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Old 05-01-2016, 15:24   #1
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How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

I have a DST-800, which outputs depth, temp, waterspeed, and voyage log. But I think I accidentally left it on when I left my boat, and I wont' be back down for a few weeks. If I really did leave it on, is this a cause for concern? Should I try to phone a friend to swing by to turn it off? I'm not sure if the echo sensor crystal deal has an hourly lifespan.

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Old 05-01-2016, 15:32   #2
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

Relax. Have a rum. You can leave it on forever. Your batteries, however, are another matter.....

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Old 05-01-2016, 15:54   #3
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

I agree with Dave. If the boat's in the water there's nothing to worry about except your batteries staying charged.
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Old 05-01-2016, 16:03   #4
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

What's the situation if the boat is out of the water? I sometimes run my instruments for a while when working on them during the winter.....

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Old 05-01-2016, 16:11   #5
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

Just as long you're not working on the bottom, around the transducer, and want to have children.......
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Old 05-01-2016, 18:51   #6
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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Originally Posted by AedanC View Post
What's the situation if the boat is out of the water? I sometimes run my instruments for a while when working on them during the winter.....
I've heard that out of the water, the transducer can get hot enough to cause problems. That said, I've run mine that way for a few minutes at a time with no issues. Perhaps this is only a problem for the high-power sonar as is often used on fishing boats?
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Old 05-01-2016, 21:18   #7
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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Just as long you're not working on the bottom, around the transducer, and want to have children.......
Can't tell if you are serious... if not, then ho,ho. If you are, you are a bit off base: no such hazard exists.

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Old 06-01-2016, 10:04   #8
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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Originally Posted by MatthewDurst View Post
I have a DST-800, which outputs depth, temp, waterspeed, and voyage log. But I think I accidentally left it on when I left my boat, and I wont' be back down for a few weeks. If I really did leave it on, is this a cause for concern? Should I try to phone a friend to swing by to turn it off? I'm not sure if the echo sensor crystal deal has an hourly lifespan.

Thanks.
Mines been on for 7 years
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:11   #9
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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I've heard that out of the water, the transducer can get hot enough to cause problems. That said, I've run mine that way for a few minutes at a time with no issues. Perhaps this is only a problem for the high-power sonar as is often used on fishing boats?
I have heard the same thing. No idea though.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:18   #10
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

if you really think it could be a problem, I do not, call to manufacturer. They are the experts. Strangers like me are not. You can ask Cruisers about less serious subjects like brain surgery.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:24   #11
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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Mines been on for 7 years

I think this is your answer.
I'd even go so far as many believe electronics without moving parts, will last longer if they are on continuously and not cycled
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:51   #12
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

Mine have been on for... about 12 years. In-water and laid-up Oct through May. Rarely power-cycled unless I'm working on something and have to switch off batteries or breaker. No problems thus far, though when it gets real cold, the depthsounder starts giving a reading even through air (which is even accurate after accounting for the difference in speed of sound in air vs water).

For the record, I'm not looking for depth, rather wind speed and direction (keeping tabs on my winter cover) and cabin temp (with the transducer pulled and sitting on the floor)... currently -4.4C inside her, and that's because it's mild outside today.

Never noticed the transducer getting warm either; it's a Raymarine ST60 Tridata, not one of the fancy high-power ones. If you're standing close by the transducer you can hear a slight ticking. Just audio bursts, nothing dangerous there.
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Old 06-01-2016, 11:12   #13
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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If you're standing close by the transducer you can hear a slight ticking. Just audio bursts, nothing dangerous there.
One or two of the dive boats I've dove off of had depth finders that are really annoying, sounds all the world like a spark plug arc kind of snap, maybe twice a second. I was surprised you could hear the things.
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Old 06-01-2016, 11:32   #14
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

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Originally Posted by Redline452 View Post
Mine have been on for... about 12 years. In-water and laid-up Oct through May. Rarely power-cycled unless I'm working on something and have to switch off batteries or breaker. No problems thus far, though when it gets real cold, the depthsounder starts giving a reading even through air (which is even accurate after accounting for the difference in speed of sound in air vs water).

For the record, I'm not looking for depth, rather wind speed and direction (keeping tabs on my winter cover) and cabin temp (with the transducer pulled and sitting on the floor)... currently -4.4C inside her, and that's because it's mild outside today.

Never noticed the transducer getting warm either; it's a Raymarine ST60 Tridata, not one of the fancy high-power ones. If you're standing close by the transducer you can hear a slight ticking. Just audio bursts, nothing dangerous there.
Wait so you use the water temperature sensor on it to measure your cabin air temperature? hahaha, that's quite clever!

And for the record, it is actually off. But it's good to know that I can leave it on and sleep well (so long as it's plugged in to shore power...).
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Old 06-01-2016, 12:05   #15
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Re: How long can you leave a depth sounder on?

It will drain the battery unless the battery is charged in a way.

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