If you own a new car, you’re probably wondering why you need a car battery charger in the first place. After all, your battery gets automatically recharged every time you use the vehicle. But seasoned drivers will tell you to better get one right away.
You can think of a car battery charger like you would a life raft; you don’t really need it every time you use the vehicle, but it’s comforting to know that it’s there when disaster strikes.
In the case of your car’s battery, disaster might come in the form of suddenly finding out that your ride won’t start because the power cell was totally drained. It could be caused by the tiniest mistake, such as leaving the stereo or headlights on overnight. You might need to go out of town for an extended period of time, only to find your battery drained by the time you come back.
Regardless of the reason, you definitely need a car battery charger. But if you’re feeling that choosing the right product is too time-consuming, we’ve got you covered.
Check out the top six car battery chargers
for 2021 that we’ve rounded up in this buying guide.
Battery Tender Plus 021-0128
If you’re looking for a smart product that charges without destroying your vehicle’s power storage cell, then the Battery Tender Plus 021-0128 is a good option to consider. Check LATEST Price
It’s fully automatic, so you don’t need to worry about damaging your battery through overcharging. When your car’s power cell is fully charged, the charger will automatically switch to float or maintenance mode--earning it the moniker as a “maintainer.”
At maintenance mode, the Battery Tender Plus stops charging but continues to carefully monitor the battery level, charging it once more once the power drops below a certain level. Talk about worry-free charging!
Aside from that, the Battery Tender Plus also solves that one problem that many car owners are facing–how to stop your battery from dying even if you’re away from home for a long time. With this maintainer, you can keep the power level at optimal condition at all times. You can even use your car the moment you return home.
The Battery Tender Plus 021-0128 charges quickly, so it won’t take long to reach a full charge compared to other products. It’s also covered by a 10-year warranty for extra peace of mind.
Won’t damage your battery by overcharging
Keeps power at optimal level
Covered by 10-year warranty
Ampeak 2/8/15A 12V Smart Battery Charger/Maintainer Automatic with Winter Mode
Driving during freezing weather is no fun. In fact, it can get dangerous due to the presence of slippery roads, forcing a lot of people to just hole up inside their homes during winter.Check LATEST Price
But if you don’t use your car during winter, there’s a good chance you’ll be in for a nasty surprise: by the time you try to use your car, it might not start due to a dead battery. How inconvenient, right?
But if you get a car battery charger that’s optimized for winter use like the Ampeak
2/8/15A 12V Maintainer, you never have to worry about the above scenario ever happening to you.
The Ampeak Battery Charger keeps your car battery charged even if you don’t use your vehicle for a long time. Controlled by a microprocessor that diligently monitors the charging process, this battery charger is extremely safe for long-term use.
Most batteries take longer to get fully charged during winter because the drop in temperature causes the battery’s chemicals to become sluggish. But the Ampeak device works around this issue by giving you options as to how fast you want it to work.
You can choose among 2, 8 and 15-Ampere settings. The higher the rating, the faster your battery will charge.
It can function even in freezing 32°F (0°C) climates all the way to sizzling hot 104°F (40°C) weather. It’s also compatible with different car batteries such as STD, AGM and GEL.
Microprocessor-controlled automatic charging
Safely maintains battery charge
Tedious six-step charging process
Noticeable noise level during use
NOCO Genius G3500 6V/12V 3.5A UltraSafe Smart Battery Charger
As far as safety is concerned, the NOCO Genius G3500 is one of the best options you have in the market.Check LATEST Price
Packed with features to ensure of a worry-free use, this battery charger sports a spark-proof technology to prevent it from getting overcharged and suddenly igniting all by itself, filling your car with flammable gases. It also has reverse polarity protection so your battery won’t get damaged during long hours of charging.
This level of safety means that you can just leave it plugged to your battery if you plan to go on a long trip. Plus, the NOCO Genius G3500 is equipped with a microprocessor that monitors your battery acidity levels, optimizing its performance and longevity.
Suitable for various vehicle types, this versatile car battery charger can also be used for your snowmobile, ATV, motorcycle, watercraft, and even lawnmower. It also works with different types of power storage cells like AGM, deep-cycle, wet cell, gel cell, calcium, lithium-Ion and Enhanced Flooded cell.
Can charge the batteries of different types of vehicles
Packed with safety features
Might not work well in extremely cold conditions
STANLEY BC25BS Fully Automatic 25 Amp 12V Bench Battery Charger/Maintainer with 75A Engine Start
Looking for a fast charging device? The Stanley BC25BS is a good option to consider. With its 25-Amp rating, it’s guaranteed to juice up your car’s battery faster than most of its competitors.Check LATEST Price
You’ll also appreciate this tool’s versatility as it works with most battery types such as gel, AGM, wet automotive, and marine 12V cells.
This is a smart charger as well, thanks to its three-stage charging feature. It initiallys use the fast charge mode to pump power into the cell in a short amount of time. After reaching a certain power level, it then switches to moderate charging speed as it nears full charge. Finally, it switches to trickle mode to maintain the charge indefinitely.
This makes it perfect for all types of charging ,scenarios whether you are trying to fast charge an almost empty cell or just want to maintain an already charged one.
But what if your battery’s dead already? You can still use the Stanley BC24BS as it has a 75-Amp engine start feature that will help you crank up your ride’s engine in as fast as 90 seconds. This makes it a perfect tool to carry in your trunk in case you encounter this type of road emergency.
When it comes to safety and performance, you don’t have to worry about this ETL-certified charger. Avoid getting the wires mixed up due to its reverse polarity protection. It also features an alternator check so that you get a warning if your the battery is no longer charging while you’re driving.
What’s even more amazing is that this product has a reconditioning feature. This means it can repair sulfated batteries to a certain degree, increasing its lifespan.
75-Amp engine start feature
Three-step charging system
Equipped with safety features
Reconditions sulfated cells
Reconditioning feature might not work in all cases
75-Amp engine start might not be enough for certain car batteries
BLACK & DECKER BC6BDW Fully Automatic 6 Amp 12V Waterproof Battery Charger/Maintainer with Cable Clamps
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Black & Decker is a well-known manufacturer of high-quality power tools, hardware and accessories. It’s not surprising then to find one of its products–the BC6BDW–in this best car battery charger buying guide
What sets it apart from the rest is that it’s waterproof. Now, a waterproofing feature might not be your top priority when it comes to specs, but it certainly is a useful feature to have in case water gets accidentally splashed on the tool while you are using it.
The Black & Decker BC6BDW is one of the best options for marine batteries. It also comes in handy when you’re charging in inclement weather. You can just plug it in and forget about it as it automatically charges as well.
Also a maintainer, this car battery charger is also a good option for you if you own a lot of cars that you don’t use on an everyday basis. With the Black & Decker BC6BDW, you can keep your car batteries fully charged so your cars are always ready for use when you want to.
This 6-amp charger also works well with GEL, AGM, or WET automotive or marine power cells. It has a completely sealed durable housing that not only makes it waterproof, but dustproof as well.
Perfect for outdoor use and even for marine battery charging
6-amp rating means slower charging compared to other models
Schumacher SC1307 6/12V Automatic Battery Charger and 30/85A Engine Starter with Advanced Diagnostic Testing
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If you’re willing to shell out extra bucks for a battery charger
with more advanced features, then don’t hesitate to invest in the Schumacher SC1307.
Despite its compact size, this product packs a punch in the sheer number of features it contains. For instance, you don’t have to set the device to either 6V or 12V setting as it automatically detects the correct voltage of the battery it’s charging.
It also has a battery and alternator tester, which makes it easier to diagnose electrical issues.
But its functionality does not stop there. It can deliver a quick burst of 85 Amps for jumpstarting your car. Such huge power burst is enough to start even large vehicles like SUVs and trucks.
The Schumacher SC1307 also uses a microprocessor to control its multi-stage charging process, making it very efficient, safe, and gentle on your battery. For added safety, it has a built-in reverse hookup-connection so that the cell won’t get damaged even if you connect the clamps erroneously.
This multifunctional charger also doubles as a maintainer. As an automatic charger, you can just plug it and forget about it. It will switch into float mode and only deliver a charge when the power level goes down beyond a certain point.
This way, your battery is always charged and ready to go when you need it.
Has an 85-A jumpstarting function
Detects the voltage of the battery automatically
Packed with safety features
Has an alternator and battery tester
More expensive compared to other options
Choosing the right car battery charger
depends on a few factors.
If you want speedy charging, you need to keep an eye on the device’s amp-rating. The higher it is, the faster the charging rate will be.
Another important decision to make is whether to get a cheaper, manual device, or opt for a more advanced but usually more expensive automatic charger. If you get the former, you’ll need to keep track of your charging to avoid damage to the power cell by overcharging. But for ease of use, it’s best if you get the automatic type as you can just leave it plugged in.
It’s also important to note the device’s safety features. It is best if you get a product with spark-resistant clamps, reverse polarity protection, and automatic detection of amperage as well as battery voltage.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What types of car battery chargers are there?
There are numerous types of car battery chargers available in the market. You can always choose from those options for the one according to your requirements. Following is the list of some top car battery chargers:
CTEK Automatic Battery Charger:
This charger has built-in temperature sensing and its cables last a lifetime. The minimum battery voltage is 2Volts.
Optimate6 Battery Saver and Charger:
Once the charging is complete, it turns power saving mode on. This charger automatically diagnosis the battery state and sets optimal charge and current.
Jane Choi Smart Battery charger and maintainer:
This charger maintains the charging process and automatically stops when the charging is complete. Provides the best maintenance and battery life.
Kinverch Battery Charger and Maintainer:
It consists of an LED screen indicating the charging mode. This dense charger can charge various vehicles including cars, bikes, etc.
NOCO Genius 10 Battery Charger:
The NOCO Genius 10 is small, handy, and the most powerful than previous models of this company. It can charge a battery as low as 1 volt.
How do I choose a car battery charger?
Check for the capacity required to charge your battery and determine the type of battery you have. The battery charger should be a minimum of 10% Ah rating of the battery.
What Is a Battery Charger-Maintainer?
A battery charger maintainer extends the battery life. It is a battery charger made to deliver a small amount of electricity to your battery for long periods of immobility. The battery maintainers contain an advanced depth of the discharging rate of the battery.
Why Buy a Higher-Price Charger-Maintainer?
The higher price charger-maintainers refer to longer cables and a fast charging rate. It has the ability to jump-start a dead battery and repair, in most cases, and will maintain the battery well.
What Do I Give Up Buying a Low-Cost Charger-Maintainer?
A low-cost charger maintainer may maintain the battery well and charges, but charging a low battery can take quite a few days to fully charge the battery. Whereas, it will have a low life span as compared to a High-cost charger maintainer.
Can I charge my car battery without disconnecting it?
A few precautions should be followed to carry out this process. The batteries are designed to be charged while it is connected to the car and make sure you connect the red wire first. It is completely safe and sound to charge your car battery without disconnecting it.
Can I Leave the Charger Attached for a Long Time?
Leaving the charger attached for a longer time will shorten the battery life and cause it to drain due to overcharging and can eventually die. The casing of the battery will become hot and begin to melt or swell and cause the acid in the battery to evaporate which will cause the battery to no longer to hold a charge.
What Is a Battery Float?
When a battery prevents overcharging, float charge will still charge the battery but voltage and current will be decreased equal to the battery’s discharge rate.
What is a portable battery charger?
A portable battery charger is a handy product that allows you to charge several devices from anywhere without a proper wall outlet.
What else can a portable battery charger do?
Portable chargers offer much utility and are allowed to store electrical energy. They can also be used to support quick charging and some include multiple ports so multiple devices can be charged at one time.