Batteries for outboard motors: types, features of selection and operation
Rubber boats with oars have long been considered the last century. The most popular water transport, which is most often used by fishing enthusiasts, is motor boats. Often, boat owners note insufficient power and a weak engine charge. Modern traction batteries for the boat provide a long period of operation of the floating means, they work for a long time without recharging and are unpretentious in maintenance. The main thing is to choose the optimal model, to know the subtleties of operation and technical specifications of the battery.
What are boat batteries?
These are special deep-charge devices that accumulate a large amount of energy (12 Volts), so you can use the battery without recharging for a long time. They are used on motors and electric motors, effectively retain charge and allow a motor boat to work for a long time. Like all types of batteries, they have their advantages and disadvantages.
Resistance to the influence of adverse factors. A special design prevents oxygen from entering the device and oxidizing the plates.
The disadvantage of batteries is that they need to be charged periodically from an AC source. The gasoline engine is powered by fuel, which can be taken into the boat in reserve and put into the tank, even while away from civilization. But the cost and maintenance of electric motors is cheaper than gasoline, so they are more in demand.
Traction batteries are not allowed to be stored in unheated rooms in severe frosts, or exposed to prolonged exposure to direct sunlight.
Types of traction batteries
Boat batteries are suitable for different electric motors that are used on many types of vehicles: trolley buses, forklifts and electric cars for various purposes. There are several types.
WET – classic lead-acid batteries with liquid electrolyte. In batteries of this type, lead plates are immersed in acid compartments. Ideal as starter batteries. The main advantages are affordable price and high resource. But there are also disadvantages: batteries for camping need regular maintenance and poorly retain capacity in the event of a deep discharge.
Gel batteries. The most popular deep discharge batteries for boat motors with lead-acid gel electrolyte. Eco-friendly and safe, do not emit harmful substances into the air when charged. Batteries are not afraid of deep discharge and quickly restore capacity when charging (idle for a month – discharging no more than 5%). Always give a high current for starting. Perfectly work both at high, and at low temperatures.
Lithium Compact, energy-intensive, autonomous batteries with a high charge rate and low regression rates (not more than 1-2% per year). They charge quickly and hold a charge well. A lithium battery for a boat electric motor is more expensive than a gel one, so these models are less popular.
AGM batteries. A new generation battery with a base made of absorbed fiberglass without liquid electrolyte, which significantly reduces the risk of sulfation of the electrodes. Relate to maintenance-free batteries and do not need refueling with electrolyte. The disadvantage of the batteries is their high sensitivity to overcharging, high weight and dimensions.
If you bought a high-capacity battery, you should install a charge limiter so that the engine does not burn out when a high charge is applied.
Why can not I install car batteries on boats?
Beginner fishermen practice using starter car batteries instead of traction. However, this is not worth doing. Car batteries give a high charge only at the time of start, it moves and charges (recharges) in conjunction with the generator. For an outboard motor this is not enough, and after just a few charge-discharge cycles the batteries can lose up to 70% of the capacity of the original volume.
When choosing a battery, many are repelled only by the budget. However, cheap devices can quickly fail. At a cost, all battery models for boats can be divided into 3 groups:
Budgetary. Batteries of medium capacity (80-100 A / h), among which there are calcium models – with the addition of calcium, which reduces the cost of their production. But such batteries are sensitive to deep discharge.
Mid-priced. These are mainly gel batteries with a capacity of 100-150 Ah. Subject to operating rules, they are enough for long fishing.
Top segment. Models with high starting charge and capacity up to 300 A / h. The best option for the pros. In the same group fall batteries for the boat.
What to consider when choosing traction batteries for outboard motors:
Type of engine (12, 24 Volts). For a 24 volt engine, you need a battery of the appropriate power or 2 batteries of 12 volts connected in series.
Lead-acid and GEL models are able to give a powerful starting impulse, long work
ute with a high charge.
Capacity. Depends on the characteristics of the motor: the more powerful it is, the more capacity should be. On average, the battery should provide at least 2-2.5 hours of continuous boat speed at maximum speed.
The power of outboard motors is estimated by emphasis and traction. A stop is a force developed by a propeller during rotation (expressed in pounds). This force is transmitted to the boat, and it moves horizontally. Often, 45 pounds of boat mass requires 2 pounds of thrust, but a 10% margin is best.
Weight. Optimum batteries with a weight in the range of 20-25 kg are considered. Heavier models can be a problem for small ships.
Type of service. The most optimal are maintenance-free batteries, because special conditions are required for maintenance (charging rooms, etc.).
The degree of self-discharge. This indicator determines the storage time of the battery without recharging. The smaller it is, the better.
Before purchasing a battery for an outboard motor, the average motor runtime should be calculated based on initial technical information. For example, in the passport it is indicated that the motor power is 30 A. This means that with a fully infected battery, the vehicle will float for about 3.3 hours. But in reality it will only be so if the battery is new. In the future, this time will be approximately -20% of the original.
The battery life is affected by several factors:
Charge quality. If the incoming current and battery power do not match, the battery wears out faster.
Storage conditions. Storing batteries when not fully charged at temperatures below 0 will shorten their life.
Depth of discharge. The number of charge-discharge cycles is indicated in the battery specifications. Optimum – 400-800.
A battery for an outboard motor requires compliance with certain operating rules.
Any manipulations with the device can be made only after it is turned off.
The charger must comply with the original current and voltage parameters.
You can not charge the battery more than the size of the capacity (it is better to use charge limiters).
Do not use or store the battery at too high or too low temperatures.
To prevent the battery from falling into the water, use reliable mounts.
Periodically, it is necessary to check the quality of the connection of all contacts in order to eliminate current leakage, overheating or oxidation.
Never open the battery.
Accessories and chargers should only be purchased from trusted suppliers.
Disposal of used batteries is carried out in designated areas.
It is not worthwhile to allow a drop in charge of less than 20%: this reduces the battery’s working life.
The choice of traction battery depends on the characteristics of the motor and the budget allocated for the purchase. For beginners and fishermen who rarely use a motor boat, you can buy a budget model. Experienced boaters should not save: it is better to buy a solid gel battery. The main thing to remember: the battery should be suitable for the electric motor in all respects.
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