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#11604316 - 05/15/16 04:33 PM Solar power battery boost for trolling motor?
JakeRG Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 02/15/14
Posts: 9
Loc: Humble, TX
Has anyone had experience with these solar powered onboard battery boosters? I have a 36v motor guide that I punish 14hrs a day 4-6 days a week. Will these things actually work in my scenario and keep my batteries going when I forget to charge them up the night before? As well as extending the life of the batteries overtime?

Any thoughts or recommendations are welcomed!

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#11604343 - 05/15/16 04:58 PM Re: Solar power battery boost for trolling motor? [Re: JakeRG]
Cast Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 07/31/12
Posts: 4771
Loc: North Texas - God's Country
They don't have enough power to charge batteries at the rate they're discharged, so no. And 36v might be tough.
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#11604763 - 05/15/16 08:47 PM Re: Solar power battery boost for trolling motor? [Re: Cast]
JakeRG Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 02/15/14
Posts: 9
Loc: Humble, TX
Appreciate it

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#11605007 - 05/16/16 01:02 AM Re: Solar power battery boost for trolling motor? [Re: JakeRG]
Flippin-Out Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/25/15
Posts: 1564
Loc: Magnolia, TX
Originally Posted By: JakeRG
Has anyone had experience with these solar powered onboard battery boosters? I have a 36v motor guide that I punish 14hrs a day 4-6 days a week. Will these things actually work in my scenario and keep my batteries going when I forget to charge them up the night before? As well as extending the life of the batteries overtime?

Any thoughts or recommendations are welcomed!


Others are correct that adding consumer aftermarket "solar cell battery boosters" would be about as effective as filling the Grand Canyon with sand one bucket at a time....

So you fish 4-6 days a week? That's very frequent. A thought/recommendation that comes to mind is to make sure you have a 4 bank 15A charger (each bank) and DEVELOP A HABIT OF PLUGGING IT IN DAILY. Remember the two Ps! Park the rig, plug in the charger!

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#11605468 - 05/16/16 09:55 AM Re: Solar power battery boost for trolling motor? [Re: JakeRG]
Muzzlebrake Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 12/26/14
Posts: 1004
Loc: Euless
It would have to be a very large panel(s) to keep up. Solar panels can be used power a whole house but the roof is almost entirely covered with the solar banks. On the other hand it surely won't hurt anything to have a little bit of trickle. It may even help to de-sulficate the batteries but it sure won't keep up with the high amp drain. Probably more trouble than it's worth since you will need a charge controller for each battery.
Now on a big CC boat with a large roof area it might be feasible.


Edited by Muzzlebrake (05/16/16 09:57 AM)
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#11607347 - 05/17/16 12:07 AM Re: Solar power battery boost for trolling motor? [Re: Flippin-Out]
JakeRG Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 02/15/14
Posts: 9
Loc: Humble, TX
I have the Dual Pro Charger 4 Bank 15 Amp - PS4 on board. I plug in and charge my boat up immediately after every use, but there are occasions that I get side tracked with re-tying, replacing a rod guide, etc... Not to mention my daughter seems to believe her scooter takes priority. On two different occasions I have walked into the garage first thing in the morning to find a fully charged scooter next to a unplugged boat lol. I was curiouse about the solar panels to be used as a tool to reduce the amount of draw my batteries see in a day. So if they are hooked up to a fully charged bank, when I start to pull from the batteries will the panels regenerate a portion of what was drawn? So at the end of the day instead a fully drained bank maybe you have 40% life left. I don't know.. Just a theory and prob not a very good one at that.

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#11607356 - 05/17/16 12:53 AM Re: Solar power battery boost for trolling motor? [Re: JakeRG]
Flippin-Out Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/25/15
Posts: 1564
Loc: Magnolia, TX
Some calculations could be done. Yes, solar panels would generate some power to partially offset the drain level of the batteries. However, I suspect that any meaningful impact would need a LOT of square footage of deck space for solar cells - way more than practical for you to dedicate to that purpose. Additionally, you change the position of the boat during use, which may reduce the effectiveness of exposure for sunlight. Solar cells are typically fixed location, not bounced across a lake taking high G forces in shock and vibration. Most are not very durable as compared to marine equipment. Got a few thousand dollars and no need for any rear deck space?

You have a total of 3 batteries, and experience very high loads in a short period. A typical solar-charged system has a lot more batteries with a lot more mass & storage capacity than your system (tiny in comparison).

Here's what I did in my garage where I normally park the boat: From a suitable outlet, I ran an extension cord that was suspended across the ceiling using appropriate wiring retainers. The last wire strap that holds it is right above where the charger plug is located on the boat. That dedicated cord hangs down the correct distance right beside the charger plug when the boat is backed into place. Plugging in is as easy as I could feasibly make it. No cord to trip on, or for anyone else to take.


Edited by Flippin-Out (05/17/16 12:55 AM)

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