Battery cable size (AWG)

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Gard
Posts: 287
Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2008 2:25 pm
Location: Fairfax Vermont USA

Battery cable size (AWG)

Post by Gard » Fri Mar 20, 2020 2:07 pm

What would be the correct (or best) battery cable size for a 900 diesel tractor? The battery is mounted on the side so quite close to the starter. What is on there now is not original. Alternately if there is a guess about the current draw of the starter I could look up a size/length/voltage drop. Thanks

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rid54
Posts: 197
Joined: Mon Oct 13, 2014 8:20 am
Location: Vallentuna, Sweden

Re: Battery cable size (AWG)

Post by rid54 » Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:05 pm

The current demand of any starter is potentially enormous. In cold conditions, with a stiff engine, the draw may be upwards of 300 A at 12 V. The starter is practically a short of the battery if it has to struggle. The bigger size the better when it comes to cable cross-section (area). Use the biggest size you can fit in the pole clamp. Make sure the connections are all sound and clean.

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rid54
Posts: 197
Joined: Mon Oct 13, 2014 8:20 am
Location: Vallentuna, Sweden

Re: Battery cable size (AWG)

Post by rid54 » Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:16 pm

Additional: The turning power of the starter is purely depending on current. Current is feed voltage divided with resistance in the current path. The resistance is found in cables and connectors, and internally in the battery (very low), and in the starter (very low at standstill or low speed). The path includes the earth connection between battery minus and chassis/engine. The earth strap and connectors should naturally be of equal gauge and quality to the battery positive connection.

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cobbadog
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Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 6:18 am
Location: beautiful Coopernook NSW. near Taree. NSW. Australia

Re: Battery cable size (AWG)

Post by cobbadog » Sat Mar 21, 2020 10:30 am

The better and cleaner the connections are between cable to fittings on the ends plus where you bolt to ground (earth) the better it is as you will have less resistance. Ideally using your multi meter you aim for 0.00 ohms especially with a short cable.

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