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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Electrical Systems
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  #1  
Old 11-14-2010
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Smile Battery banks must be the same or can be different?

Battery banks. Need they be the same?
Hi
My cal 46 has two battery banks and a set of two lifeline starter batteries

I have on board a xantrex MS 3000 which is a converter/charger combo

House battery bank 1 consists of 4 6 Volts batteries connected in series

And the bank 2 has two 4D 12volts bats connected in parallel

My question is 1) is there any advantage to this choice of bats

2) is it preferable to have two identical battery banks

Like two sets of 4 six volt batteries
Istead of two different banks

3) having two different banks would that in anyway adversely affect the

Performance of my xantrex MS 3000

Also my starter bats are also connected to the charging system. Is this advisable. My boat electrician installed a combiner with the wirings.

Ease reply. My email is edwmama@yahoo.com

Edwmama
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Old 11-15-2010
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I guess you mean eries/parallel for the bank composed of 6 volt batteries.

As long as they are 2 separate banks they can be different types.

However if in one large bank, which is better both for use and the life of the batteries, they should all be of the same type and age. 6 volt golf cart batteries make an excellent house bank in numbers of 4, 6 or 8 batteries.

One bank of 8 6 volt batteries is a better choice than 2 banks of 4 6 volt batteries each.

There should not be any problems with the charger and if a combiner is installed properly the start battery should be fine.
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Old 11-15-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edwmama View Post
House battery bank 1 consists of 4 6 Volts batteries connected in series

And the bank 2 has two 4D 12volts bats connected in parallel
I.E. 24Volt house bank, presumably high A/H capacity, and 12V start bank, also high A/H capacity...
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwmama View Post
My question is 1) is there any advantage to this choice of bats
Conceivably; you can reconfigure either bank to be a back up for the other. That's a good thing... But I am guessing that you have a vastly over-provisioned starter bank. If you don't need all those A/H for your starter (and I'll bet you don't) you could probably do away with one of the 12V batteries, and still survive any single battery failure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by edwmama View Post
2) is it preferable to have two identical battery banks
No, the two banks serve two different purposes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwmama View Post
Like two sets of 4 six volt batteries
Istead of two different banks
You could probably get a quantity discount when buying batteries.
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwmama View Post
3) having two different banks would that in anyway adversely affect the
Performance of my xantrex MS 3000

Also my starter bats are also connected to the charging system. Is this advisable.
Yes...
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwmama View Post
My boat electrician installed a combiner with the wirings.
I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess that your "boat electrician" has a better handle on your electrical system than you do.

I respectfully suggest that you buy a book that covers sailboat electrical systems, and read and comprehend it. Don Casey's Complete Illustrated Sailboat Maintenance Manual and/or Nigel Calder's Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual would be excellent places to start, AND they would cost far less than you have already spent on electrical work.
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Old 11-15-2010
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Edwmama,

Not sure exactly what your situation may be, but here's a general answer.

The one thing you need to make sure of is that your battery chemistries are the same. If the 6v batteries are wet cell, then the 4D's should be wet cell also. If they are different (e.g., 6V wet cell and 4D gel), then you will likely have problems with the different charge acceptance rates.
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Old 11-15-2010
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Brian in bictoeia harbour

Why is one bank of 8 6 V bays better yhan 2 banks with 4 6V each

Does ont one integrated bank give longer lasting capacity ?

Edwmama
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Old 11-16-2010
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The larger bank will not be drawn down as low as 2 smaller banks and will last longer as a result. It will actually give you more usable amps than 2 smaller banks as well due to Peukert's law. Also easier to control/monitor one bank instead of 2.
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Last edited by mitiempo; 11-16-2010 at 12:06 AM. Reason: add
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Old 11-16-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
One bank of 8 6 volt batteries is a better choice than 2 banks of 4 6 volt batteries each.
.
IMHO 2 banks is always better.

They can easily be combined by leaving both on.
If one battery fails its much easier to troubleshoot and isolate with 2 banks
It is easier to occasionally charge the batteries to 100%
2 battery switches adds redundancy
It allows the option in the future of partially replacing the batteries.

There are no drawbacks other than cost and slight increase in weight and complexity

For a long distance cruising boat I think 2 banks of house batteries is a very good feature.
If staying in local waters 1 bank is OK.

Last edited by noelex77; 11-16-2010 at 02:50 AM.
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