Modern RVs utilize inverters to provide primary power outlets in their mobile homes. These ingenious devices are the perfect solution for RV travel which takes a simple deep cycle battery and turns it into a powerful energy course. Freedom is a frontrunner in the inverter market.
They have a vast range of innovative systems which have been expertly designed for mobile use. Unfortunately, they are impacted by a selection of common issues which have left their owner scratching their heads. This article will highlight the most commonly associated faults and the most effective means of resolving them.
Freedom Combi Inverter Charger Troubleshooting
How Does an Inverter Work?
To better understand potential problems, it is crucial to have a foundational understanding of how an inverter works. It is a critical component of any RV, but most enthusiasts would be left scratching their heads if asked to explain the process of an inverter.
Onboard leisure batteries typically used in RVs or other portable battery units most often store energy in low-voltage DC formats. Like a car battery, they are likely to be 12V or 24V systems that supply a DC, which is a continuous and unwavering supply of electrical energy.
However, many home electrical appliances require a high-voltage AC or alternating current to operate. Home outlets produce at least 110V AC energy which is the other end of the spectrum compared to battery storage.
This is where an inverter comes in to save the day. The inverter takes the DC and alters the current output, continually changing the direction it is being pushed. So essentially, it transforms the direct current into an alternating one.
The inverter is then tasked with the second stage of electrical adaptation. Through a cleverly devised electrical coil mechanism, the voltage is transformed from low 12V to the preset limit, usually 120V.
This remarkable component is exceptionally important for battery development. It allows safer low-voltage electrical stores to adapt seamlessly to any given situation.
Although the Freedom Combi inverter is an exceptionally reliable brand, owners have highlighted some consistent problems. However, most of the issues can be resolved with some simple maintenance, so here are some of the best methods of assessing and resolving particular issues:
1. Failure to Turn On
The Combi works in tandem with its integrated control panel. There are several versions, including the Link 1000, Link 2000 and the Link 2000-R. If you attempt to use the inverter as usual, with no feedback from the interface, and the inverter fails to function, you can assume there is a more fundamental issue.
Although it is an obvious statement, it is one of the most common issues reported by users. Due to the more extreme operating conditions of the inverter, it is likely to develop simple connection issues. This can be from the battery or to the mains outlet.
In either case, the most likely cause is the vibrations and bumps experienced during driving, which have agitated, misaligned or disconnected the cable contacts. In addition, it has been suggested that the factory screw-on connections are insufficient and often come loose over time.
Ultimately, all of these issues can be fixed by simply finding and reattaching the compromised cable.
2. Overloaded Inverter
Over the years, the consumption of electrical energy has exponentially increased. As a result, there is far greater reliance on electrical appliances and devices in everyday tasks. Unfortunately, this dependence and demand do not waver when it comes to RV travel.
RV owners and enthusiasts demand the same level of electrical performance on the road as they would in their homes. Unfortunately, this has resulted in faults occurring in the Freedom Combi inverter. The inverter is rated to anywhere from 1000w-3000w energy pull for continual periods.
So effectively, it is the maximum number of watts that can be used at any time before problems occur.
The inverter setup is complex. There is a range of fuses, sensors, diodes, and so on that are specifically set up in accordance with the maximum rating of the inverter. If too much energy is drawn, even for a short period, it can compromise the internal components of the inverter.
This is a common issue associated with the Freedom inverters. The control panel will indicate the fault with flashing green and red lights if there is an output problem. This will be combined with a lack of power coming from the inverter, which requires a reset.
The issue arises from the error system. Many customers have suggested that it is overly sensitive. The trip error requires a full system reset which is a straightforward task assuming the inverter is accessible.
However, this fault can become frustrating and unnecessary, where it is said that once it has tripped, it becomes increasingly likely to tip again. Therefore, it needs to clarify the cause of the issue precisely. However, Freedom has been effective at issuing warranty replacements relatively quickly.
Moreover, the problem is extended to the integrated fuses on the apparatus. It has been commented that the fuses on some of the units blow prematurely. Although the evidence is anecdotal, customers have said they have been using well below the wattage limits when the fuse blows. Enough reports have indicated that this is a recurring problem.
However, it is still being determined if this is a factory issue, inaccurate customer usage reports or improper installation.
Ultimately, this is a fundamental issue with the device. The best course of action is to report the problem to your supplier and go through the warranty process. Most customers have a trouble-free experience, so a replacement should put an end to the issue instantly.
3. Battery Charging Issues
The Freedom Combi inverter also charges the internal leisure battery of your RV. Although this is a beneficial feature, it is also the course of several issues associated with the unit.
The Freedom illustrates in the user manual that it can utilize power from several styles of batteries, lead, AGM, and lithium-ion. In addition, there are detailed instructions on how to set up batteries appropriately, including the distinction and effect of linking batteries in series and in parallel.
Regardless of the rigorous explanation, it is one of the most prevalent installation issues that have plagued customers. The Inverter is capable of using a 12V or 24V battery system to provide mains power to an RV. However, this can go very wrong.
It is critical to understand that linking batteries in series will add the voltage of each battery together, i.e. 2 x 6-volt batteries in series is a 12-volt system. Alternatively, batteries linked in parallel maintain their voltage level.
Unfortunately, the combinations can be confusing and lead to customers linking the batteries incorrectly, causing inaccurate fault codes in the interface.
Alternatively, batteries hooked up to the wrong polarity can damage the internal circuitry of the inverter. A novice or inexperienced technician very easily makes this error. Connecting the battery to the incorrect polarity will permanently damage the appliance.
There are some issues associated with the unit itself, however. Many have commented that there are malfunctioning warnings indicating the batteries are low. It has been suggested that often they are much lower than they should have been permitted to go, or they are not low enough to result in a warning.
The most likely cause is the warning calibration which may not differentiate between AGM and lithium batteries. Lithium can be run safely until it reaches 0% or 12V. However, AGM should only be discharged to around 50% or approx 12.5V. For non-electrically minded owners, this can seem like a complicated and unnerving issue.
Often improperly installed batteries and inaccurate charging results in a third battery fault and insufficient charging. The Freedom Combi Inverter specializes in offering a charging regulator when the RV is connected to mains power or shore power.
However, faults pertaining to the battery system result from the above issues. Often it is difficult to ascertain the exact source of battery-related problems. Therefore it is advisable to contact a professional to install and inspect the components.
Several common issues associated with the Freedom Combi Inverter that have been addressed above. All of the issues revolve around components and issues associated with that device or extranet factor. It is significant to remember that if there is an issue with the device itself, then you must not attempt to fix the issue yourself.
The inverter is a complicated and potentially dangerous appliance that should be treated with respect and care. If there are ongoing device issues, then seek advice from electrical professionals and your supplier. Hopefully, your own experience is far less eventful, and you will have a faultless time with your inverter.