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Old     (suprasteve)      Join Date: Nov 2004       09-01-2009, 10:12 AM Reply   
Sorry for yet another post about a common topic. Figured I'd put it out there for all the stereo guru's to chime in on an issue I ran into this past weekend. Based on the install of my batteries(see pic), I had the perko switch flipped to position #2 while in cove this past weekend(like i always do when in cove). Came time to leave boat would not start. Flipped perko to position #1, wouldn't start. Flipped to ALL and still would not start. I got a jump and engine started. Based on the hook-up drawing below, Is this the correct way to hook up the batteries or not? I'm floored as to how the "starter battery" would be drained if the perko switch is in position #2. Upload
Old     (nwarhol1105)      Join Date: Oct 2008       09-01-2009, 10:18 AM Reply   
I have the identical setup in my boat. Worked great for a couple months...then burnt out my alternator completely. Time to upgrade.
Old     (johnny_jr)      Join Date: Mar 2006       09-01-2009, 10:19 AM Reply   
Where do you have all the common acc and power wires going to. (the wires that take power to amps, dash, lights, etc.)

If those are all ran to the common on the perko you are OK, if they run to the batteries, then you are not. Please clarify and I'll post back after I have the rest of the info
Old     (suprasteve)      Join Date: Nov 2004       09-01-2009, 10:35 AM Reply   
Great question Johnny!! Those actually all run from Stereo Battery #1. There is a kill switch lever(always flip off after an outting) that I have to flip "on" to get pwr to the ACC switches, Ballast switches, Stereo Switch, etc...That kill switch is whats attached to battery #1.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-01-2009, 10:37 AM Reply   
I would redo it and simplify your system. Here is what I would recommend. Just remove the charger out of the diagram if you don't have one. Although if you can plug your boat into a power outlet every night I would invest in one. The 1314 or any other smart solenoid does all the work for you. No more need to flip a switch. Sorry, my paint abilities are horrible.

Old     (johnny_jr)      Join Date: Mar 2006       09-01-2009, 10:41 AM Reply   
The only thing I can think of is that the Main battery drained down and had no power when it came time to use it. I stick to a charging schedule. I have a small 2 bank battery charger that I plug in after every outing. It charges the "House" batteries first (House batts are for stereo and acc) then charges my "Aux battery" I have never had a dead Aux battery with this schedule. I did have problems every once in a while before using a 2 bank charger.
Note** Batteries will drain even if there is nothing hooked up to them. Time will take it's toll, keep them charged and they will keep you happy.
Old     (david_e_m)      Join Date: Jul 2008       09-01-2009, 12:12 PM Reply   

If you're using a battery switch then the alternator, helm buss and stereo amplifiers (everything) should be hooked up to the Perko switch common post with nothing wired directly to either battery. Alternator belt tight? All deep cycle or marine combos? Hopefully your batteries are not at the end of the road. Get them load tested.


The SurePower 1314 combiner/separator that Brett is suggesting will provide some protection for your alternator. However, the wiring scheme when using a combiner/separator smart solenoid is completely different than a manual switch scheme.

Batteries won't last long if you're solely dependent on the alternator for restoration. Johnny's recommendation for a dual-bank multi-phase charger is a must have.

Earmark Marine
Old     (stuey)      Join Date: Dec 2004       09-01-2009, 3:03 PM Reply   

So what you are saying.. using a simple 1/2/all/off perko switch, it should be:

perko 1 post to batt 1 positive post
parko 2 post to batt 2 positive post
all power wires including amps power wires to go common
boat common ground wires to batt 1 neg post then jumped to batt 2 neg post also

Does that sound right?
Old     (johnny_jr)      Join Date: Mar 2006       09-01-2009, 3:16 PM Reply   
That is right if using a perko switch.

Again assuming you keep your batteries charged and only use 1 or 2 and not both when running electrical equipment without the motor on. You should always have a charged "back up" battery to start your boat with.

Important - Batteries should be all the same size, type (agm, lead, etc..) and roughly the same age. All these variables play a roll in your batteries being able to get fully charged. When 2 or more batteries are combined together each battery will only take as much charge as the weakest one in the link. I have heard this from my 3 battery vendors. This applies for bad batteries as well as size difference.

Example #1 - If you have 2 batts combined in parallel with each other and 1 is a group 24 and the other a large group XX both batteries are restricted by the smaller group 24 as far as capacity

Example #2 - If you have 2 batts and they are of equal size, but 1 only take 70% of it's charge then the 2nd battery is limited by the 70% volume of charge.

Sorry if this is confusing, but it will make a difference between a reliable bank of batts and a non-reliable one.
Old     (david_e_m)      Join Date: Jul 2008       09-01-2009, 3:51 PM Reply   

Yes, that is right. I usually don't include grounds in my schematics since they're all common anyway.

Your boat runs with the Perko on "All".
You're at rest with the Perko on just one battery.
You never rotate the Perko while the engine is running.

The Perko remains on "All" if you have a single bank charger and "off" if you have a dual bank charger.

That's it.

BTW, on Brett's diagram there should be a simple on/off battery switch to isolate the two banks when charging with a dual bank charger.

Earmark Marine
Old     (stuey)      Join Date: Dec 2004       09-01-2009, 4:59 PM Reply   
Thanks guys!! I had it set up differently (wrong) on my old boat and just about to set it up on my new boat. I don't use a charger typically, its more there for piece of mind when sitting around listening to music. I don't normally stop for more than 20-30 minutes usually and never had a problem before. Just like having the extra reserve just in case!


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