Automatic Generator Start Manuals

The combination of generator and inverter is common in remote or off-grid sites. Since OutBack inverters can recharge 
batteries with a generator, the inverter can automatically start the generator and do it for you.
Starting Requirements
This feature requires a generator with electric start and automatic choke. Additionally, you need to determine if your 
generator controls are classified as “two-wire-start” or “three-wire-start.”  
A two-wire-start generator has a simple on-off switch. If the switch is on, the generator runs. If the switch is off, it 
stops.  All cranking, timing and other functions are automated within the generator.  This is the simplest arrangement, 
and OutBack products can easily control this kind of generator.  You can usually 
identify one because it has only a single switch with two positions:  “on” and “off.”
A  three-wire-start  generator  has  separate  controls  for  starting,  and  for  running 
and stopping. This requires three or more control wires.  Because timers and other 
devices are required, OutBack products can only control this generator with the  
help of external products. You can usually identify one because it has multiple 
switches, or it has one switch with three positions, like “start”, “run” and “stop.”
If  you  have  a  three-wire-start  generator,  you  can  adapt  it  into  a  two-wire-start. 
Atkinson Electronics is one company that makes these adapters. You can get more 
information at
The  OutBack  FX  Series  of  inverter/chargers  have  an  auxiliary  (“AUX”)  12-volt 
output  which  can  drive  various  devices.  In  this  case  the  AUX  can  directly  or 
indirectly send commands to the generator. Generally you need an intermediate 
relay. Thus, the AUX would send a 12-volt signal to the coil of the relay. Then the 
relay contacts would close, making the connection on the two-wire circuit and 
starting the generator.
AC Wiring Compartment Board 
with AUX +/- Terminals
The OutBack MATE’s Automatic Generator Start (“AGS”) feature will trigger the AUX output. AGS can control a generator 
according to various conditions:  
•  Low Voltage Start. AGS can be programmed for auto-start based on three different low voltages (user-settable)
for three different periods of time:  24 hours, 2 hours and 2 minutes.  This feature 
will put the batteries through a full charge cycle.  At the end of the cycle, the AGS 
will shut the generator off instead of entering the Float stage.
•  Load Start. AGS can start the generator if loads exceed an amount for a certain
time. It will stop if the loads go below a certain amount for a certain time (all 
settable).  Note:  this feature is meant to rescue the batteries from heavy draw. It 
is not meant to rescue the inverter from an overload.
•  Time of Day Start. AGS can start and stop the generator daily at specified times.
It can also be set to run on a different schedule on weekends.  
•  Exercise Start.  AGS can run the generator for brief periods, to keep it from being
inactive.  The generator can start after a number of days, at a particular time of 
day, and run for a number of minutes (all settable) before shutting off.
•  Manual Start. AGS will run or stop the generator by manual command.
•  Quiet Time. AGS can be ordered not to start the generator during certain hours (particularly when your neighbors
are sleeping!).  Certain criteria can override quiet time, for an emergency start.

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