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DC isolator safety advice

AVANCO branded DC isolators

Examinations have identified internal faults that lead to overheating and fires with the Avanco brand of isolators that are used in solar electricity system installations.

The defective brands and models include 'Avanco' branded DC isolators with model numbers:

  • AV/DC4P25A
  • AV/DC2P25A
  • AV/DC4P25AUB
  • AV/DC2P625AU
  • AV/DC2P25AU
  • AV/DC2/2P25AU
  • AV/DC2/2P125AU
  • AV/DC4P25AU
  • AV/DC4P25AUS
  • AV/DC4P25AUT.

The defective isolators were sold in Queensland after 1 January 2012.

A recall order was made for the affected Avanco DC isolators imported by Advancetech Pty Ltd. The recall order required Advancetech Pty Ltd to remove the Avanco DC isolators and to replace them with isolators that will leave the solar power system electrically safe and operational.

The Electrical Safety Office has issued prohibitions on the supply or installation of these isolators.

What do they look like?

The Avanco isolators under recall are a rotary type switch device inside an associated enclosure, and the most common version has an enclosure with a red switch and a yellow background around the switch. Avanco brand isolators have the brand on the front (see photo below).

Alternatively the Avanco isolator may be a rotary switch installed in an associated lockable enclosure with a flip opaque or clear lid. Under the lid is a black switch and there is external labelling of the Avanco brand on the front (see photo below).

Note: these Avanco DC isolators may have the external enclosure marked with the following model numbers:

  • Clear Lid: AV/ENC4P25AC
  • Opaque Lid: AV/ENC4P25AO.

AVANCO branded DC isolators

Information for consumers

If you identify that you have these isolators installed you should shut down the system immediately by following the shut down procedure.

If you are unsure or can't identify the types of isolators you have, check your operating manual or invoice. If you are still unsure contact your installer or an electrical contractor for further advice.

You do not need an electrician to shut the system down. However, you should seek assistance if you are unsure of how to safely carry out the shut down procedure. Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

Under the recall order Advancetech Pty Ltd are required to organise replacement of the isolator and pay for all the costs relating to supply and installation of the replacement isolator they organise. The ESO has been advised that Advancetech Pty Ltd have been placed into receivership and will not complete the requirements of the recall order.

The recall requires replacement of the Avanco DC isolator. This includes replacement of the entire device (switch mechanism and the associated enclosure). Just replacing the switch mechanism does not remove the electrical safety risk associated with the Avanco DC isolator recall.

Consumer rights

As a consumer, you have certain rights under the Australian Consumer Law for products or services that are not of acceptable quality.

For more information on consumer rights you can contact the Queensland Office of Fair Trading on 13QGOV (137468) or the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on 1300 302 502.

Information for suppliers

You can no longer supply the defective Avanco isolator models listed above. If you have supplied the isolators you should contact your customers and advise them that:

  • they can no longer install the defective isolators
  • they should contact their customers who may be affected and advise them to shut down the system immediately until they can be replaced.

Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

Information for installers / electrical contractors

You can no longer install these Avanco isolators.

If you have installed the isolators you should contact your customers and advise them to shut down the system immediately until they can be replaced. Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

If you have installed the isolators you should contact your supplier regarding any refund or product replacement advice.

The recall requires replacement of the Avanco DC isolator. This includes replacement of the entire device (switch mechanism and the associated enclosure). Just replacing the switch mechanism does not remove the electrical safety risk associated with the Avanco DC isolator recall.

See more advice for installers of PV installations.

Information for tenants and landlords

Tenants

If you identify that the solar power system has one of these Avanco isolators or are concerned that it may, you should shut down the system immediately and contact your real estate agent or landlord for further advice.

Landlords and real estate agents

If the rental property has these Avanco isolators installed you should arrange for the system to be shut down immediately until they can be replaced. Advise the tenant that once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

If you are contacted by the tenant who has identified one of these isolators or has concerns that they may be installed you should advise them to shut the system down. If they are unsure about the shut down procedure you should make arrangements to have the system shut down as soon as possible. Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

PVPower branded DC isolators

DKSH, the importers of the PVPower brand DC isolator, have announced a voluntary recall of these isolators and are working cooperatively with regulators to affect the recall. The recall and contact details for DKSH can be found on their website.

What do they look like?

The isolators are a rotary type, and have a red switch with a yellow background around the switch. PVPower brand switches have the brand on the front top right hand side corner (see photo below).

PVPower branded DC isolators

Information for consumers

If you identify that you have these PVPower isolators installed you should shut down the system immediately.

If you are unsure or can't identify the types of isolators you have, check your operating manual or invoice. If you are still unsure contact your installer or an electrical contractor for further advice.

You do not need an electrician to shut the system down. However, you should seek assistance if you are unsure of how to safely carry out the shut down procedure. Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

If you have the PVPower brand you should contact DKSH or your installer. Contact DKSH at:

Phone: 1800 006 137 (during business hours)
Website: http://www.dksh.com.au/recall
Emailing: recall.au@dksh.com.

The recall and contact details for DKSH can be found on their website.

DKSH will organise and pay for a replacement isolator and its installation.

NOTE: Do not contact DKSH if you have a brand that is not PVPower.

Information for installers/electrical contractors

If you have installed the isolators you should contact your customers and advise them to shut down the system immediately until they can be replaced.

Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

If you have installed the isolators you should contact your supplier regarding any refund or product replacement advice.

The recall and contact details for DKSH can be found on their website.

Gen3 or SPM branded DC isolators

GWR Pty Ltd trading as Uniquip Industries, the importers of the Gen3 and SPM brand dc isolators, have announced a voluntary product replacement program of these isolators and are working cooperatively with Regulators to affect the replacement program. The notice and contact details for Uniquip can be found at: www.recalls.gov.au.

What do they look like?

The isolators are a rotary type, and have a red switch with a yellow background around the switch or a black switch with a black background around the switch. Gen3 or SPM brand switches have the brand on the front top right hand side corner (see photo below).
Gen3 or SPM branded DC isolators

Information for consumers

If you identify that you have these Gen3 or SPM isolators installed you should shut down the system immediately by following the shut down procedure.

If you are unsure or can't identify the types of isolators you have, check your operating manual or invoice. If you are still unsure contact your solar installer or an electrical contractor for further advice.

You do not need an electrician to shut the system down. However, you should seek assistance if you are unsure of how to safely carry out the shut down procedure. Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

If you have the Gen3 or SPM brands you should contact Uniquip or your installer.

The recall and contact details for Uniquip Industries are:

Telephone: 04 5750 5122
Website: www.uniquip.net.au/prp
Email: prp@uniquip.net.au

NOTE: Do not contact Uniquip if you have a brand that is not Gen3 or SPM.

Information for installers/electrical contractors

If you have installed the isolators you should contact your customers and advise them to shut down the system immediately until they can be replaced.

Once the system is shut down it is electrically safe.

If you have installed the isolators you should contact your supplier regarding any refund or product replacement advice.

The recall and contact details for Uniquip can be found at: www.recalls.gov.au.

NHP branded DC isolators

NHP have identified a batch of isolators models NHP-KDA-432 and KDM-43 that contains a component that has been fabricated from the incorrect material. NHP have announced a voluntary recall of these isolators and are working cooperatively with Regulators to affect the recall. The recall and contact details for NHP can be found on their website

Defects: The switch may still be 'ON' even when the handle is indicating 'OFF'.

Hazards: There is a risk of electric shock to the electrical contractor during maintenance and installation.

Only those items within the affected batch are suspect, specifically:

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).

Any product that does not fall within this band is not affected.

What do they look like?

The models NHP-KDA-432 and KDM-432 have both metal and plastic body versions (see photo below).

NHP branded DC isolators

Information for consumers

If you are unsure or can't identify the types of isolators you have, check your operating manual or invoice. If you are still unsure contact your installer or an electrical contractor for further advice.

For further details contact:

NHP Electrical Engineering Products Pty Ltd
Phone: (03) 9368 4088 (during business hours)
Website: www.nhp.com.au/recall.

NHP will organise and pay for a replacement isolator and its installation.

NOTE: Do not contact NHP if you have a brand that is not NHP.

Information for installers / electrical contractors

Test these systems to ensure isolation before conducting any maintenance or repair work.

Final identification of the affected batch may require opening the isolator, follow safe work procedures.

Defective isolators are required to be replaced.

For further details contact:

NHP Electrical Engineering Products Pty Ltd
Phone: (03) 9368 4088 (during business hours)
Website: www.nhp.com.au/recall.

ISO MAX branded DC isolators

A recall was initiated on ISO MAX dc isolators sold by Eltech industries in 2012.

The recall covers DC Isolator Switch for solar energy installations supplied by Eltech Industries with the model numbers and markings:

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

Home owners with any DC ISO-MAX switches installed should visit www.eltechindustries.com.au and complete a DC ISO-MAX Claim Form.

Electrical contractors who have installed any DC ISO-MAX switches should also visit www.eltechindustries.com.au and complete a DC ISO-MAX Advice Form.

Eltech or the installer of your switch(es) will be in contact with you in due course to arrange for the DC ISO-MAX switch(es) to be replaced.

Switches that are switched off should remain switched off. If any switches are presently switched on, leave these switched on and contact Eltech for advice on appropriate action on 1300 76 44 70.

Frequently asked questions

Q. What is the shutdown procedure?

The shutdown procedure is the safe order of turning off the solar power system. The procedure may be on a label in the switchboard where you would find the main power switch for your house, or in the literature left by the installer. You should follow the procedure supplied with your system.

If you are unsure about shutting down your system contact your installer or an electrical contractor for further advice.

Last updated
04 April 2017

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