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Old 03-12-2019, 01:07 PM   #1
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Balmar SG 200

Iam giving serious thought to installing one of these to monitor the house battery. I have a 8D start and another 8D house battery plus a grp 27 generator starting battery. A ProMariner 1260c3 60 amp charger, I replaced all the batteries in 2016 before our cruise to Lake Michigan. The only thing I have to monitor batteries are the panel volt gauge for each and a volt gauge with a switch to check each one. I anchor out several days at a time, using the generator a couple times a day to cook meals seems to maintain the house battery. The normal loads are fridge/freezer, lighting - mostly LED, fans, electric head and cpap machine while sleeping, sometimes I also have a ARB 60 qt freezer. When checking voltage I cant remember it ever being below 12 volts.
QUESTION does anyone on the forum have one and what is your opinion of its usefulness? I thought having more information might keep me from replacing batteries sooner that necessary. Thank you.
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Old 03-12-2019, 07:31 PM   #2
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Hi Ron,
I have the older version of this monitor (bought in 2016). It gives only "state of charge" (as a percentage) of one bank, and voltage only of that bank and a second bank. The model you are talking about is an improvement on my model.
I am very happy with my monitor and it actually "learns" your battery. It gets more accurate the more it is used.
I would highly recommend the unit you are contemplating. Knowing (accurately) your state of charge will allow much improved "treatment" of your batteries, and should result in longer battery life.
Hope that helps,
Tom
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Old 03-12-2019, 08:36 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by River Cruiser View Post
Iam giving serious thought to installing one of these to monitor the house battery. I have a 8D start and another 8D house battery plus a grp 27 generator starting battery. A ProMariner 1260c3 60 amp charger, I replaced all the batteries in 2016 before our cruise to Lake Michigan. The only thing I have to monitor batteries are the panel volt gauge for each and a volt gauge with a switch to check each one. I anchor out several days at a time, using the generator a couple times a day to cook meals seems to maintain the house battery. The normal loads are fridge/freezer, lighting - mostly LED, fans, electric head and cpap machine while sleeping, sometimes I also have a ARB 60 qt freezer. When checking voltage I cant remember it ever being below 12 volts.
QUESTION does anyone on the forum have one and what is your opinion of its usefulness? I thought having more information might keep me from replacing batteries sooner that necessary. Thank you.
I've installed one, but it is a bit early to pass judgment. I measure SoC pretty easily from an amp counter, and the SG200 displays what I would expect. I bought it for the SoH, which is a novel measure not readily or easily available by other means. It does not appear accurate yet, but I have only a couple of charge cycles so I hope it will settle down and be accurate. Mainesail had done testing and said it is quite accurate, so I am optimistic.
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Old 03-12-2019, 10:11 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by River Cruiser View Post
Iam giving serious thought to installing one of these to monitor the house battery. I have a 8D start and another 8D house battery plus a grp 27 generator starting battery. A ProMariner 1260c3 60 amp charger, I replaced all the batteries in 2016 before our cruise to Lake Michigan. The only thing I have to monitor batteries are the panel volt gauge for each and a volt gauge with a switch to check each one. I anchor out several days at a time, using the generator a couple times a day to cook meals seems to maintain the house battery. The normal loads are fridge/freezer, lighting - mostly LED, fans, electric head and cpap machine while sleeping, sometimes I also have a ARB 60 qt freezer. When checking voltage I cant remember it ever being below 12 volts.
QUESTION does anyone on the forum have one and what is your opinion of its usefulness? I thought having more information might keep me from replacing batteries sooner that necessary. Thank you.

First of all without additional smart shunts it will only monitor voltage of other batteries. The smart shunt ( one is included with the sg200) is normally installed on the house bank and is the hardware that provides the current flow information that the sg200 uses to calculate SOC, SOH and other battery parameters except voltage.
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:22 PM   #5
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I will keep an eye on this SG200 as it seems to be very close to what I was thinking about that the Smartguage didn't address including its size, a problem for my boat. The 2" diameter will fit the hole my ammeter, now useless, vacates. Maybe look at it for next year after keeping track of the reports from folk like you. Thank You.

Usually the battery set most of us are concerned with is only the house set which is where the bulk of the loads are wired to.

The starter set should only need the voltage to tell you if it is good or in trouble. Obviously not all big loads are always on the house such as a thruster or anchor windlass but still compared to the house set with the long draws just the vm should be good enough, at least for me, to give a warning if something is amiss. A good combiner and charger should take care of the starter battery set.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:46 AM   #6
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A SOC meter should be on any cruising boat , before a new battery set is installed.


Knowledge is power , especially with house batts that can loose a great percent of useful life from being abused.
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Old 03-16-2019, 08:18 PM   #7
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Balmar SG 200

Thanks to everyone for sharing your experience and opinions. I have a friend who works for WM and hes going to get me one when theyre back in stock. I think having the shunt on the house bank will provide the most useful information. Having volts on the 2 start batteries should be sufficient information on them.
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