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Old 13-08-2019, 17:48   #1
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Keeping the starting battery charged

Does anyone have a suggestion for keeping my starting battery charged, using my house bank? I find that if I don't use it for a while it goes dead.
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Old 13-08-2019, 18:02   #2
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

It isn't elegant, but we have a three bank 220v-> 12v battery charger run off our inverter to keep the auxillary starting battery, the genset starting battery and 12v communications battery topped off.
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Old 13-08-2019, 20:59   #3
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

It is good that all your charge sources go directly to House, since keeping Starter topped up is trivial in comparison.

But very strange that was never taken care of?

There are dozens of ACR/VSR/combiner gadgets that will do the job, which is, close a switch between the Starter circuit and House, whenever a charge source brings voltage above a certain setpoint. When voltage is lower, open/isolate.

You don't need high ampacity, or two-way sensing etc.

Xantrex Echo Charger is a reliable but inexpensive example, also look at Blue Sea's ACRs.
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Old 13-08-2019, 23:21   #4
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

KISS


If you have a 1-2-B switch, put it on B ONLY WHEN CHARGING SOURCES ARE PRESENT.
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Old 13-08-2019, 23:44   #5
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

I've had very good performance from an Echo Charger... it being automatic, does not rely upon unreliable me to throw any swithces. Worth the price to me!

Jim
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Old 14-08-2019, 00:03   #6
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

Echo charger.
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Old 14-08-2019, 05:00   #7
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

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Originally Posted by CaptWho View Post
Does anyone have a suggestion for keeping my starting battery charged, using my house bank? I find that if I don't use it for a while it goes dead.

How long is "a while?"

Might be a sign your battery needs replacing anyway.

FWIW, an AGM makes a decent start battery since they don't self-discharge much over time... if that could be compatible with the rest of your system.

-Chris
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Old 14-08-2019, 05:48   #8
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

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Originally Posted by john61ct View Post
It is good that all your charge sources go directly to House, since keeping Starter topped up is trivial in comparison.

But very strange that was never taken care of?

There are dozens of ACR/VSR/combiner gadgets that will do the job, which is, close a switch between the Starter circuit and House, whenever a charge source brings voltage above a certain setpoint. When voltage is lower, open/isolate.

You don't need high ampacity, or two-way sensing etc.

Xantrex Echo Charger is a reliable but inexpensive example, also look at Blue Sea's ACRs.
We use an ACR to jointly charge our Windlass/Thruster bank with our house bank. Unfortunately, this strategy does not work for our starter and communication batteries as those are only 12V (vs 24V for the house & windlass/thruster). If your banks to be charged are all the same voltage, these products (xantrex echo, Blue Sea ACR) are a great solution.
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Old 14-08-2019, 05:51   #9
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

Automatic Charging Relays ➥ https://www.bluesea.com/products/cat...harging_Relays

ACR ➥ https://www.bluesea.com/support/arti...harging_Relays

Echo-Charge ➥ Battery Chargers | Auxiliary Battery Charger | Xantrex

See also ➥ Xantrex Echo-Charge vs Blue Sea ACR
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Old 14-08-2019, 08:48   #10
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

At different voltages then DC-DC / B2B chargers come into the picture, more expensive.

A simple / cheap DC converter will do, but needs manual babysitting like the 1-2-B switch approach, too easy to screw up if you are forgetful like me.
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Old 14-08-2019, 08:50   #11
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

cross-reference Too many batteries
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Old 14-08-2019, 09:15   #12
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

What are ACRs, Combiners & Echo Chargers? (by Maine Sail) [scroll to the top]
http://forums.catalina.sailboatowner...d.php?p=742417 and http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,9....html#msg70131

Making Sense of Automatic Charging Relays (2019)
https://marinehowto.com/automatic-charging-relays/


These links come from this thread:
Electrical Systems 101 http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,5977.0.html
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Old 14-08-2019, 09:28   #13
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

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Originally Posted by ranger42c View Post
How long is "a while?"

Might be a sign your battery needs replacing anyway.

-Chris
I'd suspect the battery also unless it has a drain you are unaware of. I've got an old pick-up only gets started every 4-6 weeks, when I got tired of jumping it a new battery retired the jumper cables.
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Old 14-08-2019, 09:34   #14
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

Echo charger. Itís foolproof and automatic.
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Old 14-08-2019, 09:38   #15
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Re: Keeping the starting battery charged

I use Balmar’s Digital Duo Charge. Very happy with it charging start bank from house bank when charging voltage is sensed by this unit. Automatically starts and shuts down if charging voltage is not present.
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