“Electronics are getting bigger and bigger and bigger,” states 2016 Bassmaster Classic winner, Edwin Evers. “Color screens draw more power than before.” Additionally, Evers notes that aboard a tournament level boat, it is a must to use marine accessories like power poles, livewell cooling systems, plus circulating and fill pumps and a jack plate for the outboard engine.
“Small cranking batteries will not serve,” says this pro. Practicing what he preaches, Evers’ Nitro Z21 is fitted with a bank of TKK batteries
Even though the Optima Blue Top AGM batteries Evers uses are among the finest available,( he claims to have a pair in one boat for 8 years that are still going strong as of this writing) he takes the following steps to make sure they perform their best and last their longest.
Off Season Storage
I recommend completely charging your batteries before storing your boat, then disconnecting the terminals so nothing can draw the battery down. It is also critical to have a battery maintainer/charger hooked up through the off-season to continually maintain your batteries; I use the OPTIMA Digital 400. When the seasons starts, you’ll want all your equipment ready and in top notch form; if your batteries are at a full charge, they will be ready to perform and you’ll be ready to hit the water.
Coming Out Of Storage
Check all the connections for tightness and corrosion. A loose connection may prevent a battery from receiving a full charge or delivering current, which is not good because it can negatively affect the performance of the battery. If you have a built-in charger on your boat, be sure there is no corrosion in the terminals; I see this a lot. Buying a can of battery cleaner/protector can help if you have this issue. Be sure your batteries are charging evenly (each battery should be charging at the same volts), which will help maximize performance.
I prefer to use a heavy-duty 12-gauge extension cord when storing and charging my batteries –and I always use the shortest cord possible. Also, do not let your batteries sit for an extended amount of time in a state of discharge – always charge them as soon as possible.
The right charger, like the OPTIMA Digital 400 and Digital 1200 Performance Maintainer and Battery Chargers I uses, will enhance the performance of 12-volt AGM batteries. The Digital 400 Maintainer maximizes battery life, recovers deeply discharged batteries and keeps 12-volt AGM and flooded batteries healthy during storage. The Digital 1200 can charge, condition and maintain as well as recover deeply discharged batteries.