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    electrical appliances charger failing-gctid385818

    Not sure if this is normal wear after 840 hours, or a grounding issue or what, but in the last year, after 3 flawless years, the Origo electric/alcohol stove, Norcold refrigerator, microwave (magnetron) and now the battery charger (Promarine ProTech1215i) have all failed. The stove and refer had board problems. The battery charger just quit charging and no IEDs are on. These have been separate events over the last year, but the stove and refer quit within a week, then the micro and charger croaked in the last week. Could this be a coincidence or is something else going on?

    Any suggestions or advice would be most appreciated!

    #2
    First guess, line voltage! Sounds like long term brown out/low voltage problems to me. Check carefully your marina supply voltage at your boat, not at the dock. This way your cord set condition will also be counted for. Anything more than 5% drop (industry standard maximum) is considered a brown out condition and can damage equipment, appliances, etc. That's anything less than 114VAC. While it may not damage some things, the longer or worse would be the greater the drop the more damage you can expect. If you find your voltage is 114V or less the next step is to check the dock supplied voltage. If that is reading 114V or less demand that your marina do something about it. It's their responsibility! If you find the voltage reads ok at the dock then examine your cord set carefully.

    A short story about my marina. It sits at the end of a long back road with maybe 200 houses on the road total. There are also 3 marinas, 1 of them being a large marina with full 3 phase, 480v service dock side and all. Problem electrically down this small, long road is during the winter months only the 200 house use electric and the load is minimal. During the summer you now have easily 600 plus boats (100 or so 60ft+) all drawing huge amounts of electric. Every year during the months of May and June as more and more boats become occupied the voltage gets lower and lower until we (collectively) convince the electric company come out to the small, long back road and step the transformers up that supply the whole road. I personally know of many people in my maria that have suffered burnt up compressors in their ac units and broken microwaves exclusively because of this line voltage problem. Were are much faster on the the phone to the power company these days than in years past. While cord sets remain the #1 cause of low voltage in boats, sometimes the source can be an issue as well.

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      #3
      Actually, this is one of the potential causes I have suspected. Our boat is stored in a covered dry slip with a bodega in Mexico. Even on good days, low voltage occurs in the little community and with people using power washers, grinders and even welding, the lights flicker and brown out. In the past I would leave my boat plugged in to shore power using the Marinco line and adapter to a regular grounded outlet. Could this be occur if the appliance was not actually being used? The only things that would normally be on when shore power was on would have been the battery charger and occasionally the Norcold refrigerator.

      Thanks for the feedback.

      Matt

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        #4
        Matt, I would say that is definately your issue. Before you start pointing finger though, I would still perform your voltage checks to be sure. Then I would start handing over bills to the marina for your equipment replacement costs and demanding they correct the line voltage problem which actually can most likely be pushed right to the local utility from the sounds of your story. Federal laws govern the distrubution and delivery of electricity and the local utility has to abide by them. Now, seeing that your boat is stored in Mexico...I'm not sure how that will pan out in the end. I'm not familiar with their laws...if any regarding power delivery. The only other thing I can think of in short order is you could buy an autostepping transformer for your boats supply. They are based on the line voltage, 120V in this case, and the current which I'm guessing is 30A? That device will run in the neighborhood of $350-$500 - a broad guess. It will automatically use whatever input voltage is available (within reason, say down to 100v) and provide an output at your rated amps of the correct voltage of 120v. It's more money to spend but if you can not get your voltage issues corrected this may be the path to go for your own personal guarantee of no future voltage or equipment problems from shore power sources.

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