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Old 05-04-2008, 17:23   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Florida Keys
Boat: Pearson 33-2 "Anna-O"
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Xantrex Battery Monitor Installation Questions

Maybe someone out there has some insight on the installation do's and don'ts..............

Concerning the Xantrex Battery Monitor, the installation instructions

(which can be viewed at )

show two positive runs, one is voltage sensing and the other positive is supply for the monitor itself. The other run is the interruption of the negative with a shunt and three wires back to the unit; one for the negative for supply to the unit itself and the other two for the current sensing on the load side and the current sensing on the line negative.

So, here is my situation. My house batteries are aft and the battery switch (the switch is a dual circuit switch from Blue Sea) has been moved forward and up to a convenient location at the nav station. The start battery is in a different location and only sees the house bank when charging reaches 13.5V and then a combiner kicks in. The two banks share a ground via the ground achieved at the motor block. Otherwise a separate negative wire has been run to a distribution block at the nav station where the battery switch is at and the house loads start.

Is there any reason the battery monitor switch would not work properly if I start all the connections at the battery switch? I could get my hot for the switch to function off the line in side of the switch and the hot for the sense at that point also. As far as the negative shunt couldn't I install that at the negative before it hit the distribution block at the nav station? (making all my necessary sensing joints at the shunt then connecting back to the negative distribution block)

Anyone who has the time to comment or make suggestions would be appreciated. If I need to clarify anything I have written down here or if I omitted any pertinent information let me know.............


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lifefloat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 20:02   #2

Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 4,525
There is really only one golden rule with these monitors, and that is that ALL current you want to monitor (including charging currents!) must go through that shunt on the negative side.

The way you are talking about wiring it, would your charging currents be going through the shunt? If not it will not be able to work and will end up continually counting downward in AH used.

Also, would there ever be an interruption to the unit as you switch the battery switch? These units like clean, specific startup and operational currents (for their own power). They don't like interruptions in their power sources. Would using your battery switch cause any interruption in the unit's power source?

Lastly, you typically don't have to worry about tracking your starting battery at all. The monitors are mostly used for house bank monitoring.

But... to really ensure an accurate calculation of your AH usage, I'd just follow the directions to a "t." Don't forget to use a twisted pair for the current sensors. Very important. (you can just twist up a couple of regular wires by putting one end on a drill and the other on some fixed object, as we used to do in our NASA days)
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