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Thread: Car Battery Charger Recommendations Please...

  1. #1
    Master dejjl's Avatar
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    Car Battery Charger Recommendations Please...

    Any recommendations for a decent sub £80 charger, capable of doing up to 2.5L engined cars? An automatic charger would be good, switching off or to trickle when battery is loaded. Reading reviews on Amazon has left my head spinning. Thanks.

  2. #2
    I use a CTEK MSX 5. It will do everything and it's highly recommended in the trade. Under £70, 5 year warranty, incredibly simple to use and I particularly like the quick connect wiring.

    https://www.smarterchargers.co.uk/pr...attery-charger

  3. #3
    Master Arcam's Avatar
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    +1 on THE CTEK as well.

    Sent from my SM-N960F using Tapatalk

  4. #4
    Craftsman
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    Just to make you aware, I have been reviewing this for my car battery and if you have a Stop/Start engine you are likely to have an EFB (Enhanced Flooded Battery) or AGM (Absorbent Glass Mat) type battery.

    These batteries require a different type of battery conditioning smart charger. The CTEK CT5 Start/Stop Charger can provide this charging. I'm not an expert but read this in a Telegraph article.

    If you have a traditional lead-acid battery you do not have to worry.

    Just read the specification of the below charger and it states "With stop-start technology becoming increasingly widespread, the new MXS 5.0 model now gains a dedicated mode for AGM batteries commonly used in this type of vehicle"
    Last edited by Cooper85; 2nd March 2021 at 15:09.

  5. #5
    Master
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    I’ve got a CTEK as well, good charger/trickle charger, but I also have a NOCO Genius 5, which arguably covers more bases including battery desulfurization capability, covers AGM and Lithium batteries and also has a 6v mode.

    There’s a good selection of extra cables available for both so you can leave a fly lead on a battery for trickle charging, or use extension cables out of the garage etc.

  6. #6
    Master
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    Another vote for CTEK stuff.

  7. #7
    And another CTEK recommendation. It is a very versatile charger. Used one on my e24 that sat in a garage over winter as a trickle charger with the harness adapter.

  8. #8
    Craftsman
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    + 1 for the CTEK. I have one, on one of my bikes which does not get much use but the battery is always ready to go.

    Optimate are also good. I have a couple of these chargers which are over 15 years old which I also use on bikes (and cars) and they do the job well.

  9. #9
    Craftsman
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    CTEK Is what I had and annoyingly it failed a few months out of warranty. But after looking around I still couldn’t find anything better so with some slight frustration I am now on my second one.

  10. #10
    Master
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    I have a few optimates for the bikes, and use an optimate 6 on the car.

  11. #11
    Master Thewatchbloke's Avatar
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    I use Optimates for the bikes and a CTEK for the car.

  12. #12
    Master dejjl's Avatar
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    CTEK seems to be the favourite although there are a few reports of product failure. I guess that’s the case with most mass produced items. Thanks all.

  13. #13
    Master IAmATeaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deejay View Post
    CTEK Is what I had and annoyingly it failed a few months out of warranty. But after looking around I still couldn’t find anything better so with some slight frustration I am now on my second one.
    This is a common trait with the CTEK chargers with quite a few reports of them failing a few month past their warranty. I think I saw a video a while back where the culprit was diagnosed as being a failed diode? If you can solder you might be able to repair it?

    EDIT: I should add that I have a failed MX5 but for me it wasn't the diode so couldn't fixed it, mine was also out of warranty, prior to meddling I did contact CTEK and was effectively told "circle of life" so I got a cheap Aldi charger to replace it a few weeks ago which for me has been working fine keeping my AGM battery at 12.4v.
    Last edited by IAmATeaf; 3rd March 2021 at 10:23.

  14. #14
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    Rather depends on whether you want a charger to ‘maintain’ an already charged battery, or a charger to bring a discharged battery back to fully charged.
    “The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.”

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by oldoakknives View Post
    Rather depends on whether you want a charger to ‘maintain’ an already charged battery, or a charger to bring a discharged battery back to fully charged.
    I think most of us will want one that does both at some point, hence the recommendations for the CTEK. £70 isn't a lot of coin for something that will solve most of our battery charging problems.

  16. #16
    Master steptoe's Avatar
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    I have a varied selection of vehicles, from a V8 Range Rover to a stop/start car and quite a few motorcycles (BMW/Moto Guzzi) including a 1970 6 volt Honda Monkey bike, all mostly kept on chargers ranging from Optimate, Ctek, Halfords professional and Gunson.
    All pretty much do the job.
    But the surprise of the bunch is an Aldi XS battery charger, cost £12.99 and does the job as good as any of the others, plus it has a 6/12 volt option, which some of the more expensive models don't, plus a cold weather charge mode.

    https://www.aldi.co.uk/auto-xs-car-b...02686417123000

  17. #17
    I originally used an Optimate which is OK if the battery is charged and you need a top up but I found it was not good at reviving a discharged one. Upgraded to a CTEK and it has no such problem.

  18. #18
    Grand Master Neil.C's Avatar
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    I'm still using my old Crypton HC 3 battery charger I bought over 40 years ago.

    Still working perfectly.

    Cheers,
    Neil.

    My Speedmaster website:

    http://www.freewebs.com/neil271052

  19. #19
    Master steptoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil.C View Post
    I'm still using my old Crypton HC 3 battery charger I bought over 40 years ago.

    Still working perfectly.

    I've a similar one, 46 years old. I've replaced the terminal clamps with a BMW socket plug and leave it plugged into my bike in the garage.

  20. #20
    Grand Master Neil.C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steptoe View Post
    I've a similar one, 46 years old. I've replaced the terminal clamps with a BMW socket plug and leave it plugged into my bike in the garage.
    Good idea!
    Cheers,
    Neil.

    My Speedmaster website:

    http://www.freewebs.com/neil271052

  21. #21
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j0hnbarker View Post
    I think most of us will want one that does both at some point, hence the recommendations for the CTEK. £70 isn't a lot of coin for something that will solve most of our battery charging problems.
    CTEK do more than one model, with different capabilities.
    “The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.”

  22. #22
    Master
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    CTEK for me too. I also had one fail, but replaced under warranty. Good customer service but failures would be a concern to me if I was buying again, probably failed on something like 6th use.....

  23. #23
    I have a few CTEK and a few more of the £12 Lidl ones.

    To be honest the Lidl ones are just as good if not better and I’ve been using them years....

  24. #24
    Master IAmATeaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steptoe View Post
    I have a varied selection of vehicles, from a V8 Range Rover to a stop/start car and quite a few motorcycles (BMW/Moto Guzzi) including a 1970 6 volt Honda Monkey bike, all mostly kept on chargers ranging from Optimate, Ctek, Halfords professional and Gunson.
    All pretty much do the job.
    But the surprise of the bunch is an Aldi XS battery charger, cost £12.99 and does the job as good as any of the others, plus it has a 6/12 volt option, which some of the more expensive models don't, plus a cold weather charge mode.

    https://www.aldi.co.uk/auto-xs-car-b...02686417123000
    That is the exactly the same as what I recently got. No idea how any of the other functions compare but seems to have stopped the battery low, start your engine messages that I was recently getting.

  25. #25
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by 964RS View Post
    I have a few CTEK and a few more of the £12 Lidl ones.

    To be honest the Lidl ones are just as good if not better and I’ve been using them years....
    The above sums it up for me.

    I had an older Lidl charger, it gave me more than 10 years of great service, and it was used often. The only drawback is that it would not charge a completely flat battery (below 5v), so I had to run it alongside an old fashioned charger (like Neil's crypton).

    It recently gave up the ghost, and because it wasn't in stock at Lidl I've picked up a "Dunlop" smart charger. for about £12 This also came with an extra set of leads that you can leave permanently attached to the battery. I've attached them to my Volvo xc90's battery, not because the battery is causing any problems, but because it is a total pita to get at. Now I can just lift up the rear floor and plug it in - instead of having to remove 3 bolts, a large metal plate, and a plastic shroud...............xc90 owners will know what I mean :-)

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