I am soliciting your help with a problem I am having with my Sterling Pro Charger
Ultra that is about 3 years old. It is a 60 amp 12VDC unit. The unit works in Ďopen-flooded-lead acidí mode and does a fine job of keeping my 6 12V batteries
charged. My house bank consists of 3 group 31 batteries
in parallel with 2 group 27 batteries. (I plan to replace them with 5 matched cells in the very near future.) A single
group 27 start battery
is used to start the auxiliary engine
. All the batteries are open lead acid and are about 3 or 4 years old and have lost
significant capacity. The batteries are probably heavily sulfated since I have never equalized them. The batteries, when topped up and being floated typically accept about 0.3 amps of current
. There are no abnormally hot cells to make me suspect internal shorts. The batteries are mounted in the engine
room of my boat
which is kept in Florida
. It is no surprise that they are in need of replacing. During the past 10 years Iíve typically had to replace the batteries every 3 years or so; again, not surprising.
Now for the problem: I canít get the charger
into de-sulfate mode. When I follow the instructions in the manual, partially inserted below, I cannot get the charger out of open lead-acid mode and into de-sulfate mode. The manual says that if I hold the setup button for 10 secs or more, LED lights
will start to flash, enabling me to toggle the de-sulfate LED light so that it too lights up and starts to flash. Once the de-sulfate LED is flashing, pressing the up and down arrows simultaneously should cause the de-sulfate LED to go solid which would indicate that the charger is in de-sulfate mode. I cannot get the LED lights
to flash no matter how long I hold down the setup button. What am I doing wrong? Has anyone else had this problem? I donít want to buy 6 matched cells if I canít break them in by equalizing them first. By following Maine Sails
advice (aka RC) and equalizing my new batteries once a month, I hope to get an extra year or two out of new matched batteries.
Help would be greatly appreciated.