Having the right battery charger means the difference between a battery having a long life, or a short life. The size of your battery, and it’s internal construction will dictate what type and size of battery charger you need. They come in manual (where you decide when to turn it off and on) or automatic (where the computer in the battery charger decides when to turn it off and on.
We generally recommend you use the automatic ones, they have a computer algorithm that decides how much voltage to apply, for how long, and does it in stages for the best result. This is how the factories that make the battery do it, and it avoids forgetting to shut the charger off that can result in one bad battery in a hurr, or worse..
For small motorcycle batteries you don’t need a lot of amperage, in fact if you use too much it can hurt the battery. Something below 1 amp or less is ideal. These are also called battery maintainers. If you keep your battery on a maintainer in the off season, you won’t have to buy a new battery each spring. The ones we carry here at Pacific Batteries also have quick connect cables, so you can leave the charging leads on the battery itself, and not have to take it out of your bike or quad to charge it.
A car battery needs more amperage and we carry smart chargers for these too. If you left your lights on and your battery needs a charge, putting a smart charger on it is the way to go. The days of using your alternator to charge up a dead battery as you drive just isn’t very effective. It’s better than nothing, and if that is the way you have to go, then drive for at least 30 minutes at highway speeds. Just keep in mind your battery would really appreciate it if you would use a smart charger instead.
RV batteries like the 6 volts that are common to use need even more amperage. A pair of them would like 20 amps of charge. A small trickle charger just doesn’t have the power to keep the chemistry of the battery active. Pacific Batteries carries smart chargers for these too, and you can just hook it up to the batteries, and let it do it’s magic.
One question we get a lot is can I use a regular battery charger (meant for lead acid) on an AGM battery? The answer is no, please don’t do that. An AGM battery uses a different charging algorithm than a conventional lead acid battery does, and you can actually blow up an AGM battery using your old charger on it, and nobody wants that.
Jump starters and boosters have come a long way too. You can get a surprisingly small booster with today’s technology that has enough power for a tow truck driver to use. They also come in smaller sizes that are great for keeping in your glove box for those occasional emergencies like when you left your lights on. It’s a great way to keep your family safe.
Give us a call, or drop by, and ask what will work best for your application. It doesn’t have to be expensive to get the right charger, we carry them for 6 volt motorcycles or cars, 6 volt RV big batteries, 12 volt motorcycles, quads, skido’s, snowmobiles, solar, cars, pick up trucks, semi trucks, 24 volt trucks, and pretty much anything that takes a battery.