Car battery charger: How to choose the best in 2021?
Today’s topic is car battery charger. Do you need one for personal or business use, be it a workshop or any other business that deals with car fleet? Then we will explain how to choose the ideal model.
When a car battery discharges, it is very common to use a “pacifier”, that is, connect wires from another battery in good condition so that the electric charge is fed. Only this is not the ideal way to solve the problem.
Automotive battery chargers are increasingly common on the market. They easily solve the problem of a dead battery. Let’s go to the best models and tips on how to choose yours!
First, the most important
- After using your automotive battery charger, always take the vehicle to a mechanic. Only he will be able to tell you the reason for discharging the battery and if it is still good for use.
- There are chargers suitable for everything from occasional home use to large-scale use in workshops or fleets. The amperage is the main factor for you to know the ideal use of each model.
- Prices will vary from about R $ 100 in simpler models to R $ 1,200 in other very powerful ones. That’s why you need to assess exactly what your needs are with the product.
Want to buy a car battery charger, but have no idea of the differences between the models? Stay calm! We will now bring you everything you need to know to be almost an expert on the subject.
That way, at the end of this Buying Guide, you can choose the best model for your needs.
What is a car battery charger and what is it for?
The battery is one of the most important components of a motor vehicle. It is responsible for all the electrical part of it, in addition to providing the initial charge for the operation of the engine.
Due to human carelessness or the end of the battery’s natural cycle, it is common for discharging to occur. At that time, the vehicle will not start and emergency solutions will need to be employed.
The most common of these solutions is the popular “pacifier”. It consists of connecting the discharged battery to a functioning battery via cable. Only experts advise against it completely: serious damage to the electrical part can be caused.
That’s where the charger comes in: a product designed to safely recharge the battery, making life easier for those who want to act with caution at home, or for those who deal with small automotive fleets.
What are the advantages of an automotive battery charger?
If you are an ordinary driver, who uses the vehicle on a daily basis, but not as a way of working, the idea is precaution. As the saying goes, “a person forewarned is worth for two”.
So, when your car battery has a problem, you can recharge it without having to use a “pacifier”. We remember once again that after recharging, the ideal is to always take the car to the mechanic.
However, if you leave your car idle for long periods of time or have a fleet, the charger becomes a necessity. Downtime is a major cause of loss of charge for an automotive battery.
Fleets of car rental companies or taxis can leave vehicles off for a long time and this will make refills necessary. Another possible reason for having a charger is obviously if you have a workshop.
- Safe and efficient charging
- Unloading prevention
- Possibility of large-scale use
- More expensive than a simple “pacifier”
- May be inactive for a long period of time
Why do batteries discharge?
There are many possible causes for battery discharge. The first is the end of its useful life. And that is why going to the mechanic after using the charger is so important.
If this is the cause, the battery will not work for long after charging and replacement is essential. Only the mechanic can attest that this is the case.
But in addition, there are many other possible causes: long periods of inactivity, use of lights, sound or other parts of the electrical system with the engine off, cold, problems with the alarm, key turned on the ignition, among others.
In all of these cases that are not the end of life, the battery should be able to function properly after charging.
Since the law requiring the use of a low beam on roads even during the day came into force, the number of discharged batteries has increased dramatically. This is because people often forget to turn off the headlight after they leave the road.
Therefore, always pay attention if you have disconnected all electrical components when leaving your car. This can help to prevent battery problems.
The cost of a car battery charger varies widely depending on its amperage and usage. Domestic models, with lower amperage, cost between R $ 100 and R $ 250.
The higher the amperage, which makes large-scale use more appropriate and the higher the charging speed, the more the price will rise. There are quite powerful models for around R $ 1,200.
Where to buy?
A good idea is to go to stores specializing in automotive products. Within them, there are those that are even more specific and deal directly with batteries. In them, it should be easy to find good chargers.
If you prefer Internet shopping, we recommend Amazon. Other good requests are the digital versions of stores specializing in cars or batteries.
Buying online you will find the best offers and more varieties.
Purchasing Criteria: How to choose your car battery charger
What are the main criteria you need to take into account when choosing your car charger model? We have prepared a list and will explain each item in detail:
- Recharge Speed
- Security systems
- Dimensions and weight
Below, we will explain each of these points so that, at the end of this Guide, you can decide which car battery charger to take to your home or business.
It is from the amperage that you understand the ideal use of a particular model. There are chargers for domestic vehicles, others for heavier vehicles, large fleets and so on.
For example, chargers with amperage of 10A or less are for simple domestic use, when the car battery is mysteriously discharged and does not tend to repeat itself. In other words, that case of prevention that we mentioned.
Models between 10 and 30 A are already a little more powerful, being able to charge some batteries in series or even a slightly heavier vehicle. The ideal use here is for small fleets or workshops.
When talking about a charger above 30 A, it is known that it is prepared for anything: large fleets, bus and truck companies, large workshops and the like. Likewise, such a product for home use would be a waste.
Shutting down the thought process is not rejuvenating. The human mind is like a car battery: it recharges while in operation ”- Bill Watterson, cartoonist.
The charging speed is also directly linked to the amperage. To find out how soon your battery will be ready for use again, just do a simple calculation.
Take the battery’s amperage (which will probably be written on it) and divide it by the charger’s ampere. If you have chosen the traditional 10A home model and your battery is 60A, the time required will be six hours.
Obviously, the more powerful models will get the job done much faster. That is why they are employed on a large scale in large workshops and fleets. Imagine doing all that work needing six hours for each shipment?
Many models on the market come with the “intelligent charging system”. It is important for indicating when the battery is fully charged and finalizing the transfer there, preventing waste or overcharging.
In addition, there are several other systems offered that are important: against short circuit, against heating, against energy leakage, among others. Ideally, the chosen model should have as many safety specifications as possible!
See below a video from the Dispemec channel teaching how not to charge an automotive battery:
Dimensions and weight
Depending on how you use the charger, dimensions and weight are important. For example, if you have a small boat for personal use and want to take the charger during the trips, it cannot be large or heavy.
There are very light loaders, starting at 600 g, and others very heavy, reaching more than 4 kg. So, evaluate if this is an important criterion for you!
Certainly, it is not worth having at home something super heavy or that takes up a lot of space for emergency use.
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