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Important Safety Advice relating to Solar DC Isolators

Published: August 08, 2019 Last Updated: July 30, 2020

If you have a solar power installation in either your home or office, you will know about the huge range of benefits that a system can provide all year round. And, if you are reading that first sentence and going 'yes, that is so true!' we need you to keep reading... as your solar installation may be at risk of causing a fire due to a faulty isolator. 

Solar Panels

Safety advice has been released by the Queensland Electrical Safety Office regarding a range of DC isolator switches that are a potential fire risk. The release relates to a range of brands, types and models, so ensure you take a look at all the listed items on this page properly. If you would like to know a little more, give Static Electrics a call on 0429 139 039 or head to the Workplace Health and Safety - Electrical Safety Office website.

Recall Information

A series of DC isolators have been recalled due to being a potential fire hazard and having varying issues. The Electrical Safety Office website has extensive information regarding this topic if you would like to know anything more.

Avanco DC isolators

There are a series of Avanco DC isolators that are under recall, with the two main options being:

  1. Rotary style with a red switch, grey box and a yellow background, with 'Avanco' written across the front.
  2. Lockable enclosure with an opaque or clear flip lid that opens to a black switch inside, with 'Avanco' written across the front.

Defective model numbers

The defective Avanco model numbers include:

  • AV/DC4P25A, AV/DC2P25A, AV/DC4P25AUB, AV/DC2P625AU, AV/DC2P25AU, AV/DC2/2P25AU, AV/DC2/2P125AU, AV/DC4P25AU, AV/DC4P25AUS, AV/DC4P25AUT
Avanco DC Isolators

ISO MAX DC Isolators

If you purchased an ISO MAX DC isolator that was sold by Eltech Industries in 2012, a recall notice has been given for the particular models listed below. If you believe your isolator falls within this category, you are required to visit the Eltech Industries website and fill in a Claim Form.

Defective model numbers

  • Model No. LS16, DCISO 1000V
  • Model No. LS25, DCISO 1000V
  • Model No. LS32, DCISO 1000V

NHP DC isolators

A voluntary recall has been made by NHP for a particular batch of isolators, as a component has been found to be constructed with the incorrect materials. This issue can result in the switch staying on, even if it has been switched (and remains) off. This particular isolator is a rotary type, with either a plastic or metal white box and a black switch on a black background. The letters 'NHP' also appear in the top right corner.

Defective model numbers

The NHP DC isolator models that have been voluntarily recalled are NHP-KDA-432 and KDM-43. According to Worksafe :

All serial numbers from X2013 through to X3813, whereby the "X" can be any number between 1 and 5. The serial number is printed on the box and on the base, noting that the box uses a 4 digit code (no "X" prefix) and the switch base uses a 5 digit code (including the "X" prefix).
NHP Isolators

PVPower DC isolators

The importers of PVPower DC isolators, DKSH, have announced a voluntary recall on these models. They are rotary type, have a yellow background and red switch, and the letters 'PVPower' placed in the top right corner.

PVPower C Isolator

Salzer DC isolators

Both AGL Energy Services Pty Limited and IPD Group Limited have recalled the ModelDCLB232 (additionally known as the IPV40E and IPV40ES) Salzer solar DC isolator. This model is a rotary type on a white box with a white background and black switch. It may also have white side panels.

Salzer DC isolators

SPM or Gen3 DC isolators

Finally, the importers of SPM and Gen3 DC isolators, GWR Pty Ltd (t/as Uniquip Industries), have introduced a voluntary product replacement program for both SPM and Gen3 DC isolators. These models are a rotary type on a grey box, with a black switch and black background or red switch and yellow background. They also have the letters 'SPM' or 'Gen3' written in the top left corner.

DC Isolators

What should you do if you have a faulty solar DC isolator?

If you believe that you have a faulty isolator installed as part of your solar power system, or are having issues or problems, then (safely) shut off your system urgently and speak to your solar electrician or installer as soon as possible.

Another option that you may be able to choose is to complete a 'shutdown procedure' for your isolator, which is an alternative way to safely turn it off. Your main switchboard may have a label or something similar which indicates instructions for a shutdown procedure, or it may be contained in any paper that your solar installer may have provided to you after your solar panels were installed. Product recalls also generally come with instructions, so check any product recall information, websites or documentation to see if there is a specific procedure for your solar DC isolator.

If you are unsure in any way, or are concerned about your safety or the safety those around you, speak to a professional as soon as possible.

Your friendly and knowledgeable solar specialists

If you have any questions regarding the faulty solar DC isolators listed above, or would like to speak to one of our friendly team members regarding the solar options that Static Electrics offers, then give us a call on 0429 139 039 today!

*Disclaimer: Static Electrics have fitted a recalled isolator in the past, but have since replaced them all at their own cost. This is an indication as to why you should employ a reputable, long-standing company to complete any of your solar works.

Resources:

Workplace Health & Safety - Electrical Safety Office (DC Isolator Safety Advice): https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/injury-prevention-safety/electricity/homeowners-and-consumers/avanco-and-pvpower-dc-isolator-safety-advice

Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (Recalls) : https://www.productsafety.gov.au/recalls

Solar Accreditation : https://www.solaraccreditation.com.au/products/product-recalls.html


*All pictures contained on this page are courtesy of the Queensland Government - Workplace Health and Safety (Electrical Safety Office) website : https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/injury-prevention-safety/electricity/homeowners-and-consumers/avanco-and-pvpower-dc-isolator-safety-advice.

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