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The configuration menu is divided into different tabs for better overview, in the folowing all of these parts are explained.


System Config

First up is the version of the VanPi image you're currently using. You can use this number to check for newer versions.

'Set Van Name' is for putting in a name, which will be shown on the Pekaway touchdisplay. You can ignore it should you not use the touchdisplay.

For the two MUARTs you need to set connected devives. You can choose between 'Daly Heyo BMS', 'VE.Direct' and 'nothing', when nothing is connected.

You'll find dropdown menu for connected devices on all four USB ports of your Raspberry Pi, where you can choose the connected devices accordingly. We also included a port overview and status fields, which will show if a port is connected or not.

The dropwdown menu for 'Main BattData' is very important to set, otherwise your battery data may not be shown correctly!


It is possible to connect an LFBros Heater, controlled with a 433MHz remote control. For that you will need a 433Mhz sender & receiver connected to your Raspberry Pi. Once that is done, you can train the commands with your LFBros remote control and save them to the system. Once trained, the 433Mhz receiver can be disconnected, keep the sender connected to be able to send commands.


The flashtool is a different set of node-red flows. If you start it, the system copies the flashtool flows into node-red and restarts node-red. You will then be able to flash our preconfigured Tasmota firmware to your Wemos D1 mini. When leaving the flashtool, the original flows will be reloaded and node-red will restart again.

System Update

The version number indicates the need for new packages and/or hardware. Especially when updating manually, please keep in mind you may need to manually install further packages.

The version number typically is v0.9.1 with the first number indicating the need for a completely new image to be downloaded and flashed, since this means we have updated the needed hardware. The second number indicates the need for new packages, you can check the changelog at and see the needed packages here, with package.json being npm packages (to be installed at the node-red folder) and package.txt being system packages (to be installed via apt-get/apt). The last number indicates a change of the flow files, these can be safely updated without troubles.

Any update (USB and internet) will also automatically copy the existing flow-file and save them as a backup at ~/pekaway/nrbackups, so that you can always go back. Should node-red break, you'll need to copy these backup files to the correct path (~/.node-red) by hand and restart node-red (or reboot the wholething).

USB device

When your RPI is not connected to the internet, you can download the latest flows from and copy the .json-file onto a USB-drive. Connect it to the RPI, click on update device list and select the device and update file, then click on update. The new flows will be copied to the system and node-red will be restarted. Please be advised, should the new flows need further system packages or npm packages, node-red may break unless you install these packages manually!


When your RPI has an internet connection, you can check for updates automatically. Any needed packages will be installed automatically as well, data connection will be used, so keep in mind that your bandwith can handle the downloads (especially when you're on a mobile connection).

Load backup

It is possible to manually create backup files, which means that the current node-red flows will be copied and saved at ~/pekaway/nrbackups. You can restore them by using the 'Load Backup' files function. Any backup files found in that specific folder will be shown in the corrosponding dropdown menu to choose from.

User Data

Your 'User Data' are all data you set in the config of the system, for example which heater you're using or the names you gave your relays. You can download them and reupload them, should you flash a new image to the SD-card. That way, your settings will be restored and you don't have to reconfigure everything from scratch.


In this section you'll find the option to use network time sync. The correct time is important to control the heaters timebased, obviously... So either you're connected to the internet, or you deactivate network time sync and set the system time yourself via ssh. Also, if the time is not set, any charts (Monitor tab) will not be shown correctly.

The button to resize the filesystem should not be needed, but here's what it does: When you download an RPI image from our website, it is usually around 1GB in size. Now you flash it to a SD-Card, which should be greater in size, like 16GB or 32GB. On the first boot, the filesystem will be expanded to the size of the card. If for any reason that will not happen correctly, 'Resize filesystem' will trigger a command (sudo raspi-config --expand-rootfs) to do exactly that and reboot.

Here you'll also find options to reboot or shutdown your RPI manually.


We included options to connect a Liontron battery with JBD BMS included or only JBD BMS, should you use that. It is also possible to connect a GOK Senso4s gas gauge. First you need to scan available bluetooth devices and then choose the corrosponding MAC-adresses from the dropdown Menus.


If you want to set the SSID and passphrase for your RPI access point, you can do so here by putting in your new SSID and passphrase, then click on 'Update Wifi'. To reset these, simply click on 'Reset Wifi'

'Show Wifi Settings' will bring up your current SSID and passphrase in cleartext!

'Show IP-address' will show the RPI's IP-addresses for both, ethernet and wifi.

You can scan for available networks and connect to them, or you can just turn off your access point should you be connected otherwise.

'Dimmer Debug Mode' activates a text field in the frontend (Relays tab), that will show you debug messages when the dimmers are enabled and you've set a valid IP-address to watch for in the dimmer relay settings.

'Send Stats via MQTT' will send all current values every 5 minutes on their applicable topics ('pkw/tele/+') as shown in communication MQTT-API.

'Enable/Disable Homebridge' - By default Homebdrige is active, because on the firstboot a new PIN is set. Homebridge may use additional data/bandwith from your internet connection. Should you not use HomeKit on your Apple device, you can deactivate Homebridge.


In the sensor settings you can set the names to be shown in the frontend for your temperature sensors and your water level sensors.

'Get Temp Sensors' will update the temperature values every second for one minute, so that they're easily identifiable. Click the corrosponding 'Update' button to update the names after you set them.

Furthermore the sensor that defines the inside temperature (needed for the heater control) can be set, as well as the hysteresis.

To calibrate the water level sensors we implemented two options:

Option 1 is to choose the sensor to calibrate and set it either to empty or full (depending on the level of the water tank). Then simply use the slider to set the needed ohm value.

With Option 2, simply fill or empty your tank and then select the sensor and set it to either full or empty.

Votronic water level sensors can be set automatically by clicking the button 'Set Votronic'.


In the relay tab usage of the relayboard, wifi relays and the dimmer board can be activated/deactivated. These will then show up in the UI. Names for all the different relays can be set, make sure to use the update buttons after setting the names.

VanPi Shunt

Should you use the VanPi shunt, activate it here and calibrate it based on the battery you're using, so that correct data can be displayed. See also VanPi Shunt for further information.


In the debug you can find several standard debug commands, of which we thought that they might come in handy.

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