American Fence Logo

2215 IH 45

6612 Harborside Drive

3501 N. IH 35

League City, TX. 77573

Galveston, TX. 77554

Georgetown, TX. 78628

281-332-0511

409-744-7131

512-930-4000

Fax: 281-554-2592

Fax: 409-744-7131

Fax: 512-930-4002

Houston Fax 281-332-0513

Email: afence@afence.com

www.afence.com

Definitions of common fence terms use to classify fence chargers. - Fence Mileage Guide - Grounding Recommendations - How do joule ratings reflect your chargers performance

 

INSTALLATION GUIDE
TABLE OF CONTENTS

Important safety hints
I.  How to install your fence charger
II.  Operating instructions for solar installation
III.  How electric fencing works
IV.  Trouble shooting guide
V.  Radio & television interference
VI.  Lightning & surge protection
VII.  Helpful fence building hints

 

IMPORTANT SAFETY HINTS!

1. To reduce risk of electrical shock do not remove CAUTION cover. Refer to service personnel.
2. Never electrify barbed wire! The barbs may injure animals if they become tangled in the fence.
3. Use "1 amp/250V" fuses only. If fuses higher than 1 amp or lower than 250V are used, they can damage a fence controller and void your warranty. Fence controllers that are protected with replaceable fuses use external fuse holders. If there is no external fuse holder,
there is no fuse to replace.
4. Always disconnect battery-powered fence controllers from the battery before recharging the battery. Failure to do so may damage your fence controller and battery charger, and void your warranty.
5. Never run more than one fence controller on the same fence line at one time. The pulses of short shock solid state fence controllers will be too close together and may be hazardous to animals and people. It will also damage your fence controllers.
6. Never alter the design of a fence controller or substitute components. This could be hazardous to you and will void the warranty.
7. Instruct all persons how to disconnect a fence controller in case of emergency. Post signs on electric fences along public roads or near residences.
8. Never disconnect wires or approach a fence during lightning storms.
9. "WARNING" Risk of electric shock! Do not connect an electric fence to any other device such as a cattle trainer or a poultry trainer. Otherwise lightning striking your fence will be conducted to all other devices.
10. To reduce the risk of electric shock, an AC line operated fence controller has a polarized plug (one blade is wider than the other). This plug will fit in a polarized outlet only one way. If the plug does not fit fully in the outlet, reverse the plug, if it still does not fit, contact a qualified electrician to install the proper outlet. Do not change the plug in any way.
11. Never connect a DC fencer to an AC power supply.
12. Always check your fencer and fence line for voltage once installation is complete. The fence OK light will flash when power is on the fence. The fencer OK light operates continuously with the continuous current fencers that are equipped with lights.

 

INSTALLATION AND OPERATING
YOUR FENCE CONTROLLER


THE SEVEN SINS OF
FENCE CONTROLLER INSTALLATIONS

1. An insufficient ground system for the fence controller. (Refer to Step 2 of the installation instructions.)
2. Stray voltage may occur when the fence controller ground system is located within 50 ft. of a utility ground, buried water pipe, or buried telephone wire. (Refer to Step 2 of the installation instructions and Radio Interference Section.)
3. Inadequately insulated lead-out wire and jumper wires (wire must be insulated to 20,000V minimum). (Refer to Step 1 of the installation instructions.)
4. The ground wire is not adequately insulated and is located 20 ft. or more from fence controller. (Refer to Step 2 of the installation instructions.)
5. Inferior connections and splices of the fence wire, ground wire, lead-out wire, and jumper wires. (Refer to Step 3 of the installation instructions.)
6. Substandard fence wire insulation: cracked insulators, poor quality insulators, water hose, plastic tubing, or the use of wood posts without insulators. (Refer to Step 3 of the installation instructions.)
7. The fence controller is underpowered for the condition of the fence being energized (i.e., rain, snow, ice, vegetation, rusty wire, and length of fence). (Refer to "How Electric Fencing
Works" in this manual.)

 

I. HOW TO INSTALL
YOUR FENCE CONTROLLER

Grounding Instructions: This controller must be grounded. If it should malfunction or break down, grounding reduces the risk of electrical shock by providing a path of low resistance for the electric current. AC line operated controllers are provided with a polarized 2-blade attachment plug for use on a 120-volt circuit. The plug must be inserted into an appropriate outlet that is properly installed in accordance with all local codes and ordinances.

 

Grounding of this product is provided by a properly installed ground rod electrically connected to the fence controller output ground terminal. An internal fault on an improperly grounded fence controller could result in a risk of high electric shock currents on the electrified fence. 

DANGER - For an AC line operated fence controller, do not modify the plug provided with the controller if it will not fit the outlet; have a proper outlet installed by a qualified electrician. If it is necessary to use an extension cord, use only a polarized extension cord that will accept the plug for the unit. Repair or replace a damaged cord.

STEP 1
Install your fence controller under cover and protect all electrical connections from moisture. The fence controller lead-out wire carries voltage from the (hot) fence terminal to the fence. A jumper wire carries voltage from one electrified fence line to another (i.e., gates, buried wire, corners, and multiple wire fence systems). Use insulted cable that is manufactured for electric fencing (10 to 14 gauge wire insulated to 20,000 volts). Do not use common electrical wiring; it is only rated for 600 volt use.

STEP 2
Install at least one 6 ft. galvanized or copper ground rod within 20 ft. of the fence controller. Use a ground rod clamp to attach the insulated ground wire to the ground rod (clamp must bite into rod and ground wire). The ground wire should be 10 to 14 gauge wire and insulated from 600V to 20,000 volts. For best results, install three ground rods into the earth 6 ft. deep, spaced 10ft. apart. If possible, install ground rods in areas of constant moisture.

STEP 3
Do not install ground rods within 50 ft. of a utility ground rod, buried
telephone line, or buried water-line (they may pick up stray voltage). This is
evident if you receive pulsing shocks from water spigots or water tanks or if
you hear the pulse of the fence controller in your phone, television, or radio.

Step 4
Make good connections, using wire clamps, wire connectors, and proper splices (refer to drawings). Simply wrapping the wire loosely causes corrosion at the splice and reduces the power on the fence. Use high quality insulators, gate handles, and insulator wrap, with UV (ultra violet) inhibitors for your fence. If using metal fence posts, make sure fence wires cannot touch the post. There are specific types of wood posts designed for electric fence use without insulators.

Illustrations of different types of knots and connectors for electric fence

 

II. OPERATING INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE SOLAR POWERED
ELECTRIC FENCE CONTROLLER


The solar powered fence controller eliminates repetitious battery recharging and replacement and reduces costs by utilizing free energy from the sun. Its unique design collects and stores the sun's energy during both sunny and cloudy weather conditions. It will retain its full charge through 15 days of total darkness thereby keeping maximum shock on your fence line at all times. 

This completely portable SOLAR POWERED fence controller is designed for easy installation. The SOLAR PANEL is mounted at the proper angle to ensure maximum year-round energy collection. It is IMPORTANT to mount your unit in a location that receives full sunlight throughout the entire day and to fasten it securely to prevent turning and shifting. Its solid state circuit has excellent high/low temperature characteristics which are unaffected by changes in the weather for maximum output voltage on the fence wire.
            

Installing Your Solar Powered Fence Controller

STEP 1
Face the SOLAR PANEL towards the noontime sun. Due south in the northern hemisphere.

STEP 2
Connect the lead-out wire to the fence terminal and connect the ground wire to the ground terminal.

STEP 3
SOLAR REGION SETTING: (For solar fencers that have a solar setting switch).

Solar fencer installations north of the line on the solar setting map, have less useable sunlight each day when compared to installations south of the line.

For optimum performance throughout the year, installations north of the line on the map should slide the solar setting switch to the northern region setting (far left position). Installations south of the line on the map should use the southern region setting (far right position). If you can't determine if your installation is north or south of the line on the solar setting map, use the northern region setting (far left position). Failure to use the proper solar region setting will limit the solar fencers battery life and void your warranty.

For solar fencers not equipped with a solar setting switch, slide the 2 position switch to the on position.

The operating light should flash with each pulse of electricity that is sent to the fence

FOR BEST PERFORMANCE: After installing your new solar fence controller, slide the switch to the "OFF" position. This allows the sun to charge the solar fence controller battery. Let the solar battery charge for three full days.

BATTERY MAINTENANCE: Repeat the above three day charging process each time the fence controller is placed in storage or taken out of storage. DO NOT store out of direct sunlight for periods of more than 3 months without first repeating the battery charging procedure or the battery may fail. 

IMPORTANT: DO NOT CHARGE THE SOLAR POWERED ELECTRIC FENCE CONTROLLER BATTERY WITH AN AUTOMOBILE BATTERY CHARGER. THIS WILL DAMAGE THE BATTERY. A TRICKLE CHARGER SHOULD BE USED TO MAINTAIN THE BATTERY WHEN THE FENCE CONTROLLER IS NOT IN USE FOR PERIODS EXCEEDING 3 MONTHS. CAUTION! DO NOT ALLOW THE BATTERY TO CHARGE OVER 18 HOURS WITH A TRICKLE CHARGER! 

 


SOLAR PANEL MAINTENANCE: In the instance that battery replacement becomes necessary be sure to CLEAN the solar panel. However, under EXTREMELY DUSTY conditions the solar panel should be cleaned periodically with a soft cloth and water without detergent or abrasive cleaners.  A clean solar panel will operate at maximum efficiency.

 

III. HOW ELECTRIC FENCING WORKS

Electric fencing is a "fear" barrier that uses safe electric shock to deter animals. In order for an animal to feel a shock, the voltage produced by the fence controller must be high enough to penetrate the animal's hair, hide, and hoof. Once the voltage is high enough to deliver a shock, electricity must travel through the fence wire. It then flows through the animal that is touching the fence and into the soil the animal is standing on. The electricity then travels through the moist soil back to the ground rods. From the ground rods the electricity flows through the ground wire that is attached to the fence controller's ground terminal. The circuit is completed and the animal feels the shock instantly.

A good ground system will pick up most of the electricity conducted by the animal and send it to the fence controller.  Poor grounding can cause interference on telephone lines, in radios, and on televisions.  You may also receive a shock from metal cased fence controller or ground rod when it is not grounded properly.

In very dry climates (dry sandy soil) and cold climates (snow covered or frozen soil) an alternative fence installation must be used. This fence system implements the use of a ground wire running parallel to your hot wire. This ground wire should be grounded every 1,300 ft. with 6 ft. galvanized steel or copper ground rods. This fence installation is no longer dependent on good soil conditions and will carry the electricity back to the fence controller's ground system when livestock contact the hot and ground wires simultaneously.

IV. TROUBLE SHOOTING YOUR ELECTRIC FENCE

Even the best-built electric fences have problems from time to time. The best time to discover and fix the problem is before your livestock get loose. Use a volt meter designed to test an electric fence or a five light fence tester to check the fence every day. When the voltage drops drastically (Remember: Although wet insulators from rain or snow will cause fence voltage to drop, the proper fence controller with correct installation techniques will perform satisfactorily) take the following steps. . .

STEP 1

FENCE CONTROLLER DOES NOT OPERATE, CHECK THE FUSES

a.  Some fence controllers do not have fuses. Replaceable fuses can be replaced if there are fuse holders located on the exterior of the fence controller cabinet.
b.  If fuses are blown, replace them with "1 amp/250V" fuses. Plug the fence controller in. If the fuses blow instantly the fence controller must be serviced. Should the fence controller operate for several hours before blowing a fuse there is a problem with your fence installation, go on to Step 2.
c.  If fuses are O.K. and the fence controller does not operate, go on to Step 2

 

STEP 2

CHECK THE POWER SOURCE: Unplug the fence controller or disconnect the battery clamps from the battery, before checking power source.

a.  A fence controller that operates on 115VAC must have a power source ranging from 105VAC to 125VAC.
b.  A 12 volt battery fence controller should have a power source of 12 volts minimum when testing.
c.  The 6 volt or 6/12 volt battery fence controllers should have a power source of 6 volts minimum when testing.
Note: for best results use a deep cycle battery rated at 85 amp hrs or more.

 

STEP 3

CHECK THE FENCE CONTROLLER FOR OUTPUT: Use a volt meter designed to test electric fence controller output. Ask your local farm store for this product.

If a volt meter is unavailable you can use a screwdriver as a "gross check" for voltage output. Disconnect the hot lead-out wire from your fence controller. Do not remove your ground wire. Using a screwdriver with an insulated handle, draw an arc between the hot terminal and the ground terminal. The length of the spark gaps are listed below for your use. This is not an accurate method to test your fence controller, but it will indicate whether or not your fence controller's output is reasonable.

If the fence controller output is low your fence controller should be serviced. If the output is O.K. go on to Step 4.

 

STEP 4

IF THE FENCE CONTROLLER OUTPUT AND POWER SOURCE ARE NORMAL, CHECK THE FENCE INSTALLATION

a.  Reconnect the hot lead-out wire (which was disconnected in Step 3) to the fence terminal. Then disconnect the lead-out wire at the fence and check for voltage. If the voltage is good the lead-out wire is O.K. If the voltage is low, you must replace the lead-out wire. Use AFW hookup wire rated at 20,000V.  Go on to Step 4b.
b. 

Reconnect the lead-out wire and disconnect all fences that run off the main fence and check the voltage. If the voltage is low, the problem lies in the main fence. If the voltage is O.K., reconnect fences, checking voltage as each fence is added. Voltage should remain steady or show a slight drop until you connect the fence causing the problem. Then the voltage will drop drastically or the fence will short out completely.

 

c.  Once you determine which fence or section of fence is causing the problem, walk the fence line looking for shorts. Look carefully at corners and gates, and where the fence comes close to other fences. Pay close attention to insulators and connections, listen for telltale snapping sounds that indicate electrical shorting.
d. 

Vegetation or rust on the fence is the most common cause of voltage loss. Even high-power, low impedance fence chargers lose voltage when enough weeds and grass touch the fence (especially when wet). Spraying herbicide under any type of fence is good management, particularly under electric fence. Rust on the fence wires acts like an insulator and will not transfer the electric shock to the animal. If your fence wire is rusty replace it.

 

V. RADIO AND TELEPHONE INTERFERENCE:

 

VI. LIGHTNING AND SURGE PROTECTION

Lightning is one of the main causes of fence controller failure. There are some precautions you can take against lightning and AC power surges. Disconnect the controller from the fence line and power source when storms are near. (Caution: never disconnect or approach a fence during a lightning storm.) Install a lightning diverter (commonly referred to as a lightning arrestor) between the fence and the fence controller. This will divert the electricity from lightning strikes induced on to the fence to the earth before it does any damage to the controller. Lightning diverters do not arrest or stop the flow of current from a lightning strike, they direct the flow of current into the ground when properly installed. lightning diverter, is recommended for all types of fence controllers.

You can also protect 105-125VAC fence controllers from electrical surges on the utility side by installing a surge suppressor. The suppressor is plugged into the outlet and the controller is plugged into the suppressor. Surge suppressor will protect from surges up to 6,000 volts and has a response time of less than 5 nano seconds.

A quick way of disconnecting the fence from the controller before storms occur would be installing an Cut Off Switch. It also makes it convenient for working on a fence line. You don't have to unplug the fencer at the power source.

Using these types of protection will minimize the possibility of your controller being damaged from lightning or power surges, but if you live in an area of frequent electrical storms be sure to have a spare fence controller as a back up.

 

LIGHTNING DIVERTER INSTALLATION

This lightning diverter helps protect your fence controller from damage due to lightning on the fence line.

INSTALLATION

1.  For a single wire fence, connect the lightning diverter to the fence wire before mounting on to the fence post. Unscrew the top nut from the lightning diverter, removing the washer and nut. Position the lightning diverter against mounting post with the fence wire passing through the split nut at the top of the lightning diverter shield. Tighten the top nut ensuring that the fence wire is not strained. Then secure the lightning diverter to the fence post.
2.  Where more than one fence wire is hot, first mount the lightning diverter on to the fence post before connecting hook up cables (rated to 20,000 volts) to each of the hot wires using line clamps. Unscrew the top nut and pass the hook up wires through the split nut and tighten to secure.
3.  Connect ground wire by attaching hook up wire to bottom nut by winding in a clockwise direction and securing nut. Attach other end of hook up wire to ground system with ground clamps. Diverter ground system should consist of a minimum of two 6-ft. ground rods spaced 10 feet apart and 50 feet from fence controller ground system.
4. 

For greater protection, install lightning diverters on all corners of fence. First lightning diverter should be installed no closer than 50 ft. from fence controller.

 

 

VII. HELPFUL FENCE BUILDING HINTS

1) PERMANENT ELECTRIC FENCE SPECIFICATIONS

a.  The number of wires and the height of a permanent electric fence, aren't as important as wire spacing. Wires should be spaced closer together at the bottom of the fence, farther apart at the top, so animals are shocked on the nose or front of the head first. The following wire spaces were developed over many years of trial and error.

As in portable electric fences, the height of a permanent electric fence is less important than the wire spacing. Most animals go under or through permanent fences, rather than jump over them.

b.  No matter how many strands your fence has, one hot wire should be positioned at shoulder height of the animal to be controlled. This will cause the animal to hit the fence with its nose first, the area most susceptible to electric fence shock. If an animal is shocked in front of its eyes, it will back up. An animal shocked behind its eyes will go forward into the fence. Proper wire spacing is more important than fence height.

Since an electric fence isn't a physical barrier, the wire doesn't have to be stretched (Piano String) tight. But, pull it taut enough to stay at the same height between posts. Posts should be spaced every 25 ft. to 75 ft., depending on the terrain. If you space your post 75 ft. apart you should use fiberglass battens to keep your wire spacing the same height between the post.

Don't try to evenly space posts; in level terrain posts can be spaced farther apart. In uneven terrain, posts need to be spaced wherever there is a high or low place. On hillsides, posts should be installed perpendicular to the slope. This keeps the wire at the proper height and prevents it from binding on insulators or clips.

Definitions of common fence terms use to classify fence chargers. - Fence Mileage Guide - Grounding Recommendations - How do joule ratings reflect your chargers performance

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