Trickle Charger – What Is This Charging Device?
Have you been away from your car or motorcycle for a while and you need to jolt it up? Do you have a struggling car battery? Well, there’s an emerging device—the trickle charger. This nifty gadget recharges your battery at the same rate it self-discharges. You may be wondering what that statement means. To get a better understanding, you need first to know how a battery operates.
All batteries self-discharge when not in use—that is, they lose power over time. Be it the lead-acid battery in your vehicle or the lithium-ion battery in your phone. Consider a motorcycle. When not in use, its battery self-discharges at a rate of 1% every day. The same case applies to your car. Leave it in the garage for a few months with no attendance, and it’ll have little power to start up—precisely the scenario where the trickle charger comes in handy.
The trickle charger transfers energy to your battery through ‘trickles’. Think of it as how water trickles out of a tap, small droplets yet continuous. Vehicle alternators recharge normal-working batteries. But trickle chargers make inactive cells keep power and stop self-discharging. Additionally, using a charger that switches off automatically once the battery reaches full charge is an advantage. Otherwise, your battery will overcharge and suffer damage.
Is The Trickle Charger A Suitable Battery Charger?
Some of the essential basics to know of the trickle charger are—what it contains and how to use it. For starters, most of them come with two alligator clips, a power cable and a box. The simple box is where the ‘powerhouse’ of the charger resides. Before any connection, ensure the proper voltage and amperage of your battery is alright. Plus, check and set the switches and relevant buttons on the box before connecting the battery charger to a power outlet.
Like other electronics, the trickle charger requires a safe environment. Before attaching the charger to your battery, ask yourself these questions. Is the area free from humidity? Is the room well-ventilated? A wet environment increases the risk of electric shock and should be avoided. During the charging process, there’s the production of hydrogen. A well-ventilated room ensures removal of the gas, limiting the occurrence of an explosion.
An efficient connection requires a suitable location of the charger’s negative terminal. Consider attaching it to bare metal on the car. If not, a frame free of dirt will manage.
Next up is the alligator clips. The positive or red clip joins to the positive terminal of the battery to be charged. After making a firm connection, you then link the black clip to the charger’s negative.