If you own a boat or camper, marine batteries are a must. They are also expensive and understanding how to maintain your marine battery will help to ensure that you get your money's worth out of the use of your battery.
These 7 maintenance tips will help increase the life of your marine battery.
1. Disconnect your battery when it is not in use
Many people think turning off their boat motor or the lights in their camper stops the drain on the marine battery. However, this may not be the case; there may be small things in your camper or boat such as clocks or other small appliances that, if left plugged, in will continue to drain your battery. By disconnecting your battery when your battery is not in use you can prevent this.
2. Keep an eye on your battery's water level
A lead acid battery needs topping up with water every so often. Don't let the battery's water level get too low or it will shorten the life of your battery. Water topping should be done after charging, as the levels rise when charging and could overflow.
3. Recharge Your Battery Immediately After Use
Never allow a partially drained battery to sit for any period of time. Even if you are planning on using the battery again in a while, recharging it will keep you from ending up out in the water or woods where recharging is not available and discharging your battery beyond what is recommended.
4. Don't Over Discharge Your Battery
While an over discharged battery can often still be recharged, it will shorten the number of discharge cycles your battery can tolerate. Over discharging your battery can seriously shorten your battery's life.
Don't Overcharge Your Battery
Overcharging your battery is even worse and can do more damage than over discharging your battery. When you over charge your battery you cause the acid inside to boil or percolate, which can cause your battery to crack or even explode completely, ruining your battery and rendering it impossible to use.
6. Don't let your battery sit too long between uses
Batteries are meant to be used and allowing them to sit for a long period of time will cause them to lose part of their charge. If you must let your battery sit, be sure to top up the charge every few months to keep your battery in the best shape possible.
7. Store in cool temperatures
Heat is hard on batteries and it can significantly shorten a marine battery's life. Therefore when storing your battery, make sure that you store it in a cool (not cold), dry place to help it maintain its life.
While maintaining marine battery maintenance is not difficult, it is a necessity for those who want to get the longest life possible from their batteries. Following these few simple tips will help you to achieve that goal and keep that battery running smoothly.