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blacksquirrel2

Electrical issue.

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Two battery set up through a perco switch. On board charger hooked directly to batteries, not through perco. When installing batteries, perco off and charger not plugged in, I get a momentary spark on the ground wire to battery. Will not do it again unless you leave ground wire off for a short time. Then it will do it again. Am I just seeing a diode in my charger loading or do I have a problem?

 

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im no electrician but you should never see sparks unless you are bleeding energy somewhere. if your perco is off you should not be drawing any energy. I would run a meter between my ground wire and my ground and try and see what voltage im pulling or how many MA im drawing..

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That could be the onboard charger? Most of them use a little energy to monitor your battery condition. I would unhook it and see if you still gat a spark. With your perch off you shouldn’t get a spark.


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That could be the onboard charger? Most of them use a little energy to monitor your battery condition. I would unhook it and see if you still gat a spark. With your perch off you shouldn’t get a spark.


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The charger does not go through the perco it is hooked direct to batteries.

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Electrical issues on a boat are trick.  I second disconnecting the charger and seeing if it still happens.  Also get a multi-meter and check for continuity through the Perko switch - could be there's something off with the switch.

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Electrical issues on a boat are trick.  I second disconnecting the charger and seeing if it still happens.  Also get a multi-meter and check for continuity through the Perko switch - could be there's something off with the switch.
I will try both those. Good thought on the perco switch

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Take the ground wire off the battery post and put a test light between the ground wire it’s the alligator clip on the wire end and with the pointed end attach the light to the battery with a clothespin or a small vise grip pliers be sure The pliers don’t touch anything hot, if there’s a draw your light will be on in the test light, now disconnect your charger if that the problem the test light will go out, if not keep removing the fuses and replacing them till the light goes out. Now you know what area to look into as that fuse controls certain things. Gives you a ball park area to search.

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Process of elimination. Disconnect the charger. Then see if the spark goes away. It could be a filter capacitor inside the charger, that is discharging. If it is not the charger, you have something drawing current. Disconnect one wire at a time, until the spark goes away. Once you find the wire, trace down what it goes to,.

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Process of elimination. Disconnect the charger. Then see if the spark goes away. It could be a filter capacitor inside the charger, that is discharging. If it is not the charger, you have something drawing current. Disconnect one wire at a time, until the spark goes away. Once you find the wire, trace down what it goes to,.
If it is the charger is there a problem?

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not necessarily, but possibly. I would need to troubleshoot. Sorry I can't be more definitive

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Do you have any radios wired with a memory? Usually someone would have bypassed the switch for the memory wire. This can cause a slight flicker at battery cable installation as well.

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I had a boat that kept draining my battery, and it sparked every time I removed or attached the negative battery terminal. The wiring was so bad that I hired a marine electrician to rewire the boat. He found an orange wire that was always drawing current. I didn't have a Perko style battery switch. That orange wire didn't seem to have a home any more (after how many owners messed with the wiring since 1987?), so he hooked it up to the new bilge pump with a built-in float switch.

 

The boat was kept in my driveway with the plug removed, and with that orange wire hooked up to my bilge pump I had no more dead battery or sparking issues.

 

Maybe you have a wire like my orange wire that is always hot, even with the key and Perko switch turned off.

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Is it just a matter of the fact that you are completing the circuit and it sparks as the wire gets close enough to the terminal for the current to arc?  The arc that you see is the total current demand of all things that demand power as soon as you hook the cable up.

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I'm confused as to why you would take the ground wire off and on? I agree you are bleeding capacitors in some onboard electronics.

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I take my batteries to be load tested every year while getting the boat ready for the season. I noticed the small spark on reinstall

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20 minutes ago, blacksquirrel2 said:

Yes it is. I unhooked the charger and it quit. Now the big question is, is it ok or do I need a new charger?

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Its pretty typical, your charger isn't bad because its doing that, most all will. 

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