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post #1 of 10 Old 10-18-2015 Thread Starter
al brazzi
 
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Weird switch issue.

Help. I have two Battery banks. 2) Gr 27 House Bank and 1) Gr31 Start Bank. Positioned 1 and 2 respectively in the main Battery switch 1-2-All.
Disconnected Battery "2" Charger OFF
With Switch in "1" All systems powered and Motor will start.
With Switch in "2" No Power NO start.
NO voltage to cables (disconnected from Battery)
Charger ON NO Power to system.
No surprises but Here's where it get weird..

With Switch in "1" All systems powered and if I Switch to "2" power is still on with Battery "2" still disconnected! Still NO start Battery Disconnected.
Again;
Battery 2 disconnected.
Switch to 1 Motor will start.
Switch to 2 Motor will not start.
Switch on 2 Charger OFF NO power
Switch on 2 Charger ON NO power.
Switch to 1 Power ON and back to 2 Power ON!! Why is this?

With both Batteries connected I can switch Charger off and on and tell on the voltmeter the charger is working and switching off at the Panel.

I'm a Wood guy not an Electrician, I can handle the things I understand but this I don't get. Thanks AL
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-18-2015
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Re: Weird switch issue.

Sounds like a faulty switch to me.

Most (not all) battery selector switches are "make-before-break", meaning the power is maintained as you switch from "1" to "2" and back again to avoid damaging the alternator if the engine is running at the time you change over. Assuming your banks are wired correctly in the first place (can be checked with a multi-meter using the 'ohms' setting), maybe your "2" position contacts aren't always making contact?

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Last edited by Classic30; 10-18-2015 at 08:34 PM.
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post #3 of 10 Old 10-18-2015 Thread Starter
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Re: Weird switch issue.

Never fails with Battery 2 connected. Never an issue with starting but honestly I don't Start on 1 and switch to 2 as I should to protect 2. I was going through only to double check Bank orientation before labeling the Switch for House/Start. Seems to have something to do with Charger status but I cant imagine what. Could it be bleeding through the charger by switching the way I am doing. It seems to maintain power to the panel on 2 but only after 1 has been switched, (with charger ON) but with no Engine start because the Battery is disconnected.
Hopefully my write up is clear but the charger seems to have something to do with what I'm experiencing.

BTW is there an issue with running the Motor with shore power hooked up? surely not. I've always done it to exercise the motor off season. Just parallel charging circuits not related to this question!!

I didn't hook any of this up, beyond replacing Batteries
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-18-2015
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Re: Weird switch issue.

Iv'e seen wiring where the charging wire from alternator and/or charger run to both positive terminals of both banks. No diode!! Duh?? the terminals inside the either niether both can gum up and cause all kinds of erratic behaviour at random. Can only suggest you become one with your wiring.
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post #5 of 10 Old 10-18-2015
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Re: Weird switch issue.

I honestly suspect that you have a defective battery switch, which is not unusual - I had one on the Catalina and it did the same thing.

I'm confident that you could not start your engine through the charge cables without frying both the charger and the cables - they could never handle the load. As stated above, you can easily check this out with an inexpensive multi-meter.

all the best,

Gary
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post #6 of 10 Old 10-19-2015
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Re: Weird switch issue.

With battery switch OFF test for continuity between;

#1 & #2 Studs = Should be no continuity
#1 & "C" Studs = Should be no continuity
#2 & "C" Studs = Should be no continuity


With the battery switch set to #1 test for continuity between;

#1 & "C" Studs = Should have continuity
#2 & #1 Studs = Should be no continuity
#2 & "C" Studs = Should be no continuity


With the battery switch set to #2 test for continuity between;

#2 & "C" Studs = Should have continuity
#1 & #2 Studs = Should be no continuity
#1 & "C" Studs = Should be no continuity


[B]With the battery switch set to BOTH test for continuity between;

#1 & #2 Studs = Should have continuity
#1 & "C" Studs = Should have continuity
#2 & "C" Studs = Should have continuity

All of these tests should be done with the switch isolated from the ships wiring... Reconnect wiring and repeat tests. Should remain the same...

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post #7 of 10 Old 10-19-2015 Thread Starter
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Re: Weird switch issue.

Will do these checks, Thanks Maine
TE thanks for the suggestion.
LEN That's what I'm trying to do here!! like I said I'm a wood guy, and wood is not a conductor. I'm pretty good with the mechanical aspects of an electrical system if that makes sense.
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-19-2015
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Re: Weird switch issue.

If it helps, I expect you'll find something strange going on.

Here's a short story for you: My boat had the engine replaced and new batteries fitted (professionally) not long before I bought her, but from the first sail I noticed I'd get no power on switch position "1" and after addressing most everything higher up the bucket list I eventually got around to looking at it. I pulled the switch off - nothing wrong; checked battery banks, all good although Bank 1 was nearly flat, whilst Bank "2" was all good. Checked the cabling.. all seemed okay. Continuity checks: that's odd!

There were actually three identical-looking positives coming into the battery area - one for Bank 1, one for Bank 2 and one for the anchor winch (which didn't work). What had happened was: When these goons put the new batteries in, in the dark recesses at the back the positive for Bank 1 got jammed between the battery case and the bulkhead, so Bank 1 got hooked up to switch position 2 instead and Bank 2 to the non-functioning anchor winch! Of course, the charger was hooked up to Bank 2 also, leaving Bank 1 half-flat already..

..so believe me, weird stuff happens - even when you pay someone to do it.

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Last edited by Classic30; 10-20-2015 at 12:44 AM.
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-19-2015 Thread Starter
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Re: Weird switch issue.

Classic, I have already found Black wires with phasing tape to Bank 1 so some are Red and some are Black to the Main Switch so I feel your pain.

Maine: All the continuity checks were good isolated as well as connected. Found and fixed some crimps I didn't like and checked the charging system. BTW the flat washers that came with the Switch (I presume) were under the Battery cable and that's a No No as I understand so I moved them on top of the connections under the locks.
Switch on 1, Starts on 1 and Charges 1
Switch on 2, Starts on 2 and charges 2
Switch on ALL Starts on Both and charges Both.
My issue although probably self inflicted by Testing with a Battery disconnected, is still unresolved but everything works as is should. I as most, need a complete clean up of all systems and I might tackle that this winter. I suspect it will involve more time than money and that fits my budget just right. First thing is a branch panel at the Nav Station for Radios, CD, charging circuits, Etc. Todays Boats have so many accessories and things needing charging and the Main Panel is under the companionway.

Thanks to all for the help..AL
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-20-2015
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Re: Weird switch issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by albrazzi View Post
Classic, I have already found Black wires with phasing tape to Bank 1 so some are Red and some are Black to the Main Switch so I feel your pain.
Al, glad to hear you're making progress.. so here's all you need to know to become a fully-qualified Marine Electrician: "Red to red, black to black; anything else and you get the sack."

Good luck!! (...it sounds like you'll need it.)

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Last edited by Classic30; 10-20-2015 at 12:54 AM.
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