. The strain relief/bushing that's included is 25mm but I can't find a fitting that has a 1-inch threaded end that also works with 1/2-in flex conduit. Any tips?

mrpotatohead asked

0 Answers

Impianto che si spegne

Salve, ho un impianto fotovoltaico a 24 volt gestito tutto da prodotti victron cosi composto:


regolatore di carica MPPT 100 50

Smart BatteryProtect da 100 A

un Inverter Phoenix VE.Direct 1200VA.


Il consumo è abbastanza ridotto e si aggira sui 40 watt.


Le batterie sono sempre cariche con valori di riferimento di 28,40 e minimi 25,14.

Nonostante questo il sistema si spegne soprattutto di notte e l'inverter non eroga energia. Quando tramonta il sole sembra che l’impianto non si alimenti dalle batterie.

Da cosa potrebbe dipendere?

eccofe asked
Mike Dorsett answered ·

1 Answer

Existing Phoenix inverter, wish to purchase and add a MultiPlus in parallel.

I have an entirely off-grid installation with an existing Phoenix (48V/5000VA) 230V inverter and wish to purchase a MultiPlus (48V/5000VA) 230V inverter/charger to be installed in parallel configuration. The primary goal is redundancy (in case one inverter fails) and to enable charging of the batteries (if needed) from a 3kW generator (continuous 2.5kW capability). A secondary purpose would be to increase the power output capability.

I know there can be compatibility issues that have to be taken into consideration with paralleling.

The original firmware that the Phoenix inverter came with was 2624413. I have updated the Phoenix inverter from v413 to the latest v482 firmware version today, so if the MultiPlus doesn't come with the latest firmware I am more than capable of updating that to the same version.

I would be seriously concerned if a new MultiPlus didn't come with firmware starting with 26 (VE.Bus - new microprocessor, 230VAC) now, but I've cross checked the list of models document and 2624 is listed as "MultiPlus 48/5000/70-100 (+EasySolar)". It is literally the only model on that list that is 70-100 (70-amp battery charging and 100-amp AC transfer capability).

Am I correct in concluding that if I purchase a 2624 (i.e. a MultiPlus 48/5000/70-100) and update the firmware to v482, if needed, then it should be capable of being paralleled with the existing Phoenix inverter?

Second question is, if I was to purchase the MultiPlus and it failed to parallel could I instead fall back on a configuration to feed the AC output from the Phoenix into the AC input of the MultiPlus to increase the output capability?

I already have a changeover switch in the configuration to change the house AC supply from the Phoenix to the generator and could easily reconfigure that output to feed into the AC input of the MultiPlus instead. I'm not sure how the MultiPlus would handle that changeover from the Phoenix to the generator, I suspect it wouldn't too well, and it might get more complicated if the "Dynamic current limiter" setting needed to be enabled for the sake of the generator.

In the worst case scenario, I would feed the Phoenix output into the MultiPlus input and keep the inverters and generator separated by the changeover switch. This would provide the redundancy and increase in power capability. In this case, if I wanted to meet the goal of charging the batteries I would need to purchase a Skylla 48/50 TG Charger, which is practically doubling the cost as it's price isn't much different from the MultiPlus and it'd probably more beneficial to just buy another MultiPlus and just use that purely as a charger (if it can be configured that way). Really don't think I could stretch the budget to handle this.

My preference would be to parallel the Phoenix and feed the generator into the MultiPlus charger, this would eliminate the need for the changeover switch entirely and I think more likely to meet all the goals, but it would also be nice to know that even if I do everything right, there was a fallback position if the paralleling did not go as planned.

Happy to take advice if anyone has a better option to achieve the goals.

william-croft asked
offroadflow answered ·

5 Answers

Phoenix inverter 12/500 - 12v - 100a LiFePo4 battery - If I need a breaker / fuse between them, what size?

I want to protect the inverter but do not know what size protection to use. It says peak power 900W. If I divide that by 12 I get 75A . I know the inverter has 3-35a fuses in it but do not know if those are redundant and back each other up so the fuse max is 35a?

autistic1 asked
Mike Dorsett answered ·

1 Answer

Victron Phoenix Inverter (800/12) to feed a MultiPlus (12/2000/80)?

I have a Victron Phoenix Inverter (800/12) setup in my Sprinter van under the passenger seat. This inverter was originally setup to supply power to a 700watt hot water heater or to a Victron MultiPlus (12/2000/80). The switch to direct the power had not been working so I replaced it recently (hadn't needed it because my solar panels supplied all the power I needed). With that said, I went ahead and replaced the power switch that controls where the power is sent. Once this was done, when I switch to send the power to the MultiPlus, it overloads the Phoenix inverter.

Now for the question. Is it possible to limit the Phoenix inverter to a maximum number of watts so that it does not hit the overload (700watts maybe) or can I limit the MultiPlus to only draw ~700watts (from the grid/phoenix inverter) for charging?

Thanks in advance.

kcmcconnell asked
kcmcconnell edited ·

1 Answer

How much to derate a Phoenix Smart 12/1600 Inverter for altitude?

I need it to operate up to to 4500m above sea level.

What would be its constant and 5s-peak load capacities in VA, at that altitude?

Also, is there a formula or table to calculate these capacities at other altitudes?

EDIT: I strongly suspect the load capacities to be reduced due to what I've read here in this forum, in these other posts:

https://community.victronenergy.com/questions/61843/instalacion-regulador-solar-mppt-sobre-2500-msnm.html?childToView=95306#answer-95306

https://community.victronenergy.com/questions/7443/my-blue-solar-is-only-good-for-2000m-of-altitude.html

These are for Victron MPPT chargers, but I think the same issues could apply to inverters.

Are these issues mainly/only due to temperature (ie, lower cooling due to thinner air)? If so, would installing a couple of fans blowing on the unit (as suggested by @Paul B below) in order to keep the unit at/under 25C, bring the ratings back to the nominal ones listed in the Victron datasheet?

Can someone from Victron please respond, @cquinones (Victron Energy Staff), @Guy Stewart (Victron Community Manager), @Thiemo van Engelen (Victron Energy staff) perhaps?

Thanks in advance,

--

Durval


durval asked
durval edited ·

1 Answer

Phoenix Inverter 12/375 - Venus OS - show AC Loads

Hello, I am new in the forum and german. so excuse my english. I have a Phoenix Inverter 12/375 with the lastest firmware 1.21 connected via ve.direct to a venus os 2.65-3 on a raspberry connect to the vrm portal. Both, the portal an the venus shows the loads as a factor of 23 Watt like 23, 46, 69 and so on. Why the loads are not the right value? is that a problem by the firmware or general? Will that be fix in the future?


Thank for an answer and I wish a happy weekend.


Greats from Berlin, Germany Norman

Norman Kühn asked
Norman Kühn answered ·

4 Answers

Frage zu Phoenix Inverter 12/1200 Eco modus

Hallo zusammen, ich verstehe den Ecomodus des Phoenix 12/1200 nicht, bzw. frage mich, ob ein Fehler vorliegt.

Er erkennt mein Handrührgerät und eine Flex problemlos. Egal wie ich die Zeiten der Suche schalte, schalte ich die Geräte ein, bekomme ich dauerhaft Strom.

Meine Stichsäge funktioniert nur, wenn ich sie im richtigen Moment anmache. Das heißt wenn in der Suchfunktion gerade Strom gegeben wird. Das hat bestimmt mit der Elektronik der Stichsäge zu tun, denn wenn ich eben im richtigen Moment starte bleibt der Inverter auf Dauerstrom.

Leider funktioniert es gar nicht bei einem Pürierstab, der läuft immer nur solange wie ich in der Suchfunktion die Dauer angebe. Aber der Stab hat 600 Watt, das verstehe ich nicht.

Ladegerät von Handy und Akkuschrauber erkennt der Inverter gar nicht. Egal wie ich die Einstellungen ändere, es bleibt nur so lange an wie der Intervall eingestellt ist.

Insgesamt ist so der Ecomodus eigentlich nicht brauchbar.

Hat jemand andere Erfahrungen oder eine Idee was man verändern könnte. Firmware ist angeblich aktuell.

Vielen Dank



rincewind asked
Mike Dorsett answered ·

1 Answer

Phoenix Ve.direct Inverter Eco-mode

As most of the questions are written in English, i will try in English too

Hello everyone, I do not understand the Ecomodus of the Phoenix 12/1200, or wonder if there is an error.

It recognizes my hand mixer and a Flex without any problems. No matter how I switch the times of the search, if I switch on the devices, I get permanent power.

My jigsaw only works if I turn it on at the right moment. That means when power is currently being given in the search function. That has to do with the electronics of the jigsaw, because if I start at the right moment, the inverter remains on continuous current.

Unfortunately, it doesn't work at all with a hand blender, which only runs as long as I specify the duration in the search function. But the stick has 600 watts, I don't understand that.

The inverter does not recognize the charger of the mobile phone and cordless screwdriver. No matter how I change the settings, it only stays on as long as the interval is set.

Overall, the Ecomodus is actually not usable.

Does anyone have other experiences or an idea what could be changed. Firmware is supposedly up to date.

Many Thanks

rincewind asked
wkirby answered ·

1 Answer

how to disable "low voltage warning" on phoenix inverter smart?

hello!

as the title says, how can we disable the very annoying "low voltage warning" in the victron app? i never wanted to set this warning and i can not find any option in the app to disable it. (please see, that this is warning is different from the "low battery voltage alarm")

thanks!

wanek asked
Paul B answered ·

2 Answers

Phoenix IP43 Charger Startup spike tripping circuit breaker

Hello,

Sometimes when I power on the IP43 Charger (3/50A), it blows the fuse in the shore power pole. When the fuse is reset by someone of the marina, all works properly again. The unit a powering multiple lead/acid batteries.

I have read that someone else noticed a high startup consumption, but not sure he means this.

Do I have a faulty unit? Any suggestions?

Regards,

Alex


alexv asked
pepe1395 commented ·

4 Answers

Bonding neutral and earth in smaller 12V Pheonix inverter

I have purchased a Phoenix 12 I 800 inverter. The neutral to earth bond has not been manufactured in this unit as shown in the manual. Can the neutral and earth be bonded on this inverter?

Regards Greg

gregory asked
dcreedon answered ·

3 Answers

12v from 24v Charger

I have a Phoenix Smart IP43 24/16(3) charger. Am I able to program the charger to get 12v from 1 of the 3 battery ouputs and 24v from the other 2 outputs ?

If not, is there a way to achieve this ?

Cheers Rob

lurenut asked
Paul B edited ·

2 Answers

Phoenix VE.Direct inverter remote interaction

Can anyone explain how the remote on/off switch on the Phoenix VE.Direct inverter interacts with Victron Connect control of the inverter.

Does the remote switch need to be in the on position to control the inverter from Victron Connect?

If the inverter is turned off from Victron Connect then the remote switch is turned off then back on again, will the inverter start or is it necessary to go to Victron Connect and turn it on there also?

Kevin Windrem asked
dsfas9 edited ·

2 Answers

Is Phoenix 24/800 repairable?

I have a Phoenix 24/800 here that stopped working. Over the last 8 months it powered a freezer (80 W, startup 700W) on the ECO setting. I don't know how old it is, but do know it wasn't used much. I thought it must be a fuse, but it appears there's no fuse in the apparatus. These days it's difficult to find a technician for those kind of jobs. Is it worth looking into repair?

marcel asked
Paul B answered ·

1 Answer

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