BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start during the ride - why not?

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Rebel
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Hi AndY1

I had the same problem with the instructions in the wrong language but I contacted vectrix and they emailed the correct proceedure in English.
The correct proceedure is to ride until the light comes on and then fully charge . Do this twice.

hope this helps

JR

Just very well informed

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Yes, till the icon illuminates. The first time will be before you charge it, just to let the system get to a known battery state (depleted). Then do the full charge. Then a full discharge till icon comes on again. At this point the system knows the capacity of the battery, and tailors the charge algo accordingly.

AndY1
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Thank you for all your help! You're great!

Mik
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Thank you for all your help! You're great!

Hi Andy,

think about what you already know about batteries.

Then think about what you know about the "new" battery in your VX-1: Nothing much!

What is the correct procedure for breaking them in, then?

There are a few people on V recently who have not been able to shake "It's working perfectly" nonsense from the Vectrix Corp marketing department.

.

There is no damage done by treating your batteries properly until they are balanced.

Starting a break-in procedure for a 102s NiMH string of unknown SOC and unknown state of balance with a deep discharge is wrong, and you know it!

How often are you going to fall for it?

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

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

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

The icon illuminates long before the batteries are deeply discharged if you are using the latest SW. The icon is triggered at a certain power level output of the batteries. There is a threshold voltage below which the SW begins to measure the output power, if the power output is low, the icon illuminates. For example, if you are accelerating hard with a charged battery, the voltage may fall below the trip level, but the current will be high...ie power is high; no icon. As the battery gets depleted, the power output under the same acceleration is less, if low enough the icon illuminates. This threshold is well above a deeply discharged state, so avoid equating the icon coming on with the battery being deeply discharged.
This procedure is not to condition the batteries, but to allow the SW to learn the true capacity of the battery. Packs can differ in capacity by 2 or 3 amp hours. You dont want to charge a 28 Ahr pack as if it were 30 Ahrs and vice versa. So once you go thru the two discharge procedure (1st one to set a starting point and second to do the measurement) the charger knows what level to charge to. Anytime you do a discharge (from a full charge) till the icon comes on, the SW measures and averages the previous capacity with the new capacity. This average is allowed to increase quickly but only allowed to decreases slowly. For example if you fully charge the scoot then let it sit for 3 weeks, then do a discharge to icon, the average will not decrease much.

BTW...the fuel gauge will be more accurate also.

antiscab
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

a deep discharge is fine for calibration purposes....on a pack that is balanced at full charge.
Two ways to know if the pack is balanced at full charge is to charge normally, then measure the voltage of all 102 cells.
or charge normally, measure the Ah put in, and then apply a very slow charge rate of say 0.25A for hours = (rated Ah cap - Ah put in during normal charge)/real slow charge rate, in this case 0.25A

A Ni-Mh pack that has been sitting for some time (months) will not be balanced due to the differing self discharge rates between cells
It is always the difference in self discharge rate that causes balance issues, not the difference in real capacity

For example if you fully charge the scoot then let it sit for 3 weeks, then do a discharge to icon, the average will not decrease much.

I can see an instance where this could cause problems:
Say for instance someone uses a vectrix for a daily commute, and distance travelled between charges never causes the battery to deplete enough for the icon to light.
This goes on for say 10'000km
Then the day before the user knows they need the full range, they do a calibration discharge.
If the capacity loss is significant (since new), will the new calibration be stored correctly? or will the recorded battery capacity be higher than the actual battery capacity?
If not, is it possible to force the vectrix to take the new calibration at face value?

This caught me out one day (on a different, much cheaper scooter) where i had discharged my pack only ever to 50%SOC over a distance of around 8'000km.
I went to ride what i thought was my max range (i was using an Ah counter, and was basing range on Ah count, not distance travelled) and it fell short due to capacity loss.
I hadn't thought to do a capacity test before using the full range (lesson learnt), however on this setup, i knew the Ah i have pulled from the pack since full charge, and i use that to make a decision re remaining capacity.
On the vectrix, theres no Ah report, only the bars showing this ratio: (stored in memory capacity - Ah discharged)/(stored in memory capacity)

Matt

EDIT: fixed quote

Daily Ride:
2007 Vectrix, modified with 42 x Thundersky 60Ah
Vectrix 60Ah Lithium Tyres Fuel Registration Insurance cycle analyst 2 x TC Charger & MC
conversion

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Matt
That is definitely a concern. Continuous shallow discharge/charge cycles coupled with several days of non-use can get you into trouble if suddenly one day you need the full capacity. During these shallow cycles the true SOC gets lost and you lose some capacity due to voltage suppression. This is why it is recommended to discharge the scoot down to the icon once in a while. It keeps the cell plates clean and keeps the fuel gauge accurate.
The answers to your questions are no, and no. The reason it wont be stored is that big drops in capacity are not normal...like in the example I gave where the bike sits for a long time then you do a discharge; you dont want that new low capacity to take precedence. But you do want a slow long term way to adjust the charging algo and fuel gauge accuracy to account for aging of the pack and normal capacity loss. Discharging to the icon roughly once a week is sufficient under normal use.

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

It's such a pleasure to read these really useful technical information and answers to our whys :-)

Oh, and by the way. I couldn't resist to take a ride last night. It was such a pleasure to ride Vectrix again. I drove at max. speed of 60km/h, not to strain the battery pack to early.
I will complete 'until battery telltale' discharge later today, then do a full overnight charge in our underground garage, where the temperature, currently, is 17'C and do a 'until battery telltale' ride tomorrow morning.
Then, I will do a full charge and store the bike for 3 weeks - until I come back.

Mik
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

It's such a pleasure to read these really useful technical information and answers to our whys :-)

Oh, and by the way. I couldn't resist to take a ride last night. It was such a pleasure to ride Vectrix again. I drove at max. speed of 60km/h, not to strain the battery pack to early.
I will complete 'until battery telltale' discharge later today, then do a full overnight charge in our underground garage, where the temperature, currently, is 17'C and do a 'until battery telltale' ride tomorrow morning.
Then, I will do a full charge and store the bike for 3 weeks - until I come back.

Your battery gauge will learn later on to be correct. It is inconsequential if your fuel gauge is calibrated on day one.
Your battery pack will remember the abuse and under-perform for it's entire, shortened lifespan.

All it needs for your pack to get damaged is a few moderately unbalanced cells. Like the ones that were in the sun on the day (or few days) the donor bike might have been parked in the sun in front of the showroom, as they sometimes do. The top cells can easily get 20degC hotter than the bottom cells, bang, 20-30% SOC imbalance right there.
The dumb BMS cannot see this. The low SOC cells could then get reverse charged on your first deep discharge, even with the new software.
If there are a few low SOC cells, they get hammered during discharge.
If there are many low SOC cells, then the high SOC cells get overcharged during the following recharge.
.
.
The best way to break in the battery would be to discharge all cells individually at 3A to 1V cutoff level, then recharge the whole string at 3A for 15hrs with fans running. Then you could do your first deep discharge, provided the cells are actually of similar capacity, or "matched".
But this is not practical for the VX1.
The next best option is to charge the whole battery as gently as you can, until the battery is most likely equalized to FULL SOC for all cells. This can be done by short, gentle rides, followed by full recharges. Something like 14 bars left, then recharge including all stages. Repeat 3 to 4 times, then do the deep discharge to calibrate the "guessometer".

This can easily be done, but will not tell you if you have low capacity cells in the string, like the first option would.

A third, proper option would be for Vectrix Corpse to program a long equalization charge to be done BEFORE the customer gets the scooter, so that the cells are already "SOC FULL" equalized.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

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

AndY1
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

I would agree with you Mik, if I had the older software.

I don't know, whether the new software does Equalization at every full charge. As far as I know, Equalization is only done after every 8 hours of riding or after battery telltale.
If the new software doesn't do Equalization at every full charge, I may be doing more harm than good, because the cells will get unbalanced even further.

Mik
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

The CC phase and EC phase serve exactly the same purpose, just not as long. That's why you should do it several times. Any cells that are already full will be able to convert all excessive charge into heat without significant damage (unless it's done each time.....another story) if the charge current is equal to or less than C/10. That's why the charge current is 3A = C/10 in the CC part.
In EC there is also an even smaller net current flow into the battery.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

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

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Does the new charging software have CC and EC?

Mik
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Does the new charging software have CC and EC?

From what others have posted here, yes. I still have "the old devil I know" and prefer it that way: More power!

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

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

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Ok. I did a discharge until red battery telltale lit up. I plugged the bike with a delay. It did aprox. 3 hours of CP 151 charging, then went to TR for 15 minutes (new TR doesn't do any charging) and then CC started. That was 4 hours ago. I thought, that regular charging should be followed by a 4 hour Equalization charge, but when I went to the garage a few minutes ago, the bike was powered down.
So 4 hours ago it started CC and that has taken me, with the old software, aprox. an hour. EC takes an hour, that's 2 hours for both. It should be running EQ now, but the bike is powered down, like it finished charging.
The temperature in the garage is 18'C.

Where did the EQ go?

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

AndY1
Loading the new SW triggers an EQ immediatly after the 1st full charge. So if the dealer did a charge after loading the new SW that would explain why you didnt see it. It wont happen again for another 12 hrs or so of riding.

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

That was my thinking too.

Am I correct in assuming, that I don't need to repeat driving until the red battery telltale? The red battery telltale lit up at 1 bar remaining. Is that ok?

Thank you for your answers.

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

AndY1
That is right where the icon should come on. Sounds like the dealer may have done the initialization for you. Is so, then, no you dont have to do any more other that once every week or two just to keep the gauge accurate.

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Thanx!

AndY1
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

I'm resurrecting this thread as it seems there's a flood of failing battery packs out there with the same symptoms.

procrastination inc
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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

thanks

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Just to mention: since my initial 'drive to the red battery telltale icon', I've never repeated it anymore and I'm not doing it again. I've never driven it below 124V (just once with 5 bars left), but I mostly drive it only to a 7-8 bars left.
Every 1000-1500 km done I let it do EQ charging (last one lasted less than 2 hours, then it finished with EC) but no full or deep discharges. It just isn't worth it. I rather have an un-synced battery gauge than a failed pack.

I regularly charge it with timer up to 13-14 battery bars (in my underground garage, where the temperature is 11°C), full charge only if I plan longer trips. I never use regen above 13 bars left.
I accelerate gently, regen gently and drive only up to 65-70km/h (aprox.1C or 30A).

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Unfortunately, my 64km commute just doesn't allow for that much leniency on the pack. Lets see how the Lithium cells go :)

I'll probably end up cannibalizing my NiMH pack to power my Minn Kota canoe motor and play with some ebikes or buggies with the kids

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Yes, I'm fortunate, that my ride to work and back is only 25km of flat road = 5 battery bars of consumption. That's why I can afford to drive between 14 battery bars when I leave home in the morning and come back home with 8-9 battery bars left.

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Just a bit of info on my bike. It is summer here now and today on a fast ride home (30km and most at 100km/h) the batteries reached 36 C. This is the first time it reached such high temperatures. It is also the first time that I noticed the battery fans were running while driving. Even after switching off the bike they kept running for a while.
I guess that they turn on when the batteries are above 35 C.

Once you go EV, Gas is history!

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

I think they turn on at 37 C°, but mine stopped when I switch off the bike (and start again when I switch on). I don't know what is the low temperature threshold where the fans (the impellers ...) turn off.

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

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Me neither, because, when my battery was failing, I was betting red battery telltale with BATHOT on LCD display and still battery impellers wouldn't turn on to cool the battery.

Maybe it's not looking at just one sensor but an average of all battery temperature sensors and when a threshold of average of those is reached, then it turns the impellers on.

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Maybe it's not looking at just one sensor but an average of all battery temperature sensors and when a threshold of average of those is reached, then it turns the impellers on.

I don't think its a matter of average : I had only one battery temperature sensor that was over 37 C°, all the others were around 30 C°, and that was enough for the impellers to turn on.

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

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Re: BATHOT during riding, but the battery fans won't start ...

Today the fans started after switching the bike on. It had been charging during the day and were still 37C as I left. After my ride home (mostly 80-90km/h) they were 36C. Ambient temp was 27C. Fans continued to run after switching the bike off.
So this cooling works quite well on my bike. Just too bad that it is not activated when the bike is plugged in like mine was today.

Once you go EV, Gas is history!

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