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Old 16-05-2016, 19:36   #16
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

Another vote for a problem with the wiring. A bilge pump shouldn't cause this. Check the battery terminals, all the grounds and the cables feeding the electrical panel.

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Old 16-05-2016, 20:54   #17
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

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When the water pump, bilge, windlass or anything else kicks in on the boat, cabin lights flicker for a moment. Is there a way (perhaps by isolating the lights somehow) to eliminate this problem?


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I would start testing and probing for a dirty connection and look for voltage drop at connections and check wiring and corrosion.
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Old 16-05-2016, 21:50   #18
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

Look real close at the ground connections. if all those loads are affecting you, I'd suspect one of the main ground connections, possibly on the engine block.
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Old 18-05-2016, 21:20   #19
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

I hope its the lights. Yes, I have LEDs and they are high quality but I dont have a regulator with them so that may be why, I'll lookingo it one day.

...and for those of you who suggest I look into wiring, what should I look for?


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Old 19-05-2016, 00:01   #20
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

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Yes, I have LEDs and they are high quality but I don't have a regulator with them so that may be why....
Good quality Led's will handle a large voltage range - typically 10 to 30 volts. A regulator should never be needed.
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Old 19-05-2016, 10:38   #21
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

I believe what you are seeing is just that the LEDs don't have any residual light when the voltage dips momentarily. I'll bet you could parallel the LEDs with a small capacitor. Maybe someone with a more current education could help you on a value.
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Old 20-05-2016, 19:16   #22
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

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I believe what you are seeing is just that the LEDs don't have any residual light when the voltage dips momentarily. I'll bet you could parallel the LEDs with a small capacitor. Maybe someone with a more current education could help you on a value.

I could try a capacitor! What size?

The flickering light issue is annoying and I'm pretty sure it is because of LEDs, as I have over 200 Ah of deep cycle house battery on board and the lights flicker even for a tiny 300 gph bilge pump!

Thank you all for all the help!


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Old 20-05-2016, 19:31   #23
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

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Originally Posted by hd002e View Post
I hope its the lights. Yes, I have LEDs and they are high quality but I dont have a regulator with them so that may be why, I'll lookingo it one day.

...and for those of you who suggest I look into wiring, what should I look for?
Look for loose connections, corroded connections, broken wires or partially broken wires. Don't forget the ground side. You need to start at the main ground, usually on the engine block, follow that through whatever connections all the way to your electric panel. Do the same with the positive side.

Rule #1 of fixing stuff, always try the obvious and easy stuff first. I would bet 75% that it's a wiring problem. With 200 amp hour battery that is in a reasonable state of charge a normal sized bilge pump will NOT pull enough power from your system to drop the voltage enough to cause problems with other loads. Now if you have really cheap, funky LEDs then maybe something weird is going on but even that seems like a low probability.

So before you go spending money and time on capacitors, regulators or whiz-bang whatzits check the wires. Don't forget sometimes it isn't obvious just glancing at them. You may have to pull and wiggle, loosen and tighten.

OR, if you know how to use a volt meter then test at various points in the system as you cycle the pump on and off and see if you find a noticeable voltage drop somewhere.
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Old 21-05-2016, 11:52   #24
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Re: How to keep lights isolated

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Originally Posted by hd002e View Post
I could try a capacitor! What size?

The flickering light issue is annoying and I'm pretty sure it is because of LEDs, as I have over 200 Ah of deep cycle house battery on board and the lights flicker even for a tiny 300 gph bilge pump!

Thank you all for all the help!


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From that I would look at how you are wired. It would seem you have an inadequate wire size between your battery and the feed to the lights and pump.
Possibly one feeding a bus to a panel both are fed from?
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