On our SM, 302, June 2000 launch, now lived aboard for 18 months,we find that at sea we run the genset about every six hours for an hour to an hour and a half on each occasion. Less when at anchor without autohelm, nav lights radar etc.Our first batteries ( we have 420 amps) lasted two years, since when I tend to recharge when we are down to 90% ( We found that the fridge cut out somewhere below 87% notwithstanding the fact that we still had 24v).
I find that the recharge quickly up to 99% but that those last few amps,say the last 7, take for ever.
Does anyone know how important it is to always recharge to 100%?
The one thing I would suggest when running the genset is to check that the 220v fan is working ( put your hand over the outlet in the cockpit coaming. ) Ours failed in the Caribean and the extra heat in the engine room was appparently the reason why our 50 amp charger failed after 3 years, to be followed by the 30 amp one ten weeks later.This, despite the fact that both chargers have heat cut outs.The first failed in Guadeloupe and was beyond the knowledge of Pochon for a speedy repair.but both were repaired by Manuel in Ecuador ( thank God for the third world--they still know how to fix things there).He said he had never seen anything so hi tech and powerful in such a small box--the last time he saw such a powerful gadget it was the size and weight of his mother in law!
The cost of a new 220v fan ,one new 50 amp and two repairs was unwelcome, and I don`t understand the need for the 220v fan. The two 24v fans are much more powerful,give you an element of redundancy, much cheaper and can be sourced anywhere.Is there a good reason why they could not be wired up to come on with the genset just as they come on with the Volvo/Yanmar? Ian. Pen Azen
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