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PW phone app backup notification

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,148
2,569
Orlando, FL
Throwing the breaker would essentially look the same to the gateway as a complete outage, but I’m not sure that you can simulate some conditions with the breaker, like very low voltage or a line frequency problem. But still it would be interesting to test and see what happens.

As far as your speculation about solar powering the home at the time, I understand what you’re saying, but I’m not sure it really makes sense. It’s not that it waits 5 minutes to sync with the grid. That can be done quite quickly. It’s my understanding that the 5 minute wait is simply to ensure that the grid is stable before it switches back to the grid, and I would think that it would want to wait that 5 minutes whether your home is being 100% solar powered at the time or not. For all the gateway knows the sun is about to go behind a cloud and it would need to draw power from the grid immediately, so I would think it would still want to do it’s 5 minute stability verification whether the house is being powered by solar or not at the time the grid is restored.
 

wjgjr

Active Member
May 11, 2020
1,349
1,061
Silver Spring, MD
I will try to test it sometime this weekend. What I dont know is, is there a difference between "throwing the breaker myself" and an actual outage? I can confirm 100% that the "5 second" outage you see in my backup history was not me or anyone in my home doing anything. My wife and I were watching TV / cooking ( respectively) at the time.

Im trying to remember but for that one specifically (the 5 second one) I believe it was mid morning, so the powerwalls were NOT full. The state of my home was " Solar providing 100% of power used by the home, AND left over solar charging powerwalls".

I suspect that, in that specific state (solar providing 100% of power that the home needs, along with additional power to charge the powerwalls, powerwalls NOT full), that if you have any sort of power outage, there is no sync time, because the grid is not "on" at all at that point.... you are running basically off grid, but grid connected in the above state.

(speculation inc)

If there is a power outage in that state, since solar is still powering the home (it was fully powering the home prior to the outage) and there is no issue with "excess solar needing a place to go" (powerwalls not full), maybe the app just logs the "outage" and your home continues on being charged by solar, etc? It makes sense if you think about it. Home is already powered by solar, so no need to "switch to powerwall power". Solar doesnt need to be "shut down" by powerwalls because powerwalls are not full (excess solar has a place to go). No issue with "grid sync" because the home is already being powered by solar, thus synced to it. No grid powering home prior to "outage" so no need to sync back...

Makes sense, right?
That could be, though you might think it still is grid-tied so would want to isolate for a few minutes, but it is definitely a possibility.

As it happens, I had my very first outage since PTO just this morning - a brief flicker, I believe (though I cannot prove it,) but it resulted in an outage officially reported as 6 minutes. From the data I have been logging, I can see that the system status went to "SystemIslandedActive" for 6 minutes, before returning to normal ("SystemGridConnected") status. Additionally, because my PWs were at 98.x%, solar shut down for about 10 minutes - I can see the frequency shoot up to 65Hz for the time the system is offline, and then, a few minutes after that, production began again.

The above certainly does not conflict with your idea since my PWs were full, so I was exporting to the grid at the time. I also did not receive any notice from Tesla, but it was not a "clean" outage, so I did get some of my UPS devices to beep, which alerted me to the outage.

It also illustrates a minor gripe I have with the "Backup-only" mode. I would actually like to set that and fix it to like 95%. That way, when there is a brief flicker, I can continue to generate solar and not lose 10 minutes of production. I very much want the PWs to be near full for backup purposes, but I also expect to have more of these brief outages than the rare long-term ones, and 95% setting would probably be ideal. I do wish Tesla officially supported an advanced scheduling mode, IFTTT, or similar. I know the API has been found, but it is not official.
 

aesculus

Still Trying to Figure This All Out
May 31, 2015
4,564
2,615
Northern California
I have a mixture of real and forced outages too. Many are under 5 minutes.

Screenshot_20200731-131410_Tesla.jpg
 
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zƬesla

Member
Apr 16, 2020
428
164
US-NH
Had a 4-hour power outage today. Although the app/iPhone is configured to notify, never got a notice from Tesla, only SMS from the power company. Internet got taken out at the same time (utility pole hit by vehicle) and TEG cellular isn't very stable, so perhaps it couldn't send a notice when it happened and it didn't bother trying again later?
 

charlesj

Active Member
Oct 22, 2019
1,291
301
Monterey, CA
Boy, I don't have all those events that are recorded. I have 10 events since install on 21 May. Have a 2 min and a 4 min even, last one Jul 7, others longer.
I think I was doing experiments to get Gateway reset to work properly, see how notifications working(not well at all).
 

BIC1

Member
Feb 19, 2020
90
16
Missouri USA
Have had Powerwall since Feb 2020. Previously, would only get Android app (v20.49.0) push notification if outage exceeded 10 minutes. Only other way to know about power outage is to periodically review history. Don't remember if there was a notification sound; been several months since an outage lasted longer than 10 minutes.

Last night, at 5 am, my wife & I though we heard doorbell ring but nothing on cameras. While trying to figure out what was going on, we heard doorbell sound again from our phones, but not our usual ring tone. Turns out, it was the Powerwall grid outage notification followed by grid back up seven minutes later.

Does the app now notify for short duration (less than 10 minutes) outages?

I cannot find any way, either in app or Android settings to change notification sound. Is there a way?
 

BIC1

Member
Feb 19, 2020
90
16
Missouri USA
On a side note. I compare power outages with a nearby neighbor who has no batteries. Sometimes my app will say I had a brief outage, say 5-10 minutes, that my neighbor doesn't concur with. I don't know if I had an outage or not aside from the app history saying so. Previously, most of out outages matched up.
 

BGbreeder

Member
Jun 19, 2020
490
293
Bay Area
On a side note. I compare power outages with a nearby neighbor who has no batteries. Sometimes my app will say I had a brief outage, say 5-10 minutes, that my neighbor doesn't concur with. I don't know if I had an outage or not aside from the app history saying so. Previously, most of out outages matched up.
I wonder the same thing. Most 1-2 cycle brownouts (under voltage) are going to be almost unnoticeable. Dropping two cycles is a flicker that almost everyone can see, but if the lights aren't on and you are using a piece of electronics....

All the best,

BG
 

MorrisonHiker

Well-Known Member
Mar 8, 2015
10,330
10,144
Colorado
On a side note. I compare power outages with a nearby neighbor who has no batteries. Sometimes my app will say I had a brief outage, say 5-10 minutes, that my neighbor doesn't concur with. I don't know if I had an outage or not aside from the app history saying so. Previously, most of out outages matched up.
We had an issue with the power transformer closest to our house last summer. Over the course of 5 months, our Powerwalls took over powering the house more than 800 times due to dirty power being provided by the grid. Our neighbors didn't notice most of these instances but there were obviously issues with the power from the grid. Our utility eventually installed a new transformer last November and things have been fine since then.
 
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