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AC & DC System Upgrade – John & Jenny, on Jan 21, 2015 asked:

I enjoy your articles in Pacific Yachting each month and also the information on your website. I own a 33’ sailboat and am looking at updating the AC and DC systems as they have evolved. The DC in particular has outgrown the original architecture. 1. Should I replace the 1, 2, ALL, OFF battery switch to incorporate an automatic charging relay (ACR)? I am starting with a plan to test the current switch to see if there is any reason to replace it. E.g. the contacts still as good as new! I have a suspicion that there is a downside to an ACR, perhaps if one battery bank gets drained, but I am finding it difficult to find a clear explanation of the pros and cons. To me I seldom run in ALL mode and switching batteries is second nature. However, I am hoping my daughter and family will start to use the boat and they don’t have that background. 2. Should I install a galvanic isolator and/or an ELCI AC breaker? My sense from Blue Seas who do not market the former, is that the ELCI provides similar protection and new protection. I have been unable to verify how true this is. I am assuming that the permanent battery charger (Xantrex) may well provide a hidden interconnection between the AC and DC systems.

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Galvanic Isolator Install Location – Rick, on Dec 15, 2014 asked:

I am looking to equip a galvanic isolator – where can I buy a Newmar Failsafe Galvanic Isolator? Is it critical to have it installed close to the shoreline connection? Is six feet too far away?

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Terry – Fail-safe Galvanic Isolator, on Mar 21, 2014 asked:

I just had the face plate of my boat A/C panel off to check if a P/O had installed any type of galvanic protection. I found a 'Professional Mariner' Zinc Saver. It is wired with one green wire run from the A/C panel green bus bar and the other wire run to connect with the DC bonding system. The main A/C green supply/return wire is unbroken to shore power plugin. Is this setup giving me proper protection? Should I upgrade to something cut into main green wire? On the 'Zinc Saver' it reads "install between AC green wire and DC bonding system - ABYC recommended ". How would I check to see if this unit is still doing its job? Seeing as how this unit may not be a fail-safe type device, it probably should not be used on the main green grounding wire? Researching GI's, I found that DEI are highly rated and the patent holder of fail-safe technology, do you know of a West Coast, Canadian supplier?

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Jim, on Apr 20, 2012 asked:

I recently read your recent article in Pacific Yachting on galvanic isolators. How do I know whether my isolator is fail-safe, and is working all of the time?

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Peter, on Feb 17, 2010 asked:

The AC grounding connection on my Uniflite 36' is no more. What is going on here? Shouldn't the AC (green) grounding wire be continuous between the AC shore power socket and the AC grounding bus?

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