How to Diagnose a Low Battery on a C3 Field Unit

Observant Support

Created: ; updated: .

 This icon identifies the LED that provides information on a field unit's power level and its battery pack's state of charge. For both the C3 and the Solo, you can determine their battery pack's status by comparing the color and number of flashes of their battery LEDs to the following table.


Table 1.

A low voltage state of charge on a C3 battery is often caused by inadequate solar-panel charging conditions. In most cases, this is caused by a dirty or improperly positioned solar panel.

Always check the following:

  • Confirm that the solar panel is at the correct angle. The angle should be set to optimize solar exposure during the winter months. Refer to the C3 user guide, section A3: Solar Enclosure panel orientation for more details. A guide for a given latitude (South or North) is to set the angle to:
    • 30° when in latitudes between 0° and 30°.
    • 40° when in latitudes between 20° and 30°.
    • 50° when in latitudes greater than 30°.   
  • Verify that the solar panel is pointing in the right direction (true north in the southern hemisphere, true south in the northern hemisphere).
  • Ensure that the solar panel is clean. A light layer of dust can significantly reduce its efficiency.
  • Do not install the solar panel where trees, structures, or anything else can cast shadows on it. The more direct sunlight to which the panel is exposed, the better the job it will do of keeping a battery properly charged.


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