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maintain your batteries over winter

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maintain your batteries over winter
https://www.minnkotamotors.com/...xMzE0NjEyS0#BATHOWTO
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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
Thanks Robert.

I have always removed my batteries from the boat and stored them in the basement over the winter, but this spring I kind of hurt my back lifting them into the boat and down into the battery compartment.

I’m thinking that this winter I will leave them in the boat and keep the on-board charger plugged in to maintain a charge.

In the video Robert attached, the guy said that “if your batteries are the flooded lead acid type the electrolyte level will have to be checked once a month”. I’m not sure that I want to uncover the boat once a month in the winter cold to check the fluid level, but I imagine the fluid could dry up and you could find the battery dry by spring.

Let’s open it up for discussion. What’s everyone else on the forum with boats doing to maintain their batteries during the winter? Remove from the boat, keep on-board charger plugged in, top off the charge once a month, or what?

It would be nice to have Gel batteries, but that could be expensive.

Thanks, Brian
(This post was edited by BSF on Nov 2, 2019, 8:10 PM)
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Re: [BSF] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I think you can go 3 month to check the water.
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Re: [BSF] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I remove them from the boat, fully charge them, then keep them on battery tenders in the garage. Periodically I will check them with a charger that tells me the percent charge of each battery. As long as they are in the high 90 percentile I just leave them on the tenders. I never have to add water and I use a hydrometer to check each cell maybe once or twice during the season just to see how the battery is doing.
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Re: [talyn] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to

I have 6 batteries to contend with every winter. It used to be 8, but I sold the RV in June. I remove all batteries and store them in a heated room in my garage. They are placed on 2 layers of cardboard on top of a foam carpet pad. They are all topped off, charge & water wise, and then not touched again until late April/early May when they are again topped off and reinstalled. I’ve been doing this for about 30 years and have never lost a battery in storage.

For any function that requires constant draining and recharging of the battery – like with electric trolling motors – I will NEVER use any battery except an AGM. Yes, they cost more. But it has been proven with controlled testing that they will last longer than any other type of battery common to these applications. I have gotten 8 years use out of an AGM that was used (drained/recharged) about 40 times a year for duck hunting – the duck club only allowed electric trolling motors. The battery was still working as intended, but I didn’t want to chance getting stranded with up to a 500 yard plus paddle back to the launch area. The longest use I ever got out of a lead acid battery used in those conditions was 5 years and most die in 3 to 4.

Last year, I bought a pair of ACDelco M24AGM Professional AGM Voyager BCI Group 24 Battery on Amazon Prime for $146 to run my 24V Minn Kota. Worth every penny from my perspective and experience with them in the past. Cabela’s has their brand on sale a couple times a year and I’ve had good luck with their brand in the past as well. Boat crank batteries don’t normally run through deep drains and recharges, so any good quality lead acid battery will give you longevity and function at a lower price.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with keeping any battery under constant charge either in or out of the unit it powers during long storage periods. But my personal experience has shown me that my process works also. The only thing I would add is that removing and storing batteries is best done in a room temperature space.


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(This post was edited by dubob on Nov 3, 2019, 12:00 PM)
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Re: [dubob] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I am on with what dubob is saying about AGM batteries. My boat has shelter in the garage 24/7 when not in use, therefore no need to remove the batteries. I keep the onboard charger plugged in and periodically keep check. I bought an AGM marine 11yrs ago and its still going strong but all good things must end eventually. I also use one lead acid marine battery which has been changed out 3 times. AGMS are a little more costly but I have decided to make the switch over fully once my lead acid dies. When adding up the 3X the cost of lead acid I could have purchased 1 AGM with left over change. Although dubob knows what works for him which my way hasn't failed me either. I also feel keeping batteries out of the direct cold will aid in their longevity.



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Re: [BSF] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
Years ago when I first started doing the bigger boat thing, that required batteries, I took them out of my boat and stored them indoors during the Winter but after doing that for years, I gave that up and started leaving them in the boat. I check them once a month, if my cranking battery is below 12.5 v, I put the charger on it but with my electric trolling motor batteries, I just keep the plug hanging out the side from my boat cover and plug it in for a day, once a month. Never had a problem using this method. The back of my boat, where my cranking battery is located, I just leave it loosely covered so it's not hard to open it up and put the charger on it, if need be, once a month. This method is a lot easier that removing, then reinstalling them every year.


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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
Very timely post. I spent several hours yesterday putting the Tin-Can away for the winter.
Since I only have one battery, and my boat is stored in a closed storage unit (it gets cold but is dry) I remove my one battery, set it on a piece of plywood (never set a battery down on bare pavement) and hook it to a Trickle Charger. Sufficient to maintain charge and prevent freezing. Mine is a maintenance free marine deep cycle battery, so can't check the water level, but I do disconnect it from the trickle charger once a month and put my DMM across the terminals to check the voltage. Long as it stays between 10.5 and 12.5 VDC, it's good.
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Re: [Tin-Can] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
Todays batteries can be set directly on concrete/pavement and it will not harm/drain them.
Fill them with distilled water only.
A charged battery cannot freeze.
Dirty terminals will cause a battery to discharge then fail.
A cold storage is better than a hot storage.
A smart charger is the best battery investment you can make.
To be nice to your batteries charge them ASAP after discharging them.
The End.
“It’s all fun and games until someone loses an ‘eye’”.
** Member formally known as SBennett.
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Re: [BSF] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I have always left my batteries on my boats and all of my boats have been stored outdoors. I typically charge them once during the winter (on a day that is not bitterly cold). Because my trolling batteries are extremely difficult to get to (horrible engineering by the boat manufacturer) I only check the water level once a year and even then I rarely find that they need any water. My batteries have lasted over 3 years, so I see no reason to change what I am doing; especially, since I often use my boat up into January and then begin using it again in March or April at the latest.


"If I fished only to capture fish, my fishing trips would have ended long ago."
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Re: [kentofnsl] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I agree with Kent, I leave my batteries in my boat and plug charger in once a month or so. I have never had a problem and I get excellent battery life.




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(This post was edited by wyoguy on Nov 3, 2019, 9:31 AM)
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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I have seen flooded lead acid, Batteries blow up in trucks and pickups
and it is no fun. you don't want this to happen in your boat.

so I think I will change to AGM Deep Cycle.

this is what I did
google (best battery for boat trolling motor)

both of the links are from the same guy. the bottom one is long and he talks more about using batteries for big boats but I think it is worth watching.

What is the Best Battery for a Boat
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZdGQeRO_bY

How to Choose the Best Battery for your Boat

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KvOwFBxmT44
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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
After struggling with standard wet-cell batteries in my boat (trolling motor), I decided to bite the bullet. I bought two VMAX tanks AGM batteries ($250/each).

I've never had trouble since. I can run my trolling motor all day with confidence. And I never check water levels anymore. :)

I currently keep my boat in a storage unit from November to February. There is no power or heat in the unit. I pull my batteries and keep them in my basement storage room on a shelf. I plug them into the charger and leave them until I'm ready to put them back in the boat and go fishing.

Once the new garage is built, with power, I'll probably keep them in the boat and just keep them charged during the off-months.



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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I have one of these mounted by each battery in my boat. I do not use it for charging just to maintain.
https://www.harborfreight.com/...aintainer-99857.html
Plug them in after each trip and leave them hooked up until covering to take boat out. Leave them plugged in all winter.
Just replaced the starting battery this year. Lasted six years.
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Re: [dubob] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I presently have a Cabelas AGM group 24 ,bought onsale in June 2012. Its sits on a wooden shelf in the garage in the heat of summer ,cold of winter.

Its charged up after every use, never sat for very long uncharged. When not in use during the winter I occasionally charge it, especially now that its over 7 years old. I put it on the charger a few days ago ,hadn't seen a charger for a month, it took less then five minutes for it to pop to 100%.. Its gets hauled to Montana every summer ,and used frequently for six weeks, as well as here locally.


Sold on AGM for the electric trolling motor. I was told a few days as I was going to make a purchase on a new pair of truck batteries for my diesel truck, that AGM batteries cannot be jumped, and only trickle charged, they were pretty adamant about that. Although there has never been a reason to jump the AGM battery I do have, I do charge it with a charger that has the AGM charging mode .

Not sure about the trickle charge or not being able to jump start AGM batteries in a vehicle . Not too concerned , I didn't buy AGM for the truck .
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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
To add , I have two group 27 Deep Cycle batteries in my fifth wheel, the old Kirkland brand from Costco, just the plain lead acid deep cycle RV batteries . Those batteries are 10 years old.

The fifth wheel is 12 years old this month ,the original battery lasted a couple years. The fifth wheel is plugged in 24/7 other then when on the road. I check the water a couple times a year, and have no idea why they have lasted so well ,but will continue what I am doing. I think some of it is, they are never discharged very much, a few hunting trips, where they run the furnace all night ,but get charged up in morning with the generator running, and are always plugged in .
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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
I store my boat covered and under a carport, but outside. I leave my batteries on the boat and just plug in my NOCO on-board, two bank (10 amps per bank) charger all winter. Its a "smart" charger so it only charges when the batteries drop below a certain level of charge. The electric bill is about nill. My batteries last 6-8 years and they are Group 24 lead acid. One is a crank battery the other a deep cycle. Oh, my batteries are sealed so no fluid levels to check! I just check to make sure there is no corrosion on the terminals. (with sealed batteries, I have never had any corrosion either!) WHY ON EARTH ANYONE DOESN"T HAVE AN ON-BOARD CHARGER ON THEIR BOAT IS BEYOND ME!! Its the best investment (about $100 or so when on sale) for your boat and for your sanity! You don't have to uncover your boat, and don't have to go digging to get to batteries with a normal battery charger, and a simple, easy plug in with a regular extension cord after a fishing trip.
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Re: [liketrolling] maintain your batteries over winter In reply to
The best way to maintain battery's is to use them all winter, I know you are going to try as long as you can find any soft water to troll, if DC does freeze its only long enough for you to get your oil changed and boat cleaned out for another trip.Wink
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