SO, you'll remember the other week I did an equalisation charge - in a bid to reinstate some of the batteries' original capacity? Well, I thought things had improved.... apparently that was the quiet before the storm.
It's become a nightly ritual now to ensure nothing is pushing on the plate at the back of the fridge as we've been blaming that for the battery bank losing power overnight. It now appears that (whilst perhaps a contributory factor) was NOT the main cause.
The main cause was that one of the 4, 135ah marine batteries had boiled dry and was dragging the others down. HOW do we know this you ask? (I still don't know whether rhetorical questions need punctuation) well, the other night, (AFTER I'd had a good long chug up and down the river to get the batteries as full as possible before leaving the solar to finish off the charge) we noticed a rotten egg smell. Our first thought was that it was coming from the toilet tank vent and we ignored it.
As the breeze dropped further, the smell seemed to get stronger and seemed to be stronger at the back of the boat.... STILL we ignored it, thinking it must be the boat behind...
It wasn't until 'stupid o'clock' in the middle of the night when I was awoken from my slumber by an alarm going off it became apparent what the problem was.
CO alarms will trigger when they sniff out Hydrogen Gas (which is produced by the batteries) if it gets too high. My first panic was that we were being poisoned again by carbon monoxide so there I was flinging open portholes, side hatches and the rear doors ... WHILST Andy still slept! On pressing the smartgauge to see how the charge was holding up, it all fell into place.