Factors To Look At Before Buying Battery Chargers
Battery Chargers come in a variety of different types and sizes. They all do the same thing: they re-charge your batteries. However, what makes them different is the level of technology involved in how they operate. Each has advantages and disadvantages. Here are some of the main factors to consider before purchasing a specific type:
Size - The biggest factor to consider when purchasing a battery charger is the size of the actual unit. The size of the unit will determine how much charging is possible for each battery and how long the battery can be charged at a typical rate. These days, good-quality battery chargers are microprocessor-controlled, meaning they are programmed to charge your batteries depending on the generated current. Also called smart chargers, this ultimately means that they will gather data from your batteries to determine the right voltage and current needed to power them during use. This is great news if you want a portable device that can charge multiple devices since it allows you to take them with you.
Capability - Many newer battery chargers have what are called burst modes. These are designed to charge the battery quickly and then shut off so that you can leave them alone for a few hours or overnight. These newer chargers are not only more capable, but they are faster at it as well. These burst chargers tend to run at a much higher capacity than their slower counterparts. While this does allow you to leave the devices plugged in while they are charging, it can increase the overall charging time by a couple of hours.
Output voltage and charging time - Different brands will range in the output voltage that their chargers can achieve. While some can achieve up to four hundred volts, many are limited to between two hundred and five hundred volts. Knowing how high you can go to reach the proper voltage is important, so make sure that you know how high you can go before buying a charger.
Impedance - The larger the load, the harder it is for your batteries to get an adequate current. In essence, they are working harder than they can for the same amount of voltage. Keep this in mind when choosing between different brands. Some tend to run a little cooler and can be a lot less aggressive in their charging behaviors. This can be important for heavy load applications such as laptop chargers or those frequently used outdoors or in frigid weather.
Safety Features - Newer battery chargers are incorporating safety features that were introduced into the market as manufacturers worked to reduce their overall impact on the environment. For example, most newer chargers will automatically sense if there is water present within the battery. If so, the charger will not allow the battery to continue charging. If water remains in the cell, the battery can easily overheat and burn out. These safety features are a good way to prevent the most damage from happening to your battery life.
Compatibility - Some people like to use different brands of battery chargers in order to find the one that will work the best. It's very common to find that different brands of batteries work better with certain chargers. For example, Lithium-Ion batteries work best with trickle charges, while nickel-cadmium batteries tend to be more compatible with nickel-metal hydride chargers. By researching the compatibility of chargers in your specific area, you will be able to find the one that works the best for you.
When shopping for battery chargers, there are also a few things you can look for to help you choose the right one. Different chargers charge at different voltages. The higher the battery's voltage you want to charge, the faster the charger needs to charge it. Chargers can also operate at different temps. If you're planning on using your batteries at a higher temperature, you should purchase a battery that has a high-temperature range. This will ensure that your battery charges quickly and maintains a constant voltage.