How Long Does It Take To Charge
If you operate your house bank between a 50 percent and 85 percent state of charge, as many experts recommend, and charge once daily, you should be able to return the 35 percent of battery capacity by operating a properly-sized alternator for slightly over an hour. More deeply discharged batteries, or smaller alternators, will require more time. Surprisingly, using a massive charger or monster alternator to pour on the current can be counterproductive, and can shorten your battery life. Excessive current makes batteries heat up and gas excessively . Soon the voltage limit is reached, causing a downshift from the Bulk to Acceptance Phase. Adding more battery capacity is a better solution, and may even decrease the needed recharging time. Bigger battery banks can accept more charging amps, so they replenish more quickly and you dont need to run your engine as long.
Balmar’s Max Charge MC-612 Regulator has seven charging programs for your externally-regulated alternator.
There’s More To Choosing The Right Battery For Your Boat Than You May Think Making A Smart Decision Now Could Save You Big In The Long Run
So, the batteries on your boat have come to end of their life, and you need to buy new ones. But what should you choose? You would think that you could just walk into your local marine store and buy any battery that fits in the boat, right? Wrong. There’s more to equipping your boat with batteries than you might think. Batteries fall into one of two categories, deep cycle or starting. A cycle is the term given to a battery that discharges through use and is then bought back up to full charge again. As a rough guide, a light to medium duty battery will be good for about 200 to 300 cycles, while a heavy duty battery should easily be able double that amount of useful cycles with no ill effects.
A starting battery is the type you have on your car. The battery is there simply to crank the engine, then as soon the as the motor is running, all the electrical demands are satisfied by the alternator on the engine, which also recharges current drawn from the battery. The starting battery only has to give a big jolt of electrical power for a very short time.
Batteries come in range of sizes. Terms that you will often hear are group 24, 27, 31, 4D, and 8D. The group has nothing to do with the actual capacity of the battery, but merely relates to the physical size.
Determine The Needs Of Your Boat
If you are trying to find the right suitable power cell for your boat, you first have to determine the entire electrical load of your boat and the current that it needs to start its engine. As we mentioned above, your marine battery will have to handle two tasks. Starting your boats engine and running its entire electrical grid. If you have an estimated value of these two things, then you will have an idea of what kind of battery you need to handle these two crucial tasks.
Cranking Battery Design Features
The more plate surface area inside the battery, the easier it is for that battery to provide the necessary power. That is exactly why cranking batteries have many thin plates they increase surface area and make starting a marine vessel as smooth and reliable as possible.
The same elements that make a starting battery ideal for cranking an engine also make them less than ideal for continuous discharge or cyclic use. That’s why deep cycle are another necessity for boaters.
Wet Cell Gel Or Agm Boat Battery
Batteries can be further categorized as wet cell, gel or AGM , depending on the configuration of the electrolyte, or conducting medium, inside the battery. Each type has pros and cons you should know before making a purchase.
About Wet-Cell Boat Batteries: The traditional lead-acid batteries we all are familiar with are wet-cell or “flooded-cell” batteries. Each wet-cell battery contains a liquid mixture of sulfuric acid and distilled water . This is the most popular battery type, primarily because the price is generally less than other types, but also because these batteries have a number of inherent advantages. For example, a properly charged and maintained, premium wet-cell battery is capable of as many as 1,000 discharge/recharge cycles. This can translate to many years of dependable service at an initial cost substantially less than comparable capacity gel or AGM batteries. Wet-cell batteries also are less likely to be damaged by overcharging and tend to weigh less than comparable gel or AGM batteries.
|The Optima® Blue Top Marine Battery is maintenance-free and completely spillproof.|
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Cranking Amps Or Marine Cranking Amps
This is a rating of the amount of amps produced while starting the engine at 32 degrees Fahrenheit. The greater MCA rating the better. Look for an equal or greater MCA to what the manufacturer recommends for your boats engine.
Hot cranking amps is an old rating system that you likely wont see any longer. However, if you do see this rating it measures the amps produced at 80 °F.
Cautions About Life Expectancy:
Most average battery life expectancies are shorter these days due to increased energy demands onboard. Heres a sad fact only 27% of batteries sold today reach the 48-month mark. Whats worse is that sulfation build-up is the reason for 80% of all battery failures. Therere many causes of sulfation, such as:
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Hottest Faqs About Electric Outboard Motors
A single post could not answer all questions about the electric outboards. Weve picked out the most frequently asked ones below with short answers.
If you have any further confusion about the electric outboard motors, leave them in the comment and well get back to you asap and add yours to the list.
#1. How rock proof are electric outboards?
The electric outboard motor blade is usually made of solid materials and ePropulsion motors feature propeller collision emergency stop
However, the rock or oyster bed could still possibly cause damage to the motor. If you are worried, you can always protect the outboard with some propeller guard.
#2. What is the most powerful electric outboard motor?
The most powerful electric outboard motor by far is 80 hp rated, and it is mostly for commercial use due to the high initial cost.
#3. What size electric outboard do I need?
To get the right size electric outboard motor, you need to consider the boat size , boatload, your desired speed, and the boating environment, etc.
Generally speaking, a 1kw3hp electric outboard motor is enough to provide a satisfying speed and range for tenders, dinghies, and daysailers up to 1.5 tons, and 6kw10 hp electric outboard motor is for RIBs, fishing boats, and cruising sailboats up to 6 tons.
How To Pick The Right Battery Charger
Let me start with a disclaimer: BatteryStuff.com does not sell inexpensive, off-the-shelf battery chargers often found at retail outlets and certain other online stores. We cater specifically to microprocessor-controlled chargers, also known as smart chargers. All the chargers we stock are reviewed, tested and selected based on function, reliability and durability.
This type of battery charger is designed to charge lead acid and other types of batteries based on computer-generated algorithms. Simply put, the charger collects information from the battery and adjusts the charge current and voltage based on this information. This allows the battery to be charged quickly, correctly, and completely when using a smart charger. All the chargers we sell can remain connected to a battery indefinitely and will not overcharge or damage it.
Simple steps to select the right battery charger for your needs.
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Determining The Group Size Of Marine Battery
When it comes to picking the right size of battery for your boat, that first thing you have to do is to determine the actual electrical load of the boat. It will give you an idea of how much power do you need to crank up its engine and at the same time power all of the boats electrical components and accessories. Once you have an idea of the enough power that you need, you can now then identify what size of battery you are going to need.
Basic Boat Battery Types
There are two basic types of 12-volt batteries: 1) cranking, or starting, batteries, which are designed to start your main engine, and 2) deep-cycle batteries, which are used to power electrical accessories such as trolling motors, fish-finders and radios. Dual-purpose batteries that can perform both these functions to some extent also are available.
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What To Look For When Shopping For The Best Boat Battery
Your application will determine if you need a starting battery, a deep-cycle battery system, or maybe you only need a single multi-purpose battery. The best boat battery for you will always depend on how youre using it. Regardless of your application, there are some things to keep in mind when looking for any marine battery.
Efficiency is critical. Efficiency in a battery means that you can discharge your battery to 80% or more of its capacity without damaging it and then recharge it quickly.
Reliability and lifespan are also essential to consider when selecting your marine battery. You dont want to be a few miles off-shore on a fishing trip and not be able to start up your motor to get home because your battery died. Likewise, imagine taking your friends out on your sailboat for a weekend and having your battery system croak on you. Thats not going to make for a fun vacation. Beyond that, batteries are expensive. Having to replace them frequently because they dont have a long lifespan or warranty will add up quickly.
And last, but certainly not least, weight. Batteries can be very heavy. This starts to become a significant consideration in live-aboard and trolling battery systems where you likely need multiple batteries to provide the capacity you need.
Ultimately, youre looking for the lightest, most efficient, and reliable battery you can afford. Lets look at some options.
Six Advantages Of An Agm Boat Battery:
Direct replacement for flooded battery An AGM uses near the same voltage set points as flooded batteries. Therefore, it is a direct drop-in replacement for flooded cells. Ergo it is a way to spend less money for upgrading your boat.
Vertical or horizontal orientation Like the Gel cell, the AGM battery is a sealed battery. As a result, you can use it and store it in any orientation. This can be a great advantage in tight spaces.
Maintenance free AGM batteries have much less terminal corrosion, compared to flooded batteries. In turn, this means less maintenance. Also like Gel cells, the container is spill proof. So with an AGM, you dont need special safety gear onboard for hazardous acid spills.
No venting needed An AGM battery doesnt produce or expel hydrogen/oxygen gases. So these batteries are easy to store and you avoid having to worry about electrolyte loss.
Larger plate surface area When compared to batteries of the same size, an AGM has a larger plate surface area. A larger plate surface area equals higher ratings. This is vital for cold cranking amps and reserve capacity measurements.
Fast recharge The AGM battery has a lower internal resistance than a flooded lead-acid battery. This allows for better starting power, quicker recharge and slower discharge. Thus, this battery lasts much longer than other types.
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Think About The Warranties Included
You also have to think about the included warranties when purchasing the power cell. Aside from it can keep you from buying incompetent batteries that wont be able to keep up with your needs. It will also help you save a lot of money in the future because it can reduce the maintenance cost and then it can provide a lot of benefits like manufacturers support, free repairs, and even replacements.
Following this guide will help you come up with a smart decision and pick an excellent investment for your boating needs. It will make sure the battery you are going to purchase can keep up with the demands of your boat as well as its applications. It will also make sure that you are going to get the best suitable power cell for your boat which you can consider as an excellent investment. So keep these significant aspects in mind because it will help you a lot if you are going to look for a new power cell for your boat or fishing vessel.
What Are Battery Ratings And Why Do They Matter
For first-time buyers, the battery specs and features might seem confusing. From the size of the battery to reserve minutes and cranking amps, heres why these ratings matter:
- MCA vs. CCA: While these are both power measurements, they measure amperage slightly differently. CCA will measure how many amps your battery can produce for thirty seconds at 0, and MCA measures amperage at 32. MCA batteries typically work a little better in warmer climates or higher temperatures, but there isnt a ton of differences between the two types.
- Engine Size: Boaters dont always consider weather or climate when theyre picking out a battery, but these conditions can be more crucial than you think. In colder weather, a lot of boaters typically choose a larger battery with more power. The same goes for diesel engines or high compression gas engines.
- Reserve Minutes: You might notice that a lot of batteries include the reserve minutes. This isnt as important for cranking batteries, but for deep-cycle batteries, youll want to take note of the reserve minutes. This refers to how long your battery can sustain 25 amps before it drops back down to 10.5 volts. For instance, a battery that has a reserve minute rating of 120 minutes can sustain 25 amps for two hours.
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The Ideal Charge Curve
Bulk phase: This is where the heavy lifting takes place. Charge at a rate up to 20 percent to 40 percent of the batteries capacity in amp hours to a voltage of about 14.6 volts . For example, a 200 amp-hour battery would be charged at 4080 amperes. This will bring the battery to about 75 percent of full charge, and is efficient since the battery accepts more current when it is discharged. AGMs require slightly different voltages, and unless there is an AGM setting, should be charged using lead-acid settings.
Acceptance phase: Maintains battery at 14.6 volts while the amperage is steadily reduced. This will restores the next 25 percent of capacity at a declining rate. Your battery can be considered fully charged if it will accept current equal to 2 percent of C at 14.6 volts .
How Does A Wet Cell Work
The wet cell boat battery uses a rechargeable lead-acid reaction to store energy. The inside of the battery has reservoirs or cells between unlike lead plates. Between the plates is an electrolyte fluid made up of distilled water and sulfuric acid. As the fluid flows through the unlike plates, it creates a chemical reaction. The battery stores this chemical reaction until a load request power.
When a load connects to the battery terminals, the circuit closes, creating power. As well as producing hydrogen and oxygen, that must vent out. So it makes sense having an unsealed container with vented portions. The rechargeable action is that the electrolyte fluid is refillable . Therefore, as long as the battery gets maintenance recharging can happen for a long time.
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Choosing The Right Charger
Finally, you will need to choose a suitable charger for your Battery or Outdoorbox. The options vary per battery, but there are two questions you should answer for yourself:
- Is it important that the battery charger is waterproof?
- How fast do you want to charge your battery?
The first question is clear. If you always charge your battery indoors and keep the battery charger indoors? In that case you can opt for a normal battery charger. However, if you also want to be able to charge the battery on board and install the charger permanently in your boat, we recommend a waterproof charger. In addition, you often have the option between a normal charger and a fast charger. If you always drive your boat for a few hours and have the option to charge overnight for your next trip, then a normal charger will suffice. However, if you want to drive the boat for a full day and recharge during a , a fast charger can be the solution. You can find information on the charge speed on the product pages of our chargers.
Tip! Put together a package of battery and charger and benefit from a discount.
Using A Deep Cycle Battery As A Marine Battery
While marine starting batteries can withstand being discharged, the deep cycle battery can be repeatedly discharged down to 80% without any damage being caused to the battery. You can use a deep cycle battery as a starting battery but check it has the right reserve capacity and number of Cold Cranking Amps . The main difference here is that unlike marine starting batteries, deep cycle batteries are designed to provide current over a prolonged period of time, rather than just a surge.
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Cranking Or Starting Batteries
These are designed specifically to start your main engine. They are made with thinner and more numerous lead plates inside, allowing for more surface area and thereby providing the quick and massive amounts of energy required for tough starting jobs. While the motor is running, the alternator inside will easily and quickly replenish the used energy.
If your boat is powered by a newer model outboard with sophisticated computers, pumps and sensors, you definitely want to make certain you have enough starting power. It’s a good idea to check your owner’s manual for the recommended MCA rating before shopping for a battery always choose one with a rating equal to or greater than the recommended value.