Tuesday, May 28, 2024

What Kind Of Battery Does My Boat Need

Cranking Battery Vs Deep Cycle Marine Battery

What kind of Batteries do I need for my Boat? Marine batteries explained!

The Summer season is here, and if you’re a boater, you know how important it is to have the right marine battery for your boat. But, with the different types of marine batteries that are on the market, how do you know which one is right?

Choosing the right is more than a matter of going with a reliable brand that your customers can trust. Even the best battery is only as good as its application and maintenance. This starts, of course, with knowing the differences between the two most common types of marine batteries: cranking batteries and deep cycle marine batteries.

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Cons Of Gel Cell Batteries:

High initial cost The gel cell battery is a specialty boat battery that costs twice as much as the best-flooded batteries. Although this cost lessens over time, because of its long-lasting deep-cycle uses. Anyways, entry costs are a factor for most buyers.

Needs special chargers You must use the correct charger on a gel cell battery or it will lead to poor performance and early failure. This means more money to spend for the boat owner.

Overcharging sensitivity This type of boat battery uses a special charger plus it charges at a lower voltage than other types. So, some boaters have a higher chance of high-voltage overcharging. The result is damage to the battery and is annoying to the owner.

Poor heat resistance Hot temperatures can create adverse effects to the electrolyte. As a result, this can turn the gel hard allowing it to shrink off from the plates. Exposing the plates will shorten the life expectancy of this boat battery.

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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.

How To Rapidly Kill A Battery

What Size Battery Do I Need For My Boat?

Undercharging: Consistently failing to fully recharge batteries leaves them with lead sulfate that hardens on their platesthey become sulfatedand gradually lose their ability to perform. Increased resistance when charging causes falsely elevated voltage readings, essentially fooling the battery charger, leading to further undercharging, in a downward spiral. Beyond a certain point, a sulfated battery cannot be returned to a healthy state, and you need a replacement. Keep your batteries charged, and equalize your wet cell batteries every six to eight weeks in temperate climates, and more frequently in the tropics.

Overcharging: Especially fatal to Gel and AGM batteries, consistent overcharging boils the electrolyte out of the cells, and can even lead to thermal runaway, with the battery becoming hotter and hotter. One of our writers experienced thermal runaway on his liveaboard Catalina 30, caused by a ferroresonant dumb charger, with nearly catastrophic results.

Excessive deep discharge: Dont completely discharge a deep cycle battery if it can be avoided. The deeper the discharge the less life you will get from the battery. The ideal method is to charge and discharge the batteries through the middle range of their capacity and, if they are flooded batteries, to equalize them periodically. Leaving the battery in a fully-discharged state, for example during winter storage, causes it to become sulfated.

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Why You Can’t Use The Same Battery For Cranking & Trolling

It can be tempting for any boater to want to minimize accessories and additions to their vessel. But that approach will cost you more money and time in the long run. It is very difficult to combine the performance of a cranking battery and a deep cycle battery into one battery. Theyre both intentionally engineered to do completely different things.

When a cranking battery is subjected to continuous use, , it is subject to overheating and depletion of available capacity. By the same regard, when a deep cycle battery is called upon to provide the bursts of energy necessary to start an engine, it won’t always perform.

Put another, youll usually get the best results and smallest operating costs when you use two separate marine batteries.

Cons Of Wet Cell Batteries:

Unsealed Wet cell batteries have gases venting out of them they arent sealed. Any non-sealed flooded batteries carry the risk of spillage. With the fluid being hazardous to skin, you need to be extra careful around these batteries. Spillage can cause both corrosion and damage to a boat.

Vents on the battery need to be open, including the battery box that holds the batteries. Unsealed battery boxes need their own maintenance. You will need to buy and carry special safety gear in the event of an onboard battery leak or spill.

Vertical orientation only Wet Cell boat batteries have fluid inside an unsealed container. So to prevent spillage these batteries should be in a vertical position. If installed in a horizontal position the fluid will leak out and damage the boat. This can create headaches for some boat owners because space comes at a premium.

Hands on maintenance required This type of boat battery needs water top ups. One part of electrolyte fluid is water, but dont use ordinary water. You should only use distilled water to refill. To refill you need to choose the right time after charging the battery to full.

As well, you need to consider the right amount of distilled water. Ensure the fluid covers the plates when filling. If you dont, expect the batterys performance and longevity to suffer.

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Connecting The Fishfinder Device

Once youve placed your battery safely in a waterproof box you can start connecting your device to it. Being that the battery should be positioned at the lowest point of your boat, youll need pretty long power cables to connect the fishfinder to a battery. If you followed the above-mentioned steps you already have all the tools required for this job. The first thing that you need to do is to extend the power cables coming out from your device. Start by cutting the cables as close as you can to the power plug.

Make sure that you leave enough wire to connect the cables back together. This way youll use most of the original cable material. Now get an identical power cord and cut it in the same way. Once youre done with cutting, you can use your soldering iron.

Connect the cables and make sure that you do it right. Use the duct tape to secure the connection. You dont want to cause an electrical overload. Once youve connected two power cables together they should be long enough to connect the fishfinder device to your power battery no matter where youve placed your battery. Now you can safely use your fishfinder device and locate the fish directing it in any direction you want.

Once you start using this device to locate fish youll catch more fish than you ever imagined you could before.

Charging A Marine Battery

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Most of us understand that when we are buying a new or used boat, the batteries supplied may not necessarily be top-of-the-line. If they seem to do the job, we dont think much about them. But in the warmer climates everyday heat is a major enemy of batteries, and can shorten their life considerably. In areas of the country that force us to put boats in storage for the winter, how the battery is cared for during this period is also critical to increasing life expectancy.

Its best to keep batteries on a regulated trickle charger to maintain charge while not in use. A battery that is not charged can freeze in cold temperatures and a cracked case is the likely result. A battery is like a lot of things in lifeuse it or lose it! A car battery will typically last longer than a boat battery because the car is used regularly and the battery stays charged. When it comes to boats, the old adage of a batterys life being two years is pretty well on the mark. Youll usually get a heads-up when its about to give up on you, with the warning being a dead battery one morning or a bit slower cranking speed than youre used to. You plug in the charger, the battery miraculously comes to life, and youre off on your trip. You may think a light was left on, or that the radio memory pulled the voltage down. The reality may be that the battery is sulfating, plates are warped, and it no longer takes or holds a charge like it once did.

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Benefits Of Learning How To Recondition A Battery

After equipping yourself with all the information that you need that will help you pick the best suitable marine battery for your boat. It is important to remember that at some point, the perfect power cell you purchased will eventually die. With this, the most affordable option you have is to attempt to revive it or recondition it, which is a lot cheaper compared to purchasing a new replacement battery.

Availing this service can also be pricey, but doing by yourself will be a lot cheaper. So it is very beneficial for you if you can learn how to carry the process of battery reconditioning.

Adding An Extra Battery In Parallel

In a 12V system adding an extra battery is simply a case of mounting it as close as possible to the existing batteries and then connecting in parallel, connecting alike terminals using large diameter cable and properly crimped battery terminals.

Unless you have the tools and some hefty cable hanging around I would suggest you measure up and have the cross-links professionally-made. You could buy a crimper and terminals to do it yourself, but the investment for such a small job will usually be prohibitive.

When connecting two batteries in parallel its important to note that the output voltage of the bank will remain the same, but your available capacity will increase. There is often confusion with amps and amp hours. Put simply, an amp is a measure of current flow, whereas an amp hour is a measure of current flow every hour. So, in theory a 100Ah battery could provide a 20A current for five hours before becoming flat. It wont actually, for a number of complex reasons, but for simplicity Ill let it stand.

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What Size Battery Do I Need For My Boat

If you are a boat owner, then you are probably wondering. What type of marine battery do I need or What size of battery do I need for my boat? Selecting the right type and size of battery are crucial to making sure that it can keep with all of the boats needs. It will make sure that the battery is capable supplying enough power to the boat to allow it to function the way you like it and the way it is expected to be.

However, selecting the right type and size of the battery can be an overwhelming task due to the wealth of available choices in the market today. If you have the knowledge about batteries and if you know what want, looking the best suitable battery can make it easier. But if you dont have any idea of what to look for in battery, then you might be in trouble. Fortunately for you, this guide will provide you all the information you to walk you through the process of picking the right marine power cell for your boat.

You have to keep in mind that, marine batteries dont last forever and at some point, they will lose their capabilities to store charge. In cases like these, you will only have two options, purchase a new replacement or try to recondition your battery.

Now to help you in your search for the right battery for your boat, you may want to stick around and continue reading through this guide. It will feed you all the details and information that you need to come up with a smart decision and pick the right suitable battery for your needs.

Why Is There Reduction Gearing On An Electric Boat Motor

How Many Batteries Should I Have On My Boat? Hmmmm!

There are 3 great reasons for using gear reduction.

  • Its easier on the motor to spin the prop which means there is less current draw from your batteries.
  • If by unfortunate chance you hit your prop, the pulley and belt will absorb the impact vibration from the propshaft. If the propshaft is directly linked to your electric motor the chance of damage is significantly more should an impact occur.
  • Gear reduction produces Torque. The torque produced by the output is inversely proportional to the amount of gear reduction. Say what? In short, if you have a 2:1 gear ratio then the prop speed turns 1/2 as fast but has twice the torque! Its physics.
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    Charging Your New Lithium Battery:

    All Dakota Lithium trolling motor batteries include a free lithium charger optimized for LiFePO4 battery chemistry. We recommend using the Dakota Lithium chargers with our batteries but other chargers may work. Most LiFePO4 or lithium specific chargers output 14.6- 14.8 V which does safely charge the batteries, but the DL chargers output 14.4V which help you get a slightly longer lifespan from your battery. AGM or lead acid chargers will charge the battery, but are optimized for the lower voltage of lead acid batteries, so they will read a lithium battery as full when it is only at 80% of full capacity.

    Using your on-board charger:

    Most on-board chargers will work, but will only charge to 80% on the AGM setting.

    Can you use a DC-DC charger to charge while you are running your engine?

    Yes, this is a common practice to charge your batteries while your main engine is running. This will lead to extended battery life.

    How fast can I charge my batteries?

    All Dakota Lithium batteries include a 10 Amp or 8 Amp charger, depending on model. Average charge time is 4 10 hours depending on how many Amp Hours of battery capacity. For a faster charge time check out Dakota Lithiums line of Ultra-Fast 20 Amp chargers. These larger, high output chargers will cut the charge time to 2-4 hours depending on battery size and are a good choice for tournament anglers, fishing guides leading multiple trips a day, and anyone who need a lot of power real fast.

    What Does Battery Group Size Mean

    In searching for the right size of battery, it will all have to go down to identifying the right group size of marine battery. Considered as one of the specifications of marine battery that you have to look for. It simply indicates the dimensions of the power cell housings that the Battery Council International set. It is the standard sizing of marine batteries where it indicates the length, width, and height of the housings of the batteries. To guide you in your search for the right size of battery for your boat below is a chart of the common group size of marine batteries that you can consult.

    A Size Chart of the Most Common Size of Marine Batteries in the Market Today!

    Group Size


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    The Case For Name Brands

    Buying a battery takes a healthy amount of research. Understanding the nomenclature is great, but buying a reputable brand with a solid warranty is also important. It may cost a bit more, but in the long haul youll be rewarded with many benefits.

    If you do have a failure, you can usually get most high-quality brands replaced at a pro-rated amount based on usage. Personally speaking, I always buy batteries that are available in multiple stores. You never know where you might be when failure occurs and I want as many options as possible for quick replacement. Name-brand, high-quality batteries generally have more widespread availability.

    Cca And Mca: Whats The Difference

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    Look for batteries with higher CCA and MCA whenever possible.

    CCAs measure current flow when starting an engine. The higher the number, the more amps it will deliver to crank the engine.

    MCA rating is much more important for trolling motors and that number will normally be higher than CCA ratings by one-third. MCA is essentially the number of amps the battery will deliver in 30 seconds at 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

    MCA and CCA are criteria that explain the same thing, but at different temperatures. A good rule-of-thumb is get as large a CCA/MCA rating size as you can find.

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