What Batteries and What Charger

Submitted: Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:34
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Hi alll,

Just wanting to know what size AGM battery i should buy to run my waeco CF50 plus a couple of 12v fluro's. I'm also looking at buyin a electric trolling motor for the boat and was wondering if a 80 or 90Ah AGM would be sufficent? As for charging these batteries i'm looking at a 55A Christies Petrol Charger, but still not really sure if this would work.

Any help would be great!!
Thanks
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Reply By: ross - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:42

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:42
I use a dellcor 100 amp to run my waeco 50 and a few lights.
I dont know much about the Christies petrol charger,but a good Japanese 240 generator and a good charger might be better,at least the 240v generator could be used to light up the camp when the batteries are being recharged.
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Follow Up By: Member - ross m (WA) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:45

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:45
or to light up the house when the power goes off;)
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Follow Up By: richo85 - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:47

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:47
thanks ross, with regards to the waeco, what setting do you run it on for best efficency?
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Follow Up By: richo85 - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:49

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:49
yeah true about if the power goes out. however ive been told that to charge a battery with one of these petrol chargers it takes only about an hour, where as a 240v charger takes much longer.
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Follow Up By: Member - ross m (WA) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:09

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:09
I usually leave it on somewhere between 1-3 c ,I dont try and use it as a freezer(I dont have kids either).
I can get 2-3 days usually without a recharge,depending on the weather.
I now have mine wired to the cars electrical system via a solenoid that isolates it from the engine battery when I turn the ignition off.
On a long trip I probably wouldnt need the genny.
If I get a solar panel ,I can almost certainly leave the genny behind

The 1HR recharge is good,but I dont know if the 55 amps is too high.
How fast the genny recharges would depend on the amperage of the charger,but my Yamaha is only good for 8 amps from its 12v DC outlet.
I also have a 15 amp Ctek charger which I am happy with.
I can have it plugged into 240v power and it keeps the battery topped up while you are using it

When I use my genny ,I start it up late afternoon and let it run for 3-4 hours and use the 240v lights for cooking and eating and recharge the battery at the same time.
Whatever you buy,the noise may upset people which is why I chose the Yammy 1000 with its 46 dB noise output
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Follow Up By: richo85 - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:47

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:47
How much would i be looking at for a yamaha 1000 paired with a 15A Ctek charger?
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Follow Up By: Member - ross m (WA) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 22:59

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 22:59
I think sbout $1299 for the yammy and $275 fr the Ctek(from abay)
Both top quality products IMO
I think any dealer will want show off the noise suppression and give you a demo
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Follow Up By: Member - ross m (WA) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:05

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:05
I seem to remember the Ctek claims to be able to bring back a 12v battery as run down as 5 volts in its "RECON" mode.
I havent tried it though.
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Follow Up By: Geoff (Newcastle, NSW) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:13

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:13
15 Amp in my opinion is too small in the charger department when you are running off a generator, it'll take what appears to be an eternity to charge your batteries.

A minimum of 25 Amps is better and 40 Amps is about perfect off a 1kva Honda or Yamaha.

The generator will be over 2/3rds loaded and you'll be putting some meaningful charge into the batteries at the same time.

There's almost nothing worse for these small engines than underloading them!

Geoff

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Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 03:44

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 03:44
Ive got one for you Geoff its 120A at 12v with 6 outlets .
Use one for your cranker one for your onboard auxilliary and the other four for spares for all your mates to connect to.
I dont think your honda will run it though.

The full range of ProTechi from 10A to 40A and the Pro Nautic from 40A to 60A all with mutiple outlets will be here by 1/5/2009 from Professional Mariner of USA and I believe I can give the Ctek a run for their money with them.
ian

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Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 08:11

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 08:11
If you try to recharge ANY Lead Acid Battery (wetcell, AGM, Gel) in an hour, you will be shortening its life.

If it's 50% discharged, aim for 2 hours.

Aim for 0.25C i.e. 25 amps maximum for a 100 amphour battery.
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Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 09:47

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 09:47
Mike
That statement is a broad statement that needs qualifying and you have made similar statements in the past regarding how you should limit you charge rate whereas your statement is formed from an instilled insistance of knowledge which is old school with todays technology.
Common sense would dictate that no battery would fully charge in one hour if you include the absorbsion mode but it is possible with correct voltage for the battery type and temperature compensation to fast builk charge some batteries up to around 90% charge which is definately stored in the battery and useable and not detrimental and would enhanse the life of the battery by cycling the battery in a definate higher voltage cycle.
I agree in principle that it may be better to inform the masses the safety of your statement as in the wrong hands fast charging can definately damage the batteries but to make a blanket statement of all batteries is totally incorrect.

Ian

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Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 10:54

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 10:54
To further the above statement if anyone is interested they can go to the following link and read about fast smart charging from a specialist who is a world leader in his field.

http://sterling-power.com/support-faq-1.htm

The same type of testing has also been proven by Battery Energy Australia and in conjunction with CSIRO.

Ian
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Reply By: Best Off Road - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:49

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:49
Richo,

I've been running a Waeco 80 off a 100 amp AGM for years. Needs daily recharging (solar during the day and gennie top up in the evening).

80 or 90 would handle a CF 50. Keep in mind they are heavy, my 100 weighs about 35 kg. So, if you have to lug it a long way to the boat, consider the appropriate size.

As for the Christie, it would certainly charge the AGM quickly but that is all it will do. For not a lot more money you could get a decent gennie and battery charger. Whilst it won't charge as quickly as the Christie, it will be more versatile, eg whilst you are using your battery to run the boat, the gennie can power the fridge.

Also consider the noise created by a Christie. I have no idea if they are noisier than a decent gennie but it's worth looking into.

Cheers,

Jim.

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Follow Up By: richo85 - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:56

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 18:56
Thanks Jim,

I'm actually looking at having 2 batteries. 1 for the boat and 1 for the campsite. the main reason im loooking at the petrol charger, is that i've been told they can charge much quicker, which i sort of need as i dont really want to run a generator for hours at the end of a day out fishing. The christie apparantely runs at 75dba/7m , which is fairly loud i think??
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Follow Up By: Member - ross m (WA) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:11

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:11
I just saw the 75 dBA rating. That will be LOUD in a quiet camp site
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Follow Up By: Best Off Road - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:33

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:33
75 dba is indeed loud.

Sound doubles for every 3 dba increase.

The average generator (Honda, Yamaha, Kipor) puts out about 56 dba. They are nothing more than a muffled hum on the end of a 20 metre extension lead.

A poxy little two stroke chainsaw like my Talon emits 106 dba and can be heard for miles (seriously) in the bush.

Something to consider.

Jim.

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Reply By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 19:13

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 19:13
I bought one of these

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/THUMPER-AGM-DEEP-CYCLE-DUAL-BATTERY-JUMPSTARTER-KIT-12V_W0QQitemZ330322756482QQcmdZViewItemQQptZCaravan_Parts_Accessories?hash=item330322756482&_trksid=p4634.c0.m14.l1262

with the free battery charger and remote volt meter.

First charge I got 5 days running from my Waeco CF50 on cooling and then 2 days 8 hours on freeze after recharging. Better than I expected.

Weighs 28KG but nice and compact with cigarette lighter outputs and H/D jumper leads included.

Cheers

Jeff
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Reply By: Member - John and Val W (ACT) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 19:46

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 19:46
Richo,

I'm not familiar with the petrol charger you mention, BUT, no way should you charge a 100 Ah battery in an hour!!! You will cook it!!

AGM deep cycle batteries should not be charged with more curent than 1/5 of their Ah capacity. ie a maximum of 20 amps into a 100 Ah battery.

Trolling - I have a 33 Ah gel battery for this purpose. It does well on a small boat and weighs less than 10 kg. Anything much larger will probably be a nuisance to carry and fit in the boat.

HTH

John
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Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:44

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:44
Hi John
The AGM deep cycle low recahrge is only applicable to low recombination quasi AGM batteries mainly made in China.

The genuine AGM batteries are the likes of Optima, Oddyssey, Lifeline,Decca Sea Mate and RV Gel/Marine Gel are all high recombination batteries and with temperature compensation you can belt the power in even to the pont that a 100AH battery can accept 100A in the early recharge state.

Quasi AGM batteries are the price they are because the technology of high recombination is expensive and you can only find it in expensive batteries.

The economy of scale comes from the rapid recharge with less run time if using a motor driven power source.

The Christie is a screamer with noise but is very efficient but so too is a silenced Inverter generator with an equivalent sized charger using the 240V output.
Ian
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Follow Up By: Best Off Road - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:55

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:55
As always Ian, it is good to informed responses.

Your input to discussions is always appreciated and I learn from them.

Regards,

Jim.

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Follow Up By: Member - John and Val W (ACT) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 21:04

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 21:04
Thanks Ian,

Yes, I was aware that the better (expensive) batteries could stand the high inrush for a brief period, but I don't think it's something to recommend. It's not good practice to push things to the limit when we are away from our support networks! In practice it's difficult to push 50 or 100A through manageable sized cables anyway thanks to ohms law.

At the noise levels quoted for the Christie, and in the interests of flexibility I'd certainly opt for a decent, well silenced 240V generator driving a good charger as you suggest. Better still, I'll stick with my solar panels!

Cheers

John
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Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 03:34

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 03:34
Another solution if a regular traveller is a smart 50A DC to DC charger or larger Alternator to Battery charger to glean a benefit of alternator power from the fuel you are paying for anyway complimented with solar to extend stays and even though you may not run a gen in some places there is no law about running the car for a while when the sun is not producing as an emergency backup.
Then you only need a small ac charger to maintain as you are normally on 240V mains power for long times.
Ian

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Reply By: LeanneW - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 19:46

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 19:46
Hi Richo,

Back in 2004, my husband and I travelled around oz. We put a dual battery system in the car (NL Pajero), the second battery being a 75AH Optima AGM. This was to run our Waeco CF60 (which we ran as a freezer most of the time), plus some 12V lights, shower etc.
We also purchased a Christie Generator to charge our Optima if we were going to be camped at one spot for a few days and not driving the car.
We found that the Christie did exactly what we wanted, and did not have any problems at all.
Yes, it is noisy, (not sure how noisy compared to others) but even if you have a quieter generator, you still aren't able to run it in generator free areas. We would go to a spot to charge the battery (if necessary), then go back to the generator free area to camp.

Cheers
Leanne
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Follow Up By: richo85 - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:41

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 20:41
Thanks Leanne,

Being camped at one place for a longer period of time is the exact reason why i'm interested in the christie. Are you able to tell me the difference between the hi and low charging rate. And how it should be used?
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Follow Up By: LeanneW - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:01

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:01
Hi Richo,

My husband says that the "hi" sets the regulator to charge at ~ 15V, while the "lo" is 14.2V.

Apparently 14.2 V is slightly high for AGM batteries (??), but ours had no problem being charged this way during our trip and lasted for many years afterward (still working well when we sold the car last year).

15V is probably too high to use for AGM batteries. It initially charges quickly- say 40-50A- but this drops off as the battery charges. The instructions say to stop when the charging current drops below 10A.

We've just ordered a camper trailer. The way the manufacturers tackle this problem with regard to the batteries in the camper is to have a high quality 240V charger (with a 40A maximium current- not much less than the Christie) which is powered by a honda Eu10i. This combination is probaly a few hundred dollars more, but the smart charger might treat the battery a little better. The other advantage of the smart charger is that as someone else has mentioned, it can be plugged into 240V at home to keep the camper trailer batteries maintained.

Hope this helps,
Leanne
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Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 03:25

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 03:25
The Christie claim is that the unit will only run for 2.5Hrs on a tank of fuel and in that time it should not damage a battery on high Volt.

High amp AGM batteries are mainly American and should be charged at 14.2V and are voltage sensitive at more than 14.4 V so that arrangement could be debated forever and the only way it could be done is with temperature compensation of the batteries being charged and to me on rare occasions only.

Some Low amp AGM batteries can be charged at up to 14.9V but the high resistance limits the amp input that the battery will accept ands should not be used without temperature compensation.
Ian
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Reply By: Geoff (Newcastle, NSW) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 21:53

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 21:53
Hi richo,

There's an angle to this that nobody has mentioned.

First let me say I'm a big fan of the biggest 3-Stage charger you can get your hands on and a 240V generator rather than these Christie style units.

Everyone else has covered the noise aspects of the good 240v Inverter generators versus the Christie style units. The good Inverter units win hands down.

Were I believe the charger wins for me is the ability to pull into a powered camping area and hook up my charger, something you can't do with the Christie style units.

For me, the other advantage of the charger is at home, nobody has mentioned how you are going to maintain the charge in these two batteries when you are at home.

A good 3-Stage charger of any capacity can be left connected to the batteries 24hrs a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year and your batteries will be as good as new next time you pull them out to go boating or camping.

That's my slant on the deal,

Geoff

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Follow Up By: Member - Allan B (QLD) - Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:22

Monday, Apr 20, 2009 at 23:22
And don't forget that the 240v Inverter generator will provide some household 240v power if the mains go down.
Cheers
Allan

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Reply By: Maîneÿ . . . (WA) - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 10:37

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 10:37
This thread contains some good information, however I would consider going down the road of Solar power, due to the price of the Christie charger and the obvious noise and lack of usability in National parks etc associated with generators.

Remembering your battery is the source of the power supply, it should be capable of supplying the power for a few days without getting below the 50% (12v) limit, use 2 x large AGM's in parallel, you will not have problems.

A good solar system with quality regulator can be left attached 24/7/365 to (any & all) AGM batteries and they will be maintained @ fully charged ready for any quick getaway.

Mainey . . .
AnswerID: 360676

Reply By: Axel [ the real one ] - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 10:47

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 10:47
Yamaha + Ctek charger , the yammy 1000 runs longer on the same fuel amount as the honda 1000 and will run a 40amp charger , for your application a Ctek 15 or 25amp would be the go ,real world use you would have to run the genny for round 2hrs per day to keep up with the power drain of the fridge, could also run the fridge on 240v while using the Ctek to charge batts , would cut down on charger genny run time,,,,,
AnswerID: 360677

Reply By: richo85 - Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 15:25

Tuesday, Apr 21, 2009 at 15:25
Thank you everyone for your great advice. I've decided that a quiet genny, like the yamaha 1000iS paired with a smart charger is going 2 do a much better job. The Christies charger sounds like it is probably more suited to people who are in a remote area. once again thanks for all the help.
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