Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 01-11-2011, 17:23   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: San Diego, currently in Greece
Boat: Hallberg-Rassy 40
Posts: 357
Images: 4
Gas from Batteries / Carbon Monoxide Detector

Help....
We have been cruising the past 3 months and for the first time we are connected to shore power. So, wanting toasted bagels we got out the toaster and I took the smoke detector/carbon monoxide detector off the wall to avoid having the toaster setting off the alarm. And I put it back in the aft cabin.
Within a few minutes the carbon monoxide alarm was going off. No engines running and nothing I could think about that would cause carbon monoxide, but I called a plumber anyway. He came out with his good Carbon Monoxide detector and it went into the highest levels (almost 1000 ppm, when 30 ppm is considered the high safe limit.)
A little tracing and we found it was coming from the batteries. We have Trojan 105 lead acid batteries. It registers high when the batteries are charging and when they are not charging (but had been charged in the past 12 hours.)
Checking today I see our charger is not working correctly, but staying on absorbtion and putting in 14.5 volts even when the batteries are 100%. It isn't going to float.
So, is that the problem? Even though the plumbing guy said the detector only senses carbon monoxide I have to guess that it also somehow measures Hydrogen? Or can batteries produce other gases?
I went to another boat also with trojan batteries and used the professional detector and his gave a low 20 ppm.
Do you think this problem will go away when I get the charger fixed so it does not overcharge the batteries. Or can there be another problem?
For now we have moved to the foreward cabin.

Any other ideas or comments? Thank you very much...sorry for the long rambling message.
__________________

jim_thomsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2011, 17:33   #2
Registered User
 
Astrid's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Northern British Columbia, part of the time in Prince Rupert and part of the time on Moresby Island.
Boat: 50-ft steel Ketch
Posts: 1,885
Send a message via MSN to Astrid Send a message via Yahoo to Astrid
Re: Gas from batteries/carbon monoxide detector

If you had a MOS (Metal Oxide Semiconductor Sensor) type CO detector, it would pick up other gases as well such as chlorine and probably hydrogen. These are becoming quite popular since they are useful for detecting more than just CO.

I should think getting the over charging problem fixed may cure the CO detector problem. At any rate, fixing your charging system should be of first priority as over charging batteries is very hard on their life expectancy.
__________________

__________________
'Tis evening on the moorland free,The starlit wave is still: Home is the sailor from the sea, The hunter from the hill.
Astrid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2011, 17:42   #3
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 1,205
Re: Gas from batteries/carbon monoxide detector

Quote:
Originally Posted by jim_thomsen View Post
Help....
We have been cruising the past 3 months and for the first time we are connected to shore power. So, wanting toasted bagels we got out the toaster and I took the smoke detector/carbon monoxide detector off the wall to avoid having the toaster setting off the alarm. And I put it back in the aft cabin.
Within a few minutes the carbon monoxide alarm was going off. No engines running and nothing I could think about that would cause carbon monoxide, but I called a plumber anyway. He came out with his good Carbon Monoxide detector and it went into the highest levels (almost 1000 ppm, when 30 ppm is considered the high safe limit.)
A little tracing and we found it was coming from the batteries. We have Trojan 105 lead acid batteries. It registers high when the batteries are charging and when they are not charging (but had been charged in the past 12 hours.)
Checking today I see our charger is not working correctly, but staying on absorbtion and putting in 14.5 volts even when the batteries are 100%. It isn't going to float.
So, is that the problem? Even though the plumbing guy said the detector only senses carbon monoxide I have to guess that it also somehow measures Hydrogen? Or can batteries produce other gases?
I went to another boat also with trojan batteries and used the professional detector and his gave a low 20 ppm.
Do you think this problem will go away when I get the charger fixed so it does not overcharge the batteries. Or can there be another problem?
For now we have moved to the foreward cabin.

Any other ideas or comments? Thank you very much...sorry for the long rambling message.
Yes, at least many will.

Where and how are you bats installed, are they in boxes?

After you fix/replace the charger. Make sure you vent the battery boxes to the outside.

I have mine setup to turn an exhaust fan on when ever the voltage rises above 14.3 V.

Lloyd
__________________
FlyingCloud1937 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2011, 17:52   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: San Diego, currently in Greece
Boat: Hallberg-Rassy 40
Posts: 357
Images: 4
Re: Gas from batteries/carbon monoxide detector

Hi Lloyd,
The batteries are in a good box and there are 2 vent hoses, from the top of each end of the box (6 trojan 105 batteries, plus starter battery).

Using the detector I see where some gas is coming out of a lower seem so I plan to remove the batteries and fiberglass the inside of the box. I was thinking it may be good to install a fan too. The idea of having it come on at 14.3 volts sounds like a good idea. Do you think it is better to have the fan as an exhaust fan or should it blow into the box (as Nigel Calder recommends)?

Thanks for the information Astrid. Maybe I see if the manufacturer of the detector says what type of sensor it is. (Actually I having fun looking, after 3 months without internet.)

Thanks again for the information.
jim_thomsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2011, 18:00   #5
CF Adviser
Moderator Emeritus
 
Hud3's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Virginia
Boat: Island Packet 380, now sold
Posts: 8,929
Images: 49
Re: Gas from batteries/carbon monoxide detector

Hi, Jim.

Well, you're not dead, so it must not have been CO!

Just kidding!

Good to see you posting again. Congrats on getting to NZ. Love your pics on your blog. Best regards to Katie.
__________________
Hud
Hud3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2011, 18:30   #6
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 1,205
Re: Gas from batteries/carbon monoxide detector

Quote:
Originally Posted by jim_thomsen View Post
Hi Lloyd,
The batteries are in a good box and there are 2 vent hoses, from the top of each end of the box (6 trojan 105 batteries, plus starter battery).

Using the detector I see where some gas is coming out of a lower seem so I plan to remove the batteries and fiberglass the inside of the box. I was thinking it may be good to install a fan too. The idea of having it come on at 14.3 volts sounds like a good idea. Do you think it is better to have the fan as an exhaust fan or should it blow into the box (as Nigel Calder recommends)?

Thanks for the information Astrid. Maybe I see if the manufacturer of the detector says what type of sensor it is. (Actually I having fun looking, after 3 months without internet.)

Thanks again for the information.
I use an Atwood explosion proof, as a suction side. You also need to provide make-up air.

If you install it as a blower, then you have to have a complete air tight enclosure.

If you have it on the suction side you wont need to seal up the box/lid air tight.

Lloyd
__________________

__________________
FlyingCloud1937 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
batteries

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New Batteries, Second Alternator or New Chargers ? Hugh Walker Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 20 21-10-2011 12:35
Killed Batteries ? Dockhead Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 31 27-08-2011 05:14
For Sale: Fireboy Xintex Carbon Monoxide Detector (12vdc) arjand Classifieds Archive 0 19-07-2011 15:34
Voltage drop under load, amps read 99% ?? VVD Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 25 28-06-2011 16:25



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 17:40.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.