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Found 18 results

  1. Hi there, We have recently been having problems with losing power on our batteries, so around 4 weeks ago, we have 4 new leisure batteries fitted. However the problem has continued. Our inverter has started beeping and the fridge is cutting off, so i think the batteries have lost power. -We had the batteries fitted by experts, so I think they were fitted properly. -We charge the batteries from the engine. And have been running the engine for at least an hour a day and sometimes up to 4 hours to attempt to recharge. -We have only been running lights, fridge, tv (sporadically) and water. No charging/laptops etc. -We only turn the inverter on when we need power from the sockets, which is around an hour a day. -We have been reassured that they were top quality batteries If anybody can help with advice as to why we are losing charge/not charging up, any advice would be appreciated, as we have no power at the moment. I am also worried that the £450 we spent on new batteries has gone to waste and that the batteries are now dead. Thanks
  2. Hello everyone, I was hoping to start a discussion about power systems on a narrowboat. I've read both of Paul Smith's books about living aboard and the very informative Tim Davis articles about narrowboat electrics. What I don't know is what people down-on-the-ground actually *think* about different power strategies. At the moment we are trying to choose between two boats that we like and think are practical. We have lined up a remote semi-permanent mooring with no mains power (basically a friend-of-the-family is giving us a mooring at the bottom of his field) but for us, about 40% of the appeal of a boat is cruising, so we would like to do that as well. However, just "running the engine in the morning" doesn't really appeal to us (why not just move the boat? and also the farmer doesn't want too much of that) and isn't it true that you shouldn't do that with an older engine? So may I ask which boat the knowledgeable liveaboards living here would pick? (they are comparable in every other way.) I feel like Boat 1 is pretty appealing, but it doesn't have a generator. We've got some cash for buying new batteries - we just assume we'll need them - but man, those build-in generators sound freaking expensive! Boat 1 A Beta 43hp engine 240v landline (not very interested in this, but could be useful) Mastervolt 1200v inverter with a Sterling battery charger 3.5kva travel pack 300w solar panel with a control panel 1 starter and 3 leisure batteries Sterling battery management system Boat 2 ~60 year old Lister JP3 engine rebuilt 2002 (not sure if you should even run this just to power the batteries - isn't it bad with the older engines, or is that an old husband's tale?) 240v landline Waeco 2kw inverter, Sterling charger built-in Honda 2.2kw silent generator (PETROL) 1 starter and 2 leisure batteries Would y'all mind telling me which setup you prefer, or what you have on your boat?
  3. Just thought I'd warn any boaters heading for the Chesterfield Canal and using a Nicholson Guide. the guide says that there is mooring with power available at Drakes Holes. This is not the case. We arrived this morning hoping to use the facility with the card, which the lock keeper at West Stockwith had supplied. When we moored up, with signs all over the place saying BW 24 hour mooring, we found that the power outlet wouldn't take cards at all, there's a keypad only. Called C&RT who first of all said that if it was keypad operated it was for permanent moorers only Hang on says I, this is a 24 hour visitor mooring, no signs of permanent residence. I'll put you through to someone else, hang on. That someone else did eventually get back. It turns out that the power is for winter mooring or a trip boat only, and you need the code. Well, it isn't winter, there is no trip boat, why not give me a code, I'll pay. No dice as yet, hoping that Rob Taylor the C&RT mooring manager may get back, but don't hold much hope or a good result. So, don't take the book's word on the supply of power around here. Bob
  4. Hi all, I'm just about to purchase two of these solar panels and was wondering whether anyone had any experience with mounting something similar on their roof and was able to recommend where best to get screw-down / secure mounts? I had a search through old posts and, while many discuss various options for securing solar panels or discuss building their own frames, no-one seems to have mentioned actually purchasing frames from a given site and how they found the experience of installing it (unless I missed a post somewhere). Thanks as ever for any thoughts or experience. Ryan
  5. Hello folks - I'm 'noodling out 'what I need for a change from living as a ccer on my own to a ccer with a boat that will have up to 4 people (1 baby) and one 10 year old part time. - I'm getting my 45ft boat extended to 58ft. My 3 way fridge has come to the end of its life A washing machine would be good I'm not familiar with the maths I need to do to work out what my system can cope with and accordingly what else I need What I have 3 80 watt solar panels 3 105ah leisure batteries A small alternator (I cant remember its output, its for a 3 pot sole diesel, I just remember someone who saw the boat commenting that it didn't have a great output) A small inverter (too small) I have LED lights, a pump for the radiator, gas cooker, obvs water pump for shower, occasionally watch a film on an LED TV, and a laptop. My MPPT controller can have 1 more solar panel at 80watts I think I can make room for 1 more leisure battery. A generator and compressor fridge is too expensive. So what Id like to be possible - is a conventional in house sized fridge & washing machine, new energy efficient. A new Inverter (2kw big enough?) - If required a 4th leisure battery and solar panel. Is there an idiots guide to working this stuff out, so I can really sus what I need/what's possible? Thanks Martin
  6. Hi! We're new to boating and are on a boat with 4 leisure batteres (Xplorer 120Ah). Very annoying power issues: the batteries don't seem to hold charge well at all, but it doesn't seem to be a busted cell (paid a guy to come around and tell us that much, but unfortunately not much more). We can charge to well above 12V and leave overnight with little drain, but as soon as the batteries are in use, or god forbid the inverter is on, they drain like there is no tomorrow. Also using certain items, like the 12V fridge, results in lights dimming, fllushing the loo results in radio resetting, etc) Is this all due to weak batteries? The problems do seem to be less when they are charged more. Our solar arrives tomorrow, which will be a god send (we are continuous cruisers). At this stage we are considering taking the hit and just getting 4 new batteries. It is a real bother to run this loud old lister for hours to charge them up, disconnect them and wait for them to drain so I can test them each in turn. The thing is they were expensive batteries, and some of them might be fine. If I buy some more batteries, is there a place I can test and sell the old ones? Do I even need 4 of them? If I could test them prior to buying new ones, wouldn't it be best to replace all of them at the same time anyway? Is there a big chain in London (aside from Halfords) where I can just rock up and get a good deal on leisure batteries? Any help or advice would be much appreciated!!
  7. Hi All, How does a boat fridge switch between 12v and 240v when plugged in to shoreline, is it just a case of fitting a rocker switch to the 12v and turning off when plugged into shoreline. Cheers Markymark
  8. Does anyone have any experience with IBS inverters? At £1,764 inc VAT for a 1600W PSW it seems good value and it can handle starting loads up to 4.5kW. I particularly like the fact that it can power a Nespresso! http://www.tbruk.com/us16012v--us16024v-inverter-4753-p.asp It's made in Switzerland.
  9. Hey, does anyone know where to buy these? I've found one website but at £75 I'm hoping to find somewhere cheaper.
  10. I have one of these: It doesn't appear to look like anything on the Sterling web site or anywhere else for that matter. Does anyone else have one? If so do you have a manual for it? What I'd really like to know is whether it has a starter battery charging circuit or not.
  11. Hi. I want to build a strictly leisure battery bank with two 70Ah batteries and 2500watt inverter that will be used only for things like kettle, low power microwave, digital gadgets like phones and laptops, maybe cool box from time to time. I do not want to connect my new leisure bank to the boat's engines and intend to charge it by petrol generator only. I have an area near helm where I can place batteries and inverter - like a wooden box/cupboard. My question is... do I have to ground the batteries and the inverter? Thanks, t.
  12. Hello Any advice or tips on the following energy problem would be much appreciated! We recently bought a dutch barge that we've just cruised down to it's new mooring. On the way down the the inverter only worked occasionally, most of the time the 'low battery' light was on. It has a 'Victron Energy phoenix multi plus' inverter with a 'Victron multi control' panel. I assumed the batteries were spent, but we'd be fine once hooked up to shoreline (32 Amp) And we were...for a few days. All was well but we no longer have any power - the inverter is once again just showing 'low battery' So....does shoreline bypass the batteries making it irrelevant if they are in good condition or not? (making it a problem with the inverter?) And should we still have the inverter on when using shoreline? (The switch options are 'on' 'off' and 'charger only') Thanks for your help, sorry if it's obvious!
  13. hello everyone, I'm thinking of buying a Senci SC2000i Inverter Petrol Generator (2000kw max, 1600kw continuous ). Has anyone got or use one? Are they any good? How long would you estimate it would take to charge three 110ah leisure batteries from 50%?
  14. Hi there new to the community so I hope it's alright to create a new thread. The narrowboat I'm currently looking to purchase is set up with an alternator, 3 new 12v batteries, no inverter, mains cabling throughout. There is also a generator on board. I'm sorry I can't provide specifics at this point, but even general advice much appreciated. If I continue with the purchase, I'm intending on putting on 4 Renogy 100 Watts 12v Monocrystalline Solar panels and doing my best to use the engine for power as minimally as possible (going into winter I realise that the solar is not going to give much power). The current owner will also be putting on a new 12v Fridge if I go ahead with the purchase. The appliances I intend on running would be a toaster, iron, TV, record player, iMac (I already own this and not looking to replace it), Laptop charger, Mobile charger. I'll be replacing all the current lighting with LED. There is currently a Washing Machine on board but the owner says its best to remove it as its on the mains (makes sense, although I would consider keeping it if anyone could provide a realistic solution). Stove and oven will be gas, have yet to decide on a water heating system. The current gas boiler is defunct. Currently considering a new gas boiler or a back boiler for the burner (no burner currently on board looking to purchase) to fuel hot water (taps, shower) and heating (there are radiators throughout but I'm not sure if they would be necessary once I purchase the burner - she's 63'. To be clear I will not be mooring up and 'plugging in', so everything needs to be off grid power. My knowledge is limited so being completely open, I apologise if my questions appear naive any support appreciated: Is it better to consider investing in a good inverter, or should I look at transformers on an appliance by appliance basis? If primary usage was 12v, would installing an inverter affect functionality or can you run both 230v and 12v with an inverter? I'm not particularly keen to keep the generator but would anyone advise that I do and why? Instead of an inverter or transformers would anyone's opinion be that I simply run the engine (with alternator) when using non-12v appliances, and why? I want to reduce emissions and costs from over using the engine unnecessarily wherever possible. Will the current 'all mains' wiring cause any problems with purchasing 12v appliances e.g. the fridge. If I wanted to consider keeping the washing machine what would you recommend having in place? Thank you for your advice.
  15. So here we go, i have a few ideas of things i want to upgrade about my boat. Mainly power to start with, i only have 1 12v plug (cigarette lighter power) so i want to put in maybe 3 more around. I do have an inverter but it only kicks out 1000w (i think) ill upload a picture, when i was a land human i was quite the little gamer and my PlayStation wont run off 1000w. I've been looking around and seen a few that will kick out 2000-3000 watts (Midlands chanderlers), any advice? From the invertor i know ill have to add more batteries as im a constantly cruising currently, i have a spare starter battery and my current 2 leasures are also actually starter batteries, how easy is it to hook up the other battery and should i look into buying another battery (an actual leisure one). Finally i have 1 solar panel which i believe is a 100w one is worth adding another one? If so how easy it is to do so? Any advice would be greatly appreciated Robbie Ally's Mist
  16. Can anyone point me towards something to help me with an energy (or should that be power?) audit? Or is it just a question of writing everything down in a spreadsheet or whatever? I'm aware I'll need to take average power drawn for each appliance, over the length of time its running for. Also any stuff sitting quietly on standby etc. But if it's an item that would only be running while either the engine or a generator is supporting it, should that be counted? Thinking about it - it's surprising how many powered devices have crept aboard lately...
  17. I'm in the market for a generator. Some may remember I'm the proud owner of a nearly new / nearly knackered set of (4x110ah) batteries. Before I replace the batteries I feel that having a 240v feed to the Victron Inverter charger would be a good way of looking after them (both as a daily bulk charge and weekly extra absorbtion charge - see I'm learning!). I know that some of you like travel power but to me that is still using the engine, and I think the engine is too expensive to wear out just charging batteries. So, I believe the only affordable option would be a suitcase generator that runs on petrol. But, I'm not that keen on messing about with jerry cans, storing petrol, paying pump prices etc. Then I saw suitcase generators that come ready lpg'd! Bingo I'm thinking. I've only scratched the surface - one company that supplies all the favourite gennies (Honda, Hyundai etc) with the lpg gizmo hooked up already. But a quick google for lpg generators brings up a lot more besides. As far as I can tell, the gas works out cheaper, you don't have to store petrol, and lpg can be picked up off the passing fuel boat or many other convenient places. The large cylinder lasts quite(?) a while. Doubtless there will be plenty of detractors. I'm very interested to hear about affordable diesel generators, or anything else really (but lets leave solar and wind to another thread). I'm wanting to spend up to 1k. I await your thoughts, experiences and musings, gentlemen (and ladies!).
  18. Has anybody experienced this problem before? Let me know if you need any more information. I am no electrician, so might have used the wrong terminology here and there, do forgive me! We live on a 60ft 2009 narrowboat in a marina, always connected to shoreline when moored. Problem: 230V power will suddenly cut out when connected to shoreline, regardless of time of day/temperature outside/what is running When power has gone off, lights (indicating battery on float charge/fast charge/inverter on) on inverter (Sterling Pro Combi S) not displaying Power can be turned back on by switching from shoreline power to inverter, which comes on, then switching back to shoreline - BUT has also switched itself back on When shoreline power is back on, inverter shows battery is on fast charge - takes approx. 1 hour to reach float/trickle charge Last occurrence: 21:30 Tuesday: 230V power turned off, 12V remained on. Nothing special turned on using 230V apart from usual fridge/freezer etc. Reading on DC Distribution: 12.7 and -07 Didn't check inverter panel Switched to inverter - working, and back to shoreline - working again Checked inverter panel - battery on fast charge (Switched between BATT 1/BATT 2 on DC Distribution. BATT 2 (starter battery) not showing on panel - discovered that was because isolator had been switched on. Switched off isolator and starter battery working as normal, engine started. Probably not related, but noting here just in case.) 22:30 Tuesday: battery on float charge 07:00 Wednesday: battery still on float charge Later on: Switched engine on, unplugged from shoreline, switched inverter on - working 08:50: Plugged back into shoreline while engine still running - no 230V power, 12V still working. Inverter panel lights not showing 09:00: 230V turns itself back on, engine still running, inverter panel - battery on fast charge 10:00: inverter panel - battery back on float/trickle charge Might also be relevant: When connected to shoreline, inverter won't switch on. Will only switch on when disconnected from shoreline - so when we are able to switch the inverter on when the 230V power goes off, does this mean that the inverter isn't registering that it is connected to the shoreline? Is one battery on its last legs/dead and causing the whole thing to cut out/drain so suddenly? I have pics of 230V/12V circuit I can attach if needed. Could there be a problem with an isolation switch for the domestic batteries, hence why 230V still off when engine running/connected to shoreline? Batteries last changed 3-4 years ago. Why did the power cut out while the engine was running, and the battery was on fast charge when it came back on? Why does whole inverter system go off when power cuts out?
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