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I'm slightly miffed with Batrium as a company
#1
Batrium have developed an android app for Watchmon control but they wont allow it's release until they've developed the IOS version with feature parity. They've been working on this for over a year if my memory serves me so they're being ridiculously slow. 

If they cared about their customers instead of their self image they'd release the software onto the market as it is. I suspect most users use android anyway, and if not it's easy enough to find a  cheap tablet somewhere. 

I'm currently in a situation where my Watchmon has crashed and needs a reboot but I'm 40 miles away from it. This happens every two weeks or so and I know there is a firmware update to apply to the watchmon which might actually fix this so I'm not annoyed about that but just the lack of control that we have on our devices leaves a bit to be desired in this modern era of open standards.

I can't log into the watchmon except using a windows machine which is a pain in and of itself and also I can't perform any of the master settings changes without that windows machine being connected by USB.

There's an extensive warning whenever I'm making changes to the watchmon, it's not as if making changes over USB compared to Wifi will make a difference to their liability because i've already agreed to the risks, but it does make it considerably more awkward to manage.  

I think it would serve the company better in the long run if they were actually more open about things, like letting users log into the ESP, or having a small webserver for basic tasks, perhaps running a MQTT daemon on-board to free the data a bit more.
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#2
Agree with comments and tone - but things are also relative.   I recently tried a much-cheaper BMS on smaller 14s battery and it was a disaster - out $300 (1st one died and 2nd one shorted when trying to replace the first one) before I blinked.   Relative to that, Batrium is an order of magnitude more reliable (2 yrs + counting) AND I now have 84 packs under management as they advertised.  

Problems for me:
* Batrium WiFi dies (for me) every few weeks - so for reliable connection I *had* to go USB with old laptop near it and then remote desktop into it.  
* Batrium needs rebooting now and then.   This week it fired off a critical event twice this week in 24hrs, causing shunt-trip to shut things off *for no reason* that I can find in logs or settings.   I did a reboot and that seems to have fixed it.  Last reboot was 3 months ago.
* Batrium internal logic can become unstable (my shunt stopped reporting info) if you set certain combinations of things...  and its not immediate (took 3 weeks for shunt to stop reporting) - e.g. inadequate guardrails combined with inadequate documentation....
* Documentation not good - its called 'echo the dialog' in software development trade and is what get's written by someone who has no clue of the product.  For example, the help for a Max Cell V: [   ] field says "Enter the 'Max Cell V"  (help just echoes the dialog) but doesn't give details as to what affect it has on the system.

Based on the above, its a not good...  and my 'list' sounds terrible...  BUT its better (more capable with 84 packs) by far than anything else out there - AND good enough that I'm trusting my home DIY powerwall to it.     I also have the sense that they are trying / is very legitimate.    So in a strange way I'm pleased and do trust it to protect my home. 

If they would just commit to the next level of professional software development (I'm a 30yr SW dev engineer) for both the internal system code, documentation, and external apps, and youtubes, etc...  then they could be 1st class.   It can be done - maybe they just don't see it, but it could truly be world class.   

But again, I don't know of any other 2nd class system at this level...    So while I have my list of frustrations, I'm still OK to recommend Batrium as a heavy duty solution Smile
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#3
All your points make sense especially the documentation aspect, I find the blog very hard to navigate because there seems to be a bit of overlap of old posts and new and no clear description of why they are doing things differently in each, I understand information needs to stay up for older products but I wish they were able to remove some of the information there or at least group it into categories a bit better.

One example is setting up the shunt trip which should be a fairly common use case. There's three different pages to navigate before you can pull all the information that you need together to ensure that you're not taking the wrong approach and the circuit diagram has two version and no explanation why different pins are being used.

https://support.batrium.com/article/239-...t-trip-why
https://support.batrium.com/article/102-...it-breaker
https://support.batrium.com/article/250-...-watchmon4
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#4
1000% agree on poor documentation. I had to piece through several "use cases" blog posts and even some user created videos to fully understand some of the technical aspects of the design.
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#5
(07-26-2020, 04:33 PM)OffGridInTheCity Wrote: Agree with comments and tone - but things are also relative.   I recently tried a much-cheaper BMS on smaller 14s battery and it was a disaster - out $300 (1st one died and 2nd one shorted when trying to replace the first one) before I blinked.   Relative to that, Batrium is an order of magnitude more reliable (2 yrs + counting) AND I now have 84 packs under management as they advertised.  

What was the brand that died on you? If I recall correctly you purchased some Chargery units, was it them.?.? 

Thanks
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#6
Yep. 100% agree. Documentation is not the best.
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#7
(07-28-2020, 09:57 AM)Solardad Wrote:
(07-26-2020, 04:33 PM)OffGridInTheCity Wrote: Agree with comments and tone - but things are also relative.   I recently tried a much-cheaper BMS on smaller 14s battery and it was a disaster - out $300 (1st one died and 2nd one shorted when trying to replace the first one) before I blinked.   Relative to that, Batrium is an order of magnitude more reliable (2 yrs + counting) AND I now have 84 packs under management as they advertised.  

What was the brand that died on you? If I recall correctly you purchased some Chargery units, was it them.?.? 

Thanks
Yea - Chargery 16Ts.
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