10 Best Battery Chargers to Keep Your Car Going
Have you ever taken an extended break from driving your car? Did you notice that it took a bit more time to start your vehicle? A car battery charger can help this become a non-issue. Car battery charges are excellent tools for preserving your battery's health and helping you start your car in an emergency.
What is a Car Battery Charger?
A car battery charger is typically a portable unit that you can plug into a wall outlet. The unit transforms the AC into a 12-volt current stored by the car’s battery that slowly charges the battery. Car battery chargers can step in and do the job of an alternator when the car isn’t running. The latter’s function is to keep your battery charged while your car is on; however, the battery self discharges once you turn it off.
And if your car has been off for a long time or you’ve left your lights on, the car battery may significantly lose its charge, making it hard to restart. In those cases, a car battery comes in handy. Since it takes much juice to power your battery, a car battery charger can help keep your battery readily able to start back up and prevent those deep discharges.
Now that you have an idea of what the primary uses of a car battery charger are, here are some of our recommendations for options you should check out.
Best Portable Battery Chargers
NOCO 1 Amp Smart Battery Charger
The NOCO 1 Amp Smart Battery Charger lives up to the company’s name who created it: GENIUS1. It’s a six and 12-volt battery charger made for all types of batteries, including flooded, gel, AGM, and lithium-ion. It has dynamic battery tracking (which allows it to understand the states of your battery), can be used on various vehicle types, can charge batteries starting at zero volts, and is optimized for any climate. If you need a versatile battery charger, this is one to seriously consider.
Battery Tender 12 Volt Junior 800 Selectable Lead Acid Lithium Battery Charger
The Battery Tender 12 Volt Junior 800 Selectable Lead Acid Lithium Battery Charger is a lightweight option with a brain. Not only is it suitable for most battery types, but it also can automatically switch between full charge and float mode, so you don’t have to monitor this aspect. It’s got reverse hook-up protection and spark-proof alligator tips, making it as safe as it is effective.
Duralast 8 Amp 6 Volt and 12 Volt Battery Charger and Maintainer
The Duralast 8 Amp 6 Volt and 12 Volt Battery Charger and Maintainer is a bit pricier than the previous options, but the inflated bill may be worth the charge. Not only is this battery able to automatically detect whether a battery is six or 12 volts, but it has multi-stage charging for enhanced precision and safety. It also comes with a float mode that allows it to stay at the optimum charge for your battery.
Duralast 15 Amp Battery Charger and Maintainer
The Duralast 15 Amp Battery Charger and Maintainer packs an extra kick of power at 15 amps. Not only does it offer gradual charging and can be used to charge batteries from a variety of vehicle types, but it also displays the battery charging status and will not operate if the clamps are reversed — so you don’t have to worry about hurting the charger or your car. It also includes a battery percentage indicator and voltmeter and automatically detects six or 12-volt batteries. If you need a dynamic and intelligent battery charger, this option is one to consider.
Schumacher 1.5 Amp 6/12 Volt Battery Maintainer
Sometimes you only need a gradual charge to maintain the power of your battery. If that’s the case, then the Schumacher 1.5 Amp 6/12 Volt Battery Maintainer is worth your time. This 1.5 amp battery is compact enough so that you can conveniently install it in your car for a complete charge. It’s a great option if you need to maintain the power of your battery instead of needing a fast and powerful jolt; this can be especially helpful in cold weather climates or if you don’t use your car frequently.
NOCO 5 Amp Smart Battery Charger
If you’re looking for a car battery charger that’s as smart as it is powerful, then the NOCO 5 Amp Smart Battery Charger should be high on your list. Much like the other options on this list, this charger also can power all types of vehicles (ex. ATVs, marine, tractors) in addition to cars and powers a variety of battery types. Additionally, it comes with dynamic battery tracking, thermal compensation, and the feature that makes it stand apart from the rest, auto desulfation and repair, which can take care of those crystal deposits on your battery. If you need to help spur recovery for your battery, this option is a great one to consider.
Schumacher 2.4 Watt Solar Battery Maintainer Charger
If there is a vehicle you don’t drive that often, like a powersport vehicle, then a product like the Schumacher 2.4 Watt Solar Battery Maintainer Charger is a solid choice. Not only does this battery effectively charge and maintain the charge of your vehicle battery, but it is also solar-powered, so you can charge your vehicle even if you aren’t near an outlet.
Battery Tender 750mA 12 Volt Automatic Battery Charger
Have a small space to work with for your DIY auto work? Well, the Battery Tender 750mA 12 Volt Automatic Battery Charger can fit while still being effective. It works with flooded, lead-acid, and sealed maintenance free batteries and offers a gradual four-step charging process. This battery is also safe as it’s spark proof. If you need an affordable battery charger option, then give this option a look.
Duralast 75 Amp Engine Starter Battery Charger
What if a battery charger not only could get that battery fully charged and ready to go, but it could also start your engine? The Duralast 75 Amp Engine Starter Battery Charger can help you when that battery has faded, and you need to get your car started. Its multi-stage charging capabilities not only get your vehicle going but also preserve your battery’s health. It also has reverse hook-up protection and is built for rugged use.
Duralast 2 Amp Battery Charger and Maintainer
Much like the other options on this list, the Duralast 2 Amp Battery Charger and Maintainer works with standard, AGM, gel, and deep-cycle battery types. It also automatically detects six or 12-volt batteries, has multi-stage charging and has lights to indicate the charging stage. This product comes with a convenient hook allowing you to hang this battery charger without having to place it on the floor or somewhere else where it could be damaged. This is an excellent feature as it makes it easier for you to connect the charger to the battery and wall outlet.
A car battery charger is no longer a “nice to have” piece of automotive equipment. Not only can it help you in an emergency, but it can also preserve the health of your battery for long-term use. If you live in a cold-weather climate, work from home, or have a vehicle that you do not use frequently, it makes sense to invest in a car battery charger. You’ll find an excellent selection of tools to maintain your car including these battery chargers at an AutoZone near you.