Batteries, cables, chargers and misc other stuff on Valkyr

Updated 9/2018 with comments on how this has worked out in the last 8 years since I wrote this article.

Re-doing the power systems on Valkyr

When we got the boat it had two optima batteries one in the starter bank and one in the house bank. There were two other group 31 Sea Volt AGM batteries sitting on the boat not hooked up. My plan is to use the two group 31 Sea Volt AGM’s along with 2 identical Group 31’s that I have on my old boat to make a house bank of 440 AH. The two optima AGM batteries will go in the second engine starting bank. These are controlled from the stock DC switch panel that has a 1/2/All/Off switch integrated into it.

To charge the batteries Valkyr had a 3 stage computer controlled portable automotive 1/10/25 amp charger just clipped to one of the batteries. Though it is a very nice charger we would rather that the bank be charged independent of each other. We purchased a Xantrex XC 50 amp 12v 3 bank multi chemistry battery charger to rectify this.

We got a pretty good deal by price matching at west marine $499 plus another 49 for a two year warranty that will replace it even if we drop it in the water. I normally don’t do extended warranties as they mostly are a rip off but Xantrex doesn’t have the greatest reputation with their support so we thought that a little extra caution would be good. Also it extends the warranty by a year which I liked also. We could have gone with a cheaper charger by several hundred dollars but this one can charge different chemistry banks separately as well as use input power from 240 volts down […]