I'd probably get the East Penn Deka. Free shipping for orders over $25.
One reviewer says they are spot on with his Freas.
The only negative of glass float hydrometers is... they are made of glass. So... don't break 'em. I've broken one out of three, but it was my own dang fault. I get mine for $3.59 at my local Bi-Mart (it's a Northwestern thing,) so I didn't cry for too very long.
If you don't think you can properly care for a decent hydrometer... and you're not concerned about accuracy... then get the EZ Red.
You can use the little hose the glass ones come with. They do bend. Just use the glass one sort of sideways and pull it out to where you can hold it up and take a reading. You will spill a drop or two so you should hold a saucer under it.
Yes, that is why I have to split the bank to do a full charge with solar, in order to get enough time. The batteries to be done get as charged as possible the day before (you pick when to do this based on the weather forecast) and then are taken off line, then in morning they get full solar all day which gives them time to charge right up.
Then, while the sun is still high, I by-pass the PWM controller and get the batteries really gassing for an hour of overcharge. Then they go back on line, and the next time the weatherman says it will be good, do the other part of the bank. Only needs that every week or two, depends on your activities.
The day and a half that takes while you are on half a bank also needs to be planned for not using as many AH. eg, plan meals that don't involve the microwave, read a book instead of watch a movie, etc.
I've been busy enough that the amazon option delivered to my address is easiest. Also I got an Amz prime account. Free Supersaving shipping items ship free 2 day shipping, so It is almost that instant satisfaction. I've even ordered on a Saturday and had some items arrive Monday
With the amount of lengthy traffic lights incurred, I got to figure in gas.
The batteries are really behaving well, in terms of minimum overnight voltage. I have to assume plugging in and reaching those high amps at high voltage, is much better than my solar holding those same voltages for just an hour if possible, and that I Have been chronically undercharging despite awareness of it.
Those glass ones, could I still put a little flexi hose on the end without affecting accuracy?
3 cells can not be accessed perpendicularly, without pulling out the fridge 6 inches. Even then, the furthermost one would still protest.
Yes, and be sure to take your baseline readings only after you give 'em a serious beating with your "Schu."
Also... you can always pull the electrolyte with your plastic hydrometer and then empty it into a glass jar. Then take your reading with the glass hydrometer from there. Mexbungalows does something like this.
Whatever you gotta' do!
Now that you've got a better handle on battery care, I suspect once you get these baseline readings, you probably won't need to take readings to often going forward. Eventually you will really get to know your batteries and their care will become mostly instinctual.
I still take readings occasionally, but I am rarely surprised at the results. The readings are used mainly for confirmation now. But going forward... I will always take and record a baseline reading with new batteries.
The new Batteries are performing great. I Full time so I am wanting to make these new Crowns last.
I am glad the charger is able to really hammer some amps into them every 4 or 5 days when I plug in. I have plugged back in when the Pro remote claimed the alternator and solar got them to 20 A/h from full that day, then the schumacher did not go over 14.6 volts and stayed there for under 90 minutes, if that.
I want to be able to compare the difference in SG readings after a shumacher hammer session and when my soon to be 200 watts(now 130) of solar claims to return the amp hour counter to zero from full.
If the plastic is neither accurate, nor precise, then glass it will be.
Murphy plagued most of me endeavors today. I pretty much just laughed when I broke the Hydrometer before I even got to use it.
Right now 15.85 volts. 11.4 amps, Been charging for 3.5 hours
Battery case temp 70f, metal 3 feet away, 45.5 degrees
* This post was
edited 02/14/12 11:26pm by landyacht318 *