Buyers Guide & Information

Best Battery Maintainers Reviewed

To find the best battery maintainer, we have to look at several factors. Use this review guide to help you find the model that best suits your requirements.

What is a battery maintainer? It works differently than a conventional battery charger and merely keeps the charge at adequate levels while the vehicle is not in use.

To find the best battery maintainer, we have to look at several factors. That’s why we put together these battery maintainer reviews to help you find the model that suits your needs.


Preview

Product

Battery Type

Current

Check Price

Battery Tender 2-Bank Charger: 12V, 1.25 Amp...

Battery Tender

2-Bank

AGM, flooded, sealed

1.25a

NOCO Genius G750 6V/12V .75 Amp Battery...

NOCO Genius

G750

AGM, gel, wet, lead-acid, deep-cycle, marine, maintenance-free

0.75a

CTEK - 40-206 MXS 5.0 Fully Automatic 4.3 amp...

CTEK 40-206

MXS 5.0

AGM, gel, wet, lead-acid, deep-cycle, marine, maintenance-free

5a

Schumacher SC1360 15 Amp 8 Amp 3 Amp 6V/12V...

Schumacher

SC1360

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

15a, 8a, 3a

Schumacher DSR131 6V/12V 250A ProSeries...

Schumacher

DSR131

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

250a

PulseTech SolarPulse SP-3 Solar Battery...

PulseTech

SolarPulse SP-3

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

3W/250mA

BatteryMINDer 128CEC1: 12 Volt-2/4/8 AMP...

BatteryMINDer

128CEC1

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

2a, 4a or 8a

Why Invest in a Battery Maintainer

The best car battery maintainer helps to keep the batteries at an optimal charge. With the battery maintainer, they are always topped off, which also extends its life.

The battery charger maintainer also makes it easier to store batteries when they aren’t in use. In addition, you can use the best car battery charger and maintainer to restore an old battery.


Choosing a High-Quality Battery Maintainer

Frequency of Usage

Once you find the best battery maintainer, how do you plan to use it? Will you be keeping it to store your batteries, or does it need to be portable for on-the-go usage? These are important questions to ask yourself before you choose a battery maintainer. It’s also vital to consider if you will be using it outdoors, as this model should have a waterproof casing.

Battery Maintainer Type

The single bank maintainer is meant to charge one battery at a time. If you need to handle more than that, consider a multi-bank maintainer instead. With the hybrid maintainer, there are more charging options available to you for increased versatility. The cheapest of the three types is the single bank maintainer.

Type of Battery

What kind of battery are you looking to charge? You might need a different car battery maintainer to accommodate your type. For example, the lithium battery maintainer wouldn't necessarily be the same option used on your lead-acid battery. You might also need one compatible with your gel, wet cell, or AGM battery.

Maintainer Size, Amps & Voltage

The voltage refers to the electric strength of your car battery. Most vehicles have 12V batteries, so you would need a 12V battery maintainer. However, other vehicles, such as jet skis and some motorcycles, require a 6V battery maintainer instead.

Amperage talks about the amount of current that flows from the device to the battery. The higher the amps are, the faster it can charge, but that’s not always what you are looking for from a maintainer.

Durability & Compatibility

Do you plan to use your battery charger and maintainer with multiple vehicles? If so, you need to make sure it is compatible with all of the batteries. In addition, you should consider the construction of the maintainer itself. If you plan to use the charger outside of the garage, it should be resistant to the elements.

Battery Maintainer Features

High-amp battery maintainers offer varying charging modes to apply to different scenarios. You can use a fast charge mode that can restore a dead battery, while the maintenance mode is common to keep the battery charged over time. You also want to evaluate the smart features, continuous charging amps, and the option for starting/crank assist.

Safety Features

It’s not always safe to charge your vehicle battery, which is why you want additional protection. The best battery maintainer for deep cycle will feature extra safety protection to keep you safe. Look for options such as spark-resistant clamps, short circuit protection, reverse polarity features, LED indicator, and more.

Price & Warranty

We understand if you are looking for the best solar battery maintainer for an RV at the lowest price, but you can’t automatically choose the cheapest option. Instead, you want to look for a good mix of value and features. This starts by evaluating the brand and warranty term to ensure you are protected. Spending a little more money now might pay off in the future.


7 Best Battery Maintainers Reviewed

1. Battery Tender 2-Bank

Our Top Pick

Voltage

12V

Battery Type

AGM, flooded, sealed

Current

1.25a

Weight

1.7 lbs.

Key Feature

Temperature compensation

Warranty

2-year

It doesn’t matter if you want something for a car or the best motorcycle battery charger maintainer, this battery tender option fits both bills. The solid-state maintainer has two-color LED lights to indicate the status. Plus, the design includes spark-proof and reverse polarity protection. With the option to use two independent charging stations, you can connect your car and motorcycle battery at the same time.

If you need more capability than this, consider the other options, including the 4-bank battery charger, 5-bank battery charger, or 10-bank battery charger. Of course, each one adds a little more to the price as the capacity increases. However, all of these models include temperature compensation to ensure that all of our batteries receive the optimal charge voltage based on ambient temperature. The three-step charging program includes Initialization, Bulk Charge, and a Float Mode to ensure you never overcharge the batteries.

You can use this device with any AGM, sealed, and flooded battery. According to the auto battery maintainer reviews, there are no complaints worth discussing. The only thing worth considering is the shorter output wires, which could cause some problems for some people. On the bright side, this battery maintainer comes complete with a two-year warranty for your protection.

Pros

  • Charges two batteries at once
  • Includes temperature compensation
  • Highly rated
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Shorter output wires

2. NOCO Genius G750

Runner Up

Voltage

6V/12V

Battery Type

AGM, gel, wet, lead-acid, deep-cycle, marine, maintenance-free

Current

0.75a

Weight

8 ounces

Key Feature

Spark-proof technology

Warranty

5-year

Another motorcycle battery maintainer that can be used on a variety of vehicles is this option from NOCO. It is priced much lower and offers many of the same features. Use it for year-round battery care on your car, truck, SUV, motorcycle, RV, or boat. It will also recharge smaller capacity batteries, such as those on your ATV, scooter, personal watercraft, or power wheel.

It works effectively with your 6V or 12V lead-acid batteries. Use it with all wet, gel, AGM, deep-cycle, marine, or maintenance-free battery. You don't have to worry about overcharging the battery either with the advanced protection that monitors the current state. It also comes with numerous safety features, such as spark-proof technology and reverse polarity protection.

The battery charger maintainer reviews show how respected this model is. However, some people have been disappointed with the build quality. With the lower price, you might notice that the case doesn’t seem as durable as other options. If this concerns you, it might be better to choose something with a more durable design. However, the company is happy to provide a five-year warranty, which is one of the longest terms in the industry. If your budget is the top priority, you can’t go wrong with this maintainer.

Pros

  • Works with many battery types
  • 5-year warranty
  • Low cost
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Cheaper design

3. CTEK 40-206 MXS 5.0

Best Battery Maintainer for Winter Storage

Voltage

12V

Battery Type

AGM, gel, wet, lead-acid, deep-cycle, marine, maintenance-free

Current

5a

Weight

1.8 lbs.

Key Feature

Reconditioning mode

Warranty

5-year

While this next model jumps up a little bit in price, it has so much more to offer. This model proves that you get what you pay for. First, it’s a completely sealed unit for maximum protection. You can use this charger anywhere, making it ideal for winter storage use. Also, it comes with spark-proof and reverse polarity protection to ensure your safety at all times.

What sets it apart is the unique reconditioning mode that also has built-in temperature sensing ability. You can restore old batteries with this maintainer, which saves you money in the long run. It’s hailed as the fastest and most advanced maintainer on the market, but the company offers some other options. You can even choose complete kits, as well as various color options. If you need to charge multiple battery types or vehicles, you should find success with this model.

According to the battery charger and maintainer reviews, this unit is a top option. Some people did complain about the clamp design, which seems inferior to some. However, this is one of the other companies that provide a five-year warranty for additional protection. You can’t ask for too much more than reliable power and a decent warranty.

Pros

  • Unique reconditioning mode
  • 5-year warranty
  • Good value
  • Numerous options available

Cons

  • Cheap clamp design

4. Schumacher SC1360

Best Marine Battery Maintainer

Voltage

6V/12V

Battery Type

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

Current

15a, 8a, 3a

Weight

3 lbs.

Key Feature

Rapid charge

Warranty

2-year

If you want a specific marine battery maintainer, we recommend this option from Schumacher. Not only does it provide an exceptional value, but it also has several advanced features. Take the 15A rapid charge, for instance. With this option, you don’t have to wait too long to get fully charged batteries. There is also the option to use 8A to charge or 3A to maintain the battery. With the microprocessor control, the device provides the multi-stage charging application that’s best for your needs.

In addition, the Schumacher battery charger maintainer automatically detects between 6V and 12V batteries. Plus, it contains reverse hook-up protection, so there is no current when the clamps are accidentally reversed. Use this with a wide variety of battery types, from standard, AGM, deep-cycle, and gel. On top of that, the company offers several other purchasing options. Choose from 15A maintainer, 3/15A maintainer, a handheld 15A maintainer, and the trilingual 3/15A.

The reviews speak highly of the device. However, a couple of complaints suggest that the machine malfunctions when the batteries are very low. It might accidentally detect a 12V battery as a 6V instead. It is also a little bit heavier than the other models, but still quite lightweight. With Schumacher, you can count on a two-year warranty, which is plenty of time to ensure it is free of defects.

Pros

  • Three charging speeds
  • Advanced safety features
  • Good value
  • Works with many batteries

Cons

  • Trouble with voltage detection

5. Schumacher DSR131

Best Battery Maintainer For Diesel Truck

Voltage

6V/12V

Battery Type

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

Current

250a

Weight

33 lbs.

Key Feature

LED indicators

Warranty

2-year

If you need a professional Schumacher battery maintainer, you can’t go wrong with this model. It is capable of charging standard, AGM, gel, and deep-cycle batteries. With the 50A boost mode, you can quickly bring your deeply discharged battery back to optimal performance. Additionally, it comes with a digital display. With the easy-to-read display and LED indicators combined with push-button controls, it's never been simpler to charge automotive batteries.

In addition, this professional battery maintainer features a microprocessor that automatically controls the amperage rate to ensure the best charge without constant supervision. If you don’t need so much power, the company also offers this model as a 40/200A unit. Keep in mind that all of this extra power adds to the weight. You wouldn’t use this charger as a portable option since it does weigh 33 pounds. However, it comes with durable wheels that make it easy to tote around the shop.

Overall, you couldn't ask for a better high-end maintainer. Just look at the reviews for further confirmation. Schumacher provides a 2-year warranty with this particular model. Within this time, you would know if there were any defects. We recommend this for anyone with high-capacity batteries or an auto shop.

Pros

  • 50A boost mode
  • Brings discharged batteries back to life
  • Easy to wheel around shop
  • Heavy-duty

Cons

  • Heavy

6. PulseTech SolarPulse SP-3

Best Solar Battery Maintainer

Voltage

12V

Battery Type

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

Current

3W/250mA

Weight

1.95 lbs.

Key Feature

Solar panel

Warranty

10-year

Up until now, we haven’t covered the best solar car battery maintainer options. However, we don't want to overlook those who are hoping to operate off-the-grid. This solar battery maintainer provides the perfect option for RV or boating applications. It also works with a variety of battery types for complete flexibility. The company claims that this solar battery maintainer will extend the life by three times. They are so convinced of that that they offer a ten-year warranty with this charger.

Additionally, this product is known to remove sulfation from the battery, which helps it to last even longer. With the advanced technology, you can reduce the need for jump-starts and improve the overall performance. In addition, the attached solar panel is virtually indestructible, so you don't have to take it easy.

There haven’t been a lot of customers that left comments in the solar car battery maintainer review, yet what is there is quite favorable. On top of that, the solar power battery maintainer isn’t overly priced, which is good considering the solar technology. Plus, it weighs less than two pounds, making it completely portable for use anywhere that the sun is available. If you want flexible options, this maintainer is sure to impress.

Pros

  • Ten-year warranty
  • Extends battery life 3x
  • Removes sulfation
  • Includes solar panel

Cons

  • Lack of customer reviews

7. BatteryMINDer 128CEC1

Best RV Battery Charger Maintainer

Voltage

12V

Battery Type

Standard, AGM, deep-cycle, gel

Current

2a, 4a or 8a

Weight

3.2 lbs.

Key Feature

Full-time automatic desulfator

Warranty

5-year

Anyone that needs to charge up to eight batteries at once knows that it will cost more for this technology. However, BatteryMINDer offers this option that isn’t overly priced. When you connect the batteries in parallel, you can charge up to eight various battery types at once time. You will just need to purchase Y-connectors separately. This option is ideal for anyone with a shop or the average user that simply wants to maintain a variety of batteries in storage.

The company provides a unique ambient temperature sensor to ensure that the battery voltage always adjusts accordingly. With this protection, the battery won’t overcharge and is always maintained. Additional advanced safety features include short-circuit protection and reverse polarity protection. Plus, it contains a full-time automatic desulfator, which reduces the buildup of lead sulfate crystals to ensure a longer battery life. With this feature, you can easily recondition weak batteries.

With the 2-amp setting, you can keep your charged batteries in good shape. There is also a 4-amp setting for charging multiple batteries. Use the 8-amp setting when working with sealed, AGM, or wet batteries. Finally, you can rest easy knowing that the company offers a five-year warranty with this battery maintainer.

Pros

  • 5-year warranty
  • Full-time automatic desulfator
  • Charges eight batteries at once
  • Highly rated

Cons

  • Requires Y-connectors for multiple battery charging

Functions of a Battery Maintainer

  • Maintenance Charging
    The maintenance charger gets connected to the battery to ensure that the levels are always topped off. It provides a slow, consistent charge.
  • Conventional Charging 
    A conventional charger can be hooked up at any time to top off the battery or charge it from a near-dead state.
  • Engine Start/Jump Starting
    If the battery is completely dead, you will need an engine start/jump starting charger. This offers the maximum power to get the engine running.

Battery Maintainers vs. Trickle Chargers

The battery maintainer is going to hook up the battery and offer smart programming that monitors the battery levels. The battery maintainer doesn’t charge when the unit is fully charged, but clicks on when the levels need support.

On the other hand, a trickle charger isn’t always considered smart. It provides a slow charge but doesn’t automatically shut itself off. You will have to monitor the status on your own.


How to Test a Battery Maintainer

You can test your battery maintainer the same way you would any battery charger.

  1. 1
    Plug the charger in.
  2. 2
    Use a high-quality voltmeter to and touch each terminal with the probes to measure the power.
  3. 3
    If the charger is giving off the appropriate amount of power, then you might have a dead battery.

How to Use a Battery Maintainer

It isn’t difficult to use most battery maintainers. Here are some simple steps to follow.

  1. 1
    Remove the negative cable first. Then, move onto the positive cable.
  2. 2
    Plug the battery maintainer into the wall.
  3. 3
    Connect the positive cable to the positive terminal. Do the same with the negative. Don’t allow the two to touch.
  4. 4
    Ensure that the connections are tight.
  5. 5
    Choose your charging mode and turn on the device.
  6. 6
    Monitor the levels and remove them when necessary.

If you want a visual example, watch this helpful YouTube video.


Charging a Dead Battery

Very few car battery maintainers can charge a dead battery. Once the battery is completely dead, it becomes more difficult to charge. Instead, you might consider jump-starting the battery first and running the vehicle for a time to add a surface charge.

After that, you could hook it up to a battery maintainer to finish the charging. If the battery doesn’t seem to hold a charge well, you might also consider battery reconditioning instead.


People Also Ask (FAQs)

What to expect from budget, mid-range, and professional-grade battery maintainers?

You could purchase a cheap battery maintainer from Autozone, but you will get what you pay for. Instead, consider your budget to increase the features and safety precautions you receive. The more money you are willing to invest, the more smart features and safety technology will be included.

How long does a vehicle battery last?

The majority of batteries will last at least three years up to six years if taken care of properly. By utilizing a maintainer, you further extend the life of your vehicle batteries.

Is undercharging or overcharging a battery an issue?

Overcharging the battery can cause the case to swell, which will destroy it. On the other hand, undercharging the battery causes you to need charging more often, which can shorten the lifespan.

Is a battery maintainer the same as a battery tender?

The battery maintainer and battery tender are considered the same thing. Both of these units will help to keep the battery levels full.

Is it ok to leave a battery maintainer on all the time? Can a battery maintainer cause a fire? 

As long as you are using a charger that shuts itself off when the battery is full, it’s completely safe to leave it connected. However, you could cause a fire or damage to the battery if you leave a charger on excessively that requires supervision.

What size battery maintainer for my vehicle should I get?

You need a battery maintainer that fits the requirements of your battery. If you get one that doesn't provide enough power or pushes out too much, you could cause damage to your vehicle battery.


Conclusion

What is the best battery maintainer? While it depends on what your needs are and what vehicle you are driving, we highly recommend the Battery Tender 2-Bank. This particular model doesn’t just offer the ability to charge two batteries at once, but also comes highly rated.

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