Chargers are intended only for gradual charging of the battery, their current output does not exceed 8 A. About the car battery, as a rule, remember the critical moment, when the battery refuses to crank the engine. When choosing the best charger you need to take into account many nuances. Every motorist should have in his arsenal a reliable car battery trickle charger, which in case of trouble can quickly bring the battery back to life.
The brand charger is also important. Having had an opportunity to test some trickle charger, I’d like to share my impression here to facilitate your choice. Choose the best trickle charger for your car battery.
Some of the products bellow have features of smart battery chargers. If you are interested in buying one, welcome to our best smart battery charger review.
Trickle chargers for car reviews
Battery Tender Plus 021-0128 – Best Smart Car Battery Tender
The best smart battery that supports the market! This is a 1.25-ampere Battery Tender charger. Even when your car is turned off, this electronics will pull the voltage out of your battery because it is the best 12V trickle charger. Moreover, durable enough to turn off the drain, maintaining the battery at maximum performance.
And I like the simple operation, plug in the battery and plug it in! It automatically accommodates batteries of lead or gel cells, no need to set modes, just plug them in. This is the best battery trickle charger.
- Excellent battery maintenance.
- Automatic “reanimation” of heavily discharged batteries.
- Actually, none, but it takes more time to fully charge large batteries, as expected.
NOCO Genius G3500 6V/12V 3.5A – Ideal Chargers
The NOCO Genius G3500 car battery charger is a fully automatic device for which the user only needs to select the battery’s operating voltage: 6 or 12V. This charger is awesome. Charge the lead-acid battery with it, either with 6 or 12V, and your engine will spin like crazy. This is a good battery that supports and maintains a voltage of about 13.5V. It does not overheat because it is only 1.1 amps. Convenient interface and high power ensure correct and fast charging. I first started it in the standard “cold” charge mode, and it took several days to fully charge. If you had doubts because it reached 75% or so rather quickly, but it takes quite a lot of time to fully charge. Still, if you launched the “repair” mode, as the battery will be very low. It took a few hours. After that, the battery worked like new.
- There are 4 indicators that indicate battery charge in 25% increments, that is, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%. They blink and turn off when it is charged, letting you know how much more you need to trickle charge.
- A NOCO Genius G3500 trickle charger works flawlessly, could not be easier.
- The description indicates a 5-year warranty, but this is a full 2.5-year warranty, and the remaining time is 35-45%.
LST 12V 5A – Always a Good Deal
The next item in my car battery trickle charger reviews is LST 12V 5A. This 12v trickle charger has so many good qualities that almost deserves to be called the best trickle charger for car. Automatic, in which charging starts with a current of 5A, which gradually decreases as the charge progresses.
The progress of the charge can be monitored by built-in indicators. The charger itself is quite compact and does not take up much space in the garage or at home. This smart battery charger is very durable, fully enclosed outer casing, protecting it from dust, oil, and moisture. This prevents corrosion and other damaging effects of weather conditions. Through the use of the charger LST 12V 5A, you can restore the capacity of automotive batteries of various types – from gel to acid-lead.
- It can be used for both high-capacity car batteries and motorcycle batteries.
- Suitable for restoring capacity and performance of batteries of any type.
- Protection from incorrect connection.
- It does not allow switching power on its own, I would like to have a manual switch instead of a push-button switch.
LST 6V/12V 1.5A – compact set for charging ordinary cars
You can use them to maintain batteries on rarely used vehicles. When testing on the same battery there is a slight change. One battery supports 13.59 V, and the other — 13.68. The charge current pulsates at about 5 Hz, which is better than a constant stream. This motorcycle trickle charger has dual amplifiers as a battery tender jr, good for large batteries. Automation of the device is provided by an integrated processor, and versatility – the presence of several modes of operation.
- Fully automatic and can be connected to both AC and battery, which it charges for long chargers.
- It has reverse protection hook-up.
- The LED lighting system for charge status seems a bit confusing.
RAVPower – compact and versatile
This trickle charger for car doubles the charging efficiency with a 1.5 A output, which reduces the recharge time by half. I liked it. If your car does not start in winter, you can use this charger, and it will solve such a problem. It does an excellent job of maintaining a battery for long-term storage. Also, comes with two interchangeable fittings suitable for any vehicle.
It easily recharges the truck, motorcycle, ATV, and generator batteries of different capacities and it works without problems. RAVPower seems well built. Very easy to use. This product is a universal charger designed for charging, restoring and maintaining in good condition the lead-acid batteries of cars, boats, motorcycles, snowmobiles.
- Good options, such as indicators, let you know that you have properly connected it and when the battery is fully charged.
- I like long cords and attached cord wrappers.
- It takes a long time to fully charge a dead battery.
- The battery clips are attached to the charger using a connector that sometimes drops out.
Foval automatic trickle charger – average price and decent parameters
This is an automatic charger and a device for servicing batteries. This is a very good charger and it is one of the best trickle charger for car. Ideal for all lead-acid, flooded or sealed, maintenance-free batteries (AGM and gel cell). Since it charges at just 1 amp per hour, the Foval Automatic Battery Charger is best used as an inkjet charger.
If you put it on 3 batteries, backed up a car, motorcycle, and scooter. Everything charged easily. The car took longer and did not reach 13V, but nearby 2 smaller batteries reached 13V. Not a battery specialist, but I can say that if you keep them on a slow charge, they will last longer. if you had a battery on the motorcycle, which is fading away. You can set to charge for the night when it caught fire, and the next morning it charged, supported it all day and turned on the battery again, it remained charged. I read a lot of this trickle charger reviews, I saw only positive ones.
- It has a float charger mode when it is fully charged, it will not recharge it.
- It is so simple and easy to see what condition your battery is in with its LED indicator.
- No smooth charge current adjustment.
Battery Tender Junior 021-0123 – easy and convenient charging
Battery Tender Jr. comes with a 12-foot cord and plug. This plug is then connected to one of the two included connectors: a set of alligator clips, for temporary attachment to a battery, or a set of ring terminals for permanent mounting. The battery trickle charger works perfectly on standard lead-acid batteries with supercharging, as well as AGM (Absorbent Glass) batteries. If you have a gel cell battery, there is another version that has programming to work with them correctly.
Overall, Battery Render Jr works incredibly well, keeps batteries in better shape and cost less than a quarter of the cost of one new battery.
- This tender will NOT recharge the battery and is ideal for long-term use.
- It has an LED indicator with a full explanation above so that you know when your tender is charging, your battery is fully charged or there is a problem with the connection/charge.
- The device heats up a little if you leave it turned on for a long time, but not hot enough to damage anything.
Best trickle charger for motorcycle & riding lawn mower – maximum functionality
Before you choose a trickle charger for motorcycle or lawn mower, you need to know the difference between the chargers on the market today. If you choose from the above-written reviews – this is definitely the NOCO Genius G3500 6V / 12V 3.5A.
Its distinctive advantage is sufficient current and two voltage ranges. This charger is fully automatic, it starts, stops without pressing buttons. It DOES NOT recharge your battery, regardless of whether it is a car, motorcycle or lawnmower. It controls your battery voltage and performs a cycle if necessary. So, I think that it is the best motorcycle trickle charger.
What is a Trickle Charger & How to trickle charge a car battery?
Chargers are intended only for gradually charging the battery, their current output does not exceed 8 A. Attempting to scroll the engine with a starter while the charger is connected to the battery will damage it or trigger the built-in protection: the current consumed by the starter may exceed 100 A.
Trickle chargers, also called battery holders, can come in handy for charging cars, boats, RVs, motorcycles and golf carts. It has a low current level, the charger gradually charges the battery as it depletes energy.
Types of Trickle Charger
All car battery trickle chargers, regardless of their type, are required to provide a normal charging mode until it ends. Voltage and current are automatically aligned with the required parameters. All devices that are currently available for purchase are divided into two main groups: pulsed and transformer.
- Transformer devices are very reliable, but, nevertheless, they are not widely used. The reason is that they are very large and heavy, which is why it is not very convenient to exploit them.
- Most motorists prefer to use pulsed “charging”. They are much more compact, and also have a number of other advantages. Thus, the pulse device for the average user is much better, so that they are more common in the sale.
Nevertheless, those motorists who primarily value reliability choose transformer devices.
Trickle Chargers vs Normal Car Battery Chargers – what do you prefer?
Chargers for car batteries are usually installed in the range from 1 to 50 A for charging mode. Some may even have 200 amps, which is necessary for switching most starter motors.
If we talk about a trickle charger, it has a low current ratio, or it can only discharge the charge current. Most handheld chargers are discharged somewhere between 1 and about 3 amps. Some devices are called “automatic” or “smart” trickle chargers, unlike manual chargers.
Are Battery Maintainers and Trickle Chargers different?
It is worth noting that charging for the battery arose almost immediately after the development of the first lead-acid battery. Each charger works according to a fairly simple principle, according to which the voltage first decreases from 220 to 12 V and straightens. The charge is carried out by a weak current for several hours.
The main difference is that the battery maintainers will turn off the power source when the batteries are charged. It monitors the charge and when the charge drops to a certain level, it works again. It provides a continuous charge.
And how to charge the battery?
“Sat” battery … What could be a more unpleasant surprise before the trip? If you have a battery charger on hand, then solving the problem will not be difficult. And the regular and proper use of it is a reliable remedy for such annoying “surprises”. Charging a car battery with a charger is not difficult and inaccessible.
First of all, it is safety. Park your car in a ventilated room, because charging a battery can release additional gaseous hydrogen, which can explode after it is left in a confined space. Switch off the ignition and ensure that the charger is turned off.
How to use a trickle charger?
Set the appropriate current and voltage for your car’s battery. Select the desired charging mode, in accordance with the instructions for the charger. From time to time, monitor the process of charging the battery, and after it is completed, turn it off. When disconnecting the battery from the charger, first disconnect the negative cable.
How much time does it take to charge a car battery?
As for the optimal time for auto battery charging, this question is clearly and unequivocally difficult to answer. It all depends on the level of battery discharge and charging method. On average, the process can last 8-10 hours, and in some cases more than 12 hours. You can, of course, use currents of large magnitude, then charging will be completed faster, but this method has an extremely negative effect on the working condition of the battery and practices this method is often not worth it. Then very quickly, the battery will fail and will have to buy a replacement for it.
Charge time for motorcycle
The main question asked by almost every novice motorist is whether it is possible to charge the battery with a car charger? The answer to this question is quite ambiguous. On the one hand, car chargers with a current regulator allow you to do this. On the other hand, it is better not to start a new rider for such a recharge, since the procedure requires attention and experience.
For a normal battery charge, we need a current of one-tenth of the capacity of the battery. As a rule, a full cycle of charging a 12-volt battery for a motorcycle takes about 10-12 hours.
Overcharge battery with a Trickle Charger
Despite the fact that the chargers are very modern today, they are also vulnerable to overcharging the battery, which can cause serious damage to the battery. But I can recommend a battery regulator to prevent a decrease in the possibility of recharging.
Also, to protect the batteries from overcharging, each device is equipped with a special protection that automatically shuts it off when the battery is 100% charged.
How to connect a trickle charger to a car battery?
A charged battery in good condition with a normal density electrolyte can withstand large frosts without freezing. Only a dead one can suffer from frost. Conversely, in heat, the chemical processes inside the battery are activated, thereby increasing self-discharge, and in the cold, the self-discharge process will decrease. Pay attention that when the battery is almost discharged (most likely sulfated), it is essential to elicit it from the car and examine before starting the recovery. A highly discharged power unit is one that has a voltage below 11.9V. Deeply discharged batteries have a voltage of 7V or lower.
If you don’t know how to hook up a charger, you might think that it’s better to seek specialist help. Don’t worry and try to do it by yourself as in practice everything is not so hard as it may seem. All you have to do is follow the further recommendations.
Arrange the battery and location
Owing to the risk of explosive mix concentration around the rechargeable battery, it should be charged in a area with a constant fresh air inside. The garage and workshop aren’t the best locations for this, as such places don’t have enough ventilation. Moreover, better leave the vehicle open for 2 hours outside. Clean the plunging zone of the power unit. Remember not to leave your vehicle on the ignition so take the keys out.
Visually check the condition of the electric power storage for mechanical deteriorations, for example, traces of swelling or damage to the housing, signs of electrolyte leakage, or the presence of lead sulfate. If the battery is complemented with the filler caps, unscrew them and check the lead plates for white matter on their surface. You may see that the plates are in contact with each other. Whereas the battery has mechanical damage, do not try to revive it as such a process may be dangerous. You should contact a service center.
Negative and positive connection
Don’t forget that it is forbidden to attach both plugs on the device. Connect the positive ends and don’t attach the negative end to the battery. Elsewise, the wrong connection may become the reason for fire and bring harm to all the surrounding objects. The negative terminal should be plugged to a large bolt that is placed on the engine. It’s possible to get the required grounding due to the negative energy. It’s possible to join the negative terminal to the vehicle frame but it’s better not to do it in a case of dirt or oil presence (it may appear due to the car exploitation). The junction should be performed to the clean spot only.
The cables attaching
The charger is complemented with the 2 alligator clips. It’s recommended to affix the red clip to the accumulator positive terminal and plug in the blue one with the designated negative connection. The wires should be kept apart. The shutdown should be performed backwards — first blue, then red.
Bear in mind that it’s forbidden to turn the electricity on prior to plunging the cable to the electric power storage. Elsewise, you’ll get struck by electricity. Charging can only be started once all plugs have been completed and if you move away from the car as far as possible.
The 10A charger is a good option for a 12V battery. However, the 80A charger is able to energize it in an hour, while it’s required 1 – 4 hours for the 40A device to fully recharge the battery.
Turn the charger on
Before turning the battery on, preferably to double check everything and be sure that all the process is made in the right way. Hit the switch and check the charging, as the whole process won’t take long (it may die in a case of overcharging).
After charging is successfully complete, disengage the switch first and unplug the trickle charger. Mind to unplug the charger, unless you use a smart device that automatically lessens the electric current when fully charged.
If all mentioned-above recommendations are done correctly, the car will start smoothly. The further step is to accelerate for some time on the neutral gear in order to allow the alternator to perform the finishing charging touches.
Tips: Don’t forget to take out the terminals in the case of prolonged non-use. It’s better to recharge it periodically (once every 2 months) with a small current flow to balance the electrolyte gravity throughout its volume. The electric power storage must be kept clean in order to prevent leakage currents. Dry the jar, especially the top part of dust and electrolyte. The battery should be safely mounted to the car, as shocks and bumps can reduce the electric power storage life.
My name is Brandon, and I’ve been interested in cars since I was a kid. I got a bachelor’s degree in Automotive Technology and worked in a private car workshop. I have two cars that have been completely upgraded with my own hands. So I successfully put all my knowledge into practice.
Last update on 2020-04-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API