Trickle Battery Chargers

I have used my car very little since C19 virus arrived and envisage using it even less during the winter.

My battery was new last November but has been deleted by lack of use and trying to start the car with a faulty gear motor which is being repaired today.

I am thinking of getting a Trickle Charger , I will get a good one like the CTEC 7 but after reading lots of information I am confused about whether or not I should be using the negative terminal on the battery or some mysterious ‘ground location’ to connect the car and charger .

I can’t keep lifting the battery in and out of the car so intend to run a cable from the garage to the drive and only use the charger in fine conditions or maybe cover the bonet in a waterproof cover.

Do I have to use a ‘ground location’, the CTEC site shows the charger being connected to both terminals on the battery.

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Just connect it to the battery terminals +ve and -ve

I bought one too just a cheap one and it came with a connector which is on the car permanently. I just mounted the charger on the wall near the bonnet and a power point. If the car is left for more than a couple of days I just plug it in and leave it.

If it only has clips just clip red to red (+ve) and black to black (-ve) on the battery terminals. Easy as…

Thanks Bruce :slight_smile:

Our Suzuki only tackles local type runs and during the past 5 or so yrs has only covered about 5.5K miles from new, so its not kind to its battery. As soon as this became apparent, I bought an Einhell Smart charger and by adapting the output cable and connection ends, it became capable of plugging into any of the 12volt sockets inside the car. By doing that I am able to keep the car’s battery fully charged for use at any time one of us need to use it, without the awkward business of opening the bonnet and connecting the charger up with extension lead etc.
I found the 12v plug/cig lighter adaptor on e-bay and the charger came from my local Toolstation.
As the site will not allow commercial links, I will PM the link to you if you wish, or, just search Toolstation’s website for Einhell Smart Charger (£17.99)

From the info sheet:-
Notes on automatic charging
The charger is a microprocessor controlled automatic charger, i.e. it is suitable in particular for
charging maintenance-free batteries and for the
long-term charging and maintenance-charging of
batteries which are not in constant use, e.g. for
classic cars, recreational vehicles, lawn tractors
and the like. The integrated microprocessor enables charging in several steps. The final charging
step, maintenance charging, maintains the battery capacity at 95–100% and therefore keeps the
battery fully charged at all times. The charging
operation does not need to be monitored.

Besides keeping the charger in good shape, it is advisable to run the engine on a regular basis. I usually kept engine mine running for a short while about a couple of weeks. Apart from anything else, it does the charger kept kept.

Thanks for you input LD and Besoeker :slight_smile:

How does that work if the engine is switched off and the car doors are locked?

Better check what type of battery you have first as the modern one’s used in stop-start car engines can’t be charged with a standard charger.

The 2 core feed cable passes through the thick door rubber seals and the door still closes … just as the roof rack fixing clamps/grabs do. Our car does not need the ignition to be switched on to use the 12v sockets. The internal lighting works without the ignition too, so I presume those items are not ignition switch dependant.

I agree and that is why I quoted the more modern ‘smart’ type of charger that sorts itself out via its own processor.

Hi Judd :slight_smile: thank you, I don’t think that ‘stop start’ technology will l be a problem with my ancient Ford Fiesta reg 2007 .

It is one up from a horse and cart but with only 28,000 miles on the clock too good to get rid of.

Hi meg, you can get a smart charger for your car and with these modern chargers they won’t do any damage if you connect them the wrong way round, the ground you mentioned is the cars body, ie, the negative terminal basically connects to the cars body, but unless you can see a good earth, then it would be best to connect the red to positive ( it will be marked or colour coded on the battery) and black to the other battery terminal ( again it will be marked), but don’t switch it on until you have connected up.

Fiesta…and there I thought it was a Ferrari…!

…Hi Primus :slight_smile: I don’t think I will be connecting the wrong terminals to the charger , I was just confused about ‘finding a bolt or a clean part of the cars body’ on which to clip the negative lead as some sites have stated.

In the days when I charged batteries on other cars I always removed the battery from the car and charged it in an open garage, clipped on the negative lead first and never turned on the mains till all was connected but I can’t lift a battery in and out of the car now I am an old lady :slight_smile: and I shouldn’t need to with a trickle charger …

Not a chance Besoeker :slight_smile: I like small simple cars nothing fancy.

Yes just clip onto the battery terminals, no need to even remove them, charge in situ

Thanks Primus :slight_smile:

Although you look upon your Fiesta as ancient, its 1.25L efficient engine was a class leader in its time and not too far behind even considering today’s engine technology. Serviced regularly, your engine should be good for another 100K miles due to the protective nature of modern engine oils. Now as for the bodywork, that is a different matter as steel will corrode as it ages :wink: but again, with protective underseals available in 2007, car undersides last many years longer than they used to do :thumbup:

LD :slight_smile: it is 1.4L
I have refused the generous offer of a more up to date car from my son. My car has only had 2 owners the first for 18 months and myself, it is regularly serviced by a really good little garage.
The owner an ex racing car mechanic says my car is a little gem with the low milage and not to let anyone persuade me to get rid of it.

Back to the trickle charger, I am currently looking at the CTEK MXS 5.0 and if my car has a a ‘live’ cigarette lighter with the ignition off , I will get an adapter and use that instead of the crock leads :-).

If it costs you very little to run and you’re not into up to date Models, then keep it until it cost too much in repairs, the only problem is if the engine is not the latest in low emissions for the ulez targets that some major cities are now turning to so if you drive into one of these zones then you may have to pay a big charge ( fine) , but you can always use p&r