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Battery Bank Integrity

Batteries, once cabled together to form a single bank, will only charge and discharge equally if care is taken in the initial design and configuration of the bank, and consideration is taken with the maintenance of the bank.

Ever Wonder How A Battery Stores Electricity?

A battery is composed of multiple cells alternating between a positive and negative charge. For instance, a 12 volt battery is composed of 6 cells at 2.1 volts each. All the positive and negative cells are connected together in series, but insulated from one another. The plates have a grid configuration that helps them retain the active material which stores the battery’s energy.


Early electrical pioneers discovered that passing a magnet in close proximity to coiled wire induced an electrical charge, and that a rotating magnet in front of coiled wire created alternating current. This electrical principle is the basis of an alternator. An alternator is a rotating machine designed to produce alternating current that can then be rectified to produce directional current that can be used, or stored for later use in a battery.

Tachometer Signals

Tachometers all look pretty much the same, but there is some variation between the methods that tachometers get their signal information. The function of a tachometer is to display the RPM (revolutions per minute) of the engine. Typical RPMs will be in the 10s of hundreds, so the method for counting the revolutions must be quick and accurate.

Solar Charge Controllers

Solar energy is becoming a very common addition to many boat’s electrical systems as an alternative charging source for their battery bank. Solar energy is harvested by photo-voltaic cells converting the light energy, photons, into direct current that can then be stored in a battery bank; however, like all charging sources it is important that the charge is controlled to prevent battery damage.

Plugging Into Shore Power

It is easy to become complacent when it comes to plugging an electrical cord into a socket. This convenient arrangement for making an electrical connection has become such a casual part of our lives. It is commonplace to just plug-in if it fits and sometimes, with a little encouragement, it can be made to fit.

Best Boat Heater Systems for Cruising Boats

A little heat can go a long way towards extending and enjoying boating into the shoulder seasons when the weather gets cooler and damper. A properly installed marine heater can provide that luxury, but not all heating sources are the same.

Garmin's Product Updates

We recently attended a Garmin training course and thought we would share some of the things we learned. Some we knew and some are new. For 2016, the Garmin GPSMAP 76XX series chartplotters will include the full Western Canada G2 charts. Up until now, only the USA...

Importance of Remote Battery Switches

A common conundrum with battery banks and their main disconnect switch is that batteries are often located in the engine room space. The cable to disconnect switch for the battery should be as short as possible and by commonly accepted standards, within 72” from the battery terminal post. The problem arises that in the situation of a catastrophic event, like a battery exploding, it should be possible to easily access and disconnect the battery without entering the space in which the battery is contained.

Shore Power Connections

With the coming of fall and cooler weather, there will inevitably be some concerned boat owners having a closer look at their shore power connections. Many boats will soon, if they are not already, be tied to the dock for the duration of the ‘off-season’ with the exception of possibly a couple of forays on spectacular or special days. Most people will leave their AC electrical system connected to the shore side utility to run the battery charger and maintain the batteries

Page 1 of 18    Total Results: 173