On Board Battery Chargers

Discussion in 'Boating & Boat Maintenance' started by frenchman, May 12, 2010.

  1. frenchman

    frenchman Well-Known Member

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    I'm getting tired of forgetting to charge my trolling motor battery and having it dead when I go fishing. Just thinking about getting a on board charger that to make things easier to plug in. Is there one charger that is better than another? I just have a 12v system. Thanks.
     
  2. ol dirty basser

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    I don't know that much about them, but I'm guessing you will be needing a 12v 2-bank charger. The more amps per bank, the faster it will charge.

    I have one that fits that description, it's a ProMite (by Pro Mariner) 5 amp X 2. I don't have any experience with other chargers, but that one has been fine. I have no complaints. And I picked it up for only $80 or so at BPS.

    You probably know this, but I'm gonna say it anyway because you mentioned "forgetting to charge your batteries". The onboard chargers don't charge while you're running (off your alternator), they are just chargers that stay in your boat so you can just run an extension cord out to your boat to charge, and leave it plugged in (or disconnect when it's done). Maybe you just meant you were forgetting because you had to charge two batteries. In that case, the onboard charger is nice because you just plug in one thing and it's good to go.

    Don't take that the wrong way, I actually thought they charged off the alternator until I did some research.
     
  3. frenchman

    frenchman Well-Known Member

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    I thought the same thing too. Having one that charges while I'm running would be ideal but just looking to get the one that you just plug in. I'll take a look at the one you got, thanks.
     
  4. gofish

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    I've added on-board chargers to both boats I've owned and both times I went with pro-pak(now known as Genius) chargers. I went with them because of other recommendations I got when researching them. The chargers I've owned were 3 and 4 bank and they have both worked well. The on-board charger is one of the best additions you can make to your boat and it makes life a lot easier.
     
  5. ol dirty basser

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    From what I understand, charging while you run the big motor is mostly only practical if you troll (with the outboard), or if you fish river systems where you make long runs. Probably wouldn't work too well out here, unless you're really indecisive, LOL.
     
  6. poysunivey

    poysunivey Well-Known Member

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    They make Solar powered trickle chargers as well. They work good, and once they are installed all you have to do is flip the switch to charge the batteries. They are just a touch more expensive, but If you store your boat in a boat/RV yard somewhere, they can not be beat.
     
  7. Big Daddy TR21

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    Frenchman,

    I have a 2 bank charger that I took out of my boat when I put in a 3 bank charger, it works great and would only want $100 for it if you want it.

    John
     
  8. fisheromen

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    Question along this line: Does keeping a charge on a battery make it last longer? I usually just charge mine the night before I am going out.
     
  9. Big Daddy TR21

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    Yes I keep mine plugged in all the time from the minute I get home until I go again.

    John
     
  10. mick

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    A quality charger (like a propak) will charge the battery and when it's fully charged it will stop to prevent overcharging. Then it will continue to top off the battery as necessary to maintain a full charge. It will increase battery life over a battery that is left in a discharged state.

    mick
     
  11. frenchman

    frenchman Well-Known Member

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    Ah that's good to know there mick. I don't do that and my batteries haven't been lasting as long as I think they should have. Big Daddy don't have the funds right now for the charger but thanks for the offer.
     
  12. mick

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    I don't think any battery is happy when it's left in a discharged state. You don't want to overcharge your battery but once it's charged just go back every once and a while and top it off. That will extend your battery life.

    mick
     
  13. Finadic

    Finadic Well-Known Member

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    poysunivey,
    Great Idea!
    Thanks.
     
  14. 93Buff

    93Buff Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to hijack the thread, but I'm wondering what the lifespan is for a 12volt marine battery? I run two batteries (parallel) in my boat for my trolling motor and they seem to be losing some steam. I usually fish two times a week so they are charged (not overcharged) on a regular basis.

    I'm guessing in the two years that I have had them, they have probably been discharged/charged 75-100 times.

    Until recently, I could go all day (9-10 hours) no problem without noticing any loss in power. But now they get very weak, almost dead at 8 hours.

    The batteries are well maintained and I was hoping to get more life out of them, am I expecting too much?

    Thanks
     
  15. poysunivey

    poysunivey Well-Known Member

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    I think it depends on the quality of the battery, and numerous other factors. Are they "Deep cycle" marine batteries, or just "Marine batteries." It makes a difference. Also, are they sealed, Maintenance free type, or wet cell that can have distilled water added? One bad cell in a battery will eventually ruin the whole battery. My personal experience with batteries is the more you spend on the front end, the more you save in the long run. I currently have a set of Optimas that are going on their fifth year.
     
  16. dfishin

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    A on board charger is great. But even better is charging all your batteries at home, on the way to the lake, on the water and on the way home. ALL CHARGE! Stayncharge system. I have it and love it, no worrys any time about my 1 starter and 3 TM batteries. I know there ready when I get to the lake. Just PM me.
     
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