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Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
09/16/2014
Posts: 190
I've had the same cranking battery for two years - going into the third season now. It also runs all my pumps, lights, and three graphs. This has worked fine up until now.

A few weeks ago, my console graph shut off when I started the big motor to move to a new spot. At first, it did it intermittently, but then it began shutting off every time I started the big motor. Then a couple days ago, along with that problem, the front two graphs flashed and rebooted themselves when I started the big motor. The next time I started the big motor, all three shut off. Finally, after a couple times doing that, the big motor failed to turn over.

I had jumper cables, so I shut down all the graphs, and jumped the big motor using one of the trolling motor batteries. It started fine, so I took it for a 10 minute spin, just so I could test whether the big motor was charging the cranking battery. It definitely did. I shut her down, and she fired right back up. The rest of the day, I ran with one graph at a time, shutting it down before starting the big motor, and had no more issues with the motor not starting.

Here's my question: I assumed (and still do unless you guys tell me differently) that it's time for a new (and possibly bigger) cranking battery. When I got home, I volt-tested the cranking battery and it reads 12.20.

Is a bad battery for sure my problem, or is there some other possible cause for this issue?

The motor is a 1988 Yamaha 200HP. The battery says: BCI No. 27DCM / CA @ 32 F 810 / CA @ 0 F 650 / RC 150.

Thanks in advance!

Posted on: 5/15 23:45:19
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
03/04/2013
From GODS country
Posts: 383
I would say too much draw off one battery.
The Humminbirds need a certain amount of voltage to keep running otherwise they shut down.

That has been my experience so far.

Posted on: 5/16 5:45:29
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
01/21/2010
From East Bethel
Posts: 101
I had the same issue it actually screwed up my bird and I had to send it in
Hummingbird fix it for free. But I got a letter with the return stating I need a separate battery for graphs. No problem since adding another battery

Posted on: 5/16 6:09:44
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
07/01/2010
From Wahkon,MN
Posts: 824
If you could post the make, type of battery (cranking or deep cycle) amount of cranking amps and the reserve capacity it would really help to give the best feedback. Without that info it is tough to speculate. Also maintenance schedule for the battery helps.

You may be over-drawing that battery, add a second deep cycle for your graphs and such, maybe run only one graph off the starting battery. Otherwise you could link 2 batteries together and run all that off of them but yo really want 2 equal condition batteries linked not an old and new as the new battery will fail prematurely.

Secondly, if you have not maintained your battery water levels you will see premature failure of the batteries (assuming they are lead/acid batteries). I leave my batteries plugged in most of the year and find myself adding about 2 cups of distilled water in the spring and 2 cups in the fall. Low water will kill the battery and I suspect that may be your issue with a relatively new battery.

Posted on: 5/16 8:37:24
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
09/16/2014
Posts: 190
Quote:

MarkBruzek wrote:
If you could post the make, type of battery (cranking or deep cycle) amount of cranking amps and the reserve capacity it would really help to give the best feedback. Without that info it is tough to speculate. Also maintenance schedule for the battery helps.

You may be over-drawing that battery, add a second deep cycle for your graphs and such, maybe run only one graph off the starting battery. Otherwise you could link 2 batteries together and run all that off of them but yo really want 2 equal condition batteries linked not an old and new as the new battery will fail prematurely.

Secondly, if you have not maintained your battery water levels you will see premature failure of the batteries (assuming they are lead/acid batteries). I leave my batteries plugged in most of the year and find myself adding about 2 cups of distilled water in the spring and 2 cups in the fall. Low water will kill the battery and I suspect that may be your issue with a relatively new battery.


Hi Mark. I included the specs you asked for at the end of my post above. The only think I didn't include was the name brand - it is a NAPA cranking battery. The water levels are good, and I charge it between outings - an "outing" being a day on the water, or 5 days at Lac Seul - I never let it sit uncharged for any length of time.

I literally do not have room for a 2nd battery. My trolling motor is 36v, and between that and the cranking battery, there is just no space.

It IS an automotive cranking battery as opposed to a marine cranking battery. I don't know what the difference is. Could that be my issue?

Posted on: 5/16 9:30:50
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
11/23/2015
From Minnesota
Posts: 549
I think you need a bigger battery. I run three graphs lights pumps radio etc etc all of of one battery and never die out. Now I do not sit in one spot for 6 hours either but I run an interstate size 31 marine cranking.

Posted on: 5/16 10:07:04
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
07/18/2013
Posts: 517
I never bought into the AGM battery craze, but for industrial usage, in hot and cold environments, real life experience, the AGM batteries will last up to 5 times longer. They cost twice as much, but in the long run are still a better investment.

Just a note on charging AGM batteries, normal chargers sometimes have trouble charging them, especially smart chargers without a special AGM charging mode. They will act like they are not taking a charge. Simple solution, connect the AGM to a standard battery, hook the charger up to the standard, and this almost always fixes the charging problem. Lots of AGM batteries get returned with this issue, that are in perfect condition. Or, but a charger with an AGM charging mode.

Posted on: 5/16 10:24:41
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
01/09/2008
From Mn
Posts: 3136
The difference between a marine battery an auto is only how many solder points the plates have to hold them in place,Marine have more solder points
Heres a battery charge/discharge list I think you may need a larger and newer battery.Your battery will yet work but it just aint taking a full charge.
You wrote " I volt-tested the cranking battery and it reads 12.20."
Charge it fully let it sit 24 hours then check the volatage again.at 12.20 your less than 50% capacity of charge



* Fully charged batteries store at 12.75 volts
* 50% state of charge is 12.3 volts
* 100% state of discharge is 11.90 volts

Posted on: 5/16 10:54:54
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
09/16/2014
Posts: 190
Great info fellas,thank you!

Posted on: 5/16 12:05:52
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Re: Cranking Battery Question...
LSF Member
Joined:
11/28/2012
From Grand Forks, ND
Posts: 96
Quote:

dew2 wrote:
The difference between a marine battery an auto is only how many solder points the plates have to hold them in place,Marine have more solder points
Heres a battery charge/discharge list I think you may need a larger and newer battery.Your battery will yet work but it just aint taking a full charge.
You wrote " I volt-tested the cranking battery and it reads 12.20."
Charge it fully let it sit 24 hours then check the volatage again.at 12.20 your less than 50% capacity of charge



* Fully charged batteries store at 12.75 volts
* 50% state of charge is 12.3 volts
* 100% state of discharge is 11.90 volts


This.

What's happening is the voltage is dropping so low when you crank up the motor it is killing the graphs. The graphs are probably rated for 10-19 DC volts in. And if it drops momentarily below the lowest set point the shut off since the internal electronics can't smooth out the voltage drop enough to keep it in acceptable range for the graph.

Posted on: 5/16 14:03:11
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