We boaters don’t think much about Galvanic Currents – because we can’t SEE them. But if we could see them, they might look like a sea of mines around the boat. Or a shoal of piranhas.
PLUS, they can also warn you if your boat has earth Leakage, (which is FAR more damaging than plain old Galvanic Currents).
Everyone has heard about Galvanic currents… how they can cause huge damage to your boat. And it’s absolutely true – Galvanic corrosion affects 90% of steel hulled boats.And sadly, GRP craft are immune. If you take a look on the internet, you’ll find some scary images of GRP boats with ruined outdrives, corroded props or outboards that have deteriorated beyond the point of no return.
One of our customers replaced his propeller due to Galvanic corrosion, and had to replace it AGAIN just three months later. Actually, this customers boat didn’t have Galvanic corrosion. The corrosion was being caused by Earth Leakage. Earth Leakage has a similar effect to Galvanic corrosion, but it happens MUCH, MUCH faster. It can hole an outboard motor’s leg in no time at all, and pit a steel hull to the point of perforating it in a matter of months.
Earth Leakage often comes from a fault in the boats electrical system, water ingress etc., but it can also be caused by “stray signals” from tech equipment, such as battery chargers, Nav’ equipment etc. Modern tech’ uses what are known as switch mode power supplies, and these operate at a high frequency, which can “couple” into the boat’s wiring, and send electrical “spikes” down the earth conductor of the hook up cable. These spikes can cause rapid corrosion, because their voltage may be MANY times that of normal Galvanic currents. That’s why the damage happens faster.
There is no reason to let Galvanic Currents and earth Leakage damage your boat. Fitting a Galvanic isolator takes SECONDS.
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