Good news and bad news on battery chargers

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Good news and bad news on battery chargers

Postby sailmon » Wed May 25, 2016 3:12 pm

I wanted to share some personal experience in case anyone is looking for a new shore power battery charger. Last week, I went down to the boat to finish up some spring commissioning work. I found the refrig warm and realized that it had shut down because the battery voltage had dropped below 11.5 volts. All of the LEDs on my 40 amp Xantrex Truecharge2 were lit as they normally would be - but the unit was not charging. I checked wiring and fuses, and then called Xantrex tech support. They were pretty much useless in terms of "technical" support and did not seem terribly interested in customer service. They told me to 'hard reset' the unit by disconnecting from battery and AC, waiting 1/2 hour and then restarting. When the reset failed, they informed me the unit was dead and offered to sell me a new one at a modest discount. I actually found comparable prices on the internet. They had NO further insights into possible problems and offered no further direction on diagnostics.

The good news - the units work very well. They kept my 12 year old Lifeline group 31 AGMs charged and in good health.
THE BAD NEWS - I have had 3 Xantrex chargers die on me in 8 years. Warranty is 2 years and each one lasted around 2.5 years. In addition to seeking gear for our boats that works well, we all need equipment that is durable. This product is not!
Sailmon (Captain Bob Allenick)
S/V Her Diamond
1991 Freedom 38
Cleveland, OH
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Re: Good news and bad news on battery chargers

Postby rvivian » Wed May 25, 2016 3:31 pm

I had the same experience with Xantrex Trucharge and now have a Pro-Mariner charger that works very well.
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Re: Good news and bad news on battery chargers

Postby CaptLen » Wed May 25, 2016 4:20 pm

Imteresting- I had a Xantrex 40 amp for 12 years and it was fine; but I appreciate the heads-up on customer service attitude for future reference
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Re: Good news and bad news on battery chargers

Postby mike cunningham » Thu May 26, 2016 3:36 pm

I have had a xanterx true charge in for about 9 years now. Still going strong.

Also my three 110 AH Lifeline AGMs are still going strong after that same amount of time. Pretty good performance on the AGMs! I baby them, try to recharge max possible and temps are maintained within pretty hi lo limits but I am pretty happy.
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Re: Good news and bad news on battery chargers

Postby sailmon » Thu May 26, 2016 4:20 pm

Mike, Len - do you keep your boat plugged in and charger on all summer? On Her Diamond, the only thing running off of 12 volt when we are not at the boat is the refrig - and it draws very little - but the charger is turned on all the time we are at the dock. Manufacturer said there should be no problem leaving it on all season (usually on float).
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S/V Her Diamond
1991 Freedom 38
Cleveland, OH
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