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Marine Batteries

There are mainly two types of marine batteries that can be used on your boat. Cranking batteries are those which are used to start up the engine. This has more lead plates and is capable of providing a sudden burst of energy. It is this energy that is required when starting up the engine. The deep-cycle battery on the other hand has thicker lead plates and can survive numerous discharge cycles. But they don’t provide as much cranking power. Another kind of marine battery is the dual purpose starting/deep-cycle battery that is somewhere between these two.

Cold weather is well suited for good maintenance and storage of marine batteries. But in hot climates you need to be on the lookout for a dip in the level of the distilled water and sulfuric acid solution in the battery. When it gets warm the water tends to evaporate and needs to be replenished constantly. Always used distilled water to top up marine batteries, never tap water. Dry plates tend to harden and can lead to lesser effectiveness. When a battery discharges sulfur builds up on the lead plates. This decreases the life of marine batteries.

Keep the batteries as dry as possible. You could use bolted or strapped battery boxes made of plastic or fiberglass for this purpose. Make sure that the ring terminals are clean and free of oxidation. Do not let the battery get discharged all the way to zero. Recharge it every time you are on shore. Also take care not to overcharge. With proper care and maintenance an average marine battery can last up to three years. Before installing marine batteries, make sure it is equipped to serve all your needs. By noting the amperage draw of each piece of equipment using electricity and multiplying hourly consumption by the average number of operating hours each day and adding them up, you can get an estimate of the power you will require.

 
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