AIMS Power Inverter Troubleshooting; 7 Issues and Their Fixes
An inverter charger can be an excellent alternative to a generator, though it may be a companion to the generator. The best inverter charger is able to store energy from the power grid or the generator, releasing it slowly to any item plugged into it.
The AIMS power inverter/charger is one of the most popular such products. Let’s look at 7 AIMS power inverter troubleshooting. And we’ll share the fixes to these issues where they exist.
Here are 7 AIMS inverter problems and Fixes
Issue 01: Can’t connect gaming console to inverter / problems with gaming console and inverter
A lot of people want to take a gaming console to entertain the kids on trips. You will need at least a 300 watt pure sine wave inverter to power the gaming console. Since you’re probably powering a TV or laptop in addition to the gaming console, consider using at least a 600 watt pure sine power inverter to meet the power needs of the gaming console.
The clean power from the pure sine inverter won’t cause power spikes that can burn out sensitive electronics like laptops and gaming consoles.
You should directly connect the inverter to the battery because most car power outlets can only deliver 180 watts of power. The battery cables will need to be used to connect the inverter to the power source.
Issue 02: My appliances die when I try to start them up when connected to the inverter.
Any AIMS inverter or generator has a base load that they provide. When you turn on appliances like motors and the compressors found in air conditioners and refrigerators, they pull more power than their baseload rating. This means that a fridge, AC and sump pump motor rated to pull 500 watts when running may pull 700 watts in the first few seconds of operation.
One solution is to not turn everything on at the same time and ensure that the generator and/or inverter can supply the load. One possible alternative is to attach an inverter to the generator that can handle the surge and stay under that peak load.
A third choice is to oversize your inverter. If the inverter is rated for 1500 watts and your base load is 1000 watts, you can handle one or two startup surges.
Issue 03: My batteries don’t last as long as I think they should.
You can estimate how long the inverter will last connected to a battery bank based on how many batteries you have, their power output, your power draw and how long you want things to run.
Take the output AC amps and multiple them by the voltage output (the VAC) to determine the watts. Divide the number of watts by the input voltage or VDC. This gives you the DC amps consumed per hour.
Unfortunately, all electrical systems suffer some loss. Multiple the DC amps per hour by 1.1 (100% plus 10% loss). That gives you the total DC amps required, not including any startup surges.
Any inverter you choose will have to exceed this number to be able to run the system.
Issue 04: I keep blowing safeties on my batteries connected to the inverter.
If you don’t correctly wire the battery bank, your system may not work at all, or you could severely damage it. For example, you’ll create problems if you connect positive posts of two batteries in series though that’s the correct method if you’re working with batteries in parallel.
Sometimes the issue is system design. If you connect batteries in series, you’ll increase the voltage. Connect several in series to an inverter, and you may trip the voltage regulator.
Connect several batteries in parallel, and you’ll increase the amperage and may trip a different safety feature on the AIMS inverter.
Issue 05: My batteries aren’t charging, though it seems properly set up.
If your batteries aren’t charging, there are several possible reasons. One is that the inverter/charger is not set up correctly. For example, the battery charger may not prevent the batteries from being drained when there is no power from them. This is similar to the ghost power draws caused by items plugged into the wall pulling power though they’re turned off. (This isn’t a problem with grid-tie inverters.)
Another possibility is that it is faulty, and power isn’t reaching the batteries to charge them. A third possibility is that you are drawing so much power from the batteries that it meets or exceeds the power going to the batteries that otherwise would charge them.
Don’t use an inverter in a moist area, because this causes the drivers to burn out. This is a problem when the inverter is sitting on wet ground.
Issue 06: My solar panel array isn’t charging the batteries/inverter.
One possibility here is that the solar panels aren’t getting enough light to generate enough power to recharge batteries or add power to the inverter. Heavy cloud cover, dirt on the solar panels and a build up of debris on the solar panels could cause this.
Another possibility is that the wiring to the solar panels is loose or disconnected, so the power they generate isn’t being sent downstream.
In some cases, the issue is system design. If you have an MPPT charge controller, two 30 volt panels in series allow you to charge a 24 volt battery bank.
Without the MPPT, it will send an even lower level of power to the battery bank and/or charger. If you have several solar panels in series, they could be sending too much voltage to the controller and be tripping the safeties.
Another thing to check is the temperature of the batteries and system components. Things should shut down if overheating. Whether this is due to batteries running out of electrolyte or a loose electrical connection depends on the root cause, but if something is running too hot, fix it once you’ve disconnected everything and let it cool down.
Issue 07: I’ve wired the AIMS inverter into the wiring panel of my RV and it isn’t working/stops working.
Don’t try to connect an inverter to a service panel that runs AC power. Most people don’t know how to wire this properly, and a mistake can destroy the power inverter. This happens when AC power is fed back into the inverter.
If you’re running the inverter into a DC power panel, you can still run into problems when the voltage is too high or too low. If you don’t know why it is dying, call in an electrician.
Inverter chargers can work as a backup power source, provide clean power for sensitive electronics or provide extra power when your appliances are surging as you turn them on. You can use our advice to troubleshoot some of the most common issues, but know when to call in the pros.