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How to Charge a Trolling Motor Battery From the Outboard Motor-Deep Cycle and Charging Methods
Anytime you hear different stories about fishing expeditions or a ride out in the lake, you never miss hearing that horror story of being stuck due to a dead battery. Most people would use the outboard motor to make it back to shore. Have you ever considered that your outboard motor can recharge your battery?
Despite the possibility, you first have to keep a battery combiner in your boat to make this possible. Apart from this, you also have the option of upgrading your outboard motor by installing a regulator. Afterward, all you have to do is combine the wires with your battery. Unfortunately, both option may be hard for you to manage while in the middle of the lake, and you find yourself lacking the necessary items.
In the article below, we address all relevant questions relating to trolling motor batteries. Let's get started.
How to Charge Trolling Motor Battery While on Water
Imagine this, you are out in the middle of the lake or ocean, and suddenly your trolling motor dies. On inspection, you discover you may have a low charge or dead battery. What next? You are not alone. Often, you are bound to hear a sob story about how a fishing expedition was great until the trolling motor batteries died. It can be an unpleasant experience when faced with such a situation without a way of recharging the battery. Not to worry, as there are ways you can still get to charge your dead trolling battery.
Using an Onboard Charger
When you have an onboard charger installed in your boat, it is a good substitute as it is always attached to the battery system. An onboard charger ensures you never have to experience the horror of a dead trolling motor battery.
A portable charger such as a trickle charger is preferable in the case of a small boat with limited storage. It may or may not work when you are out having a good time; hence you will have to come up with some way to power the charger. You can do so by having it hooked in your outboard motor.
You can also install a solar panel on your boat. It allows you to charge your trolling boat deep cycle batter with free energy from the sun. It is important to note that, after installing solar panels, you should also have a charge controller. The controller will keep the voltage at a safe level to avoid damaging your battery. Even though the installed panel does not supply a lot of power, it acts as a trickle charger may.
How to Charge Deep Cycle Battery at Home
Trolling motors are best powered by deep cycle batteries. Deep cycle batteries are designed to deliver a low to moderate current over a long period. These batteries are also meant to discharge on a much deeper level when compared to other marine starting batteries. Therefore, a crucial thing to consider when purchasing deep cycle batteries is the reserve capacity.
We all know extreme high or low temperatures affect our batteries' performance. Such is the case with deep cycle batteries. Apart from this, there are other factors to consider when you want to charge your deep cycle battery properly.
Choosing the correct charger based on the battery type you have. For example, if you have an AGM battery, you are advised to use an AGM charger.
Consider the size of your charger. A battery charger has to supply around 10% of the maximum amperes of your battery.
Calculate how long to charge your deep cycle battery.
Let's look at a step-by-step guide on how to charge your deep cycle battery at home.
First of all, ensure all the battery terminals are clean. That is, you have to check for any grease or dirt and remove it.
Connect your cables tightly onto the battery terminals.
Make sure to connect the cables correctly and to the terminals. Red cable to red terminal first, and black cable to black terminal last.
Plug in your charger and switch it on.
Remove your charger when fully charged. Using a smart charger is beneficial as it will notify you when the charging process is complete. With a non-smart charger, make sure that you calculated beforehand the charging time before starting the charging process.
When unplugging the charger, first remove the black cable then the red one.
Lastly, grease the terminals to prevent corrosion.
Charging Trolling Motor Batteries While Running
You can charge your trolling motor batteries while the boat is running or moving. Any boat owner knows that most boats will charge the battery while the battery is running. One of the ways to charge the trolling motor batteries is through the outboard motor. You may find that your outboard motor is already set up to charge your battery. In case this is not done, you have to convert it for it to be able to do so. By installing a regulator/rectifier, this may be possible. Apart from this, it is possible to charge the batteries using solar energy or an onboard charger.
When using an outboard motor, it is good to make sure that the regulator parts are compatible with it. To ensure the outboard motor charges your trolling motor batteries every time it is running, here is what to do;
Check whether your boat has a lightning coil already installed.
Make sure your regulator/rectifier has all the wires. It should have four wires; a red wire, black wire, and two other colored wires. The red and black wires are the DC-out wires, while the two colored wires are the AC-in wires.
Connect the red wire to the positive terminal of your battery first and the black wire to the negative terminal last.
In case your engine has a pull starter, disconnect the two wires from the flywheel; and connect them to the two colored wires on your regulator.
In case you need to install a lightning coil, it is advisable to select one that fits the boat's motor. To fix it, remove the flywheel and screw the lightning coil into place. Make sure the bolts are locked in place, and the screw holes line up.
Charging your trolling motor deep cycle batteries with an outboard motor is possible when you use a battery combiner or a regulator. Apart from this, you have other options to charge your battery, as stated above.
It is also important to understand the safety measures to take when charging your trolling motor batteries. It is also advisable to understand your boat's power consumption needs. Observing the expected safety regulations would ensure you enjoy a reliable and hassle-free battery performance from your trolling motor.