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Old 12-23-2018, 01:45 PM   #1
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Charger always on?

Hi All,

The new charger goes in this week. Weve had the good boat a year and a half and have always left the shore power on which meant the charger was on (wired that way). Im wiring the charger through a circuit breaker and was thinking about whether or not I should continue to leave the charger on all the time. One 8D for the starter and 4 GC batteries for the house. I go to the boat once a week and stay over couple nights a month. The batteries are all wet cell. Never studied batteries enough to know if they get shortened life from always being on the charger.

Input and opinions?
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Old 12-23-2018, 01:53 PM   #2
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Hi All,

The new charger goes in this week. Weve had the good boat a year and a half and have always left the shore power on which meant the charger was on (wired that way). Im wiring the charger through a circuit breaker and was thinking about whether or not I should continue to leave the charger on all the time. One 8D for the starter and 4 GC batteries for the house. I go to the boat once a week and stay over couple nights a month. The batteries are all wet cell. Never studied batteries enough to know if they get shortened life from always being on the charger.

Input and opinions?
I installed a sterling 60A charger this year and was a bit concerned to keep it on all the time (always worrying when installing something new and leave the boat for a week). However like most of the time it was more worrying than needed. Moreover the charger detect full charge and stop charging if full charge is maintained for a period of time and resume when there is enough draw to justify it.
I prefer to keep it connected all time while away, mainly to be able to leave the dock with full charged batteries.

L
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Old 12-23-2018, 02:01 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Lou_tribal View Post
I installed a sterling 60A charger this year and was a bit concerned to keep it on all the time (always worrying when installing something new and leave the boat for a week). However like most of the time it was more worrying than needed. Moreover the charger detect full charge and stop charging if full charge is maintained for a period of time and resume when there is enough draw to justify it.
I prefer to keep it connected all time while away, mainly to be able to leave the dock with full charged batteries.

L
I have a Sterling as well in the 40 amp size. Since the idle voltage drops to just 13v there is no charger stress on the batteries from a high voltage idle. I leave mine on all the time, but did wire it through a breaker so I have some additional control. The remote panel for this charger keeps you fully informed as to what it is doing all the time...a nice feature.
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Old 12-23-2018, 02:08 PM   #4
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if it's a smart (3 or more stage) it's probably best to leave on..... If it's an old school constant voltage probably best to put it on a timer and let it run 15 minutes or so a day when you're not on the boat
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Old 12-23-2018, 02:11 PM   #5
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If you have a multi stage charger that stops changing completely, no reason to not leave it plugged in. If you develop a leak, I would want the bilge pumps to have an endless supply of power.

Ted
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Old 12-23-2018, 02:25 PM   #6
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I am on the boat nearly every day and run the charger while on board and turn it off when I leave.
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Old 12-23-2018, 02:28 PM   #7
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In addition to the good advice above to leave it on, if it has two outputs and most do, then wire one each separately to the start and house banks.


Then you need a way to keep them isolated. Many use the 1,2,all,off switch which works fine unless you forget to change it while hanging out on the hook. A combiner, ACR or Echo Charger is a set and forget solution.


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Old 12-23-2018, 03:12 PM   #8
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I have 2 Promariner chargers on the boat. I leave them on 24X7 since they sense when the batteries are full and shutdown.
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Old 12-23-2018, 04:11 PM   #9
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I have a Sterling charger and I leave it on all the time. The boat is on the hard now with the batteries in it. I disconnect the battery temperature sensor at the charger. This is so the charger doesn't compensate for low temps and raise the voltage. As it is on all the time the lower voltage is better for long term storage.
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Old 12-23-2018, 06:42 PM   #10
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I have a Sterling charger and I leave it on all the time. The boat is on the hard now with the batteries in it. I disconnect the battery temperature sensor at the charger. This is so the charger doesn't compensate for low temps and raise the voltage. As it is on all the time the lower voltage is better for long term storage.
Good idea about NOT up compensating for the colder battery. Otherwise, fully agree with leaving the charger on, especially for the power available for the bilge pumps.
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Old 12-23-2018, 07:57 PM   #11
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If you have a multi stage charger that stops changing completely, no reason to not leave it plugged in. If you develop a leak, I would want the bilge pumps to have an endless supply of power.

Ted

Ted's above post presents a wise reason to leave smart chargers on 24/7.
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Old 12-24-2018, 10:57 AM   #12
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Thanks everyone for the outstanding responses and input! The one that really stands out is the temp sensor wire. Since the engine room stays 40-50 degrees all winter, better not to have the charger giving them too much based on winter temps. Thank you all. MERRY CHRISTMAS ��

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Old 12-24-2018, 12:20 PM   #13
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Ted's above post presents a wise reason to leave smart chargers on 24/7.
I agree but I am not sure if the pump continuously running would live long enough to deplete the battery bank. Even a 10A pump would need to run more than 24h continuously before empty totally a modest bank, not sure it would not burn before that (and I do not want to know as I do not want to face this situation).

L
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Old 12-24-2018, 12:33 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Lou_tribal View Post
I agree but I am not sure if the pump continuously running would live long enough to deplete the battery bank. Even a 10A pump would need to run more than 24h continuously before empty totally a modest bank, not sure it would not burn before that (and I do not want to know as I do not want to face this situation). L
We’ve used Rule bilge pumps for live bait wells that have run for 4-5 days at a time and never burned one up. That doesn’t mean I want to test one on Hobo though.
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Old 12-24-2018, 01:05 PM   #15
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I agree but I am not sure if the pump continuously running would live long enough to deplete the battery bank. Even a 10A pump would need to run more than 24h continuously before empty totally a modest bank, not sure it would not burn before that (and I do not want to know as I do not want to face this situation).

L

If a pump has a short life expectancy, it should be replaced. If there is a leak with a failed pump it would not matter if the battery bank was connected to a charger, the boat would eventually sink.
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