Battery Tips For Best Performance
No matter what kind of battery chemistry you choose, follow these recommendations to get the best performance:
- Stay with one battery chemistry . Each battery type requires specific charging voltages. Mixing battery types can result in under- or over-charging. This may mean replacing all batteries on board at the same time.
- Never mix old batteries with new ones in the same bank. While it seems like this would increase your overall capacity, old batteries tend to pull down the new ones to their deteriorated level.
- Regulate charge voltages based on battery temperature and acceptance to maximize battery life and reduce charge time. Ensure that your charging system is capable of delivering sufficient amperage to charge battery banks efficiently. This generally means an alternator with an output that is 25% to 40% the capacity of your entire battery bank.
- Keep batteries clean, cool and dry.
- Check terminal connectors regularly to avoid loss of conductivity.
- Add distilled water to flooded lead acid batteries when needed. Keep them charged. Leaving them in a discharged state for any length of time will damage them and lower their capacity.
- Clean corrosion with a paste of baking soda and water.
Do I Really Need A Marine Battery For My Boat
Not only are marine batteries expected to crank over an engine, they are also required to supply energy for lighting, pumps, sound systems and anything else that might be essential for comfort or safety while out on the water. Anyone that has spent time in rough water will appreciate shock resistance in a boat.
Electric Outboard Motor Weight
The electric outboard motor and battery weight could be a concern, especially for the elderly. Boating is enjoyable, but lugging the heavy batteries over boggy ground to get to a boat in remote areas is definitely not tempting.
If you are looking for a portable electric outboard motor, consider the one with a built-in battery. The electric outboard motor with battery is easy to transport and could save you a lot of trouble.
Some electric outboard motor batteries can even float in the water so there is no need to worry about dropping it while installing the outboard.
Looking for a higher power electric outboard motor?
It will need standalone batteries to power the electric outboard. If you are going this way, wed recommend looking at the E-Series LiFePO4 battery range.
The E-series electric outboard motor batteries offer a modular system from 2kWh to 144kWh. They are very affordable marine-grade batteries with a long lifespan.
Also Check: Remove Stains Vinyl Boat Seats
How Many Batteries Are Normally In A Boat
Every boat has two types of power requirements. One is the starting load, which is the amount of power your boat requires to start up. The other is the running load, which is the amount of electrical power your boat requires in its running state.
The different electronics on your boat, such as the GPS, the motor for your trim tabs, and any lighting you might have on board.
Traditionally, all boats have at least two different types of batteries. One is the starting battery, which you use to start the engine. The other is what is called a house battery, which is responsible for powering all of your lights and electronics.
Starting batteries need to deliver large amounts of current to start your boats engine. They can only provide this huge amount of current for a short time .
Using your starting battery for longer than this can cause irreversible damage to the battery. Thus, if you crank and crank and crank on your battery when your engine wont start. You can wear the battery out.
Starting batteries do have an estimated lifespan. Basically, there is an estimated number of starts you can put the battery through. Or what would be called a discharge cycle.
Where the battery is used by starting an engine. This puts that massive draw on the battery and drains a large amount of power. When the battery is new. It can carry a longer load or discharge cycle.
Deep Cycle Battery
Electric Outboard Motors Are Not Trolling Motors
Before we get into depth, lets make it clear that here we are talking about electric outboard motors. Not trolling motors or electric start combustion outboards.
Unlike the trolling motors that can only go at slow trolling speed, true electric outboard motors can provide much higher power: They are designed to be used as the primary power source.
Even small electric outboards, for example, the popular 3hp electric outboard motor, would be enough to power boats weighing up to 1.5 tons including dinghy boats, inflatables, and small sailboats, at a speed of 5 knots.
If you have no idea which one to choose between electric outboard motor and trolling motor , check out our previous post for a detailed comparison.
Read Also: How To Pick A Prop For My Boat
Required Accessories For A Jonboat Battery
If you get a battery for your jon boat, thereare some accessories that you cant get away from purchasing. You may get abattery that comes with all of these accessories already, but some may need tobe purchased on the side. Luckily, theyre easy to find and not too expensive.
First things first, youll need to make sureyou invest in a good battery cover. Most places require battery covers by lawfor those using them to power marine vessels, including jon boats, so youllcertainly want one for your battery. The good thing is that most marinebatteries come with an effective battery cover, so youre most likely good togo.
Another required accessory youll want toinvest in is a good recharger. It can take quite a while to recharge a marinebattery since they often hold a decent amount of energy, which is why gettingyourself a good recharger is so important. Thankfully, battery recharges areplentiful and relatively inexpensive.
Hi, Im Charlie. I grew up going to the lake and boating has always been a big part of my life. Jon Boat Planet is a place for sharing things about boating as I learn them, and helping other boat owners and newcomers to enjoy their boating experience even more.
First Time Boat Owners
So, if you know nothing at all about your boats battery type. Say you are a first time boat owner. In that case, what you have to do is to identify amount of power that you will be requiring. For example a water pump uses about 5 Amps in an half hour period. Another one, is the TV they can use 4 Amps for a period of say 4 hrs. So, there are many guides for this information online. Including the excellent information on sailboat-cruising .com.
So the other big important thing for novice boat owners is choosing the ideal dimensions of batteries for your watercraft. Specifically, you will be looking for a battery that first of all will fit into the space allotted for the battery . Secondly, you have to take into consideration the fact that the battery of your choice will have to start the boats engine as well supplying all the other electrical gadgets on-board.
Read Also: Freedom Boat Club Lindenhurst
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.
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.|
Also Check: Freedom Boat Club Membership Fee
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.
Choosing A Battery Charger Based On Desired Outcome
Some folks require a charger to keep their motorcycle, classic car, or aircraft battery charged during the offseason. In these cases, a simple low current charger will work fine. Others require a fast and powerful charger to quickly restore a trolling motor battery or a wheelchair battery set. Other types of chargers and the reasons you might need them:
- MULTI VOLTAGE Input chargers for use when visiting a foreign country
- Waterproof chargers for those times when youre out in the elements
- Chargers that double as power supplies for RV use
- Multi-bank chargers for charging multiple batteries simultaneously
Hopefully, weve helped you figure out which is the best charger for your application. Use the link below to see our large selection of battery chargers and 12v/24v trickle chargers.
Was this information helpful? Sign up to Get Updates and Offers.
113 people commented,
James D Florindi I have a 12 volt 8 Ah battery I will be using for my fishing sonar. I have an older sears 10/2/50 amp charger. Can I safely use this charger on the 2 amp setting with this battery?
Rated article 5 November 30, 2021 at 11:57 am
BatteryStuff Tech James, some batteries can take an amp rating up to 25% of the battery packs AH rating if using a smart charger. However, the best method to verify what your battery can take would be to simply look at the side of the battery. Most batteries are labeled with a max current or amp rating.
Rated article 5 December 3, 2021 at 10:29 am
Don’t Miss: Best Deck Boat 2021
What Is A Conventional Wet Cell Battery
Wet cell or flooded batteries are the oldest type of rechargeable boat battery in use today. This chemical type is popular because it is cheap to buy and maintain. A wet cell battery will contain an electrolyte liquid in an unsealed container. Whereas AGM and Gel cell batteries, arent open or contain liquid.
Do I Need Two Batteries For My Boat
Many boats use a starting battery and a house battery in conjunction to power all the electrical loads out on the water.
However, keeping two heavy and bulky batteries on your boat is not always feasible, especially if your boat is too small. For these situations, there is an alternative solution to your needs of electrical power on the water:
As the name suggests, dual-purpose batteries are capable of powering your starting as well as your electronics. These batteries include active lead paste chemistry and thicker and larger plates that contain more antimony than other types of batteries.
The construction of these batteries allows them to undergo deep discharge cycles that other starting batteries simply dont handle well. Thus, you can use them to start your boat engine AND power all your electronics.
The drawback to dual-purpose batteries is that they are generally more expensive than either starting or deep-cycle batteries. They also have lower power capacity than a similarly sized deep cycle battery.
However, despite the drawbacks of dual-purpose batteries, they offer an extremely valuable power solution for certain applications. If you have a small powerboat like a runabout, space is of primary concern.
Recommended Reading: Sell Your Boat Fast
The Abcs Of Marine Batteries
You need to know the differences between battery types before you can pick the right setup for your boat.
I recently received an e-mail from a reader who said that while he liked this column and looked forward to it every month, he also viewed it with trepidation because every time he finished one task he found he had more things to add to his to-do list. For his benefit and that of other harried readers I offer this column as a Christmas present. I promise it will be informational only and contain no maintenance tasks whatsoever.
The subject is marine batteries. This may not seem terribly exciting at first glance. Most of us give little thought to our batteries until they dont work. Fortunately thats rare. Marine batteries are remarkably durable and reliable, but like old soldiers, they eventually fade away. When they do, knowing some battery basics can help you pick the best replacement.
A batterys ability to crank an engine is indicated by its cold cranking amps , the amount of juice delivered at a specific temperature, usually 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Since few pleasure boats operate near freezing, CCA is valuable mainly for comparison, and most people just use the amp-hour rating. Diesel engines require batteries with more amp-hours because they have much higher compression ratios, which make them harder to crank.
This article originally appeared in the December 2014 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.
What Is The Best Marine Starting Battery
If your sole reason for buying a marine battery is to start your medium-power inboard or outboard engine, the Optima 34M BlueTop Marine Starting Battery is a trustworthy choice. It has a 100-minute reserve capacity and a CCA rating of 800 amps more than enough to start most recreational engines, even in winter.
Don’t Miss: How Long Does Banana Boat Sunscreen Last
How Much Power Do You Need
Before you assume youll need more power when adding electrical gear, why not first carry out a thorough audit of your needs. Often a deep review of the energy requirements on board can reveal possible energy savings that might even make it unnecessary to add extra capacity and the associated increase in charging capability.
Thin Plate Pure Lead And Lithium Batteries
New technologies will require new ways of thinking about your boat’s battery system. NorthStar TPPL batteries are among the most advanced AGM batteries in the world. They’re made from 99.99% pure lead that’s rolled into thin plates. Combining the pure lead’s low electrical resistance and greater surface area from more and thinner lead plates, they can accept much higher charging amperage than typical AGM batteries. Not only do they charge incredibly quickly, but they’re capable of 400 charge/discharge cycles with an amazing 80% depth of discharge.
These batteries add intriguing options for long distance cruisers. Instead of installing a 1000Ah battery bank and running your diesel for six hours, you can install a 500Ah TPPL bank and charge more frequently, but faster. Or you can forego a genset and install one or more very high-output alternatorsturning your propulsion engine into a high-output charging machine. Your diesel will run for short periods but with a high load .
Lithium/nickel/cobalt/manganese batteries, like those used in Torqeedo electric outboards, weigh less than lead acid batteries, can be discharged 800 times to 100% depth of discharge, and can be recharged in a little over an hour. They excel as battery banks in electric boats, as well as for other high-performance battery tasks.
Also Check: Hydropeptide Pro Club
Four Boat Battery Basics You Should Know
Spring is in the air , and so are the sights and sounds of boaters everywhere hauling out their rides and getting it ready for the water. Sure you know how to clean it up and make sure the motor is in good working order, but what do you know about your boats battery? Lets get back to basics before the season is in full swing.
How To Find Your Boat Battery Size Using A Clamp Meter
Asides from using the amperage to find the right size of the battery, you can measure your engine with a clamp meter. With this method, it is possible to know the amps required to start an engine.
Start by fixing the clamp meter to your starter. After checking the readings, use the measurements to find the best battery size for your engine.
Recommended Reading: Freedom Boat Club Milwaukee