Best Car Battery Chargers, Tested. 12v battery pulse charger

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Best Car Battery Chargers, Tested

Will Moore has been driving since he was first allowed behind the wheel of a golf cart. He’s written for several major auto sites including Motor1 since 2020, unraveling the intricacies of auto insurance policies and products for the everyday driver. Will has logged hundreds of hours researching and testing products ranging from child car seats to torque wrenches. After completing a PhD at the University of Missouri, Will moved to North Carolina with his wife, daughter, and two semi-obedient beagles.

A durably-built car batter charger that’s able supply juice to just about any battery type and voltage.

A sturdy, fast-working battery charger with modes for a several battery types and ambient temperatures.

A car battery charger can restore a depleted battery or maintain a battery you don’t frequently use. We’ve studied and tested several of the best car battery chargers so we could suggest the fastest, most reliable models. A quality charger can extend car battery life if used properly. Keeping your battery regularly charged prevents sulfation – a process where lead sulfate crystals build up on the surface of a battery, rendering it inoperable. If you need something to jumpstart a dead battery, look for one of the best jump starters.

Best Car Battery Chargers

How We Tested

The car battery chargers in this article went through two rounds of reviews. We started by searching retailers like Amazon, RealTruck, and Advance Auto Parts for top products, looking at factors such as battery type, voltage, customer ratings, and prices.

Our product testing team then ordered the car battery chargers that best met these standards. A team member tested each product on a 2004 Subaru Forester, taking note of how quickly the car battery charger could charge a car battery, versatility, ease of use, and value. Each car battery charger was given a rating out of 5 stars based on these criteria.

Best Car Battery Chargers Testing Process

To test each car battery, we unpackaged it and attached it to a 12.0-V wet cell battery. We started the battery charger according to the instructions and measured the voltage using a multimeter.

During testing, our review team recorded careful notes about each feature of every battery. Evaluation across our review categories is based on our in-person experience and online customer reviews.

Charging Speed

By considering a battery charger’s voltage and amp hours, you can determine the approximate charging speed. Batteries that charge a car faster received a higher rating in this category.

Most car batteries are 12.0-volt. A higher voltage will charge a battery more quickly, but too many volts can damage your battery. A few volts above a battery’s rating are acceptable and even desirable, but a car battery charger must produce at least 12.0 volts to charge a 12.0-volt battery. Maintaining a consistent voltage is also important for charging speed and battery protection.


Not all car battery chargers will work with every type of battery. While most cars use a wet cell battery, some may use an AGM, gel, or lithium-ion battery. Chargers compatible with the most types of batteries scored best in this category.

Additionally, some car battery chargers have features such as overcharge protection and trickle charging options. Such features also contribute to a battery’s versatility rating.

Ease Of Use

An easy-to-use automotive battery charger has long clamp cables and durable alligator clamps. Battery chargers are also easy to use if they have long outlet cords and straightforward interfaces and instructions.


Our value score is based on the relationship between a battery’s rating in all other categories compared to the price.

Why You Can Trust Us

Each year, we test over 350 auto products on vehicles and in our testing lab. Our team of product testers thoroughly researches top products, unboxes and puts our hands on each component, and tests the items on real vehicles before making recommendations to readers.

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We publish hundreds of product and service reviews to bring car enthusiasts detailed guides on automotive tools, detailing kits, car seats, pet products, and much more. For more information on our testing methodology and how we evaluate every product, check out our methodology page here.

Best Overall: Schumacher SC1280

The Schumacher SC1280 is a quick battery charger putting out 13.0 volts at a 15.0 amp current. It can fully charge a 105.0-Ah battery in 16 hours (this is relatively fast). The SC1280 is lightweight, portable, and easy to set up and use. It can automatically detect the battery voltage and adjust between 6.0-volt and 12.0-volt modes. While most cars use a 12.0-volt battery, 6.0-volt batteries are common in motorcycles. This charger includes a two-year warranty, trickle charging, and desulfation mode. It also has an automatic shutoff feature to help prevent overcharging. However, several reports say this automatic charging feature can malfunction.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 50
  • Battery type(s): Standard (wet cell), absorbed glass mat (AGM), and gel
  • Amperage: 15.0 and 3.0 amp modes
  • Voltage: 13.0 volts
  • Weight: 3.0 pounds (lbs.)
  • Warranty: 2 years

What’s In The Box?

There’s nothing included with the Schumacher SC1280 other than an instruction manual. The clamps are permanently attached to the device, which is designed such that the clamps are easily wrapped and stored.

Our Experience

The alligator clamps are a good size with long cables and therefore easy to use. The power cord is also fairly long, making it easy to set up to SC1280. The device’s computer automatically detects the proper voltage, so all you need to do is attach the SC1280 and press the start button to enter charging mode.

The voltage was tested at 13.0 amps while the battery charger was in use, which is in the ideal range for a 12.0-volt car battery. This voltage stayed consistent throughout. Perhaps our favorite feature is the LCD display, which can even provide an estimate of your vehicle’s battery charge.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.6 out of 5 based on over 10,000 ratings

Many users are impressed with the charging speed of the SC1280 and appreciate that it can automatically detect battery voltage and adjust accordingly. Several reviewers note that this battery charger restored otherwise dead batteries after other chargers failed to do the same. Many say this is the best battery charger they’ve ever used with several others mentioning how helpful the LCD screen is.

The most concerning negative reviews are from customers who say the automatic shutoff feature failed to work. This can result in overcharging, which can permanently damage your car battery. While this doesn’t appear to be a common issue, it’s a concerning malfunction. Make sure the automatic shutoff works properly before leaving any charger on your battery unattended.

Most Rugged Design: NOCO Genius PRO50

Pros Includes 24-, 12-, and 6-volt charging modes High-quality components and clamps Very fast charging speeds

We recommend several NOCO battery chargers because all are built with reliable quality and backed by top-notch customer service. The Genius PRO50 is NOCO’s most powerful and versatile battery charger. In addition to offering many voltage and charging modes, this car battery charger features braided cable sleeves and the strongest alligator clamps of any battery charger that we’ve tested. Compatible with both gas- and diesel-powered vehicles, the Genius PRO50 is suitable for just about any battery you’d need to charge, even lithium-ion batteries. This charger is expensive and relatively heavy, so it’s not the best choice for those who only need a casual-use battery charger. For those with a fleet of batteries to maintain, the Genius PRO50 is a good item to keep in your garage.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 740
  • Battery type(s) : Standard, AGM, SLA, VRLA, and lithium-ion
  • Amperage : 25.0 and 50.0 amp modes
  • Voltage : 24.0-, 12.0-, and 6.0-volt modes
  • Weight : 17.7 lbs.
  • Warranty : 3 years

What’s In The Box?

The Genius PRO50 includes a solid EVA carrying case as well as several different power cords (for North America, European Union, United Kingdom, and Australia outlet types).

Our Experience

The first thing that stood out to us about the Genius PRO50 was the quality of the alligator cables. While many of our other recommendations (including other NOCO products) have well-made alligator clips, the Genius PRO50 has thick, braided cord sleeves that provide extra protection and longevity.

This car battery charger is a little heavier than a portable battery charger, but still smaller than stationary units like the Schumacher SC1309. We do note the lack of a display screen to provide battery data. While this isn’t a necessity for a battery charger, it’s a modern feature that would be nice to include on a unit this expensive.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.4 out of 5 based on over 250 ratings

Most reviewers rave about the charging speed of the Genius PRO50 battery charger. Those looking to top up batteries for large engines like this charger. They claim it’s capable of bringing dead batteries back to life in fairly short order.

A few reviewers are upset that there is no display screen. There are indicators for the voltage, battery type, and charging mode, but no screen to show battery status. Another complaint some have is that some units arrive damaged because of poor packaging. However, NOCO does include a three-year warranty and customer reviews speak highly of the company’s customer service.

Fastest Charging: Schumacher SC1309

Unlike the other battery chargers on this list, the Schumacher SC1309 is capable not only of charging a vehicle but also provides a good jump start. The built-in tester can detect battery charge levels and even has some diagnostics features. While a bit heavier than our other recommended best car battery chargers, the Schumacher SC1309 is versatile and charges quickly. It’s easy to operate and includes desulfation and float modes. The SC1309 can fully charge a 105.0-Ah battery in about 16 hours.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 175
  • Battery type(s): Standard (wet), AGM, and deep cycle
  • Amperage: 40.0 and 400.0 amp modes
  • Voltage: 15.0 volts
  • Weight: 30.0 lbs.
  • Warranty: 1 year

What’s In The Box?

The necessary alligator clamps are the only item that comes with the Schumacher SC1309.

Our Experience

This battery charger is simple to use and has large, strong alligator clamps. We found it one of the easier chargers to operate. Its size and long clamp cables allow you to rest the charger on the ground (other smaller chargers with short jumper cables can’t reach the battery from the ground).

The voltage output is consistent at 15.0 amps, which is a little high for a 12.0-volt battery but not high enough to endanger battery health. This voltage also means a fast charge rate and minimal charging time.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.5 out of 5 based on over 1,700 ratings

Satisfied customers express surprise with the SC1309’s charging speed. Many say they used this battery charger to rejuvenate long-dead batteries with little difficulty. Several reviewers mention being able to use the engine start feature to revive SUVs and other large vehicle batteries.

One recurring negative comment comes from customers who report that the SC1309 stopped working properly after a couple of months. While this doesn’t seem typical, it’s not uncommon either. This charger comes with a one-year warranty, and one reviewer says they received a replacement from the company.

Several users also mention receiving faulty products with scratches and other damages. The company appears to have a good record of refunding these mistakes, but it’s a pain not to get a functioning car charger from the start.

Most Versatile: TOPDON Tornado 30000

Pros Modes for many battery types and voltages Durable, robust design Includes Smart charging features that protect your battery

If you find yourself charging a variety of battery types in all weather conditions, consider the TOPDON Tornado 30000. This car battery charger has modes for just about every type of battery, including lead-acid, WET, GEL, AGM, and lithium. It also has modes for 6.0-volt, 12.0-volt, and 24.0-volt batteries. This charger even has a special option for battery charging in low temperatures. While it is a fairly expensive option, this robust charger is sturdy and long-lasting. This is thanks to the TOPDON’s spark-proof housing and large list of safety features, such as reverse polarity protection. Additionally, t he included alligator clamps are of a higher quality than many other battery chargers of this size (they are large and made with thick plastic).

Key Features

  • Cost: About 300
  • Battery type(s): Lead-acid, WET, GEL, ME, CA, EFR, AGM, Lithium-ion.
  • Amperage: 30.0 amps
  • Voltage: 12.0 volts
  • Weight: 6.1 lbs.
  • Warranty: 3 years

What’s In The Box?

The Tornado 30000 does not come with any parts or accessories other than the charger itself, a pair of alligator clamps, and an instruction booklet.

Our Experience

What immediately stands out about the TOPDON is that it has 12 different charging modes. This can seem overwhelming if you only need to jump a typical car battery. Some of the charging modes are for batteries unlikely to be used in a vehicle. However, included with the TOPDON is an instruction booklet that provides a handy table describing the use case for each charging mode.

The TOPDON uses Smart charging technology to detect the state of the battery to which it is attached. This helps prevent overcharging and allows you to easily use the device as a trickle charger. A series of lights indicates the approximate (0-, 25-, 50-, 75-, or 100-percent) charge remaining in the connected battery. Despite having so many different charging modes, this charger is very easy to use, even for non-mechanics.

There are only a few buttons, one to select the charge mode, and another to initiate charging. We had little difficulty attaching the TOPDON to the battery terminals of our test vehicle. During our test, we were impressed with the high quality of the alligator clamps. They are a bit larger and sturdier than the clamps typically included with this size battery charger. The power cord, however, is short for a device that must be plugged in to operate. Many users may need an extension cord to get this charger to their vehicle.

Our other criticism of this charger is that it does not include a carrying case or an easy way to store the device.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.7 out of 5 based on over 40 ratings

As a relatively new product, there aren’t a lot of reviews for the Tornado 30000 on Amazon. However, those that do exist are largely positive.

The most commonly praised feature of the Tornado is its Smart charging functions. Reviewers like that it can be set up and allowed to run on its own with no need to worry about overcharging. At full power, the Tornado can quickly charge a battery. Despite the high price point, many feel this battery charger offers high value.

Another thing some reviewers praise about this car battery charger is that it operates relatively quietly and at a low temperature compared to other battery chargers those reviewers have used.

While around 90 percent of reviewers award the Tornado 5 stars, some have given the product a 3- or 1-star rating. None of these reviewers have posted written Комментарии и мнения владельцев about the Tornado.

Best For Old Batteries: CTEK Multi US 7002

The CTEK US 7002 is a beefed-up version of the CTEK MXS 5.0. It boasts many of the same features such as automatic switch charging. It can put out a bit more amperage (7.0 amps) and so will charge more quickly. This model is also built to withstand extreme temperatures and can operate between.4.0 degrees and 122.0 degrees Fahrenheit. Choose the 7002 if you need to restore an old or depleted battery. This is also a battery charger that works with a wide range of vehicles, even boat and ATV batteries. The 7002 has a broad temperature operation range and water-resistant construction.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 175
  • Battery type(s): Standard (Wet), MF, AGM, GEL, and Ca
  • Amperage: 7.0 amps
  • Voltage: 12.0 volts
  • Weight: 1.72 lbs.
  • Warranty: 5 years

What’s In The Box?

The CTEK 7002 comes with alligator clamps and eyelet clips.

Our Experience

The CTEK 7002 is one of the easiest-to-use battery chargers we tested. Simply plug it in, attach the clips, and press the power button. The display will even give an indication of how much charge your battery has. When attached to our multimeter, we noted that this machine delivers a consistent 14.4 volts in normal mode.

We like that the CTEK 7002 operates in a wide variety of temperatures, and even has a mode for charging batteries at temperatures below 41 degrees Fahrenheit.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.7 out of 5 based on over 1,900 ratings

Reviewers like the 7002’s reliability as well as the safety features that prevent overcharging. The unit is also durable, with many describing drops and accidents that failed to break this car battery charger. It seems to work well at reconditioning and reviving old batteries, and many purchase it for that purpose.

Some say the unit can heat up quite a bit when charging for long periods of time. It is also more expensive than other options, though most feel the increased cost is worth the improved quality that comes with it.

Best Portable Charger: NOCO Genius 10

Pros Exceptionally lightweight Features an overcharge mode Can also work as a battery maintainer and sulfator

The NOCO Genius 10 is a battery charger, maintainer, and desulfator. It can work on 6.0- or 12.0-volt batteries and includes thermal sensors to help prevent overcharging. The Genius 10 can charge nearly every type of car battery, including lithium-ion batteries. This small yet versatile car battery charger is energy-efficient and includes a three-year warranty. Utilizing next-generation microprocessor technology, the Genius 10 can fully charge a 100.0-Ah battery in about 14 hours.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 100
  • Battery type(s): Standard (wet), Gel, Ca, enhanced flooded battery (EFB), AGM, and lithium-ion
  • Amperage: 10.0 amps
  • Voltage: 13.0 volts
  • Weight: 4.0 lbs.
  • Warranty: 3 years

What’s In The Box?

Included with the NOCO Genius 10 are the battery clamps and a mounting bracket with self-threading screws.

Our Experience

The NOCO is easy to set up, and while the alligator clamps are small, they open wide and are a breeze to attach. The NOCO display shows battery charge, and the one-button interface allows you to switch between modes. We love how lightweight this device is, hence why we named it the Best Portable Car Battery Charger of 2023.

One nice feature of the NOCO Genius 10 is the overcharge mode. Most battery chargers, including the NOCO, automatically detect the battery and adjust voltage accordingly. When attempting to charge a completely dead battery, automatic detection won’t work. This is when overcharge mode comes in handy.

The NOCO put out a consistent 13.0 volts, according to our multimeter.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.6 out of 5 based on over 14,000 ratings

Reviewers say this battery works well with deep-cycle batteries, and users appreciate its ability to revive completely dead batteries using the overcharge mode. Several customers also praise the high quality of the included alligator clips.

Even positive reviews often mention that the instructions can be difficult to follow. While we didn’t have any issues with the Genius 10, we also didn’t attempt to use all the advanced features.

Some reviews note that the desulfation mode doesn’t work as anticipated.

Best Trickle Charger: CTEK MXS 5.0

Pros Comes with a well-written instruction manual Features built-in temperature sensors Can charge more than just car batteries

This small battery charger has an extremely long five-year warranty. It features built-in temperature sensors that adjust the voltage output based on temperature conditions. This automatic battery charger is programmed to tend batteries once they’ve reached full charge. The CTEK MXS 5.0 can charge batteries up to 110.0 amps and takes about 35 hours to charge a 110.0-Ah battery. Because of its automatic voltage detector, you can use this product to charge not just car batteries but any battery under 110.0 amps. If you’re looking at this car battery charger for its battery-tending abilities, we recommend checking out our review of the best trickle chargers.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 90
  • Battery type(s): Standard (wet), calcium (Ca), AGM, and gel
  • Amperage: 4.3 amps
  • Voltage: 14.0 volts
  • Weight: 1.8 lbs.
  • Warranty: 5 years

What’s In The Box?

In addition to the charger, the CTEK includes:

The carrying case fits everything nicely, but it could be more robust. It’s soft and won’t offer much protection.

Our Experience

The CTEK is easy to start and features the most straightforward, easy-to-understand manual of the car battery chargers we tested. However, the CTEK loses some points because of the lackluster alligator clamps. They are rather small, and while we didn’t have problems getting them onto our test car battery, they are of noticeably lower quality than other car battery chargers.

This charger put out a consistent 14.0 volts when we attached it to our test battery. This is within the ideal range for a 12.0-volt car battery.

We like the preprogrammed multi-stage charge cycle, and the only settings you must choose are a 12.0-volt versus 8.0-volt battery as well as standard, AGM, or reconditioning mode.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.7 out of 5 based on over 4,200 ratings

Reviewers are impressed by the charging speed of the CTEK, especially since most purchase this charger as a battery tender for trickle charging. Customers appreciate the tending safety features, and several people point out that they prefer this battery charger for their AGM batteries.

A couple of reviews mention that the CTEK is prone to overheating. However, proper positioning (ensuring the bottom vents are open) seems to help.

Best Value: NOCO Genius 1

This low-cost entry in the NOCO Genius series offers an alternative to the Genius 10. It has many of the same features, including the ability to charge lithium-ion batteries. The Genius 1 does lack some of the battery repair features of the Genius 10. This car battery charger is very small, simple to use, and energy-efficient. It can act as a desulfator, trickle charger, or battery maintainer for 6.0- and 12.0-volt batteries.

Key Features

  • Cost: About 30
  • Battery type(s): Standard (wet), Gel, Ca, EFB, AGM, and lithium-ion batteries
  • Amperage: 1.0 amp
  • Voltage: 15.0 volts
  • Weight: 0.39 lbs.
  • Warranty: 3 years

What’s In The Box?

The alligator clips are the only item included with the Genius 1.

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Our Experience

Using the Genius 1 is nearly identical to using the Genius 10. It has excellent alligator clamps and a single button for switching to the desired mode.

When tested with our multimeter, the Genius 1 showed a reading of 15.0 volts, which was more than the Genius 10 supplied. The lower amperage of the Genius 1 means it must supply a slightly higher voltage to increase the charging speed. Fifteen amps are within the tolerable limits for a 12.0-volt battery.

While designed more for smaller batteries you would use in ATVs and lawnmowers, this Smart battery charger is capable of topping off 12.0-volt car batteries.

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What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score : 4.5 out of 5 based on over 34,000 ratings

Praise and complaints for the Genius 1 are similar to the Genius 10. Many users say the review manual is difficult to decipher. However, using the Genius 1 is mostly self-explanatory, especially for the most common tasks of charging and maintaining a standard 12.0-volt car battery.

Satisfied customers are pleased with the power in this tiny package. The overcharge mode to juice up dead batteries is a helpful feature, as is the temperature sensor.

A few Комментарии и мнения владельцев claim the overcharge detection failed to work, and a couple of customers almost ruined their batteries. This doesn’t appear to be a common issue, but make sure overcharge protection is working before leaving the Genius 1 attached to a battery unattended.

Other Car Battery Chargers We Recommend

Need more options to consider? We haven’t yet tested the car battery chargers listed below, but they have high customer ratings on sites like Amazon and Advance Auto Parts.

NOCO Boost Plus GB40

The Boost Plus is a heavy-duty battery charger that is compatible with diesel engines up to 3.0 liters. It features a similar design as the other NOCO chargers we’ve recommended. It is the same general size and shape, but the Boost Plus offers a lot more amps than the Genius 1 or Genius 10. This device can charge a completely dead battery and many reviewers have had success rejuvenating their batteries after long periods without driving.

Biuble Car Battery Starter

Another heavy-duty battery charger, the Biuble offers 1,000.0 peak amps. There are also 2,000.0A and 3,000.0A models available. This charger has a low self-discharge rate, which means that it won’t lose much charge after being tucked away unused for several months. The Biuble charger also has two USB ports for charging small electronics. Reviewers say this car battery charger is convenient, powerful, and reliable.

BlackDecker BM3B

The BlackDecker BM3B is unique in the fact that it automatically stops charging when your vehicle’s battery is fully charged or topped off. This handy car battery charger not only offers a quick charge, but also protects against overcharging, reverse polarity, and short circuits. Additionally, a mounting bracket is built into this fully automatic battery charger to make your life easier.

Buyers Guide: Best Car Battery Chargers

Not all automotive batteries are the same. While most modern cars use 12.0-volt wet cell batteries, this isn’t the case with every vehicle. When selecting a battery charger, first determine your car’s battery type. You’ll need to purchase a compatible battery charger. Common car battery types include:

Many car battery chargers are compatible with wet cell, AGM, and gel cell batteries, but not all are rated for use with lithium-ion batteries.

Amperage And Voltage

Amperage is a measure of electrical current. A battery charger’s amperage can affect how quickly it charges a battery. Generally, the higher the amperage, the better. You can use a charger with a higher amperage than your battery.

Voltage is also a measure of electrical current. Simply put, amperage describes the volume of electrons flowing through a circuit, and voltage refers to the force with which those electrons are moving. You want a battery charger with a voltage slightly higher than the voltage in your battery. However, if the voltage is too high, it can damage your car battery. You shouldn’t charge a 12.0-volt battery with much more than a 16.0-volt charger.

Types Of Car Battery Chargers

“You have two different types [of battery chargers]: you have chargers and you have trickle chargers” according to our aftermarket auto parts expert, Kyle Marker, Parts Manager at Leith Lincoln with more than 10 years of experience in the industry. “Trickle chargers, like the Battery Tender and the Tender Junior – always worth it.” When asked why, Marker says, “My Mustang won’t start right now because I [haven’t started] it in three weeks. The battery had 3.6 volts and it’s dead.”

Trickle Charging And Desulfation

The best car battery chargers typically have several modes serving different purposes. The most basic use of a charger is to top off a battery’s charge or bring a dying battery back to health. But you can also use chargers for trickle charging and desulfation.

Trickle charging, or battery tending, is when a charger detects that a battery needs charging and automatically supplies power until the battery is topped off, then shuts down. Trickle charging is necessary to prevent seldom-used batteries from becoming depleted.

Old lead-acid batteries are prone to sulfation when completely discharged. Sulfation is a buildup of lead sulfate on a battery’s surface. Once sulfated, a battery can be difficult to charge. Some car battery chargers have a desulfation mode, which applies a higher voltage to recharge the battery. Once charged, the normal charging process breaks down lead sulfate buildup.

Car Battery Chargers Vs. Jump Starters

Keep in mind that a car battery charger is different from a jump starter. A battery charger provides a lower current to steadily replenish your battery’s power. A jump starter provides a strong current to reset a dead battery. Some battery chargers (such as the Schumacher SC1309) can act as a charger and jump starter.

How Do Car Battery Chargers Work?

Car battery chargers utilize a process called induction charging to restore a car battery to working order. This is done by creating an electromagnetic field between two points, moving energy from a power source into the battery.

Best Car Battery Charger: Bottom Line

Our review team spent countless hours researching and physically testing numerous car battery chargers. We evaluated these car battery chargers based on their price, charging speed, power, and much more. By our testing, many of the top chargers come from NOCO, such as the Genius PRO and Genius 10, but it’s the Schumacher SC1280 that gets our top recommendation overall.

Car Battery Jump Starters At A Glance

ModelApproximate CostVoltageWeight

Car Battery Charger: FAQ

How do I choose a car battery charger?

First, be sure to select a battery charger compatible with the type and voltage of your car battery. Then you’ll want to select a charger based on your needs. Some chargers are better at reviving completely dead batteries, while others are designed to maintain batteries.

Are Schumacher battery chargers any good?

We believe the Schumacher battery chargers are good products. We vetted and personally tested the SC1309 and SC1280 models. Our experience, along with thousands of customer reviews, testifies that these chargers are reliable and effective.

What is the fastest car battery charger?

Based on our testing, the Schumacher SC1309 is one of the fastest car battery chargers. Keep in mind that even the fastest car battery charger will take several hours to fully charge a car battery. Slower chargers may take several days, while the best car battery chargers can top you overnight.

What is desulfation mode?

Desulfation mode on a car battery charger is for recharging a completely depleted battery. Depleted batteries can accumulate lead sulfate and can’t be recharged with the typical 12.0 volts. Desulfation mode applies a greater voltage to restart a battery’s charge cycle.

What is trickle charging?

Trickle charging or battery tending is when a charger detects a battery’s charge and turns on or off accordingly. You can attach a trickle charger to a car battery and leave it alone. It will automatically detect when a battery needs charging. This type of charging is useful when a car is in storage for a long period of time and not in use.

What is the best battery charger for cars?

Our review team’s choice for the best car battery chargers is the Schumacher SC1280. We like the quick charging mode and that it can be used for both cars and motorcycles.

Is it OK to leave a battery charger/maintainer on all the time?

Many modern car chargers are Smart enough to read when a battery is full and stop supplying power. Charging time also varies from product to product, so a completely dead battery may require leaving the jumper cables attached for well over 10 hours.

Is a car battery charger worth it?

When you need an engine start, a car charger is a better solution compared to waiting on maintenance service. Most modern batteries use stage charging to avoid oversaturating the car battery, which can also help avoid a short circuit.

What is the strongest car battery charger?

The strongest car battery charger we profiled is the Schumacher Electric SC1309. We also awarded it the fastest charging option of all the products we tested.

Does it matter what car battery charger you use?

As a general rule, choose a charger that can handle at least one-tenth the power of the car battery. An 80.0 amp-hour (Ah) car battery would need a charger that can handle at least 8.0 amps. Car battery chargers range from 5.0 amps to 30.0 amps and beyond.

Do chargers ruin your battery?

If applied improperly, yes. Overcharging a battery can impede performance or just kill it entirely. Some of the best car battery chargers, like the TOPDON Tornado 30000, have Smart charging features that prevent overcharging.

How much is a good battery charger?

Some of the best car battery chargers we found range from 30 to over 150. Some portable car battery chargers, which have a smaller format, tend to be cheaper.

Data accurate at time of publication.

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