Give Me Power -Power problems on a Narrow Boat

Now I’m going to get all British on you and say … what a wonderful summer we have had! The glorious wall to wall 12 straight hours a day of sunshine has been quite simply wonderful (Although my ponies bellies may disagree), surely it’s been fabulous for life aboard? Surely your running costs are lower than low with ray after ray being cast on the solar panels. Unfortunately not.


Please allow me to set the scene, you’ve had a long day at work battling the hot weather and what you’re looking forward to more than anything is getting home to a nice cold beverage, familiar story right? Well imagine opening up that fridge door to be hit by the smell of putrid food. The natural response? You slam the door shut, go to the nearest pub and wait for James to be home to deal with the problem.

But on returning home the outlook was glum, despite the weather being more than glorious for several months we (James) discovered after much searching (To clarify I did supply moral support in the form of hollering you ok in there), that the solar panels hadn’t been pumping any charge into the batteries … sensitive readers look away now … buggeration.

A small amount of diagnostics lead us to the cabling from the solar panels on the roof, which brings me nicely to:

Boat Hack One – When you have a darkly coloured boat and temperatures are reaching upwards of 30 degrees thanks to wall to wall sunshine do not place your bare skin on these surfaces. 

Once up there we found a loose wire, hurrah we chorused, and quickly re-secured it. We laughed as we thought it must of come off during the urgent rescue mission to save Rosie the Terrier while out cruising a few weeks prior, which brings me to:

Boat Hack Two – Do not assume that when you have not seen your dog on the back of the boat whilst at cruising that they have popped inside for a snooze, do always check your gunnels for suicide attempts!*


*For anyone seriously worried on this one, she has never done anything like this before, and in fact will often need copious amounts of treats to tempt her out from sleeping under the sofa or as we call it the Rosie Cave when cruising. We have since deployed some tactically placed fenders to prevent any future Evil Knievel stunts. 

So that evening we went to bed happy in the knowledge that tomorrow the sun would rise, our batteries would charge and cold grown up drinks would be available from the following evening.

Oh how naive we were … to be continued.


James & Kirsty


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