I have 2 batteries on my boat with a battery switch.I bought a solar charger from haber frieght and was wondering if it is a good idea to leave it hooked to them all winter or will this over charge them and cause damage to them?Thanks for any help.
a good solar chargeing setup will include a good charge controller that will regulate the charge & keep the batteries in top shape. no matter what solar panels you buy ,make sure the charge controller will do the job that you want it do.
not knowing what solar panels/ charge controller combination that you have, you would need to consult the documentation that comes with your equipment.
I place my swith to OFF and hook it up the batteries and that is it. For 3 yrs. now this is what I've done.... Everytime I use the boat,,, it's always at 12.6V and never had a problem with my solor panal. I simply place it on top of my T-top and wrap the cord around one of the stantions.... Never had a problem.
What RJ said. Harbour frieght sells the charge controller for around $25 It wont overcharge and basically has a diode which prevents the batteries from draining out back threw the solar panels. Some solar panels (I would say none at harbour frieght) may have this cicuitry built into the unit. As the previous poster said he's never had a problem, the battery life will be cut in half or worse with the constant charge discharge and because it's only a minimal discharge the battery is not really being "exercised" as they should and will loose potential. Batteries should be fully charged and a panel used as a maintainer.
If the output of the solar panel is less than 15 watts, all you need is to make sure the panel has an inline diode, most maintainers do! Over 15 watts you will need a charge controller. The smaller (under 15 watt) panels do not produce enough power to harm the battery, especially when connected to dual battery setups, and at under 15 watts the charge controller will eat up a lot of the output power. They do draw some power to operate.
Cool. I thought about ading a solar panel to my upper sundeck just to maintain the batts since sometimes she sits for a couple/3 weeks without use, just the auto bilge pump. With 2 batteries and a perko switch, do I neeed 2 chargers, or can 1 be wired into the circuit somehow to maintain both?