A Solar-Log® user, let’s call him Bill, told us that he gets an overwhelming number of error alerts about his solar plants, so now he just ignores them all. 😱 Alerts are the best way to quickly detect operational issues and component failures before they cost money due to generation losses. By ignoring all alerts emails, Bill was unaware that a couple of solar plants in his fleet were having major performance issues. Fortunately for Bill, and all Solar-Log® users, there are some simple steps to reduce solar plant error alerts, without losing any critical information.
1. Reduce false alerts with complete data input
Incorrect or incomplete data entry in the Solar-Log® portal can lead to notification errors including receiving false alerts or not receiving any alerts at all. For proper working monitoring, the Generator Power per MPPT value and the module fields should be set correctly.
The Solar-Log® will typically enter default values for the AC power output based on the inverter model. We recommend that you double-check this value to confirm that the default value is correct.
2. Set the maximum number of emails received per day
You can set a maximum number of emails per day in the plant management section. Further define this by setting the maximum number of emails you receive per plant or inverter error code.
3. Filter out unwanted error codes
Solar-Log® sends email alerts when it receives status and error codes from the inverter. Some inverters are very chatty. You can filter out unnecessary or unimportant codes to avoid unwanted emails.
For example, if you are aware of a problem that triggers error code 46 at a specific location, you can filter out code 46. That way, you will not receive those emails every day. The Solar-Log® automatically assigns a numeric code to inverter codes. So, code 46 may be inverter code “standby”.
You can further define how often an inverter error code is received before it triggers an email. For example, an inverter might relay an over-voltage message for over-voltage that only lasted half a minute before returning to normal. You can use the “Activate after X readings” to only trigger the email if the problem is consistent. If the “X” readings parameter is not set then you are likely to receive many unnecessary alerts from the inverter.
In the configuration example below:
• The user will not receive any emails for inverter code 46
• An error occurring 20 times will trigger an email
• Only 1 email will be sent per day
4. Sign up for a Solar-Log® Configuration Check
As part of our Monitoring as a Service offering, the Solar-Log® WEB-4U team offers stand-alone configuration checks. For a 1-time fee, our team will make a multi-point check of your Solar-Log® portal. The team will confirm that all information is entered completely and that all devices are configured correctly. If you are flooded with alerts and error messages, we strongly encourage you to reach out to us for more information on this valuable service.
Additional Resources to Reduce Solar Plant Error Alerts
For more information about improving the accuracy of error messages, check out our article on how to define module fields.