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Category Archives: Boat Electronic & Electrical Systems

Electrical Survey, what do I look for?

Electrical Survey, what do I look for?

  Last week I received a query from a reader asking me what I look for during a comprehensive inspection of a boat’s electrical system. I’ve gotten similar questions from attendees at Cruising World’s annual Boat of the Year (BOTY) competition. So, I thought I’d spend a few minutes creating such a list today. Why? Well I don’t want your Continue Reading »

Shock Hazard Protection Makes a Giant Step Forward

Shock Hazard Protection Makes a Giant Step Forward

On board electric shock hazard protection takes a giant step forward. GFCI receptacles have an extremely high failure rate, especially in marine environments. One of the reasons for this is that few of us actually subscribe to the “test monthly” dictate found on the units. Doing this helps to exercise the mechanical mechanism inside the unit to ensure that it Continue Reading »

What does ABYC say about covering live electrical terminals?

What does ABYC say about covering live electrical terminals?

Recently a reader sent in the photo above that was taken on board their boat. The question is that the electrical terminals connected to the blue colored battery isolator and several auxiliary studs don’t have any rubber boots covering them. Basically the connections you see are all live and connected directly to the battery you can see at the bottom Continue Reading »

Why does my boat have a switch for the battery negative?

Why does my boat have a switch for the battery negative?

  “I’ve wondered for some time why my boat has a switch at the main battery panel that turns the DC negative on and off. I’ve sent in a photo of my main battery switch arrangement. None of my friend’s boats have this feature and I’m just curious about it.” Switched DC negative is typically a European electrical feature that Continue Reading »

Is My Boat’s Electrical Panel Moisture Resistant?

Is My Boat’s Electrical Panel Moisture Resistant?

A question from a reader came in earlier this week regarding the electrical panel on their new sailboat. Basically the question had to do with concerns over the PC (printed circuit) board that is essentially the main electrical panel board for their boat. The concern is over the possibility of the fine bits of electronic components on the back of Continue Reading »

Hubbell Marine Adds Introduces USB Outlets To Their Line-up

  Connecticut Company Hubbell Marine just announced the addition of several new USB outlet receptacles to their line up. Let’s face it, in today’s world it just seems you can’t have enough of these receptacles at your disposal. As shown above the two new devices offer either a two USB or four USB cord configuration. The units offer some enhanced efficiency Continue Reading »

Shallow Bilge Might Equal Soggy Electrical System

Shallow Bilge Might Equal Soggy Electrical System

I’ve touched on this topic before, but ran into this photo just this morning while reviewing some of the photos I took this year while serving as a BOTY judge for Cruising World Magazine. The two flat looking red handles in the lower center of the photo above are the primary battery switches for the boat in question. The glossy Continue Reading »