SMA Inverter Repairs, monitoring and servicing

About SMA Solar Inverters

SMA is a world-renowned German manufacturer of solar inverters founded in 1981. Their premium inverters come with a five-year warranty and are easily identified by their signature red box. However, they also come in a variety of other colours including blue and yellow to suit your home. SMA manufactures the rebadged range of Schuco inverters which are distributed throughout Australia.

Our experienced team services and repairs the following models in the SMA range of inverters:

  • Sunny Boy
  • Sunny Tripower
  • Sunny Central
  • Compact MVPP
  • MV Power Platform 

If your SMA inverter develops a fault, please refer to the table below to find out what to do.

We’re happy to assist you with any SMA warranty issues. We just need the fault code and serial number to lodge an insurance claim. Some faults will require testing prior to lodging the claim, though. We recommend adding a health check to the technician's attendance to ensure that there are no underlying issues with your installation. SMA has the fastest industry response to warranty claims with a response time of about 5 working days, so whatever the case you should have your system back up and running very quickly.

If your SMA inverter is no longer under warranty, you’ll need to purchase a new inverter in the closest possible size. SMA inverters are transformerless inverters, so Growatt, Zeverlution and Fronius are all compatible. Some faults, such as varistor failure, can indicate a surge has occurred and can, therefore, be covered by insurance, although, sometimes, the cost of repair is less than the excess, depending on your policy. If you need assistance with your insurance claim, generally we will be happy to assist.
 

FAULT CODE DESCRIPTION REMEDY
Derating Over temperature Derating refers to overheating and will often require a replacement inverter if outside of warranty, or a repair if within warranty.
Disturbance No grid connection Disturbance is a utility issue, which means it pertains to an AC issue. You should check the AC isolator below the inverter and the switch labelled “AC solar supply” in the switch board. The inverter may need replacing.
Error Internal Fault Error codes represent an internal error and will likely need to proceed with a warranty claim or, if out of warranty, a replacement inverter will need to be purchased.
Grid Mon Grid Monitoring This message will appear during start up and shut down. If it occurs at midday, the inverter may need replacing.
MPP MPP Mode on This is not a legitimate error and the inverter should still operate with this fault being displayed.
Off Grid System Islanding The inverter will need to be replaced.
Offset Measurement This code does not indicate a fault.
Riso Insulation Resistance A technician will need to attend in order to test the panels and the balance of system (BOS).
Stop Interruption of operation Check the solar supply main switch. The inverter may need replacing.
V-Const Constant voltage operation This code does not indicate a fault.
Waiting Switch on conditions not met This message will appear during start up and shut down. If it occurs at midday, the inverter may need replacing.
vac-BFR GRID ISSUE Check the solar supply main switch. The inverter may need replacing.
Varistor Failure   A varistor failure is indicative of a surge and is not covered by warranty. It is repairable for a fee.

In the event that your SMA inverter stops working, as an SMA service partner, we’re happy to help you with your warranty claim. As long as your unit still falls within the warranty period we’re able to assist with all types of warranty repairs or replace the entire unit if necessary. You will just need to provide us with:

A copy of your receipt to prove that the inverter is still within the warranty period.
Any information you can provide about your installation.
Your inverter’s serial number which is located on a label on the upper right-hand side of the unit.

Once you’ve supplied us with these details, we can submit the warranty claim on your behalf. Then once the claim has been approved, we’ll contact you to arrange a suitable time for your replacement parts or replacement inverter to be installed.

What support is available for SMA inverters that are out of warranty?

In the event your SMA inverter develops a fault after the warranty period has expired, we can still conduct a health check on your system. We always bring replacement inverters and spare parts with us, so regardless of the fault we can get you back up and running the day we attend your site.

To get the most out of your inverter, you should monitor it regularly. A major part of this process involves checking your inverter’s yield. To bring your SMA inverter menu, tap the front of the screen. The screen will automatically light up and scroll through three menu options. There are two main readings which you can use to check your system’s performance - E-Day and E-Total.

The E-Today figure is the amount of kilowatt-hours you have produced that day. Since it is a daily reading, the best indication of the system's production will be towards the end of the day, before the sun goes down but while the system is still running and producing energy, even if it is beginning to wind down for the day. You can check this figure against the data provided to you in your Solargain Customer User Manual given to you in a black handover folder when your system was installed. If you cannot find this manual please call 1300 73 93 55 and we will send you a new one.

The other figure is your E-Total. This is a cumulative total of your kilowatt-hours since the system was installed. To work out your average monthly production, simply record the difference between your E-Total figure at the start and end of each month.

For example:

  • E-Total on 1st January is 1100
  • E-Total on 1st February is 1300

January’s Monthly Yield is therefore 200 units (1300 less 1100)

January’s Average Daily Yield is, therefore, 6.45kwh (200 monthly yield divided by 31 days in January)

Like the E-Today figure, this data can be compared to the yield estimates in your Solargain Customer User Manual.

Troubleshooting

Sometimes in the morning and late afternoon, as the inverter is turning on or off, it will display green, red and orange flashing lights. This indicates that the inverter is shutting down or starting up. If you hear it clicking, this is also just a normal part of the operation. You should also note that the inverter’s sound increases as it works harder and produces more wattage. Any internal issues with the inverter will be detected by the device and will cause the fault light to be displayed permanently.

If there is ample sunlight outside during the day and any of the lights are flashing, you should conduct a reset. Instructions explaining how to do this are available here. If, after a reset, the red light remains lit, you should retrieve the error code displayed on the screen as well as your serial number from the side of the inverter. Then contact Solargain on 1300 73 93 55 and we will happily assist you to resolve the issue.

Please note - if you have no power in your house due to a blackout, then your inverter will not work until the grid has been restored.

Arrange your inverter health check now

If you would like one of our technicians to take a look at your inverter, just fill out the form below or call us on 1300 73 93 55 to book your inverter health check today.

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