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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 03-07-2008
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Battery charging problem...

Currently my batteries are not being chanrged anymore, I have replaced them and they work for awhile but then go dead. I have tunred everything off and still they do not seem to get charged when plugged into the shore power connection.

I can here my invertor huming when plugged into the shore power, so my question is, how do I know whether my invertor is working correctly or if that is actual problem.

It is an older 15amp power invertor, what should, I have a starter battery model 800(cranking amps) and an 110amp deep cycle battery from West Marine.

What invertor would you recommend...?

And how could I make sure that the invertor is the problem...?

thank you,
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Old 03-07-2008
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First, an inverter is not a battery charger. It is a device which takes battery voltage (usually 12V) and converts it to AC house voltages (usually 115V AC in this country).

Some inverters also have a battery charger built in, mostly the larger ones. It would be plainly marked as an inverter/charger if it had this capability.

You can tell if a battery charger is working by measuring the DC voltage at the battery terminals. With the charger on, voltage should be above 12.6 volts and, depending on the state of charge of the batteries, could be as high as 14.4 volts.

Hard to diagnose your problem without knowing more about your setup and how everything is connected. Also, knowing about the loads typically connected and how you use your boat would be helpful.

If you're looking for a recommendation for a battery charger, one of the best buys on the market is the line of Iota chargers with the IQ-4 smart charge option. These come in a number of sizes and their engineering is excellent, as is their pricing. For your 110AH battery, a 30A or 45A model would be plenty powerful and would keep your battery well-charged.


Bill

Last edited by btrayfors; 03-07-2008 at 03:31 PM.
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Old 03-07-2008
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Are you asking about..

Are you asking about an inverter or a charger?


Inverter:
An inverter converts 12 volts DC to 120 volts AC and does NOTHING to charge your batteries and ONLY sucks power from them.


Inverter / Charger:
These are very expensive units and both charge and invert all in the same box. Many will have a "remote control panel". Inverter/Chargers start at about $500.00 for the smallest model.

Charger:
Plugs into a line voltage supply or shore power and replenishes and charges your batteries by charging them at a rate of about 13.6 to 14.6 volts depending on your battery type.


Multimeter:

Get one!!


Book:
Get this too!
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Last edited by Maine Sail; 03-07-2008 at 03:40 PM.
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Old 03-07-2008
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If you don't have a battery charger, and do hear the inverter humming when you're aboard your boat and it is plugged into shore power...your inverter is draining the battery....hence the humming sound, but nothing is charging them back up. If it is an inverter/charger, then you've got a problem.

It would help if you said what make/model of inverter it was specifically.

Most inverters aren't measured in AMPS, they're measured in WATTS... If you have a 15 Amp charger, then the charger is probably broken. BTW, what you have is probably a charger, since chargers are usually rated in AMPS.
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