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Old 03-06-2006, 07:20   #1
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Battery charger to replace battery?

I saw a case where someone was living at a marina and had all 12V lights, pumps etc. but no 110V equipment on his boat. He had simply disconnected his batteries and wired in a cheap battery charger in their place. When the bilge pump switch turned on or he turned on a 12V light the battery charger would click on and provide power. The idea had worked for him apparently for years. Are there any hidden/dangerous aspects to doing this.
I wouldn't want to sugest this idea to anyone unless it was safe.
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Old 03-06-2006, 13:22   #2
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You can use your battery charger as a power supply if it is so rated. If you look at the specs for the better, higher priced units you can determine that. However, if you use a standard cheap charger and you have 12 volt lights you will most likely be spending more on bulbs than you would like. Quartz-halogen bulbs don't like power over 12 volts.

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Old 03-06-2006, 14:31   #3
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Plus, you can't call this guy a sailor. He obviousely doesn't leave the dock.
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Old 04-06-2006, 02:20   #4
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Rather than disconnect your cruising batteries, and run directly off a battery charger/power supply, I’d install a cheap “throw-away” buffer battery. Remember to maintain your cruising batteries, while they are disconnected.

Of course, you won’t be totally independent of 120VAC - your charger requires shore power. The shore power supply should be a GFCI protected outlet, with both primary (120V) & secondary (12V) fuses installed at the charger.
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Old 04-06-2006, 05:45   #5
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I don't see any problem of usuing a 12v system with a 110 charger as the charging source... as opposed to a ???? alternator, solar panels or a wind generator. Of course, you will "use up" the batteries as they become sulfated etc... but this will always be true and it is more likely that with a charger attached (a smart one) it wil main tain the batteries without letting them get deeply discharged.

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Old 22-07-2006, 19:11   #6
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I'd think there are two issues one would need to be aware of. First a battery is an OUTSTANDING capacitor. It will smooth out many irregularities in the voltage. It makes a decent surge protector. The second is a battery makes a GREAT Uninteruptable Power Supply. But lights, not a problem. Computers and other devices that may have been adapted for DC use might be problematic on an inexpensive charger.
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