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Old 31-03-2020, 02:47   #1
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New battery charger needed

Looking for a recommendation for a marine battery charger.
Extra karma points for recommendations of a charger that can both charge and maintain. Portable (so my dad could use it for his boat) and waterproof option preferable. 10-12A.
Gents, what do you have?
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Old 31-03-2020, 06:28   #2
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Re: New battery charger needed

An Amazon or Walmart smart charger for about $60 is all you need. They can be left on 24/7 to maintain charge or re-charge automatically when power is used.
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Old 31-03-2020, 06:33   #3
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Re: New battery charger needed

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Originally Posted by YANDINA View Post
An Amazon or Walmart smart charger for about $60 is all you need. They can be left on 24/7 to maintain charge or re-charge automatically when power is used.
I agree just make sure it's isolated. There's a simple test you can do with a multimeter I can't remember how you do it but you're basically checking to see if there's continuity through the plug and the alligator clips I'm sure you can easily find how to do it - Google. Otherwise there can be AC flowing through your ground if your battery is grounded. Also it would be best to remove the alligator clips on the charger and put connectors that can slip under butterfly nuts.
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Old 31-03-2020, 07:04   #4
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Re: New battery charger needed

If you are at all interested in ABYC Standards you will not use a portable charger as these are designed for automobiles which don't typicalyl sit in water while connected to shore power.

The automotive type chargers do not have the AC and DC sides isolated and none of them carry the UL Marine certification. If your boat is wired properly this means you could leak AC into your DC system.

Your insurance company will most definitely take issue.
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Old 31-03-2020, 08:38   #5
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Re: New battery charger needed

I've been using the West Marine 15A portable charger for a couple of years now and I like several things about it: cord management, battery-reconditioning function, automatic float charge. I've not used its alternator-check function.
https://www.westmarine.com/buy/west-...45?recordNum=8
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Old 31-03-2020, 09:29   #6
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Re: New battery charger needed

How about either of these from Victron:

https://www.victronenergy.com/charge...e-ip65-charger

https://www.victronenergy.com/charge...t-ip65-charger


Allan.
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Old 31-03-2020, 09:48   #7
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Re: New battery charger needed

Victron are one of the best.
Another choice is for CTEK (Sweden) als to quality.
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Old 31-03-2020, 16:41   #8
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Re: New battery charger needed

I'll second (or third) the Victron recommendation, but mention that perhaps the IP67 version would be a little better than the IP65 for your application:

https://www.victronenergy.com/charge...ger-waterproof

I didn't see you mention the battery nominal voltage, but the IP67 chargers are available in up to 12v/25A or 24v/12A, and a range in between... also available in US 120 or a variety of 230 plug configurations.
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Old 01-04-2020, 19:09   #9
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Re: New battery charger needed

Do you see anywhere that says how large of a battery bank that the Victron charger you linked will charge?
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Old 01-04-2020, 20:20   #10
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Re: New battery charger needed

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Do you see anywhere that says how large of a battery bank that the Victron charger you linked will charge?
A good rule of thumb is the battery bank capacity can be 5-10 times the maximum charger output, depending on how fast you want the bank to be charged. So a 25A charger would be good for a battery bank from 110 to 250 AmpHour.


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Old 02-04-2020, 08:56   #11
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Re: New battery charger needed

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A good rule of thumb is the battery bank capacity can be 5-10 times the maximum charger output, depending on how fast you want the bank to be charged. So a 25A charger would be good for a battery bank from 110 to 250 AmpHour.


Allan.
Agreed! It's not necessarily that you couldn't use it on a larger bank, but my concern would be that the charger would likely get hot and derate if it had to spend more than 8 hours in bulk charging... Of course, if you're just topping up a moderately depleted bank, that's not so much of a concern.

That being said, these are "infinitely parallel-able" so you could technically connect multiples to a large bank to achieve your target charge rate; the cost starts adding up quickly though - at that point it's usually more cost-effective to go to a dedicated high-current charger, but then you also lose the portability factor, so... eh. Sort of have to weigh the pros and cons there based on your particular use-case.
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Old 23-04-2020, 23:53   #12
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Re: New battery charger needed

Thanks for your feedback, gents.
And sorry for the late reply, it's been a crazy month for our family so I had to give up my boating hobby for a while.

And it seems like we have a winner!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ayates View Post
How about either of these from Victron
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riddle View Post
Victron are one of the best.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Cook View Post
I'll second (or third) the Victron recommendation, but mention that perhaps the IP67 version would be a little better than the IP65 for your application.
I was thinking about Noco at first (something like Noco Gen-2D or even Gen-4), but in the end it seems to me that Victron is a more interesting option. So I'm waiting for Blue Smart IP67 to arrive. I really like that it has a battery control since I've been thinking about this option lately - to know how much we are using, and how much is left. My father's batteries are pretty old, so this should be extremely handy.
So thanks again for recommendations!
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Old 24-04-2020, 08:58   #13
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Re: New battery charger needed

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Originally Posted by j_morrison View Post
Thanks for your feedback, gents.
And sorry for the late reply, it's been a crazy month for our family so I had to give up my boating hobby for a while.

And it seems like we have a winner!







I was thinking about Noco at first (something like Noco Gen-2D or even Gen-4), but in the end it seems to me that Victron is a more interesting option. So I'm waiting for Blue Smart IP67 to arrive. I really like that it has a battery control since I've been thinking about this option lately - to know how much we are using, and how much is left. My father's batteries are pretty old, so this should be extremely handy.
So thanks again for recommendations!
I hate to disillusion you, but better earlier than later I suppose: No chargers have a real battery monitor built-in... yes, when the Victron is plugged in to shore power it will tell you (through the VictronConnect app) what your battery voltage is and how much current the charger is supplying to the batteries, but it won't tell you how much current your various loads might be using or how much of your capacity is left - that would be an SOC calculation, and only a shunt-based battery monitor can do that, because all current into and out of the batteries needs to be measured, and the only way of reliably measuring that is with an inline shunt. A charger can only see what *it* is doing, not the capacity of the batteries or how much current is being consumed by any loads.

Victron still takes the prize in terms of accurate battery monitors - the BMV-712 is the most popular, though if you don't need a dedicated display, the SmartShunt is a viable option (though be advised that, after the first shipment to the US was sold out very quickly, the SmartShunt won't be readily available again until likely sometime in June).
Balmar's SG200 is also a reasonably accurate monitor, and has some cool features... but I've been running one against a BMV-712 on my test bench for a little over 6 months now, and although the Balmar is easier to set up initially, it also costs more and is significantly less precise than a properly programmed BMV-712, so... eh... Victron still wins on that one, as far as I can tell. Balmar's customizable color display is pretty cool, but at the end of the day I'm not sure that's worth the added expense and lower accuracy.

Regardless, the Victron charger will do well for you, I just thought you should be prepared for the disappointment if you expected it to give you SOC readings.

Cheers!
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