I installed Lifeline AGM batteries upon commissioning the boat when new. I used GPL 27T's on the engine start and bow thruster service. I used the 6 volt GPL 4ct's in the house bank ( total of six, 660 amp hour capacity)

I just had to replace both of the GPL27T's. Boat was commissioned in July of 2008, so a bit over 7 years life obtained from those two. Hope to get at least a year or more from the house side, as they have been managed carefully.

Just data for those interested,


s/v LONGHAWKI B43 2008

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Sam, how are your GPL 4ct batteries set up?  I have two 4d batteries for the house bank and am interested in using the Lifeline 6 volt batteries when I have to replace the house bank.

Thanks, Richard

I have three "banks" of two gpl4ct's. Wire two in series and then the three sets in parallel. Two are located in the battery area in the footwell of the aft cabin. The other four are on the centerline behind the engine and under the aft bunk.

Sam, many thanks.  I will be looking at this as a winter project.


Sam, and anyone else,  I have two 4d as house batteries and find that running the fridge only has a constant draw of 5-6 amps and an hourly draw of 3.5 amps. If I miserly manage any electrical usage it will only last 7-8 hours before dropping me down to 12.1 volts (50%) and that is without running the freezer.  Running my navigation instruments, (without running the radar) takes 4 amps so this puts a lot of pressure on battery life.  Does anyone have any suggestions.


Primera Vista B43


If the voltage you are referencing comes from the silver panel over the nav station, then you cannot rely on it. I highly recommend adding a battery monitor.

Even then, these boats are energy hogs. My house bank is 660 amps hours since it will now carry me a couple of days. With normal loads and usage I can consume 100 + AH per day. A couple of days is 200+ AH. I never like batteries to get below about 60% state of charge.

I also added one solar panel just to help things along, as well as a larger alternator and external multi stage regulator. Without a multi stage controller the batteries never get a great charge from the standard alternator.

Not sure how you have the system set up, but that is my idea.

so.. add batteries, use external multi stage regulator, think of adding wind or solar for that little something extra. add a battery monitor.

apologies if you have already done these things, just shooting a quick reply


LONGHAWK B43  hull #9

John, I think we've discussed some of this before but here it is again. Those 4Ds just don't provide that much power and as Sam has already stated these boats are power hogs. The 4Ds are rated somewhere in the 135AHR each for a total of 270. At 50% you're at 135AHR at best. Considering the typical consumption it's barely covering your needs. Because of battery recharging patterns if you're out on the hook for more than a night then you have to calculate on 80% of the 270AHR which is only 216AHR, inadequate at best.

To improve your situation you have to both find ways of reducing power usage as well as beef up your energy system. The fridge and freezer are two of the biggest consumers of amp hours. Keeping the compressor coils clean is critical to their performance. I've also placed a 3/4" sheet of insulation in the bottom of the freezer to help keep the cold in. I've also placed a wire rack in the bottom that allows better air flow and therefore less compressor cycle time. If your 43 has halogen lighting replace the bulbs with LED types. The same for the anchor light.

Once you've done all that you can to reduce energy consumption then focus on the battery/energy system. I've done the same things that Sam has; Battery Monitor (Victron single bank), replaced the 4Ds with 4 Trojan 6V T105s for a house bank of 450A, High Output ElectroMaax 140A alternator, Balmar external regulator (came as a part of a ElectroMaax kit), and lastly a Kyocera 250W solar panel with Morningstar MPPI controller. Like Sam we can easily use over 100AHR per day. Actually it's more like 125AHR. On sunny days, while on a mooring or the hook, we can go 2 plus days without recharging thanks to the solar panel. Of course we need hot water for showers so the engine gets run daily, sometimes 2x but for shorter durations, which via the alternator replaces more amps into the bank.

Mind you all that comes at a respectable cost. Better batteries are the least expensive of all and probably the best place to start. The others really depend on how you use your boat. You'll really need to determine what your Return On Investment would be for each and move forward from there.

Good Luck


October Moon

Mike, How do you access the coils?  I believe the freezer coils are somewhere under the stove, but what about the fridge? Can you get behind the fridge?

Gary G


Sam here,

The coils (and compressors) for both the refrigerator and the freezer are located under the oven area on my B43. There are two wooden grills. They may be glued in place or have screws holding them in. If glued, pop them off and then add a screw to each side when reinstalling. I use a tooth brush to de-fuzz the coils.

The fridge does not have any access. Defrosting both the freezer and the refrigerator are done by turning them off and letting them warm up and de-icing the panels.



Gary, Sam pretty much nailed it on the head. The grills on our boat were glued on. I gently pried them off to gain access to the coils. One had enough residual glue which allowed me to simply push it back into place. The other was too loose to stay on its own so I made a wedge out of a small piece of paper which was enough to make for a tight fit. Keep them clean for max efficiency and reduced run time.



We went trough the same projects on Hibernia.

For batteries we installed 4x150AH Mastervolt Slim line that fit where the 2 original 140AH wet cells. Very good quality holding charge very well even after 6 years.

Battery control by Mastervolt DC shunt and Mastervolt Easyview monitors.

We have a 3,5 KVA Generator and the Electromaax 165 AH Voyager alternator serpentine kit with an external alpha pro regulator. We have a Mass Combi 2000W/100A charger with the original 40A charger for the starter and bow thruster. The Mass Combi can power the grill microwave and  all the 230V appliances.

And also two SOLARA M 110W PV with an MMPT regulator.

Only LED on board interior and navigation. Camro fans no AC for the Med in the summer.

For the fridge we keep the evaporator clean but I feel there is room for better insulation and maybe a variable speed thermostat.

Hope this helps you and others. This has completely changed our cruising comfort of the grid for up to 4 weeks.

Fair winds to all.


Hi Sam

Congrats on the long life of your batteries.

May 2008 our B43 came equipped with 2 Dekka 4d Agms that are rated for 198ah's of service for a total house bank of  pretty close to 400ah (396ah). Engine battery was Dekka Group 31)  October 2015 we replaced all batteries (7 and 1/2 years). The batteries were still giving decent service but we noticed the battery charger could not get the house bank to 100% no matter how long it charged. This meant significant sulfation was taking place and time for new batteries ( yes, i am aware you can equalize the lifelines but not Dekka's).While the argument of which manufacture of batteries is significant I think  proper maintenance and proper bank size is vastly more important than who makes a battery.  As an example, if you have a boat and I have a boat and your boat has 660 ah and mine has 400ah we use the same amount of amps a day We both charge accordingly I would think your batteries would last longer since you do not deplete your 600ah bank to the same level as my 400ah bank if we're both using same number of amps per day. There is also cost, the Dekka's gave 7 1/2years service but we have solar and we try to get the bank up to 100% at least once a week using our honda generator to achieve this in conjunction with the solar panels. The point in all this is education. Most batteries will give you excellent lifespans if properly cared for. Avoiding less than 50% discharging, proper charging and maintenance (fluid levels etc) will give extended lives. I could easily continued using the previous Dekka batteries another year but as in the case of John Hanrahan, the power supply was decreasing due to sulfation and we felt 7 1/2 years adequate service.

John, sounds like it might be time for new batteries.

Not real sure why Mike feels the 4d's are underrated but ours are rated at 398ah and give great service and service life. No complaints from our 4d's

We have 2 Kyocera 140 watt(280 total) panels with morningstar pwm controller (mppt is better).

We are currently on mooring in Miami at Dinner Key Mooring field, been here 1 1/2 month. We do not use our freezer since the freezer in our refrigerator is adequate for our purposes here. Our boat sits on anchor, indefinitely, without charging as long as there is sunshine 6 or so hours each day. This is our 3rd time here so I assure you it  is true, ask Mike. When there is no sunshine we run our Honda Generator to charge batteries. We look at local tv, movies with cd, computers, phones, all the conveniences. will will run engine for hot water if we choose not to use shower facilities in marina but we do not run our engine to charge batteries.

Our boat is optimally set up for a 400ah service, no complaints.

Hope this helps

Dekka 4d AGM's at $349 each with exchange at Stevens Battery Wharehouse in Annapolis Md. Compare that to Lifelines or any other brand for cost and service.

Oh yeah, forgot to mention battery monitor. The stock panel voltage panel is basically worthless in determining battery condition unless you've let the batteries sit idle for hours. Purchase a good battery monitor. It is vital for being up to date on your battery's condition. We have a LinkLite monitor which gives number of amps used, remaining amps, current battery voltage (actual) and it also monitors a second banks voltage.


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