20 January 2011

Xantrex Link 20 woes

We've had some weird moments with our Xantrex Link 20 particularly when relying on solar as our primary source of incoming current.

For those not in the know, a Link 20 basically monitors how many amps you are taking out of your battery bank and how many are coming in and gives you a running tally of how many amps you are "down". It also gives you your battery bank voltage. The issue with the Link 20 which is both a strength and weakness is that it knows it is imperfect in its tallying so it re-sets itself when the battery voltage gets high enough for a long enough time.  This is good because it has a re-set value but bad because, apparently, solar panels can trick it into thinking the batteries are more full than they are..causing you to fail to recharge...causing damage to the batteries.

See our sister ship Piko's excellent post on the matter and update. They are already in Mexico. *le sigh*

We haven't figured out what is going on for us. Sometimes the Link 20 would go from something like 100 amp hours down to 'fully charged' in a period of time that wasn't realistic. So, we started monitoring the voltage instead. Tentatively I think in our case it was somehow overestimating how much we had used instead of underestimating as Piko experienced.

Food for thought for any Link 20 owners. Anyone know the answers? You can customize many of the settings but I haven't found a way to make it less sensitive to resetting or to turn off the reset function. If you could turn it off you could reset manually when needed.

Update: This link gives some great advice. I've tried their suggestions and I'll report back after we've had some experience with the new settings at anchor using solar.

1 comment:

  1. We had nothing but problems with our Link 20's, got replacements and still had nothing but problems with it. Offhand, in my opinion the Link 20 equates with spawn of the devil.

    We then bought two Bogart Engineering Tri-Metric 2020's (we have an electric drive so we have both 48V and 12V banks) and all of a sudden our electrical system monitoring problems became history.Best part last time I looked the Bogart was cheaper than the Link...

    Even better is Bogart is excellent with after sales service and seems more than happy to talk folks through installiation questions and suchlike. Quite refreshing after the Xantrex experiece.

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