Fishin’ Tip Friday – Winter Battery Care

This week, instead of talking about a tip or tactic, we’re going to give you some timely battery care advice.  With winter dropping down into most of the country, some of us “northerners” experience harsh temps and hard water.  Some of us even have to put the boat “Up” for a few months.  With cold storage, there are some things that need to be done to make sure your gear weathers the storm.  One important area that needs attention is your battery system!

We reached out to our friends at Pro Charging Systems/Dual Pro.  They’ve been the leaders in domestic charging solutions for over 25 years, doing testing and research on a continuous basis, so they certainly know what’s up.  Here are the recommended BEST practices to maintain lead-acid batteries all winter long.

• Check the battery connections – Ensure that all terminal lugs are clean and tight.
If battery posts/terminals are dirty or show signs of corrosion:
o Use a quality battery terminal cleaner
o Or make your own with a baking soda and water mixture
• Check the electrolyte level – The plates must be kept covered so they do not dry out.
If the solution doesn’t cover the battery plates:
o Distilled water can be added to a level approximately ½ in above the plates
o Do not overfill
• If possible, keep your batteries suitably protected from extreme temperatures
• Batteries should be kept/stored in a well ventilated area
• Never leave batteries in a deep depth of discharge
• Use a PCS/Dual PRO Professional Series and Sportsmans Series chargers optimally maintain your batteries over the winter.  The charger will systematically check the voltage of the batteries and top off when needed.
• After 30 days, the charger will go into an equalization phase. You will still want to check on your batteries every 30 days to ensure that the charger hasn’t seen an issue with the batteries and turned off or that the power hasn’t gone out.

Seems pretty straight-forward…clean ’em up, fill ’em up, and keep ’em charged up and you’ll be good to go come spring.  Now keep in mind, this is for lead-acid batteries.  Dual Pro specifically recommends getting your lithium battery storage details from the manufacturer themselves.  They see a lot of variation currently within lithium technology on the market, so there really isn’t a set of recommended BEST practices that cover all the possibilities.

We’ll get our lithium tips from the lithium experts at Relion and bring them to you soon!