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DC Power Products
     •  Battery Chargers      
     •  StartNow

AC Power Products
     • Isolation Transformer
     •  A/B Selector

Onboard Communications System
     • C-Phone

Shore Power Cables
     •  Smart Y



Please have the following information available when contacting Charles Industries for assistance - 
•     Serial number of the product
•     Approximate purchase date of the product
•     Note any indicators or discrepancies

Be prepared to take notes for further troubleshooting or return information.


Any electrical measurements should be made by a qualified technician.


DC Power Products -
Battery Chargers

What are the proper AC and DC fuse or Circuit Breaker sizes for my Battery Charger?

The AC fuse or circuit breaker is equivalent to the AC AMPS rating on the label located on the right side of the unit.

The DC fuse is equivalent to approx. 120% the rated output of the Battery Charger, but no larger than 150% the rating of the wire.

Does my Battery Charger ever completely shut off?
No, the battery charger will remain on is a lowered rate of charge, to act as a power supply and maintain the batteries.

Why do my batteries appear to be boiling?
The electronic series battery charger we produce is a multi-stage charger.

You may be witnessing the first stage, the "bulk/high" rate of charge, which has a timed function of 4 hrs. After which, the unit will then cycle to the "float/trickle" rate of charge. 

Why do I seem to add a lot of water to my flooded batteries?
Flooded batteries will always evaporate fluids while being discharged and recharged, higher usage will require higher maintenance.

If the charger is being cycled on and off, not being allowed to operate for the full 4 hrs of "bulk/high" rate, the output voltage may effectively remain in the "bulk/high" rate. This will cause additional evaporation/out-gassing of the battery's fluids.

It is important to allow the battery charger time to cycle through the charging stages, ending in the “float/maintenance” stage.

Is there an adjustment that can be help cut back on fluid evaporation?
An easy way to "taper" back the amount of energy being supplied to the battery(s) would be to switch the "battery type selector" switch to GEL or even AGM. This will lower the peak voltage allowed to the battery(s) from the charger.

Can I use a Lead Acid/Flooded Cell Battery Charger on a Gel Battery?
Although a Flooded type battery charger could charge the battery, it is not recommended for typical charging/maintenance.
 

Can I use a GEL  Battery Charger on a Lead Acid Battery?
Our GEL charger can adequately maintain a Lead Acid battery, but it may not allow the Lead Acid battery to reach peak potential.

What size charger do I need?
For standard and deep cycle batteries, we recommend sizing the charger to (50% of the total AHrs of the house/accessory battery bank) / 8 hours of recharging/recovery time.

The 'hours of recharging/recovery' may be changed to accommodate faster recharging time, but we recommend not exceeding an average of 25 amps per battery.

For starting batteries, we recommend sizing the charger to (25% of the total AHrs of the house/accessory battery bank) / 8 hours of recharging/recovery time.

Why is the needle on the meter always showing max amps?
It simply may be overloaded. Try to lighten the load by temporarily disconnecting some of the batteries or turn some DC loads off.

The battery charger will respond like a power-supply, thus as DC loads appear it will react by supplying energy until it reaches its ampere limit.

A battery may be damaged. The charger can't distinguish between loads and the batteries, good or bad. Touch your batteries to see if any are hot. If so, turn off the battery charger and see if the battery voltage quickly drops, indicating a damaged cell(s). 

Why is the needle on the meter always showing 0 amps?
It is an indication of the batteries being charged or the charger has no load applied.

To test the charger, try turning on DC cabin lights. On a 12-volt system, 100 watts is about 7.5 amps (+/-2 amps) On a 24 volt system, 200 watts is about 7.5 amps.

Can you please tell me the difference between 2000 and 5000 model charger lines?
The primary differences between the 2000 and 5000 models are:   

1.  The 5000-Series is UL certified and the 2000-Series is not UL certified.

2.  The 5000-Series has better EMI filtering  (Electromagnetic Interference) providing additional protection from
      the radio frequency spectrum of external electronic devices.

3.  The 2000-Series has a 2-year warranty and the 5000-Series has a 5-year warranty.

What are the operating temperature specifications of the 5000 series chargers?
The 5000 series chargers are designed to operate at 100% of rating in a 0°/32°F to 50°C/122°F environment. 

Is it possible to simultaneously run your boat engine(s) while having the Charles battery charger left on?
Yes.  The battery charger has "blocking diodes" on each output and as such can operate in conjunction with multiple DC power/charging sources.

Our battery charger will appropriately adjust its output as needed. If the alternator has a higher voltage than the battery charger's current charging state, the battery charger's output will remain low. 

Can my battery charger work with two different battery types simultaneously? 

As long as the batteries are of the same cell type, the charger will not be affected and the batteries will be charged as needed.  (Larger batteries, though, will take longer to recover.)

If the battery cell types are different, the charger is best adjusted to accommodate the lowest charging rate. For example when trying to charge Lead Acid and sealed (AGM) batteries, use the “AGM cell type” setting.

For 9Q-xxxx models only: 

How can I adjust my charger to accommodate charging other types of battery cells?
 
To adjust the charger for various types of batteries:
     
•     Turn the charger off, and then disconnect the output to the batteries

•     Locate the voltage adjustment potentiometer (tinted red) 

•     Turn the charger on, then raise or lower the output to the appropriate voltage. 
 (For example, 14.2vdc for 12volt chargers, or 28.4vdc for 24volt chargers.)

* Check with the battery manufacturer to determine the recommended voltage setting.

•     Turn the charger off and then reconnect the batteries. 

What is a dripshield?
The dripshield is a charger over-head cover used to inhibit direct water from above and is recommended where chargers are located in areas subject to moisture and/or debris from above.

On the 5000 series SP chargers, where is the switch for choosing the battery type? 
T
he switch is located on the back of the charger.


DC Power Products -
StartNow

How can I troubleshoot problems with a StartNow device? 
Using a DC voltmeter, measure from the DC negative stud, to the remote indicator stud located on the StartNow. When the engine “cranks”, the voltage on the remote indicator stud will read approximately 12 volts DC.

Using 2 DC voltmeters, measure the voltage on the Main battery and measure the voltage on the Reserve battery. When the engine “cranks”, you will briefly see the Main battery voltage "dip/sag" below the Reserve battery voltage, then they will level off to almost equal in voltage when the StartNow enables.

Why does the remote light always seem to be flashing? 
Even if the charging source has been removed (such as the alternator or the battery charger), the remote indicator will remain flashing the “charge mode” indication until the Main battery becomes lower than 13 volts DC, or a measurable voltage drop of the Main battery occurs. 

Why does my indicator come on every time I start my engine, even though my starting/main battery is fully charged? 
The StartNow will generally connect the auxiliary battery during an engine “crank”, though very little energy will be transferred from the Auxiliary battery if the main battery has sufficient charge.

When using a StartNow/BattCom, which battery should I connect my battery charger to? 
Always connect your battery charger to the Main battery.  The StartNow/BattCom will automatically connect to charge the Reserve battery, once the Main battery has received an adequate charge. 


AC Power Products - Isolation Transformers

Why would a boat need an Isolation transformer?
To create a safer, “off-grid” electrical AC power source inside the boat. This eliminates to possibility “stray current” from nearby boats and eliminates the possibility of AC power leaking into the water.

Can I use one Isolation transformer with two shore-power connections?
No, only one shore power source can be connected at a time.

Why does my shore-power circuit breaker keep “tripping”?
On occasion, there can be a surge of AC amps commonly called “inrush”. If this becomes a nuisance, a device called a “transformer Soft Start” will be needed.

What size of Isolation transformer do I need?
Our isolation transformers are design around the most commonly found AC power outlet sizes at

If the boat has an electrical system, then it would be sized to existing shore power connection.

If there is no existing electrical system, the transformer should be minimally sized to the largest electrical load.

Why can’t I get power through the isolation transformer using a 120vac shore power cord?
If your transformer is designed for a 240vac only input, such as the 93-ISOBOOSTxx-A or the 93-iXFMR12T-A, there is not a available connection for the shore power “neutral” on the input.

I already have a transformer, how can I boost low shore power voltage?
If the transformer is designed for 240 volt AC output, the Charles 93-SMTBST50-A can be adapted to any shoreline transformer up to 50 amperes.

Can the Isolation transformers alter frequency from 50Hz to 60Hz?
The isolation transformers will not alter the frequency.

Can the Isolation transformers alter voltage?
Yes, some models can changes the voltage automatically, while others must be manually changed at the connections to alter voltage.

Why is the Yellow indicator on my Iso-Boost transformer always on?
The Yellow indicator will be illuminated when the shore power needs boosted. Many marinas use a 3-phase 208/120 “Wye” power transformer, making the nominal voltage to the outlet 208vac.
 

If the Iso-Boost Isolation Transformer does not appear to be operating:   

•     Check the input voltage from L1 to L2 only, not from L1 to N or L2 to N.  If you check from L1 to N or L2 to N
       you will get a false reading if there is a poor connection between the shore and the transformer.

•     Make sure sufficient shore power is present. A minimum of 185 volts AC input is needed to enable the
       Iso-Boost.

•     Check the input circuit breakers. If necessary reduce output load and reset the breaker.

•     Check surface temperature. BEWARE, this device can operate at a high temperature. If the surface
       temperature is approx. 110 degrees Celsius (230 Fahrenheit), allow time to cool.

•     Try the Manual Override switch located behind the smaller, lower right access cover.

•     If the Iso-Boost Isolation Transformer appears to be functioning, but there is no power to the distribution
      panel:

•     At the Iso-Boost’s output terminals, make sure there is 100-125 volts AC from L1 to N, and 200-250 volts
      AC from L1 to L2.

•     Check the secondary circuit breaker (panel). If necessary, reduce load and reset the circuit breaker.

If the Iso-Boost Isolation Transformer appears to be functioning, but there is no power to the distribution panel:

•     At the Iso-Boost’s output terminals, make sure there is 100-125 volts AC from L1 to N, and 200-250 volts
      AC from L1 to L2.

•     Check the secondary circuit breaker (panel). If necessary, reduce load and reset the circuit breaker.


AC Power Products - A/B Selector


9x-ABSELxx  AC source

How can I tell is my A/B selector (9x-ABSELxx-x) is working?
Using an AC voltmeter, check to ensure adequate voltage is coming to the input terminals of the ABSEL device. Then measure the output terminals to verify the power is passing through the device.


Onboard Communications System - C-Phone

Why am I hearing a lot of static in the handset?
This is a sign of a bad connection. Check all connections to see if moisture or corrosion has created interference. If this fails to produce results, try another handset.

If the above fails, try removing power to the C-Phone system. This connects all handsets to the incoming line 1 to see if the problem disappears. This will confirm the wiring to and from the C-Phone system.

Why do I hear clicking in my handset?
This is typically a result of a "shorted" connection.

Check all connections to see if moisture or corrosion has created interference. If this fails to produce results, try another handset.

If the above fails, try removing power to the C-Phone system. This connects all handsets to the incoming line 1 to see if the problem disappears. This will confirm the wiring to and from the C-Phone system.


Shore Power Cables - Smart Y  

Why don't I get any power from my Smart Y adapter?
The power phasing could be incorrect. The Smart Y 100 requires two “in phase” sources of electricity, while the Smart Y 50 requires two “out of phase” sources of 120-volt electricity.

On the Smart Y 100, if a GREEN indicator is ON and you still receive no power, check the boats internal breakers.

On the Smart Y 100, if a RED indicator is ON it is an indication of improper phasing on the input connections.

If no indicators are ON check the input connections.

On the Smart Y 50, if a RED indicator is ON and you still have no output, check the boats internal circuit breakers.

Why does the Smart Y 100 have to be used in conjunction with an isolation transformer?
The Neutral conductor from the shore power outlets is not passed through the unit.

Why won't the Smart Y 50 supply 50 amps of current?
The Smart Y 50 is limited to 30 amps due to its 30 amp input connections.

Why won't the Smart Y work with only one leg plugged in?
This is an inherent safety feature to keep voltage from "back-feeding" to an open input plug, preventing possible shock.

 
 

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