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Old 08-24-2017, 07:49 PM   #1
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2016 Seneca Inverter issue

Looking for some guidance on this one..

On our last trip we stopped at a rest stop and I needed to use the microwave. (engine off) With people sleeping I didn't want to turn the generator on, so I decided to use the invertor. I turned on the inverter the LCD screen illuminated and the microwave beeped.. After setting the microwave for 1 minute I hit start and the microwave started. But then after a little while turned off. The display was black on the microwave

Checking the inverter LCD display it was no longer illuminated. I turned it off and back on and nothing.. After the 3rd attempt it came back on and everything worked for a short while, then it stopped again.. I saw something on the inverter LCD that said something to the affect of "powering down".. I didn't catch the full message.

After that, no LCD display, no power to the microwave or tv. Checking the battery connections everything is good and tight. My batteries were showing fully charged. I checked fuses and everything and I can't seem to figure this one out.

Side note: After 3 days of not using the inverter I tried it again just for kicks and it came on, powered the microwave. However no volts, no amps, nothing was showing on the LCD screen. It just illuminated green. Thoughts??
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Old 08-25-2017, 02:12 PM   #2
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When I go to use the microwave on 2018 Seneca, it trips power off and I get an error message of "low voltage" on inverter screen even though panel read 13.2 volts or something. Only way I could turn it back on was to kill the main battery switch at the door and turn on again. Same thing with coffee maker plugged into microwave outlet. Turns off after a couple of seconds. TVs work fine.

I checked all connections which seem tight. I haven't pursued it any further since we are on the road. Please let me know what you find.

Only thing I learned was to kill the battery to restore.
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Old 08-25-2017, 03:26 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Mark S View Post
When I go to use the microwave on 2018 Seneca, it trips power off and I get an error message of "low voltage" on inverter screen even though panel read 13.2 volts or something. Only way I could turn it back on was to kill the main battery switch at the door and turn on again. Same thing with coffee maker plugged into microwave outlet. Turns off after a couple of seconds. TVs work fine.



I checked all connections which seem tight. I haven't pursued it any further since we are on the road. Please let me know what you find.



Only thing I learned was to kill the battery to restore.


Are you using the coffee pot and the microwave at the same time?


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Old 08-25-2017, 03:30 PM   #4
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No, one at a time but neither works on inverter. I can run a fan, charge phones and watch TV. Just nothing with a sizable draw. I am assuming batteries are good since they are new and read 13+ volts but haven't checked yet.
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Old 08-25-2017, 04:01 PM   #5
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It might be worth your time to inspect your connections, especially the ground wires from batteries and the inverter.
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Old 10-20-2017, 02:38 PM   #6
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I finally got around to working on my inverter issue. I can watch multiple TVs and run a fan without issue. With nothing else on, if I run the microwave, it runs for about 2 seconds and then kicks off. The inverter panel reads an error code that indicates low voltage.

Today I took a hydrometer and tested all four batteries. All cells indicated they were good.When plugged in to AC power the panel reads somewhere in the 13-14 volt area and unplugged 12.6 volts. All connections are secure.

Any suggestions? Thanks
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Old 10-20-2017, 06:55 PM   #7
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Any chance you can put a voltmeter on the 12-volt connections right at the inverter, and then have someone turn on the microwave? Seeing what the voltage reads right at the inverter under load might be revealing. And compare that to the battery bank voltage also (when under the same load) to see if the voltage drop also exists at the batteries. Voltage too low just at the inverter end with the battery end holding steady might indicate excessive resistance due to undersized conductors, or a poor connection not readily evident on visual inspection.

That is where I would start, but if you feel your dealer is motivated and competent, it is still under warranty!
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Old 10-21-2017, 04:59 PM   #8
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Any chance you can put a voltmeter on the 12-volt connections right at the inverter, and then have someone turn on the microwave? Seeing what the voltage reads right at the inverter under load might be revealing. And compare that to the battery bank voltage also (when under the same load) to see if the voltage drop also exists at the batteries. Voltage too low just at the inverter end with the battery end holding steady might indicate excessive resistance due to undersized conductors, or a poor connection not readily evident on visual inspection.

That is where I would start, but if you feel your dealer is motivated and competent, it is still under warranty!
Thanks Rob. 12.6 volts to the inverter, same as on then panel. When I turn on microwave it shuts inverter down in 2-3 seconds, too short to get a reading.
Coffee maker is only 900 watts and same shut down.

I will call the inverter manufacturer on Monday. I guess a trip to my dealer is in the future. It's not a big deal but it would be nice to be able to make a pot of coffee without running the generator.

Thanks for the suggestion.

Mark
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Old 10-22-2017, 08:20 AM   #9
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This is a REALLY long shot, but your inverter might have a bad capacitor / capacitor bank which is not allowing it to sustain internal voltage/amperage during the heavy pull.
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Old 10-23-2017, 09:53 AM   #10
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So as I may have mentioned before, sometimes I don't sleep at night, especially when I have really important things on my mind. Like my inverter not working correctly.

So I read through the Magnun Dimensions Inverter PDF and right there on page 26 was the flow chart of the inverter operations. And right there was the choice of "SDL or SDH". Clear as mud, right?. "SDH" prevents the inverter from discharging the batteries too much and, yup, trips the inverter off when the voltage momentarily drops below 11.8 volts, which it does when the microwave or coffee maker turn on. "SDL" does not trip until the voltage reaches 10.5. And of course it came with the SDH setting.

I switched to SDL and I am now drinking coffee I reheated in the microwave on battery power.

I sure wish I knew this when we were on our 10 week trip. I also wish that the Magnum Designs tech support people knew this as well. Oh well, IT WORKS!!!!!!!!
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