Strange charging behavior

13 replies [Last post]
clagros
Offline
Joined: 01/29/2009
Points: 85

Sorry if this question was already posted. Today I took the bike full charged and after 2 minutes slow riding the battery red led went on, followed with a sensible loss of power (no acceleration) and the max speed was limited to 35 mph (~50 km/h). The battery indicator also dropped suddenly (which is no new, it happens when the battery is 3-4 bars left).
I stopped the bike and put in on charge, no delay. Charging cycle begun normally, but after a few minutes, the dashboard went off, only the fans kept running.
I disconnected and reconnected the power and the same thing happened time after time. Then I turned on the switch, setting 15 mins delay. After the delay, same thing.
After about 4 hours connecting, disconnecting and reconnecting the power, the battery gained just 3 bars, enough to give me 6 kmts back home.
Now the bike is resting, disconnected, but I can still hear the fans running(36C).
Ideas / explanations / action items?
Thanks!
Claudio

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
clagros
Offline
Joined: 01/29/2009
Points: 85
Re: Strange charging behavior

18 views but no any answer? what is happening with this group?
I'm going to sell the VX and buy a bettle...

AndY1
AndY1's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/17/2008
Points: 1071
Re: Strange charging behavior

What was the Voltage when you started charging and just before it switched off the LCD?

Mik
Mik's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/11/2007
Points: 3727
Re: Strange charging behavior

clagros wrote:

18 views but no any answer? what is happening with this group?
I'm going to sell the VX and buy a bettle...

That might be the way to go!

After all, having spent years on this forum, you could not possibly know that a fair bit of detail is needed to come to a reasonably accurate diagnosis for a VX-1 problem?

Having waited 6hrs:03min you should complain and buy a stinky ICE vehicle, of course!

How long do you think would be a reasonable waiting period before others ask you for the essential answers needed to have a crack at your problem?

If you were a new Vectrix owner or new forum member you might be excused, but you are not.

The advice you may get here is quite highly specialised - and always free of charge - and often total nonsense....

But it always takes someone else's time to figure out how to help someone here, and if it looks like it is too hard, too nebulous or too un-interesting, you get no answers.

__________________

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

marylandbob
Offline
Joined: 06/22/2009
Points: 520
Re: Strange charging behavior

Without much detail to go on, I would guess that you may have a loose/burnt/corroded connection, possibly at the motor controller, at the rear of the bike, or a bad battery cell or connector. How about some information/details? Give us the battery voltage, both before and after charging, and what is the charging current, shown on the speed dial?-(Provide as much detail as possible)-Bob

__________________

Robert M. Curry

mikemitbike
mikemitbike's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/20/2008
Points: 310
Re: Strange charging behavior

Hi clagros, as you are able to set a delay before charging, you have a newer Firmware on the bike.
If the Bike turns the LCD off (during charging) just let the bike pluged in to the grid AND turn
the ignition on. So the LCD will come back to life und show you some data of the cooling-phase.
It shows voltage of the battery, temp, and time how long it cools, or if a dely was setted how
long it will go on cooling.
I had a temperature problem this days after washing the bike, when some moisture came on one of the
two BMS boards (it swapped from 27°C to 56°C).
Just try to read out Voltage and temperature and tell us.
Greetings Mike

moccasin
moccasin's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/11/2008
Points: 494
Re: Strange charging behavior

Sounds like a hot battery to me. That's happening to me a lot lately with our temps tickling the 100 degree mark. She won't charge a hot battery, so repeated aggravating the situation by disconnecting and reconnecting is going to get you nowhere.

You said you only drove the bike for 2 minutes before symptoms occured, but how long did it have to cool down after its initial charge?

For me, this time of year means the bike doesn't get charged except late at night and has several hours of cooldown in the morning before it gets used for its 3.5 mile journey, and I avoid using regen at all when temps are this high. Not unusual at all for mine to run hot in these temps.

I don't know where you're from, so I can only give you guesses based on my own experience and locale.

clagros
Offline
Joined: 01/29/2009
Points: 85
Re: Strange charging behavior

Hi, I'm going to put some additional background info. I promise to come back with some numbers as soon as I could revive the bike.
The model is VX-1, manufactured (2008?) bought new in Israel, February 2009. 14 months of riding without any major problems. 7500 kmts on the clock.
Currently used only once a week, for a 40-50 controlled riding.
After the ride, the bike rests about a whole day before a 8 hours delayed charging.
Sometimes, when coming back home wiht 3-5 battery bars left riding at about 40 mph, the battery red tagtale goes on, and the battery bars and the estimated range drops suddenly to 0, but with enough juice to get home.
That does not disturb me, but probably it is a sypmtom of degradation.
BUT this time, the bike rested 3 days after a full charge. I also connected it about one hour before the ride in order to compansate the natural loss of volts due to the days not used (as usually I do).
The battery bar was full (19 bars), 139 volts, 31 C.
Clime was hot, but at 20:00 hs, I believe the outside temp was similar (31C).
After a 2 mins riding, the battery red led turned red, followed of a sensible power of loss, speed limitation and battery bar dropping from 19 to 0.
As told, I was not able to recharge the bike, since after each attempt, the dashboard turned off, only the fans running. At that point, battery temp was 36C.
I'll back home and try to plug it so I'll can put some more data.
Thanks!

AndY1
AndY1's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/17/2008
Points: 1071
Re: Strange charging behavior

It sounds like a bad connection between the two battery cells. It might came loose causing the loss of power and increased heat between the terminal and the connection, because the connection was not proper.

If that is the case, then your battery is still full, but because your battery gauge thought it was empty, it went to 0 bars. DO NOT TRY TO CHARGE THE BATTERY, since if it's full, you'll only do damage by overcharging it.

Try do to another ride. If the problem repeats, let the service engineer check it out. In any case, you'll have to drive it to the red battery telltale, so that the real battery State of Charge syncs with the battery gauge, so that the bike won't try to charge the already charged battery.

Mik
Mik's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/11/2007
Points: 3727
Re: Strange charging behavior

clagros wrote:

...

Currently used only once a week, for a 40-50 controlled riding.
After the ride, the bike rests about a whole day before a 8 hours delayed charging.
Sometimes, when coming back home wiht 3-5 battery bars left riding at about 40 mph, the battery red tagtale goes on, and the battery bars and the estimated range drops suddenly to 0, but with enough juice to get home.
That does not disturb me, but probably it is a sypmtom of degradation.
BUT this time, the bike rested 3 days after a full charge. I also connected it about one hour before the ride in order to compansate the natural loss of volts due to the days not used (as usually I do).
The battery bar was full (19 bars), 139 volts, 31 C.
Clime was hot, but at 20:00 hs, I believe the outside temp was similar (31C).
After a 2 mins riding, the battery red led turned red, followed of a sensible power of loss, speed limitation and battery bar dropping from 19 to 0.
As told, I was not able to recharge the bike, since after each attempt, the dashboard turned off, only the fans running. At that point, battery temp was 36C.
I'll back home and try to plug it so I'll can put some more data.
Thanks!

Your usage pattern makes imbalance very likely. High ambient temperature aggravate this further.

Do you ever let the bike go through a full EQ charge?

The problem might be that the end-of-charge voltage has been dropping gradually, because the battery never really gets full.

You seem to leave the bike standing without active cooling after your weekly rides, unless I misunderstand you. It would be better to set a pre-cooling period and start it immediately. You need to remove the heat from the battery right after riding, it does not cool down much by itself. A 12hr or 24hr delay (without impellers running) will only serve to cause a higher than usual self-discharge rate, which then lets your bikes charging system mis-calculate the SOC; this causes the incomplete charging.

But I'm not at all certain that this is all there is to it. I have no experience with the newer software versions that allow pre-charge delay setting. Could your bikes refusal to charge after your last ride have something to do with the charge delay setting? It kind of sounds like it!

Make sure no charge delay is programmed, then plug the charger in. Leave it plugged in for 24hrs to allow a full EQ charge to occur. I would check every 30min during the bulk-charging phase to figure out what is happening.

Did you ever find that the bike had not charged to 17/17th after a ride ending with disappearing bars?

__________________

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Le Concombre Masqué
Le Concombre Masqué's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/06/2010
Points: 74
Re: Strange charging behavior

This problem looks like mine (http://visforvoltage.org/forum/9144-momentary-laps-power), but more serious. We are now suspecting the ICM, after an unsuccesful battery charger replacement.

__________________

April 2010 Vectrix VX-1, 2004 Prius (feeded with E85), Giant Suede (electric bicycle)

Cell Propelled
Cell Propelled's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/29/2010
Points: 63
Re: Strange charging behavior

Hey Mik, Do you want me to plug in when I end my travel, or wait for a while before plugging in and charging? I was thinking I read that I souldn't charge when HOT, but you're saying that it needs to be plugged in and start cooling down with the fans, which the system holds back the charging till cooling is done.

Mik
Mik's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/11/2007
Points: 3727
Re: Strange charging behavior

Cell Propelled wrote:

Hey Mik, Do you want me to plug in when I end my travel, or wait for a while before plugging in and charging? I was thinking I read that I souldn't charge when HOT, but you're saying that it needs to be plugged in and start cooling down with the fans, which the system holds back the charging till cooling is done.

Whenever the battery is hot and the ambient air is cooler, you should have the fans running to remove the heat.

The newer software allows this to a small degree, others can explain it better because they have tried it out.

An ABCool gives you total control over the cooling (at least when grid power is available).
http://visforvoltage.org/forum/7471-abcool-40-vectrix-auxiliary-battery-cooling-system

__________________

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

AndY1
AndY1's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/17/2008
Points: 1071
Re: Strange charging behavior

Cell Propelled wrote:

Hey Mik, Do you want me to plug in when I end my travel, or wait for a while before plugging in and charging? I was thinking I read that I souldn't charge when HOT, but you're saying that it needs to be plugged in and start cooling down with the fans, which the system holds back the charging till cooling is done.

The after October 2008 software has a feature, with which you can pre-charge cool your batteries.

If my batteries are over 25°C, when I arrive home (usually from work in the afternoon), I immediately start cooling them with pre-charge cooling delay to cool them down to 24°C. I have my plug with a digital timer set to 1 hour Count Down and my pre-charge cooling delay on Vectrix set to 1:15 hours. What that means is, that after I plug Vectrix in, it immediately cools the battery pack for 1 hour (which I found out, is enough for underground garage at 17°C), but does not charge it, because the plug timer interrupts the sequence before the charging would start. Instead, the real charging takes place between 5:00 AM and 6:00 AM at off peak hours - also set by a digital timer. By that time, the battery temperature is at around 21°C.

With summer being quite hot (32°C), my battery never exceeded 28°C on discharge and 27°C on charge (on the road opportunity charging).

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Customize This