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Sonnen Macht Inverter Faults and Repairs

Sonnen Macht ('Sun Power' in German) are rebadged inverters that were manufactured by a Chinese company called Macsolar. These inverters were in circulation and appear to have been quite widely installed in the UK between 2011 and 2013. Unfortunately Macsolar are no longer trading and should they be needed, we are not able to source parts to fix these inverters.

Popular models were the yellow SMMCSL-TL2K and the green SMMCSL-TL3K and we have seen a fair number of these in the field. Other models are the red SMMCSL-TL1.5K and the blue/grey SMMCSL-TL3.6K.

The problem we often find with these inverters are damaged relays, the tell tale sign of a relay failure is an Error 19: Relay or Error 19: Relay Fault warning displayed on the inverter's display, with the date and time that the fault was last found underneath. This error presents itself just before you would typically expect the inverter to connect to the grid and start generating, when it fails to do so it will start a countdown and try to connect, again failing to do so. This failure, although DC power from the panels is available, prevents any usable power from being generated or being counted by the generation meter.

Other faults that you may find with Sonnen Macht inverters and what action to take to resolve them are listed below:

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Repair Sonnen Macht Inverter

 

 

Repair Sonnen Macht Inverter

Sonnen Macht Inverter Faults and Warnings:

Some of the advice we give related to identifying, confirming and or resolving some of the faults detailed below, starts with safely shutting down and restarting the inverter and the solar PV system. This is something that nearly all solar PV systems installed in the UK would have been designed to be carried out safely by the solar PV system owner. However, paperwork, schematics and manuals are not always clear or available, so if you have any concerns about how to do this, we will always be more than happy to talk you through the process over the telephone at no charge.

  • Error 0 - Grid Vtg. Fault - The inverter is measuring a grid (mains) voltage or a grid impedence that is either too high or too low in relation to the parameters that the inverter has been set to safely operate within. If this fault persists and mains power is available to other local circuits then check that all isolators, MCBs and RCDs on the AC side of the solar PV system are 'On'. If automatic safety devices such as MCBs or RCDs have switched 'Off' then leave them 'Off' and contact us to arrange for an engineer to visit to establish whether the fault lies with the inverter, the supply circuit or with the grid.
  • Error 1 - Grid Vtg.10minFault - The inverter has measured a grid (mains) voltage or a grid impedence that is either too high or too low in relation to the parameters that the inverter has been set to safely operate within that has lasted in excess of 10 minutes. If this fault persists and mains power is available to other local circuits then check that all isolators, MCBs and RCDs on the AC side of the solar PV system are 'On'. If automatic safety devices such as MCBs or RCDs have switched 'Off' then leave them 'Off' and contact us to arrange for an engineer to visit to establish whether the fault lies with the inverter, the supply circuit or with the grid.
  • Error 2 - Fac Fault - The inverter is measuring a grid (mains) frequency that is either too high or too low in relation to the parameters that the inverter has been set to safely operate within. If this fault persists and mains power is available to other local circuits then check that all isolators, MCBs and RCDs on the AC side of the solar PV system are 'On'. If automatic safety devices such as MCBs or RCDs have switched 'Off' then leave them 'Off' and contact us to arrange for an engineer to visit to establish whether the fault lies with the inverter, the supply circuit or with the grid.
  • Error 3 - Utility Loss - The inverter understands that there has been a mains failure (a power cut). If this fault persists and mains power is available to other local circuits then check that all isolators, MCBs and RCDs on the AC side of the solar PV system are 'On'. If automatic safety devices such as MCBs or RCDs have switched 'Off' then leave them 'Off' and contact us to arrange for an engineer to visit to establish whether the fault lies with the inverter, the supply circuit or with the grid.
  • Error 4 - High DC Bus - The inverter is measuring too much total voltage from the panels. Assuming that this is an existing installation that has been specified correctly, hasn't recently been changed or added to and has operated before without problems. This could mean either a problem with the panels or with the inverter. We would advise that the DC side of the system is disconnected using either the built in DC isolator at the side of the inverter or the DC Isolator installed between the panels and the inverter (if available) and contact us to test the DC side of the system including and excluding the inverter.
  • Error 5 - GFCI Fault - This error is generated when during normal operation of the inverter, a leakage current to ground/earth is detected on the DC side of the system. Earth / Ground Faults (also called Iso or Isolation Faults) often present themselves when it is raining or at times of high humidity when moisture can enter the system. These faults often clear when conditions improve but they will not get better by themselves, potentially becoming more dangerous over time. We would advise that you book an engineers visit in order to carry out a full system test, identify the source and rectify the fault as soon as possible.
  • Error 6 - Over-temperature - The inverter has measuring a temperature that is too hot and has reduced power output to protect itself. This could be due to a number of factors, for example 1) If the inverter is exposed to direct sunlight 2) If the inverter has been installed without adequate ventilation around the chassis which would allow excess heat to dissipate 3) The inverters components are getting too hot due to an internal component fault. If the unit isn't running hot and if after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 7 - Varistor Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 8 - PV-Overvoltage - The inverter is measuring too much voltage from the panels. Assuming that this is an existing installation that has been specified correctly, hasn't recently been changed or added to and has operated before without problems. This could mean either a problem with the panels or with the inverter. We would advise that the DC side of the system is disconnected using either the built in DC isolator at the side of the inverter or the DC Isolator installed between the panels and the inverter (if available) and contact us to test the DC side of the system including and excluding the inverter.
  • Error 9 - Consistence Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 10 - Isolation Fault - This error is generated when during normal operation of the inverter, a leakage current to ground/earth is detected on the DC side of the system. Earth / Ground Faults (also called Iso or Isolation Faults) often present themselves when it is raining or at times of high humidity when moisture can enter the system. These faults often clear when conditions improve but they will not get better by themselves, potentially becoming more dangerous over time. We would advise that you book an engineers visit in order to carry out a full system test, identify the source and rectify the fault as soon as possible.
  • Error 11 - Device Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 12 - DC INJ Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 13 - GFCI DeviceFault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 14 - Comm. Disturbed - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 15 - Current Sensor Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 16 - CPU Ref 2.5V Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 17 - EEPROM R/W Fail - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 18 - DC INJ Device Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us.
  • Error 19 - Relay Fault - This is an internal error within the inverter. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us. NB: See further information in the introduction at the top of the page about this fault.
  • Error 20 - AC-Overcurrent - This is either an internal error within the inverter or less likely a problem with the AC side of the system such as a short circuit in the supply circuit. If after the system has been safely shutdown and restarted this condition persists then contact us to test the AC side of the system including and excluding the inverter.

We are familiar and comfortable in working with these units, so please let us know if there is anything that we can help with with regards to error codes and faults, repairs, specifying replacements and or if you have any performance or safety concerns.

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What Our Customers Say:

"We had been let down by a failure on our system,and the manufacturer of the part was no longer trading. We called Glen during the afternoon and he was there in the evening. He examined the system and recommended a replacement manufacterer, promising to come back and fit in the new part once it arrived. We informed Glen of the arrival on a Friday PM, he was there fitting the new part by 10:30 on the following Monday. Of course it worked. That is what you call service, and guess who is looking after all our requirements in the future. Highly recommend this company." - Gill Spencer, Newbury

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"In Balance contacted us promptly after we made an enquiry, Glen telephoned and arranged to visit our property to identify the fault, he arrived the following day! Brilliant as when the system is down it isn't earning us money. We decided to have a new inverter installed as our original one was 9 years old. Glen ordered the unit which was delivered to our property he then arrange to fit the unit the following day. He really could not have done it any quicker so thank you for that. Good job done for reasonable money. Highly recommended." - Geoff Thomas, Abingdon

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"Can't recommend In Balance Energy and Glen enough. I had a fault in a solar tile that needed tracking down. Other companies did not want to know as too much hassle. Glen saw it as a challenge and was all over it. Problem fixed and full power restored. Well done and thanks." Paul Rodwell, Wallingford

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"We were very relieved to find Glen when our Solar Panel system stopped working, as our original supplier had gone out of business. We cannot praise Glen's persistence enough as he thoroughly reviewed the system to identify the faults and repair it, despite the searing heat of last summer. He also talked to Solar Edge and provided fault data to enable us to get a replacement part under warranty. Many thanks Glen for getting us up and running again!" - Jane Pearce, Highworth

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"Excellent service. We contacted Glen when our solar PV system stopped working. His response was prompt, he explained all we needed to know and got the system up and running after just a matter of days. Glen was friendly, professional and most of all reliable and we would have no hesitation in highly recommending him." Fran Armstrong, Market Lavigton

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"Outstanding. Conscientious, thorough, friendly and reasonably priced service. Highly recommended. Made our solar panel battery system safe, correcting the sub-standard work of others. Will always use this trustworthy PV electrician. Even after the work was completed, he studied the manual for our system and assisted with resolving further problems. Thanks Glen." Rob Barnes, Royal Wootton Bassett

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"Very decent with a helpful attitude and expert in the technical side and reliable too. Had to integrate with our roofers to use their scaffolding before and after their work to take down and reinstall our PV panels. Helpful scheduling. Up and running again to our satisfaction at a decent price." David Ballard, Ramsbury

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"I got in touch with Glen as our old converter was no longer working due to its age (9 years). Glen quickly diagnosed the inverter and tested the solar panels. The next week replaced it with a new inverter with WiFi connectivity. Everything is working again perfectly and I can see what power it's generating on a phone App now. Great service!!" Peter Dowsett, Chippenham

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"Our inverter failed and as our installer had gone out of business did not know what to do. Contacted Glen who was brilliant. Came out checked the failure dealt with the manufacturer and all aspects of the warranty claim.New inverter received under warranty and Glen came out and fitted the new one straightaway. Superb service from a very professional and helpful person. Highly recommend this company." Martin Brailey, Wokingham

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"Had a tricky fault on my (8 year) old system which Glen narrowed down and has now sorted at a very reasonable price. We have also had our faulty inverter replaced by In Balance; would recommend if he covers your area!" Peter Nobes, Bath

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"My inverter failed and Glen very quickly got my system up and running again. He was very professional but explained everything to me. Many thanks Glen and I've already recommended him." Di Foxwell, Wroughton

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