The car battery tester is a handy electronic device that tells you the state of your battery. With the best car battery tester, you can instantly tell the state of your automotive battery. However, finding a quality car battery load tester isn’t always easy. That’s why we put together these best car battery tester reviews so that you can find a model that suits your needs.


Preview

Model

Output Power/Voltage

Battery Type

Check Price

Schumacher BT-250 12 Volt Digital Battery...

Schumacher BT-100

6/12V

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, deep-cycle

INNOVA 3721 Battery and Charging System...

INNOVA 3721

9-16V

Lead-acid, AGM, marine

Battery Tester FOXWELL BT705 Automotive...

FOXWELL BT705

12V/24V

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, deep cycle

SOLAR BA9 40-1200 CCA Digital Battery and...

Clore Automotive BA9

4.5-16V

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, gel

ANCEL BA101 Professional 12V 100-2000 CCA...

ANCEL BA101

9-15V

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, gel, deep cycle

OTC 3181 130 Amp Heavy-Duty Battery Load...

OTC 3181 130

6V/12V

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, gel, deep cycle


Choosing a High-Quality Car Battery Tester

Usage/Frequency

How do you plan to use the best car battery tester once you find it? If you are only going to use it at home or indoors, you have a lot less to think about then if you were going to take it with you and use it outdoors. If you want something portable, look for a design that’s not only lightweight but also comes with a protective case.

What Kind of Battery?

Your vehicle has a unique type of battery under the hood. With this wide variety of batteries, comes a varied selection of testers as well. You must make sure that your tester is compatible with your battery, whether it is a lithium-ion, lead-acid, AGM, flooded, or other types. Otherwise, you could face a difficult time getting an accurate reading and using the equipment safely.

Tester Type vs. Testing Need

What exactly are you hoping to test? Sure, we all want to purchase a car battery tester that can read CCA rating, battery health, alternator functionality, and the charging system. However, each function that the tester performs will add to the cost. Instead, focus on what you need to know and leave out the rest. 

Operating Range & Accuracy

The best battery tester for a car will have a large operating range. This additional capability allows you to test a variety of batteries, making the tester a better value. In addition, you will want to read the car battery tester review of the model you are looking at to determine if it is accurate enough for your needs.

User-Friendly Interface

While the battery tester is a simple device to use, some features make it even easier to operate. If you aren't tech-savvy, you don’t want to figure out a complicated machine. Look for a unit that has an easy-to-read display, as well as a battery and alternator status indicator.

Other Features

There are some other features you can look for, but each will add to the overall cost. Look for lengthy connector leads, heavy-duty clamps, or an anti-slip feature that makes the unit easy to hold. Of course, if you only plan to use the tester occasionally, you might prefer to save money and avoid the extra perks.

Price & Warranty

We all want to find a cheap car battery condition tester, but it’s vital not to sacrifice quality. Instead, we recommend evaluating the top brands to find a highly rated model. If the existing customers are happy with the performance, you know the tester will be a good value because it won’t break. The top companies also provide exceptional warranty terms for your protection.


6 Best Car Battery Testers Reviewed

1. Schumacher BT-100

Our Top Pick!

Output Power/Voltage

6/12V

Battery Type

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, deep-cycle

Functions

Load tester, starter motor draw, battery condition

Weight

2 lbs.

Schumacher is one of the leading brands when it comes to battery testing equipment. You can use this model to test your 6V or 12V batteries up to 1000 CCA. With this versatility, you can carry the tester for your car, truck, RV, motorcycle, ATV, or boat. This unit will test the load, starter motor draw, battery condition, and offers a charging system diagnosis.

There are also several other features that make this tester a great value. It comes with a top-mounted rocker switch that provides an easier operation. In addition, you will enjoy the super-grip design and heavy-duty color-coded battery clamps.

It even comes with a ventilated case to keep the tester cool. Overall, this is one of the top rated battery testers on the market. Customers can’t say enough good about what this tester provides and how simple it is to use. However, many wish it had a longer warranty period, as it only lasts six months.

Pros

  • Highly rated
  • Ventilated case
  • Easy to hold device
  • Versatile

Cons

  • Only a 6-month warranty

2. INNOVA 3721

Best Value For Money

Output Power/Voltage

9-16V

Battery Type

Lead-acid, AGM, marine

Functions

Battery voltage

Weight

8 oz.

If you want a tool that offers a digital display instead, this option might be easier to use. Plus, you don’t have to touch the battery at all to get a reading. Instead, plug the Innova into your power receptacle or cigarette lighter to monitor the charging system and battery voltage.

It’s designed to work with most 12-volt negative ground systems. On the LCD, you can quickly find the voltage with a bar graph that displays the current charge level. In addition, the color-coded LED lights quickly show you the status, so you never have to wonder what is going on. Plus, you can change the angle of the tool with the head-pivoting action. 

Adjust it to any angle for a perfect view. Not only is this product highly rated, but it also comes with a one-year warranty. However, it doesn’t appear to work on deep-cycle batteries, which seems to disappoint some users.

Pros

  • Highly rated
  • Easy to read
  • Color-coded LED lights
  • Adjustable angle

Cons

  • Doesn’t work with deep-cycle batteries

3. FOXWELL BT705

Best Car Battery And Alternator Tester

Output Power/Voltage

12V/24V

Battery Type

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, deep cycle

Functions

Cranking time, charging system health, cranking voltage

Weight

3 lbs.

If money is no object, you want every feature possible. That’s precisely what you get with this Foxwell model. It tests 12V or 24V batteries that have a capacity between 100 and 2000 CCA. It also works with flooded, AGM, gel, and deep cycle batteries.

This premium tester features a copper clip and wire that ensures a stable connection during testing. Because of this design, you can count on the accuracy. This auto tester shows the status of the starter system, cranking time, and cranking voltage. It also features a battery diagnostic tool. 

In just two to five seconds, you will see the results on the large LCD display. It even comes with a 7.8-foot long cable for easy testing from inside your vehicle. The majority of customers have given this battery tester a five-star review, with the only negative being the higher price. However, it’s unlikely you will find another reliable model that offers this much versatility for the price.

Pros

  • Highly rated
  • Versatile
  • Long cable
  • Durable copper clip and wire

Cons

  • Expensive

4. Clore Automotive BA9

Most Versatile Option

Output Power/Voltage

4.5-16V

Battery Type

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, gel

Functions

Cranking, battery life, voltage

Weight

9.6 oz.

For maximum versatility without spending a fortune, you might prefer this device from Clore Automatic. It works with most 12-volt battery systems that function between 40 and 1200 CCA. It comes with an operating range of 4.5-16V, so there's no limit to the ways you can use it.

In fact, you can quickly test your flooded, AGM, gel, and spiral cell batteries with this unit. Furthermore, it comes with an LCD display, which operates perfectly in any lighting environment. In addition, it is compact and lightweight. You could even carry it in your pocket if you wanted. 

If you have never used a battery tester before, this might be the best option because the system automatically walks you through the process. While it does come with a one-year warranty, there have been some complaints about the accuracy. However, the majority of users don’t seem to struggle with this complaint, so it might not occur for you.

Pros

  • Compact
  • LCD display
  • Versatile
  • Ideal for beginners

Cons

  • Accuracy concerns

5. ANCEL BA101

Best Car Battery Load Tester

Output Power/Voltage

9-15V

Battery Type

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, gel, deep cycle

Functions

Voltage, cranking power, battery life, charge

Weight

5 oz.

As far as car diagnostic systems are concerned, Ancel continues to be a top choice. This small tester is simple enough for a beginner to use, but comes with enough function for the advanced mechanic. You can check voltage, cranking power, battery life, and charge with this device. In addition, it operates with any 12V battery featuring 100 to 2000 CCA. 

With the large LCD display, you won't have trouble reading the results even in poor lighting. Also, this unit doesn't feature its own batteries but uses the power from your automotive battery instead. It also comes with a thick, insulated cable for maximum safety.

However, some people wish the cord was a little longer. It only measures three feet. On the bright side, Ancel does provide a two-year warranty, which is one of the longest on the market. Overall, you won’t find many battery testers with as many positive reviews as this one possesses.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • LCD display
  • Easy to use
  • 2-year warranty

Cons

  • Shorter cord

6. OTC 3181 130

Best Heavy-Duty Car Battery Tester

Output Power/Voltage

6V/12V

Battery Type

Lead-acid, AGM, marine, gel, deep cycle

Functions

Voltage

Weight

3.05 lbs.

If you work in a shop, you might prefer a heavy-duty battery tester, such as this one from OTC. This tester provides results in as little as ten seconds. It also comes complete with uniquely constructed clamps that offer a positive grip on both top and side posts. You can use this reader with 6V or 12V batteries for maximum versatility.

With the extra-large display and zero adjusting capability, you can easily see the results. Plus, this device comes with side tabs for on-tool clamp storage, as well as back brackets that help with storing in a toolbox or on a wall.

It’s the perfect addition to any busy shop, especially since it comes with a one-year warranty. The only complaint found in the highly rated reviews is the size. This device does come a little bulkier than most, but it’s needed to provide the heavy-duty capability. If you plan to be rough on your tester, this is your best option.

Pros

  • Heavy-duty construction
  • Extra-large display
  • Zero-adjusting capability
  • Ideal for busy shops

Cons

  • Bulky

Safety Tips When Testing Your Car Battery

Do you know how to use a battery tester for a car? We will provide some tips on how to use a battery tester on a car. With these guidelines, you ensure safety during testing.

  1. 1
    Wear goggles and rubber gloves when working with a car battery.
  2. 2
    Turn off the ignition and your lights.
  3. 3
    Connect the positive lead of the tester to the red terminal on your battery.
  4. 4
    Connect the negative lead of the tester to the black terminal on your battery. Don’t let the two touch.
  5. 5
    Read the voltage of your car battery. It should read around 12.6V. If it is lower than that, the battery requires a charge or replacement.
  6. 6
    Remove the negative terminal first, then the positive.

The length of time that your car battery holds a charge depends on the quality and manufacturer. You can also check the car battery capacity by performing a battery load test.

Here are some helpful tips to load testing a battery.


People Also Ask (FAQs)

How long do car battery testers last?

If you purchase a reliable battery tester, you may never need to buy another one again. The longevity of any tool depends solely on how it is made and how you care for it.

How long do you load test a battery?

With your load tester, you want to apply a load that’s equal to half of the battery’s CCA rating for 15 seconds.

Can you load test a dead battery?

To load test a car battery, it should be fully charged first.

What are the indications of a failing car battery?

If your automotive battery is starting to fail, you might have trouble starting the car, especially in colder weather. You might also notice that the lights and accessories aren’t working as they once did.


Conclusion

What is the best car battery tester? While it depends on what your needs are, we tend to lean toward the Schumacher BT-100. This model offers great value and works on a variety of batteries for complete versatility. You will never have to wonder about the state of your batteries again.

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