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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 01-24-2007
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Gel batteries and cold weather

I don't have much experience with Gel batteries but three new ones came with the new "old" boat I bought this past summer (Offshore 33). I left the batteries in the boat for the winter and now, as it begins to get cold for the first time this winter, I'm wondering if that was a good idea.

Batteries in or out? Any thoughts?

Thanks!
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Old 01-24-2007
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Where are you? Hard freezes frequent? Do you have a battery charger plugged in on 'em?
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Old 01-24-2007
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Mid-Hudson area of New York and no battery charger. Hard freeze is on the way
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Old 01-24-2007
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It all depends on your management plan. Were they left fully charged? Are there any electrical devices, no matter how minimal drawing power as the vessel is stored? When idle, Gell cell battereis have very little voltage drop as compared to deep cycle lead acid. Of course there is nothing at all improper to throw a charge on the batteries during the off season, as it certainly can not hurt. I have done this without problems for many years.
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Old 01-24-2007
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Slocum-
Are they GEL batteries , or AGM batteries?

Each behave differently. Neither wants to be frozen but AGM will not be harmed by long times without a charge and by cold temps--if it is fully charged to start with. You'd need to check with the maker versus the temps you expect in your area to be sure.
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Slocum...if your batteries are not fully charged up they can freeze. If they are fully charged they are good to well below zero. Your call on whether you need to pull 'em put if they freeze you probably will need to replace them. This is specific advice for Gels and AGM's. Wet cells should be pulled unless left on a charger.
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Old 01-25-2007
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Wow, this is twice I am citing Cruising World Feb '07, maybe I will renew after all, they might have listened to my criticism of only havinf info for million dollar boats. Anywat, there is a good article that goes into the details of the types of batteries in Feb '07 on page 116.
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