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Old    fff88            05-10-2003, 8:56 PM Reply   
Hey all, question. about a month ago i had my system installed, 2 amps, 7 speakers in boat 4 on tower, dual remotes, cd changer, blocks, fuses, AND a 1 farad Capacitor. Now, the boat has not been ran since the install and now the battery is totally dead. The guy who installed said it was the capacitor that drained the battery even though the system was off. Does this sound right? He said i should use some sort of isolator. I am planning to install an Optima Blue top and an isolator switch that can switch between either battery or both. I will then start the boat with the new battery and attempt to charge the dead battery back up and then use one for starting and one for stereo, ballast pumps, etc. Does this sound like it will work? he also said that with the isolator, that when in the off position, the cap will not drain the battery anymore. Does this sound right as well? Should i just dump the cap and call it a day? Sorry for all the questions, but i need help. thanks in advance. The system is only pushing 1600 watts max so approx: 800RMS. Do ineed a 2nd Battery? or just get rid of the cap, or both?
Old    chris_hargis            05-11-2003, 7:10 AM Reply   
From what I have seen here about capacitors, they do more harm than good. More problems than help. Try losing it and see how you like it.
Old    nohalfboats            05-11-2003, 3:36 PM Reply   
i had the same problem.The memory or yellow wire drains the battery after awhile.My sony deck also has a button to turn off this feature which solved the problem.
Old    fff88            05-11-2003, 4:28 PM Reply   
Thanks. Not sure what to do yet. Probably just take it out of the loop first. It is connected directly to the battery and then the block is next then the equipment. Everything is within inches of the battery too. My amps are only about a foot away maybe 18". all is 4 and 8 gauge wiring.
Old     (peter_c)      Join Date: Sep 2001       05-11-2003, 5:05 PM Reply   
Ummmm bad battery? Have it charged then tested.
Old     (bob)      Join Date: Feb 2001       05-11-2003, 10:05 PM Reply   
Im sure mines sat for a month this past winter with the cap connected and no switch to disconnect it and dont recall having to jump it off. Before you pull the cap id look at other culprits but id say from the research ive done the cap may not be all that they are cracked up to be, dont know if id go as far as Chris since all amps are made up of caps in the power circuit??
Old    xtigeman            05-12-2003, 2:47 AM Reply   
Cap will not drain a battery when stereo not in use.
Old     (typhoon)      Join Date: Jul 2001       05-12-2003, 6:45 AM Reply   
or think about a second battery with a stinger relay for 15.00 at
Old     (sandbag)      Join Date: May 2002       05-12-2003, 6:54 AM Reply   
My deck illuminates an "off" message
on the display. (this is the most brainless feature ever included in a battery operated
It will drain the battery by itself.
Make sure your deck power has been moved
to the second battery. When I first put
my system in I didn't realize I still had
the deck powerd by the first battery.
Old     (typhoon)      Join Date: Jul 2001       05-12-2003, 6:56 AM Reply   
I also got one of those small battery maintainers from overtons. i had a larger battery box and it slid right in the box on the side of the battery.
Old     (bigdad)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-12-2003, 9:51 AM Reply   
Sandy is right,

My stereo is a Kenwood with the removable face. Even when I press the "OFF" button and leave the face in the battery will drain. I have to remove the face each time put my boat away. This may be the quick solution to your problem
Old     (mossy44)      Join Date: Oct 2001       05-12-2003, 10:00 AM Reply   
sandy - whats the benefit of moving your deck power to the second battery? never even thought about that one. i will have to go and check to see how mine is.
Old    fff88            05-12-2003, 10:27 AM Reply   
Sandy, AP, thanks. That just may be it. It's brand new so i do not even know if the faceplate stays lit with amessage. I will charge my battery and then check. You know, it did stay good for a while because i went over a couple times and it was functional. That was within the first week and a half after install though. i am going to get a second Battery soon, but if i can just remove the face plate for now i'll be very happy.
Thanks to you all for your replies!!!!!
Old     (sandbag)      Join Date: May 2002       05-12-2003, 12:28 PM Reply   
Matt, I'm assuming that because you have a second
battery for a stereo setup you also have an isolator of some type, either manual of automatic.
Putting the deck on the same battery would leave
you with a cranking battery should anything
kill the stereo battery.
I set up my system like that but killed both
batteries anyway since I didn't move the deck
power over to the second battery : )
Old     (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       05-12-2003, 1:50 PM Reply   
My first thought is: Are the amps powered down with the stereo? The amps should have a control wire that connects to the stereo deck, usually to the wire marked "power antenna". This output of the deck is is always on with the deck, and used to signal the amps to power up. A shortcut installation method is to connect the amps control line directly to the +12, which leaves the amps powered up and drawing considerable current all the time.

Assuming that is not it then I would suggest getting a multi-meter and figuring out where the current is going. You have to be careful when doing this or you will blow the fuse/circuits in the multimeter, but it is not difficult to do.

Turn everything to "off". Disconnect the positive lead from the battery. Set your multi-meter to read AMPS, the lowest range available. Note that most multi-meters require you to move the + lead to a differnt connection spot on the meter when you switch to AMPS. BE CAREFUL THAT YOU DON'T ATTEMPT TO MEASURE VOLTS WITH IT SET THIS WAY!

Connect the meter between the battery terminal and the battery cable. If you have a digital meter then it won't really matter which way you connect the leads. If you have a old "needle" style meter then the red (positive) lead must go to the battery.

I would fully expect there to be a small reading, under 0.010 amps (10 milliamps). A reading that small you can ignore, as it would take a year to run your battery dead. A reading above 0.1 amps I would worry about, as it could drain the battery enough in a week to cause a problem.

Once you have the reading, start disconnecting things until you see a dramatic drop in the current. You will probably find that there are a number of items drawing a tiny amount each, but look for one drawing a lot more than the others.

Be careful that you don't turn anything ON while you are checking, as the meter will most likely not handle the many amps that the stereo system would draw when powered up.

As I said above, I would expect the amps to draw quite a bit if they were powered up, but only a tiny amount if they were powered down. In theory, a capacitor would draw no current, but in practice they leak. The bigger the capacitor, the more they leak. If it turn out to be the capacitor that is causing your problem then you might be able to find a better quality one that didn't leak as much.
Old    fff88            05-12-2003, 4:06 PM Reply   
Thanks all. Well, i went over to the boat at lunch and tried to see if anything obvious was the culprit. I had no way of giving it power today so i just started reading the deck manual after checking all the wiring. The system is on a seperate switch that i can turn on or off independant of the boat. So it was off. I think perhaps leaving the faceplate in is what did it. The manual says it has a clock. So, i am assuming the clock stayed on and ran down the battery over the course of a month. Does this sound logical? If i remove the face plate(which i did today) will it still draw for the clock and memory? I am going to call Clarion to find out. Tahnks again. Once i get the second battery i will not have to woory about it anymore
Old     (monstertower)      Join Date: Mar 2003       05-13-2003, 2:56 AM Reply   
I always add a Perko Battery Switch to every boat I've had. First it lets you have two batteries and switch to either one or both, and most importantly when not using your boat it's like disconnecting the batteries.

With that much amp it's nice to have an extra battery. If your at the beach for a few hours and running the amps drain your battery you just switch to the other one to start it up.

Do a search at for Perko Battery and you'll see what I'm talking about. You can usually pick them up off eBay for about $15. There is a simple "on/off" for single battery or Off/1/2/All for dual batteries.

Old    fff88            05-15-2003, 1:03 PM Reply   
Thanks Bill. I am getting a switch


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