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Smithvillesteve

Battery question

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I wear sunglasses based on some of you boys recommendation. Same with several lures like the Nutech Jig and War Eagle spinnerbait. Heck, even my long underwear from questioning you good Ol boys!! And my jerkbait rod. I have a battery issue I would like to run by you boys. I have a 600 cca deep cycle battery i use for my trolling motor. 12 volt system. Interstate battery. This battery is beginning its 3rd year in use. After using i place my charger on it and the light turns green indicating a full charge. But when i go fishing and push my charge indicator button on the trolling motor it never shows 4 lights which is a full charge. I thought maybe the light was out but when i was at Taneycomo earlier this year i was charging it overnight and forgot and left it on all night and that is the only time i have seen that 4th indicator light come on. I was crappie fishing in the Ozarks last week and that battery got really low after 6 hrs of fishing. I thought maybe it was my charger so i went and bought a new one. Nope!! Bad battery? Already? Trolling motor? Any advice is greatly appreciated. 

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Check the water in it? 

You may be able to get a little more life out of it by topping off the water if it isn’t a sealed battery, but it sounds to me you will be in the market for a new deep cycle battery.

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"I have a 600 cca deep cycle battery i use for my trolling motor."

Therein lies your problem.  You have a cranking battery.  You need a deep cycle trolling motor battery.  Get one with 180 or more RC not CCA.

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I have found that while handy, my on board chager doesn't don't he same job an external charger does.  Every once in a while instead of plugging in my charger I pull out the regular batter charger and hook up one battery at a time and let it run on automatic over night.  And yes a deep cycle battery is the key for TM usage, also I believe that a deep cycle battery supposedly requires abut 10 amps to bring it to full charge.  

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Well it IS time for a fresh battery, but something you need to know about chargers is that they bring a battery up to 15v as quickly as they can without over-boiling it, then they shut down until the battery voltage falls back to about 12.6, then they kick back on and once again bring it up to 15v.  This goes on over and over again until the time it takes for the battery voltage to drop increases by a predetermined amount.  

Some chargers have a MANUAL option that over-rides this function but that is not advisable except in emergency situations, because without the cooling down cycle the battery can actually boil the electrolyte down to a level that exposes the plates.  

Simply charging until the light goes green ONCE is not charging the battery but about half way.    A battery that is fully charged, in good condition, and has set for 12+ hours without being hooked to a charger will test at 12.70 or more.  

Here's a guide that shows percentage of charge that you can test with a simple voltmeter.   Screenshot_2015-11-11-20-10-54.png

To test the full condition of a battery just apply a decent load (turn something on that has a substantial current draw, for 10 seconds) and see how far the voltage falls.  If it falls below 20% then returns to less than 0.5 volts of your beginning voltage when the load is removed then the battery is failing.  

When the light is green on a charger that doesn't indicate that the battery is fully charged, it simply means that the battery will not accept any more charge AT THAT TIME.

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I have said this a dozen times on here, but I'll keep repeating it because it's important.... Operating a Trolling motor with a battery that is on its last leg will damage the brushes and armature contacts in the trolling motor.   Low voltage creates heat, and excess heat causes the brushes and contacts to glaze over.   A trolling motor that is ALWAYS run with good, strong batteries will stay strong and probably last forever.  One that is run on dead or dying batteries will have a loss of power even after a fresh battery is added to the system, unless you replace the brushes and clean the armature contacts.

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41 minutes ago, fishinwrench said:

Well it IS time for a fresh battery, but something you need to know about chargers is that they bring a battery up to 15v as quickly as they can without over-boiling it, then they shut down until the battery voltage falls back to about 12.6, then they kick back on and once again bring it up to 15v.  This goes on over and over again until the time it takes for the battery voltage to drop increases by a predetermined amount.  

Some chargers have a MANUAL option that over-rides this function but that is not advisable except in emergency situations, because without the cooling down cycle the battery can actually boil the electrolyte down to a level that exposes the plates.  

Simply charging until the light goes green ONCE is not charging the battery but about half way.    A battery that is fully charged, in good condition, and has set for 12+ hours without being hooked to a charger will test at 12.70 or more.  

Here's a guide that shows percentage of charge that you can test with a simple voltmeter.   Screenshot_2015-11-11-20-10-54.png

To test the full condition of a battery just apply a decent load (turn something on that has a substantial current draw, for 10 seconds) and see how far the voltage falls.  If it falls below 20% then returns to less than 0.5 volts of your beginning voltage when the load is removed then the battery is failing.  

When the light is green on a charger that doesn't indicate that the battery is fully charged, it simply means that the battery will not accept any more charge AT THAT TIME.

Some of the best info ever posted in this site. 

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Batteries have befuddled me for several eternities now no matter if it be outboard batteries, trolling motor batteries, tow vehicle batteries or, most recently, golf cart batteries.

And, every single time I've suspected a battery that is under warranty of failing and take it somewhere to be load tested I have gotten the exact same answer - "It tests just fine." - only to take it home and have it still not work properly so I replace 'em out of my own pocket.

Just last week and after two years of arguing I finally convinced the place where I bought my golf cart to test my batteries for the THIRD time because they flat out didn't perform anywhere near what they were supposed to.  FINALLY the guy says that, "Yeah, two of the six are pretty much dead." and they replaced them under the remaining warranty.

Unfortunately, I know about as much about batteries as I do everything else in life so I'm pretty much at their mercy.  Heck, I've been trying to figure out how to use the $80 voltmeter sitting on my workbench for about ten years now and still can't so much as tell if flashlight batteries are good or not until the light goes out!

Thanks, Wrench for this little tutorial - I don't know if it will help somebody as lost as I am but it can't hurt!

And I sure never knew that operating an electric motor with dying batteries would damage to the device.

Good stuff.

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Just get a Walmart Everstart 29dc battery and make sure you charge it up all the way as soon as you get back from a day on the water. I've been running my 24v Maxxum 70# thrust on a pair that I've had for over four years now and they are still working well. I"m going to replace them this spring before my bass club starts back up again though just to be safe as I could tell last year that they weren't quite as strong after a full day of tournament fishing on the rivers as they had been in previous seasons. The key is to charge them up right away and keep the water levels in check and they will serve you well. If somebody claims a battery is junk, they probably didn't know how to properly maintain it.

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