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Can a gauge be grounded to the ignition & house??

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Can a gauge be grounded to the ignition & house??

Old 05-28-2016, 12:22 PM
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Default Can a gauge be grounded to the ignition & house??

Finally decided to tackle rewiring my boat and go from one to two batteries.
My gauges all run to a bus bar tied into the ignition wire, and grounded through the starter battery.
The lights on the gauges run through my navigation light switch which is powered by the house battery.
So, as you may have guessed, when I flip on my navigation lights, two things happen: my instrument lights do not turn on, and my fuel tank pegs to full.
The issue is my gauges do not have a separate connection to ground the lights, so the positive is being fed off the house battery and the ground off the starter. If I run a separate wire off one gauge's ground, to the house battery ground, the problem is solved. My dash lights turn on and the fuel gauge reads accurately.

So, here is my question. Can I have a gauge be grounded to both the house and starter, or will that create other issues?

Thanks
Old 05-28-2016, 02:24 PM
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To have all batteries negative together is a common practice.
Just make a jumper cable going from the house negative to the engine negative and you are good.
Chris
Old 05-28-2016, 02:54 PM
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Thanks Chris,
So you are saying not to run two ground wires off the back of my gauges, one going to the house bus and one the starter/ignition bus (i have two dual bus bars) but rather simply run a cable between the two battery negative posts. That way, the whole boat has a common ground.
Correct?
Old 05-28-2016, 09:26 PM
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No, because if there is a fault elsewhere, you may get a very large current through that little ground wire... As suggested, link the 2 battery negative posts with a jumper roughly the size (don't need to be exact) as the wires to your starter.... If you plan n charging the second battery with an ACR or putting in a 1/2/both switch you need this anyway...
Old 05-28-2016, 09:41 PM
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would be interesting to see him crank an engine through ~40' of 14awg....
Old 05-29-2016, 12:05 AM
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Little Scout,
as mickt243 already wrote, make a black jumper cable of the same size as the positive cable and jump from one negatibe battery post to the other.
The other solution would be to run both negative cables to your (to newly install) negative bus bar and from there ypu can run the green ground wire to a submerged sacificial anode outside the hull.
Chris
Old 05-30-2016, 01:00 PM
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Thanks guys, I appreciate the help.

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