Battery Switches - which one and how to install them
General InformationBattery disconnect switches help manage the overall use of electrical power onboard. They are used to connect or disconnect electrical devices from the electrical system. They help to prevent battery drain during periods of inactivity. They allow for a quick and easy way to shut down the entire electrical system in an emergency. An optional key lock helps to prevent unauthorized use of the vessel.
Use of more than one batteryIn addition to doing everything a battery disconnect switch does, battery selector switches permit battery selection (of two or more batteries) for specific purposes including starting engines, running accessories or even recharging. They allow for the use of one or more batteries in systems with one or more engines and facilitate putting batteries in parallel for emergency starting when one or both batteries are substantially discharged.
CertificatesAll our Battery disconnect switches and battery selector switches are UL listed, ignition protected and CE approved. This means they have been tested and certified by a respected outside agency, are designed to be used safely in a bilge where explosive fumes may be present, and meet all the requirements for use and sale throughout the world.
UsageOur battery switches are designed for surface mounting. Standard duty switches have a bright red polycarbonate housing for safety with a large easy-to-turn black knob. The housing of the heavy duty switches are red fiber-reinforced polycarbonate. Selector switches are designed with a “make before break” feature. This allows switching between the “1”, the “all” and the “2” positions while the engine is running. Models with an “Alternator Field Disconnect” feature offer protection for Non-Unitized Alternators should the switch accidentally be turned to the “OFF” position with the engine running.
USCG Electrical StandardsOn January 31, 1977 the U.S.C.G. Published Safety Standards for Marine Electrical Systems.
These standards cover such technical details as:
- Batteries and Associated Conductors
- Conductor Size and Ampacity
- Strain Relief and Pull Tests
- Termination Requirements
- Over current Protection
- Ignition Protection
U.S.C.G. Safety Standards For Electrical Systems, CFR Title 33, Chapter 1, Subchapter S, Part 183, Subpart I