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Old 19-08-2009, 17:17   #1
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House Battery

Hi Guy's/Gal's,

I have quick question, more to follow soon. I bought a 245ah 12 Volt, Group: 8D Power-tec battery this spring, I've yet to install it. Should I move it to a climate controlled area for winter? What other precautions should I take with it to maintain it's full charge? It has never been under any load. Maybe it wasn't so quick.

Thank you for your time

Jeff
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Old 19-08-2009, 18:35   #2
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Moving 8Ds are not my favorite form of exercise. Any wet cell will self-discharge somewhat which isn't good especially over the winter. If you cannot periodically put a charge on it which most of us can do when we're at the boat checking on the cover, make sure it is fully charged when you put the boat away and you'll be fine.
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Old 19-08-2009, 19:06   #3
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I agree with Illusion...moving 8D's isn't my idea of fun!

Anyway, to protect your investment you will want to keep that battery fully charged as best you can. Flooded batteries have a pretty high self-discharge rate, and can lose a lot of their charge in just a few weeks. You DO NOT want this to happen.

When lead-acid batteries are at less than a full-charge state, lead phosphate crystals (PbSO4) begin to form on the plates. Over time, these will reduce the capacity of the battery, i.e., it's ability to store and deliver energy. Some other things also can happen when a battery is stored, like stratification wherein the electrolyte begins to separate into layers so that the plates don't receive equal treatment.

Occasionally, it's also a good idea to give them an equalizing charge, i.e., a controlled over-charge using 15.5-17 volts or so for a few hours. This helps restore equilibrium amongst the cells, and helps to knock off the PbSO4 crystals. See the battery manufacturer's recommendations.

Bill
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Old 19-08-2009, 19:18   #4
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Well right now this battery is sitting on my cockpit seat. I had to carry it up a ladder and into the boat myself, I just haven't had the courage to carry it down into the cabin. So right now it's not hooked up to anything nor has it ever been. Are you suggesting that I get my electrical system setup before winter to facilitate keeping the battery in shape?

Thanks

Jeff
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Old 19-08-2009, 19:49   #5
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Jeff,

You'll certainly want some way to keep it fully charged. Small smart charger could do it. Or, if you visit frequently in winter you could do it periodically. Whatever, get a full charge into the battery ASAP and try to keep it fully charged.

Fallback position: let it die, give it a decent burial, then get some batteries which are easier on the back, like golf carts :-)

Bill
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Old 19-08-2009, 20:08   #6
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Bill,

I guess those smart chargers are smart enough to know when the battery is at 100%? I really don't want to bury it, it's brand new and was almost $500.00. That won't be an option...ohhh nooo way!!!
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Old 19-08-2009, 20:43   #7
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Yeah, they know.

Oops...was going to recommend an Iota charger, but I assume your Triton has a gas engine, right? If so, you'll want a charger which is certified for marine use with gas engines.

B.
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Old 19-08-2009, 21:25   #8
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Any recommendations or do you know a manufacturer I could look up?
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Old 19-08-2009, 21:39   #9
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Dumb Charger solution:
I just purchased a 5watt (yes, just 5W) solar panel to trickle charge a 120AH battery stored in a garage for months. The panel is set up on a window sill, and I believe it will not need a regulator since it is not powerful enough to overcharge the battery. It does not need direct sunlight, but there must be a reasonable amount of natural light coming in.

But I chose the panel with some care - it has a cell count sufficient to raise the unloaded output voltage to 19v or more. When connected to the battery (loaded), it will obviously not reach 19v. If fact, if you are concerned about overcharging, you could always experiment with it's output and insert a diode (or two or three) to get some voltage drop.

Martin
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Old 19-08-2009, 23:56   #10
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I am with Sildene on this. Trickle charge with solar. If it is not a sealed cell you willhave to monitor fluid level.

I would set the battery on a pair of 1 X 1 or 2 X 2 boards. It may be an old wives tale but it is one I endorse to not let batteries sit flat on metal shelves or cement floors long term.
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Old 22-08-2009, 21:52   #11
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Ensure that the battery is not exposed to sub-freezing temperatures and that it starts its storage period fully charged. If the battery is off the boat, periodically check its state of charge using a DMM and recharge with an automotive battery charger. Do not worry about insulating the battery from metal shelves or concrete floors...those truly are now urban legend from the time when battery cases were made of porous rubber based compounds.

Charie
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