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Michael Jack

That explains a lot, John. This summer, I was on the boat by myself for a bit with a Samsung Galaxy Tab and a Samsung phone. The boat batteries managed fine. Then my wife arrived with an iPhone and a Mac. The batteries already started to empty surprisingly fast. Then my two daughters arrived with just their iPhones and that put things over the top. I really have to figure out this winter how to generate more electricity (or have less visitors but that won’t happen :-))

David Eberhard


Great points about easy to overlook loads.

Years ago when I purchased a new Paneltronics dc load center, I opted for the new whiz bang led digital meters and led pilot lights showing what circuits were energized. Oh it all looked great. It wasn’t long before I realized that I was losing a good 4 amp hours every day! I added a simple switch to what powered the meters so I could turn them on when I wanted to check things. All others times, they were off. That made a great difference. The next thing I looked into was all of the led pilot lights that were always on. Things like cabin lights, bilge switches, anything else that was normally always on. I just removed the wires that were powering the lights. That also lowered the energy consumption some, but not as much as the panel meters. There was the unattended bonus that it was very easy to see if something was left on that shouldn’t be. Normally there are no pilot lights on.

Darren Greenhalgh

i was having the same issues with my 400amp/hour lithium battery bank. when the kids were on the boat playing board / card games all night then wanting to charge their phones i noticed that the battery was significantly low – especially in the winter months here in the pacific NW. so, instead of growing my battery bank i just bought 2 small jackery battery/inverters for the boat so the kids can use them to light the LED lights i installed and also charge their phones at night. one in the main cabin and one in the aft cabin. i just charge them either on shore power or when the engine is running. they work great and was a simple solution to my battery needs and less work than jumping into the main lithium battery bank. there is a down side to them though – more crap on the boat. i have a hard rule now – i cant bring anything else on the boat unless i take something off of the boat with comparable weight!!!!
im not sure if there are any other down sides to my knee jerk reaction of supplementing the battery bank with the jackery portables.
can you think of any?
john, this is THE best site on the internet for cruising information – a huge thank you your way for all of the time you have dedicated to the site – love it!!!!