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Xantrex 3000 Inverter dead upon arrival home from a trip


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Just got home from a great boondocking trip where we used the inverter for a bunch of things, including the microwave to heat sandwiches for lunch before hitting the road.

I put my trailer back in the garage and discovered my Xantrex 3000 Inverter is not working at all - no lights, no power - nothing.  My batteries are at 61% and all DC is working fine.  I checked the breaker and the cutoff switches and all look normal.

I'm going to go out and try to trace the wiring to see if there's an inline fuse or something, but since it worked literally minutes before we pulled out to drive home I'm thinking something must have come loose somewhere?

I'm hoping I missed something simple.

Any ideas?  Thanks!

John and Anita

2020 Oliver Elite II, Hull 688

Tow Vehicle:  2006 Silverado 2500HD Crew Cab.  6.6L Duramax

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Bummer.. sorry to hear that.
 

When our remote panel started its [20] issue, I contacted Xantrex about it. It was the weekend so I didn’t hear back til Monday but they were on it first thing in the am..

Mark & Deb..2020 Elite II..Dearie..Hull #685..2016 Tundra

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When I had inverter problems a while back I called Xantrex and received excellent assistance.  While waiting for Monday I would start checking connections just to make sure nothing is loose.  Let us know what the resolution is!  Mike

Mike and Carol | Fair Oaks Ranch, TX | 2016 Elite II #135 | 2020 Ram 2500 Laramie 6.7L Cummins Turbo Diesel

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Dumb question - you  mention checking cutoff switches. Is there  a switch on the inverter itself that you haven't checked?  My  van  has a Xantrex inverter (different model I'm sure, from 2004 and 2K watts) and it has a stealthy little on/off switch that early on I  learned was easy  to knock into the off position with cargo (which led to discovering the switch...).

Jim and  Yanna, Woodinville WA

2004 Ford E250 camper conversion

Oliver Elite II hull #709

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There is a switch on the Xantrex inverter as well as the remote.  I've been toggling both with no results.  Not even a flicker of electrons.

I don't see any loose connections anywhere and there's not much I can do besides call OTT and Xantrex on Monday.

I'm now thinking I better invest in a good Lithium charger as problems like this put my 4K worth of Lithiums at risk.

Not good.  I'm more and more frustrated not having the electrical schematics too.  Seems I need them daily at this point.  😬

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John and Anita

2020 Oliver Elite II, Hull 688

Tow Vehicle:  2006 Silverado 2500HD Crew Cab.  6.6L Duramax

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This is the price you pay for combining a critical function (charging) in a non- critical device (making popcorn): with the factory lithium package if the inverter fails you can’t charge your batteries off shore power or a generator. And they won’t fully charge off your truck either! And if you don’t have solar there is no way to charge!! Having at least two separate charging sources is always a better setup for camping. The Progressive Dynamics charger section for Ollies without the lithium battery package is only $160 and can easily be changed in half an hour by the average owner. Why ruin a trip when one rarely used component quits? Does not compute.... ☹️ Good luck. Maybe also consider buying a high amperage portable lead acid charger, as an ultimate backup, it won’t hurt the lithium batteries in any way, it just won’t fully charge them. Complain to Oliver about their decision to charge off the inverter. I think it is a very dumb engineering decision.

I will soon be able to charge my Victron lithiums by the PD converter (new module), by the truck (new DC to DC converter), by the roof panels (new MPPT controller) and by a portable panel. All independent of each other. I have already had one failure of the standard 2000 watt inverter, the replacement is loud, and I do not trust it.

John Davies

Spokane WA

Edited by John E Davies
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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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I was able to "wake up" the inverter by plugging into shore power.  I was kind of "shocked" 🙂 that it came on and started charging the batteries.  I then unplugged shore power and it stayed on with DC.  Go figure.  I'm definitely not happy with not being able to understand what happened or explain it yet.  I will still call Xantrex and open a service ticket with OTT.  I need to understand if this was normal (hope not) and if not what could have caused it.  Could be a precursor to an all out inverter failure for all I know. 

So, I hope to learn more from either OTT service or Xantrex, but here's what I've learned so far.

1.  This issue combined with the [20] error code (lost communication) on the remote leaves me with zero confidence in this component.

2.  To JD's point, what if the microwave really fries the inverter and with it the critical charger?  Definitely need a backup AC charger for Lithium and would consider one now even if the charger was isolated from the inverter.  It's just too important to not have a backup in my mind.

3.  Thank goodness OTT engineering has not designed the Ollie in a way that relies on 120V for anything operationally critical.

4. My all-electric backup plan for heat (which is critical unlike Air Conditioning) should my propane run out or the furnace fail has to be all 12V DC.  I was considering using my Mr. Heat portable as a backup, but that's 120V.

5.  My wife brings some reality to the situation.  She says we paid good money for the ability to have oven cooked chicken and microwave popcorn if we want and this is not a pop up camper.

If I get an answer to what happened in this particular case, I'll definitely update this thread.

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John and Anita

2020 Oliver Elite II, Hull 688

Tow Vehicle:  2006 Silverado 2500HD Crew Cab.  6.6L Duramax

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John, sorry for this trouble you're dealing with.  Since we have similar interests in terms of cold weather camping I'll be following your thread closely.  The resolution from either OTT and/or Xantrex will influence what power options we choose.  

Hopefully you get good tech support from both OTT and Xantrex and the issue is gone for good.  I like JD's approach to isolating stuff and having back ups which is an approach I'll take because my brother got the "electrical gene", not me.  I'd have a hell of a time fixing or troubleshooting anything electrical related while on a trip.  

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2021 Elite 2 on order (June 2021 delivery)

2020 Toyota Tundra

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Dropped in on my Oliver this morning for a wellness check as temps this week in Franklin, Tn will drop to near 20* a couple of nights.  The furnace is working great and the batteries are staying well charged, BUT the inverter isnt working!  Not good since we’re off to the gulf of Fla in two weeks.  Any ideas?

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47 minutes ago, Mac said:

Dropped in on my Oliver this morning for a wellness check as temps this week in Franklin, Tn will drop to near 20* a couple of nights.  The furnace is working great and the batteries are staying well charged, BUT the inverter isnt working!  Not good since we’re off to the gulf of Fla in two weeks.  Any ideas?

Are you plugged in to AC or charging from solar?

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I spoke with Victron some time ago about the potential problem if my MultiPlus died that I would have no options for 120v, since the Multi is essentially the gatekeeper and if broken wouldn’t allow shore power to the outlets. They told me on yacht installations that they often recommend a manual transfer switch to bypass the Multi and send shore power directly to the outlets.

That doesn’t solve battery charging, but then any charger can break, not just complex ones. But I have considered reinstalling the original PD charger back in my trailer,  but hooked up to a manual transfer switch.  I haven’t put enough thought into it to figure out exactly how that would work, but I assume it’s possible. Or I could always just keep the charger module as a spare and reconnect everything in an emergency. That would be a really manual transfer switch. 

Edited by Overland

Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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Well my Multi feeds power back through that breaker.  Without the charger module, my PD still acts as the distribution panel. I think I would need to simultaneously switch both the power feed to the Multi/PD and also the feed from the Multi/PD to the breakers. There’s surely some damage potential there if power were to get back fed into the Multi, even briefly. I’d definitely want to consult Victron before doing it. 

Edited by Overland

Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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5 minutes ago, Mac said:

Charging from solar

Mac, there's actually a power switch of sorts on the front of the inverter.  It's not really power - it's for "hard on" or "standby" mode.  Standby is what it should be on for normal operation (button out) I believe.  You could push it in and see if that turns on the inverter.  If you have absolutely no power from the batteries to the inverter and you've made sure the inverter breakers (there are 2) aren't tripped, then you may have encountered the exact problem I was having.  Plugging into AC/Shore fixed mine - at least for now.  

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John and Anita

2020 Oliver Elite II, Hull 688

Tow Vehicle:  2006 Silverado 2500HD Crew Cab.  6.6L Duramax

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5 minutes ago, Mac said:

Charging from solar

It may be that the inverter has gone into power standby assuming the power button is in the on position. (In/down) Plugging in a lamp with 75W or greater light bulb in should wake it up. If this is the case, I would go into the settings and turn the power save timer off, then use the power switch on the inverter to put it in standby when it's not going to be needed for long periods.

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11 hours ago, John E Davies said:

This is the price you pay for combining a critical function (charging) in a non- critical device (making popcorn): with the factory lithium package if the inverter fails you can’t charge your batteries off shore power or a generator. And they won’t fully charge off your truck either! And if you don’t have solar there is no way to charge!! Having at least two separate charging sources is always a better setup for camping. The Progressive Dynamics charger section for Ollies without the lithium battery package is only $160 and can easily be changed in half an hour by the average owner. Why ruin a trip when one rarely used component quits? Does not compute.... ☹️ Good luck. Maybe also consider buying a high amperage portable lead acid charger, as an ultimate backup, it won’t hurt the lithium batteries in any way, it just won’t fully charge them. Complain to Oliver about their decision to charge off the inverter. I think it is a very dumb engineering decision.

I will soon be able to charge my Victron lithiums by the PD converter (new module), by the truck (new DC to DC converter), by the roof panels (new MPPT controller) and by a portable panel. All independent of each other. I have already had one failure of the standard 2000 watt inverter, the replacement is loud, and I do not trust it.

John Davies

Spokane WA

I'm with JD here. It may seem efficient and $$ wise as a design, but has no real redundancy. Were I to redo my system - JD's plan would be the path I took. 

As for Xantrex - my experience with them- on another Oliver's inverter troubles was nothing short of explemporary! They did everything possible to help the customer.

On another note - I ran my inverter solid for about a month - powering a portable freezer - never waivered.  

Edited by BackofBeyond
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Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite II - 2018 GMC 2500 Duramax 

"Die young - As late as possible"

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This  is my first post on this forum so forgive my ignorance if I say something silly here. My wife and I are in the queue for an elite 2 with the lithium pro package so the dead Xantrex 3000 post gave me concern. Following up on the post about the power save mode possibly being the problem I found the manual for the unit on the Xantrex site because the wrong manual is on the Oliver site. There is a power save mode that is factory set to shut the unit down 25 hours after ac loads drop below 50watts. When an ac load greater than 25 watts is sensed by the Xantrex unit it should automatically turn back on. I have attached a copy of the manual to this post. Not sure if this helps but the power save feature could be related at least. 

254903808_FreedomXCPROOwnersGuide(975-0799-01-01_Rev-C)_ENG.pdf

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Ok, I spent about an hour on the phone today working through this with Xantrex support (they are great as others have mentioned), and this is a bit complicated, but I'll try to explain what we think happened.

The only way we could reproduce the problem is with the inverter to battery relay tripped and both "power" buttons (remote and main unit) in the up position.  So my working theory is that we somehow tripped the battery to inverter cutoff relay (300A) before leaving for home - but not before heating our sandwiches with the microwave to our satisfaction!  👍

So not knowing the cutoff relay had been tripped, when we got home I noticed the 120V was not working (Microwave clock was off).  I checked the Xantrex remote first, and there was no power.  During checking, I must have left the remote power switch up - which is "hard off" when there is no shore power.  I then went under the street bed and got no response from the inverter - even after resetting the cutoff breakers - because I had inadvertently left the remote switch in the off position.  Plugging into shore power bypassed the remote switch, so that's why it fixed the issue.  I'm relieved that I could have recovered without shore power (or a generator) by turning the remote switch back "on" and resetting the relay cutoff switch.  I tested this multiple times and I'm convinced this would have worked.

To complicate matters further, the [20] error code that's popping up on the remote (loss of communication with the inverter) was going on intermittently during all of this.  I had that error code on the remote the entire camping trip but now I know to ignore it as the remote is still controlling things - as long as the inverter switch is in up / standby.  There's another thread on this error code that I'll post what I've learned about that through all of this - which is quite a bit.  

Bottom line - I think things are working as they should - it's just not always intuitive figuring out how things work or don't together - especially with a remote that is having software problems communicating with the inverter.

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John and Anita

2020 Oliver Elite II, Hull 688

Tow Vehicle:  2006 Silverado 2500HD Crew Cab.  6.6L Duramax

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