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Old     (gundogg)      Join Date: Feb 2004       07-13-2004, 5:22 PM Reply   
I put in a 2 battery perko switch. I am having charging issues with the boat. So I am wondering if there is something wrong with the way I wired the batteries.

The house battery is Batt 1
The stereo batteris is Batt2

I ran all the stereo equip off of battery 2. I put in a 150 amp alternator and I ran that directly to batter 1. I then put in the perko switch. Batt 1 is connected to the house battery positive and batt 2 was attached to the stereo positive terminal. I then installed a ring terminal onto the 4GA house wire that leads to the starter and put that on the common. I then hooked up the main ground wire from the engine block up to the battery 1 negative terminal. and from there I ran a negative wire from battery 1 to battery 2.

I realize that this hookup will limit the ability to charge battery 2 directly, but I was told to hook the alternator directly to the battery and not to run it to the starter or the panel.

I had a problem with the top of battery 1 positive terminal getting hot (hot enough to melt the wire on my battery tender. which was not hooked up) Any ideas?????? I have never had a perk switch, and I can't find any other faults in the wiring. I have been looking for common shorts, but cannot seem to come up with anything.....any help would be greatly appreciated.

The terminal on the battery changed from the silver color to a bronze. I would understand the battery tender wire melting if it had a load that was excessive, but nothing was hooked up on it, so I don't think it could have had any current running through with enough current to melt the wire the fuse would have blown, right? So I figure it must have been from heat off the terminal that caused the melting
Old     (gundogg)      Join Date: Feb 2004       07-14-2004, 7:23 PM Reply   
NO help???? I know someone has an idea
Old     (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       07-15-2004, 7:29 PM Reply   

As I read you post I am nervous that you are very close to having meltdown or worse a fire. Call the switch makers support line and describe your system. Make sure all your wiring is sized adequately for the amperage you are pushing and your connectors are tight and the circuit protection is done correctly (fuses/breakers). Without wire sizes and a wiring schematic it is impossible to diagnose you wiring issue.

When everything is connected properly nothing should get too warm to hold with your bare hands.

If you can produce a wiring schematic and send it to me I might be able to help you trace it to the source of the problem.
Old    whitechocolate            07-15-2004, 10:18 PM Reply   
Im afraid to comment
Old     (nvsairwarrior)      Join Date: Aug 2003       07-16-2004, 6:43 AM Reply   
Reading your post it sounds as though you have definetly shorted + to -. The only other thing I can think of might be is if one of the batteries is totally shorted out.
Get physical help immediately.
Disconnect both batteries and get help.
Good luck
Old     (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       07-16-2004, 3:37 PM Reply   

If I am understanding how you have this wired then I think you may have created a problem. Who told you to connect the alternator directly to the battery?

You said that the terminal on battery 1 got hot. What were the conditions? Engine off? Engine running, most electricl off? Engine running, stereo belting out some serious volume?

Heat is caused by current flowing through a resistance. Resistance can be from too small of a wire or a bad connection.

From your description I can not tell what the size of the wire is from the battery, through the perko switch to the starter. If the wire is too small then just starting the engine could make the wire very hot (it could also make the starter not work very well!).

It also sounds like you have forced all the current from the alternator to flow through the battery post. Normally, the current that runs all the electrical system splits off from the starter, and only the charging current flow to the battery. It is possible that passing all the current that the stereo would draw through the battery post is causing it to heat up.

To start with, I would make sure that the battery connections are TIGHT!. I hate the wing nuts that are supplied on marine batteries, these are responsible for more bad connections than anything else. If you have wing nuts, get a pair of pliers and make sure they are tight, or replace the wing nuts with a hex head nut.

All the wires leading to the battery need to be a fairly large size. You mentioned 4 awg wire, that is a bit small in my opinion, especially if you are passing 150 amps through it.

Old     (gundogg)      Join Date: Feb 2004       07-18-2004, 9:56 PM Reply   
Thanks for the responses.
I was told by the people on this forum to connect the alternator directly to the battery, should I try connecting directly to the starter??? I thought there might be problems with the extra amperage of the new alternator???

All connections were made with 4GA wire. That is from the alternator to the battery...and from battery 1 to the perko and from battery 2 to the perko and the ground between battery 1 and 2.

The house load is the stock 2GA going from the perko (originally hooked up to the positive battery terminal, and now connected to the common terminal on the perko switch.

The positive terminal is getting hot when driving and playing the stereo at a "moderate volume"

I called my brother who was out in the boat today and had him check the battery connections and he said that the termial where the alternator connects to was loose...could this be part of the problem??? would a loose connection cause the terminal to get hot???

Grant....afraid to respond????? I know your system isn't that different, I thought you might be of the most help.

(Message edited by gundogg on July 18, 2004)
Old    whitechocolate            07-19-2004, 7:58 AM Reply   
Sorry Richard: I didnt know what to say? and didnt want you to think I was ignoring you. I was kind of confused after reading your post like 5 times I still couldnt figure what was going on? My only advice would have been to have some one becides yourself look over your system. Somtimes a new face can look over your work and see the problem right away.
Old     (gundogg)      Join Date: Feb 2004       07-19-2004, 8:29 AM Reply   
Hey I is hard to get a full picture from just an e-mail or a post on here...I was just hoping you had an idea. I agree on getting a fresh view on things, so I am trying to get my buddy's mechanic from his office to go to the lake with me.
Old     (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       07-19-2004, 2:45 PM Reply   

As I indicated before, a loose connection would definately cause this sort of problem. Take a pair of pliers and get that wing nut TIGHT!

A helpful hint in chasing down bad connections: A circuit will get the hottest at the point of highest resistance. If you are having a major voltage drop proble, run your hand across all the wires and connections in the path. It is not unusual to find a terminal block or fuse holder that burns your fingers!

When you find a hot spot, fix it. Sometimes you just need to tighten the connection. Sometimes you need to replace the terminal on the wire, or even the terminal block/fuse.



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