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Author Topic: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!  (Read 8308 times)

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Waterfoul

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I'm sure John "slipkey" will agree with all this as he learned the hard way Sunday about what NOT to do.

John's starting batterty went dead on him Sunday morning for reasons unknown (he thinks he has a drain somewhere on his Ranger).  But as I was motoring down the lake and about to wave to him I see him shoot off his fire extinguisher!!  I immediatly turned hard right and mashed the throttle telling Ron to get the extinguisher ready as soon as I got off plane.

We pull up next to John (leaving a little distance!) to offer assistance as I see John kicking flaming wires into the water.  It seems John made the mistake of trying to jump a 12 volt starting battery from his 32 volt trolling motor system.  You cannot do this people!!!  You must first unhook one battery and jump from THAT one.  32 volt systems carry a LOT of amps that a standard jumper cable cannot handle, much less the 12 volt battery on the other end.  This can cause damage to the battery and fire will result in most cases.  Also, make sure you are grabbing the starting battery with one end and the trolling motor battery with the other.  Grabbing a second trolling motor battery WILL result in a fire, right John??

In the end we did get John's motor started and he finished out the day with no more damage than some melted carpet and the need to buy a new set of jumper cables.

Be careful out there!!!!

Mike

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fishhound

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2013, 03:46:45 PM »

I have had to jump my 250 with two trolling motor batteries in tandem after a day of using them. Didnt have issues with fire though. Ideally you could use just one.

Waterfoul

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2013, 04:52:22 PM »

I have had to jump my 250 with two trolling motor batteries in tandem after a day of using them. Didnt have issues with fire though. Ideally you could use just one.

If you have a GOOD set of jumper cables with a high gauge wire you will get away with it.  Not the best way, but you can get away with it.  Cheap, low gauge cables will melt even on a 24 volt system.
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Mike S.

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2013, 07:32:30 PM »

I've jumped mine several times. My cables are pretty beefy. I do have an issue with my 1 year old starting battery. It was new the first time you and I fished Manistee last year. I had to jump it that day. Hmmmmm.....
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Jmeis

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2013, 07:51:12 PM »

If the system is done correctly there should never be more than 12 volts on a single trolling motor battery. The 36 volt series connection is made at the plug.  I have jumped hundreds of times even left cables hooked up for extended periods when we were running 4 black lights all night.
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Waterfoul

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2013, 09:54:51 PM »

If the system is done correctly there should never be more than 12 volts on a single trolling motor battery. The 36 volt series connection is made at the plug.  I have jumped hundreds of times even left cables hooked up for extended periods when we were running 4 black lights all night.

This is not always true.  Many boats have a full 36 volts running from bank to bow.  My 24 volt system has 24 volts running forward.  It can be done both ways.  Like this:

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Slipkey

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2013, 10:01:17 PM »

What happened in my case was a bit different, but I should have disconnected the 36v system before attempting to jump the starting battery.  

I had my starting battery hooked to trolling battery #1 and didn't seem to be getting a decent jump.  I decided to jump from battery #3, which is on the other side of the boat.  Not paying attention, I pulled the clamps off of the starting battery, instead of trolling #1, and attached them to trolling battery #3.  Since the 36v system was still in place, I effectively completed the circuit with no where for the current to go.  Within seconds, my cheap emergency jumper cables were in flames.  

It was a freak mistake, totally my fault for not paying attention to what I was doing and I really appreciate the two boats that raced over to help.  The back deck of my boat now looks like someone lit a giant one of those 4th of July "snakes" on it and I have a few minor burns, but it could have been much worse...  
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Mike S.

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2013, 05:50:29 AM »

That's how my batteries are hooked up. I always jump off of the number 3 battery because it is closest to my starting battery.
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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2013, 09:32:22 AM »

Glad the situation wasn't any worse.  I don't have a 36 volt system on my boat, but thanks for the info on this. 
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Waterfoul

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2013, 09:38:59 AM »

That's how my batteries are hooked up. I always jump off of the number 3 battery because it is closest to my starting battery.

No wonder you have trouble with your starting battery!  LOL!!

You must have a good set of cables.  Does it always get you started right away?
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Dan

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2013, 10:30:36 AM »

I have a Stealth Charging system and after installed it has a switch you can simply throw whenever you need to start using your trolling motor batteries. I highly recommend the Stealth Charging system. KVD uses it. It's a little more expensive, but charges on the go and works well.
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Waterfoul

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2013, 11:41:46 AM »

I have a Stealth Charging system and after installed it has a switch you can simply throw whenever you need to start using your trolling motor batteries. I highly recommend the Stealth Charging system. KVD uses it. It's a little more expensive, but charges on the go and works well.

Maybe on my next boat.  I'm not putting any more money into my 16 year old boat.  Great system though.
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fishhound

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2013, 01:56:16 PM »

The new rangers are coming with a jumper box.

BIGSHOW

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2013, 08:35:44 PM »

Great info, Thanks!
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Jmeis

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2013, 08:44:59 PM »

Just went through this on a brand  new Z9 with all the bells and whistles. Only thing I can say is if your connections are anything but poitive to negative don't jump it. The second thing is the new Opti Max has an inline circuit breaker that will blow if you hook a 36 volt system to a 12 volt battery. Not pretty we spent 3 days figuring it out.Voltage especially DC voltage can hurt you. It does not let go and can be evil......
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Slipkey

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #15 on: October 09, 2013, 09:06:25 PM »

Maybe on my next boat.  I'm not putting any more money into my 16 year old boat.  Great system though.

Liar, liar, pants on fire!  I saw that new Rayethon Dragonfly…  ;D (and, yes, I'm jealous...)
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djkimmel

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #16 on: October 10, 2013, 12:17:55 AM »

What you described Slipkey sounds like me when I'm sleepy... that will definitely cause what we in fishing call... a 'problem' ;D

I usually blame things like this on my being a redhead. BUT, I also believe the reason one of them hasn't killed me is... because I'm a redhead. I've set myself on fire 2 or 3 times. I forget...

I have 3 Deka 31 dual purpose deep cycle batteries - 1 as a starting battery and general electronics battery, and it is also hooked in a 2nd series to provide 36 volts for those times I need more power in current or wind for my electric trolling motor.

The 36 volts is only on the 2 wires coming off the complete 3 battery series to the trolling motor so my electronics and starting my outboard are fine. Most of the time I use just the other 2 battery series to run my older electric motor in 24 volt.

On the one or two times I've needed a jump thanks to mistakes I also blame on being a redhead I just remove the jumper wire to the 3rd starting/36 volt battery and jump from the 2nd middle battery. Works fine. You just have to make sure you don't complete a 2 or more battery series. Right, Slipkey?? (hey, I really like your use of the word 'effectively' ;D) :) Glad you're okay and I don't really want to make light of your 'incident.'

I've been told you can also do what I think fishhound is saying and hook to tandem batteries - where you still have 12 volts but more than one battery hooked up positive to positive, and negative to negative. You just get longer lasting 12 volts that way. I rarely see bass boats and smaller fishing boats doing that. On purpose anyway ;D

DON'T TRY THIS IF YOU AREN'T SURE FROM EXPERIENCE but my foggy memory has me thinking when you have batteries in tandem (still 12 volts but multiple batteries) you are actually supposed to hook to the 1st battery's positive and the last battery's negative to get the best multi-battery 12 volt draw?? Anyone smart out there who has done it and knows if this is so?

I DEFINITELY don't want anyone to just try this because I mentioned it. I haven't tested some hookups, and it's been so long with my weird 24/36 crossover plug and 2 series plus still 12 volts setup that I'd have to get out my diagrams and stare at them for a while. Maybe call someone who actually knows some things about batteries and hookups. I believe if you listen to a redhead and go astray it is not out of the question that you could create a black hole that swallows the universe and all existence?!? I DON'T want that on my conscience...

I've had plenty of experiences in 'Fun with Electricity' and am thinking I've met my quota. (I actually think I 'crossed over' once when I cut a wire by pinching it over and yanking it while it was plugged into the wall... I don't remember parts of it but there were black marks that took a while to come out of my skin, lots of black 'soot' that used to be cord covering, and a new hairstyle including funny eyebrows... a 'non-redhead' would have probably been toast. Literally... ;D)
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Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of Michigan BASS Nation or TBF of Michigan.

thedude

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #17 on: October 10, 2013, 08:59:36 AM »

you don't have to disconnect anything. if you hook to a single battery's terminals, you get 12v even if its inside of  24 or 36v circuit. Jumper cables aren't going to melt based on voltage alone. If you look at the wires running 36v or 24v to your TM they are likely half the gauge of even the cheapest jumper cable.

Now - jumping 36v power source to a 12v battery, there's a problem. 
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Waterfoul

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Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #18 on: October 10, 2013, 09:33:39 AM »

Maybe on my next boat.  I'm not putting any more money into my 16 year old boat.  Great system though.

Liar, liar, pants on fire!  I saw that new Rayethon Dragonfly…  ;D (and, yes, I'm jealous...)

Ah yes, but that's a demo unit straight from Raymarine!  One of the benefits of the job.  :-)
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Slipkey

Re: A word of warning about your boats batteries and jump starting!!!!
« Reply #19 on: October 10, 2013, 05:09:35 PM »

What you described Slipkey sounds like me when I'm sleepy... that will definitely cause what we in fishing call... a 'problem' ;D

That was a big part of it, I'm sure, Dan.  Of course, I'm always sleepy when I fish tournaments.  I get so keyed up before a big day of fishing that, added to being a night owl anyway, that I find it hard to fall asleep.  I don't think I've been on the water at sunrise with more than 4 hours of sleep in over a decade.

I've had plenty of experiences in 'Fun with Electricity' and am thinking I've met my quota. (I actually think I 'crossed over' once when I cut a wire by pinching it over and yanking it while it was plugged into the wall... I don't remember parts of it but there were black marks that took a while to come out of my skin, lots of black 'soot' that used to be cord covering, and a new hairstyle including funny eyebrows... a 'non-redhead' would have probably been toast. Literally... ;D)

 :o  I've done a lot of AC and DC electrical work, but this was a first for me.  Scared the crap out of me, truth-be-told.  The adrenaline let-down made me sleepier still.
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