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Old 13-07-2009, 14:14   #1
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Electric Gauge at Pedestal

Not sure if I'm in the right area but here goes.

I have 2-4D batteries that always stay charged via a Xantrex on my Catalina 320. At the pedestal there are water temp, fuel, and battery gauges. Is it normal when running the engine that the battery gauge is pegged all the way to the right, way past the 16 amp mark? Is it a good thing, bad thing, or does it matter? The battery monitor down below is usually 13-14amps although when the engine is running and if battery 1 is on, its readout is higher than the one not in use. It has always done this.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 13-07-2009, 21:52   #2
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Probably just a cheap guage. It is more of a device that's just saying the alternator is working.
I would go with the Xantrex provided that the shunt is correctly wired.
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Old 13-07-2009, 22:30   #3
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I am guessing you mean 16 Volts and 13 - 14 Volts and I would suspect the gauge at the pedestal is faulty (ie cheap).
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Old 14-07-2009, 07:25   #4
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I am guessing you mean 16 Volts and 13 - 14 Volts and I would suspect the gauge at the pedestal is faulty (ie cheap).

Yep. I meant volts of course. Thanks
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Old 15-07-2009, 08:39   #5
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And I could have sworn it did the same thing on my old Columbia 30. What should the gauge read at the wheel? The actual voltage of the battery I'm using? If it's there only to indicate that the alternator is working, is pegged to the right an indication of a working alternator? This gauge was stock with the boat (that doesn't mean it's not cheap).
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Old 15-07-2009, 09:23   #6
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Those types of guages (on the instrument panel) are not meant to be as precise as a mulitmeter, that is what we mean by "cheap", they are more of an indicator. What you should be intersted in is if there is change in the reading. A change in the reading would indicate a problem. The same goes for the oil pressure. The obseved reading may be high or low, it dosn't matter, if it suddenly goes high or low would signal a problem.

The voltage at the batteries when they are fully charged and the engine is runnng should be around 13.95 to 14.25. It all depends on the regulator you have.
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