Moderated Discussion Areas
ContinuousWave: Small Boat Electrical
Battery Charge Duration
|Author||Topic: Battery Charge Duration|
posted 09-15-2006 06:47 PM ET (US)
I am the new owner of an old 13-foot Boston Whaler boat. How long should a newish battery hold its charge if boat is only taken out every couple of weeks? Should the battery terminals be disconnected when not in use? I'm new [at] this (: Thanks for your comments. marysol
posted 09-15-2006 07:47 PM ET (US)
Welcome to another 13'er. The battery I have get used maybe every three months at most and I do not disconnect the terminals although my lighting system has the fuse removed just to prevent that mistake from happening. Again. I don't think the life of the battery has suffered as I replace it at about five years anyway as a precaution.
posted 09-15-2006 11:30 PM ET (US)
congratulations. You should not have to disconnect the battery every time unless you feel comfortable doing that. To make life easier, you might consider a battery disconnect switch. Cole-Hersee, Hella, and the like. This has the same action as the cable removal as long as you don,t have anything connected directly to your battery. Since you haul your boat after every use (weekends I imagine) you needn't worry about a direct connection of a bilge pump.
good luck and again..... congratulations.....
posted 09-16-2006 08:32 AM ET (US)
Consider using a 'Battery Tender'. This is a high tech trickle charger which monitors the battery during periods of disuse and keeps the battery condition optimal.
posted 09-16-2006 09:11 AM ET (US)
[Moved to SMALL BOAT ELECTRICAL.]
All batteries have a small self-discharge current. There may also be small parasitic currents in your boat electrical system which will discharge the battery when the boat is not in use. A battery disconnect switch can be installed for a modest cost. This will allow the battery to be isolated from all loads when the boat is not being used.
A fully-charged battery will easily hold its charge for two week intervals between use.
posted 09-19-2006 06:52 PM ET (US)
If you are going to use the boat even less frequently, you may consider an AGM battery, such as OPTIMA -- these batteries lose their charge extremely slowly (see their website for the facts, but it's literally over a year on a fully charged, healthy battery)
I have 2 in my OR18 and due to an ongoing re-power project my boat hasn't been in the water for 3 months (ouch). plugged them in the other day and they both read at 94% charge.
posted 09-19-2006 07:44 PM ET (US)
I have a Lifeline AGM as one of two batteries in my Outrage 22 and it just keeps running and running...
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