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Thread: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

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    E500E Guru TerryA's Avatar
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    Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    I don't have a trickle battery charger. My local COSTCO is selling this model Battery Tender for $25.00.

    Will this suffice for me?

    Any opinions on this model?

    Thanks
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    Re: TRICKLE BATTERY CHARGER

    Quote Originally Posted by TerryA View Post
    I don't have a trickle battery charger. My local COSTCO is selling this model Battery Tender for $25.00.

    Will this suffice for me?

    Any opinions on this model?

    Thanks
    Terry:

    That Battery Tender is a trickle charger and it will work fine for you. I will offer you my Mercedes Ctek unit for $90.00 local pick up.

    Jeff
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    Re: TRICKLE BATTERY CHARGER

    Deltran makes a decent product. And they stand behind it. I have about a half dozen units of various specs. Including outdoor and multibank.

    The 3A units have been sold out at Costco for a while. Looks like they're back in stock. Cannot beat the $30 (shipped) online price.


    EDIT: ordered 2, thanks for the heads up!
    Last edited by ace10; 2 Weeks Ago at 01:23 PM.
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    Re: TRICKLE BATTERY CHARGER

    The Deltran Battery Tender will work fine.

    I'm personally a fan of maintainers that also have desulfation / conditioning, like some CTEK and all Pulse Tech units. These tend to cost $60-$100 but you may recoup some of that through the longer battery lifespan.


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    Re: TRICKLE BATTERY CHARGER

    It's fine. I have 4-5 of them on various cars. I also have a couple of the the Harbor Freight ones which i really like. They're usually $35 but go on sale for $23 every now and then,

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    While I admit to using some Harbor Fright items... a battery charger or maintainer is one thing I would not trust from them. At least not for use on a car with computers, or any car you care about. Spend the few bucks more on a quality item.


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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    While I admit to using some Harbor Fright items... a battery charger or maintainer is one thing I would not trust from them. At least not for use on a car with computers, or any car you care about. Spend the few bucks more on a quality item.
    I had the same thoughts but HF seems to be upping their game. This micro processor charger seems to do a very decent job. I trust it enough to plug it into my 96 Bentley Continental R

    https://www.harborfreight.com/4-amp-...ner-63350.html

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    Re: TRICKLE BATTERY CHARGER

    Quote Originally Posted by ace10 View Post
    Deltran makes a decent product. And they stand behind it. I have about a half dozen units of various specs. Including outdoor and multibank.

    The 3A units have been sold out at Costco for a while. Looks like they're back in stock. Cannot beat the $30 (shipped) online price.


    EDIT: ordered 2, thanks for the heads up!
    I have 2-3 of this model [Deltran Battery Tender] and they have been fine. My E500 is on one right now. They seem to be reliable.

    Stay away from the “Battery Tender Junior” model from Detran, which is their lowest-end model. I got several of them on Amazon and they are good for about 2 years of use, tops. all three of them died.

    However this Costco model seems to be a good one.

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    I had the same thoughts but HF seems to be upping their game. This micro processor charger seems to do a very decent job. I trust it enough to plug it into my 96 Bentley Continental R

    https://www.harborfreight.com/4-amp-...ner-63350.html
    For $32... what's the advantage of the HF Viking, over the Deltran Battery Tender at $30-$35? Just curious!


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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    I got my Battery Tenders at Costco also for $25 each, FYI.

    I would trust them more than an HF unit.

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    I am in the market for a few of these, and also got a recommendation for this: CTEK Mus 4.3. This has the desulfation / conditioning that GSXR mentions but its more than double the price of the Costco one ($68). Not sure of cost / benefit of going with the CTEK.

    Screen Shot 2018-11-01 at 1.26.16 PM.png

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Thanks Guys,

    I headed back to Costco to pick one up.
    Terry

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by RicardoD View Post
    I am in the market for a few of these, and also got a recommendation for this: CTEK Mus 4.3. This has the desulfation / conditioning that GSXR mentions but its more than double the price of the Costco one ($68). Not sure of cost / benefit of going with the CTEK.

    Screen Shot 2018-11-01 at 1.26.16 PM.png

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...YYFGTX6JZ6CR2A
    I have been using CTEK chargers since they came out years ago and they are the best chargers I have used by far.

    The reconditioning cycle really does work to bring back a fading battery. Indeed; since I bought my CTEK I have not had to junk a single battery by giving them semi regular stints on the CTEK. I have only one CTEK so need to buy a few more really but rotating batteries works fine for me. AKA there are 5 or 6 batteries in cars that I dont drive so I try to get each battery on it a few days a month to keep it in top condition. I don't always use the recon charge - only every few months for that.
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    Re: TRICKLE BATTERY CHARGER

    Quote Originally Posted by captruff View Post
    Terry:

    That Battery Tender is a trickle charger and it will work fine for you. I will offer you my Mercedes Ctek unit for $90.00 local pick up.

    Jeff
    Thanks Jeff

    But I respectfully decline. I'm just to cheap for the high $$$ Benz model.

    lol
    Terry

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by RicardoD View Post
    I am in the market for a few of these, and also got a recommendation for this: CTEK Mus 4.3. This has the desulfation / conditioning that GSXR mentions but its more than double the price of the Costco one ($68). Not sure of cost / benefit of going with the CTEK.


    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...YYFGTX6JZ6CR2A
    Ricardo, I have the same CTEK model. It's a good unit, I like it. My only (small) complaint is that it won't go into desulfation / conditioning mode until several days after full charge is reached.

    The other units I like are Pulse Tech Xtreme Charge, around $70... I have several of them. The PulseTech will desulfate / condition during the charge cycle and continuously after:
    https://www.amazon.com/Pulsetech-Xtr...dp/B00BPF0Y64/

    Both types can sometimes resurrect batteries that other chargers claim are defective (may require some tricks to get a bit of voltage into a completely dead battery, but that's a separate discussion).


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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    As I typed the post above, look what showed up in my email, lol! The Power Pulse unit is a desulfator / conditioner that consumes a small amount of power from the battery. I have these units in most of my vehicles. It's ideal for frequently-driven cars, HOWEVER, if a car will be parked longer than 2-3 weeks you MUST connect a charger / maintainer, or it will drain the battery. I asked their tech support if the Xtreme Charge pulsing will interfere with the Power Pulse pulsing and they said nope, not a problem to use both simultaneously.

    Short version of the propaganda below is that for top-quality batteries, the pulse technology really can extend battery life 2x-3x. I have some batteries that were in service for 10-14 years (not a typo). But they can't cure poor manufacturing or internal defects; I've also had batteries completely fail in as little as 18 months despite the conditioning units being used. Overall I still think they are worth it though, especially with AGM Group 49's averaging $200 these days.

    https://www.amazon.com/PulseTech-735...dp/B00J4VT5VG/

    =============================


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    When you use the PowerPulse you can rest assured that your battery will be ready when you are. Here are some of the benefits you will see!

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    I depend heavily on the productivity of the forklifts to load trucks for distribution sales. After a month, it is clear to me that the PowerPulse was a wise investment. I have seen an overall increase in the battery's ability to store more energy and they are putting out a longer shift.
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    Posted on 3/30/18

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    For $32... what's the advantage of the HF Viking, over the Deltran Battery Tender at $30-$35? Just curious!

    Like i said, on sale it's $23 but aside from that:

    The casing is rubberized and feels quite robust
    It's 4amp instead of a 3amp so charges 33% faster
    It has a digital display is nice to have because you can see the start voltage , charge voltage and it cycle through from charging to maintaining etc vs the 3 color LED

    Like I said, I have both (plus a bunch of others). It's a good product, there's no reason to trash it

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Got it. I'm not saying to trash what you already have, but I still would have a hard time recommending a purchase. I don't trust HF ratings one bit (their 4 amp may be less than Deltran's 3!) and I've had HF voltmeters that were so inaccurate (vs two reference Fluke meters) it wasn't funny. They sell eye candy at a low price, I'm more interested in function over form. YMMV, etc.

    That said, I picked up another one of their folding LED lights on sale with coupon at $20 (normally $35-ish), as discussed in the Tool thread!


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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    Got it. I'm not saying to trash what you already have, but I still would have a hard time recommending a purchase. I don't trust HF ratings one bit (their 4 amp may be less than Deltran's 3!) and I've had HF voltmeters that were so inaccurate (vs two reference Fluke meters) it wasn't funny. They sell eye candy at a low price, I'm more interested in function over form. YMMV, etc.

    That said, I picked up another one of their folding LED lights on sale with coupon at $20 (normally $35-ish), as discussed in the Tool thread!
    Yep, like I said, i would be leary if it was one of their old ones but the viking range seems to work out pretty well. I have a HF volt meter. It cost me $21. I don't think it would be fair to compare it to a Fluke like it's not fair to compare a Casio to a Rolex.

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by TerryA View Post
    Thanks Guys,

    I headed back to Costco to pick one up.

    Those $25 Deltran Battery Tenders from Costco are unbeatable for the price. I've used them for years.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    Yep, like I said, i would be leary if it was one of their old ones but the viking range seems to work out pretty well. I have a HF volt meter. It cost me $21. I don't think it would be fair to compare it to a Fluke like it's not fair to compare a Casio to a Rolex.
    The cheapest HF VOM's are absolute garbage. While I agree that a direct Fluke comparison isn't fair, I did find a decent alternative from Sears/Craftsman, a $20 meter on sale for $10 a year or two ago that was dead-nuts accurate on auto battery voltage compared to the Fluke. Looks like it's currently $14 on sale (link). All I wanted was something to keep in the trunk of a few vehicles for troubleshooting in the field. I used to have the HF cheapies until I discovered how the accuracy goes out the window (like, 10-20% error or worse!) without a fresh 9V battery, and even with a new 9V battery multiple different HF meters had significantly different readings (2-3% is a big deal on 12v charging systems). Under $20 for a decent meter is well worth 3x-4x the cost of the HF without moving into $100+ Fluke territory.

    I know HF is trying hard to change their image, and releasing new brand names of higher-quality stuff, but I still don't trust them on things like meters, gauges, or chargers... gonna take a long time before they'll change my mind.


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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    I know HF is trying hard to change their image, and releasing new brand names of higher-quality stuff, but I still don't trust them on things like meters, gauges, or chargers... gonna take a long time before they'll change my mind.
    Well I wouldn't buy a parachute from them but as you said, some of their newer higher quality stuff is worth a gamble. I might even have a go at TIG welding in 2019 with their new TIG welder.

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    Yep, like I said, i would be leary if it was one of their old ones but the viking range seems to work out pretty well. I have a HF volt meter. It cost me $21. I don't think it would be fair to compare it to a Fluke
    HF has so many manufacturers making their stuff that it's hard to lump one category of products into good or bad. Sometimes the same item (ever wonder why there's so many SKUs for an identical item?) is made by several different manufacturers, so not all Viking chargers might be created equal. That being said, their new line is very impressive but seems to be getting more expensive too. Not to mention the 20% coupons tend to exclude more and more stuff lately...

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    like it's not fair to compare a Casio to a Rolex.
    Well... the quartz digital Casio keeps better time than any Rolex, does it with zero maintenance, isn't affected by magnetism, and will take a helluva beating without flinching

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    ...

    Short version of the propaganda below is that for top-quality batteries, the pulse technology really can extend battery life 2x-3x. I have some batteries that were in service for 10-14 years (not a typo). But they can't cure poor manufacturing or internal defects; I've also had batteries completely fail in as little as 18 months despite the conditioning units being used. Overall I still think they are worth it though, especially with AGM Group 49's averaging $200 these days...
    After struggling with a cheapie 36 month battery that was in my '93 Land Cruiser when I bought it, I've taken the leap into a high-end AGM battery. This rig never gets hooked to a battery maintainer, but doesn't get driven more than 1-2X/week.

    Next week, an X2Power should be arriving. 350 bones for a Group 27F. Five year, nonprorated warranty.



    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    The cheapest HF VOM's are absolute garbage. While I agree that a direct Fluke comparison isn't fair, I did find a decent alternative from Sears/Craftsman, a $20 meter on sale for $10 a year or two ago that was dead-nuts accurate on auto battery voltage compared to the Fluke. Looks like it's currently $14 on sale (link). All I wanted was something to keep in the trunk of a few vehicles for troubleshooting in the field. I used to have the HF cheapies until I discovered how the accuracy goes out the window (like, 10-20% error or worse!) without a fresh 9V battery, and even with a new 9V battery multiple different HF meters had significantly different readings (2-3% is a big deal on 12v charging systems). Under $20 for a decent meter is well worth 3x-4x the cost of the HF without moving into $100+ Fluke territory.
    ...

    I have a couple of those super-cheapie red Craftsman multimeters. I too leave them scattered about.
    For the money, they cannot be beat.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by ace10 View Post
    After struggling with a cheapie 36 month battery that was in my '93 Land Cruiser when I bought it, I've taken the leap into a high-end AGM battery. This rig never gets hooked to a battery maintainer, but doesn't get driven more than 1-2X/week.

    Next week, an X2Power should be arriving. 350 bones for a Group 27F. Five year, nonprorated warranty.
    AGM batteries have different charging characteristics than the older flooded cell type and may require a different alternator.

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    AGM batteries have different charging characteristics than the older flooded cell type and may require a different alternator.
    This is true, but I'm going with the wisdom of the masses on this particular rig... The X2 and the Northstar AGMs are the go-tos for the FZJ80. At least for those who are willing to spend a few bucks on the equipment, and not go the double battery route for heavy accessory loads.

    We shall see how it works out.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by gsxr View Post
    The cheapest HF VOM's are absolute garbage. While I agree that a direct Fluke comparison isn't fair, I did find a decent alternativ�� from Sears/Craftsman, a $20 meter on sale for $10 a year or two ago that was dead-nuts accurate on auto battery voltage compared to the Fluke. Looks like it's currently $14 on sale (link). All I wanted was something to keep in the trunk of a few vehicles for troubleshooting in the field. I used to have the HF cheapies until I discovered how the accuracy goes out the window (like, 10-20% error or worse!) without a fresh 9V battery, and even with a new 9V battery multiple different HF meters had significantly different readings (2-3% is a big deal on 12v charging systems). Under $20 for a decent meter is well worth 3x-4x the cost of the HF without moving into $100+ Fluke territory.

    I know HF is trying hard to change their image, and releasing new brand names of higher-quality stuff, but I still don't trust them on things like meters, gauges, or chargers... gonna take a long time before they'll change my mind.

    +1 and very explanatory about quality.
    I’m not deep into electronics and I´ve so far never needed a VOM - luckily! So I have to get one at some point but won’t cheap out on quality on such type of equipment. A incorrect VOM will tell me it's some kind of voltage over a circuit. In some cases that would be good enough, but exact readings is better IMO.

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    Well I wouldn't buy a parachute from them but as you said, some of their newer higher quality stuff is worth a gamble. I might even have a go at TIG welding in 2019 with their new TIG welder.
    If you´re not a trained welder already, take this advice; No, that is the wrong choice!
    Welding is a bit more than just igniting the arc, so triple your budget and buy something better from a branded shop. And for TIG welding it is even more important.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by 500AMM View Post
    If you´re not a trained welder already, take this advice; No, that is the wrong choice!
    Welding is a bit more than just igniting the arc, so triple your budget and buy something better from a branded shop. And for TIG welding it is even more important.
    I'm not a trained welder, but I did not do badly with my old Clarke 180amp MIG which I later replaced with an Eastwood 220V MIG (~$500). I used it to build my garage doors, a frame for an enclosed barbecue grill and wall in the sides of a steel building. The results seem to have lasted and aside from some crappy plastic used on the drive mechanism, the welders have held up (let's just say it functions better than my skills).

    The TIG welder seems to get good reviews from outside the HF website and I really don't want to spend $2700 on a piece of equipment just to see if I like it. If I can find a used Lincoln, Miller or Hobart, I might go that way.
    Last edited by alabbasi; 2 Weeks Ago at 10:08 AM.

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  52. #29
    E500E explorer 500AMM's Avatar
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    I'm not a trained welder, but I did not do badly with my old Clarke 180amp MIG which I later replaced with an Eastwood 220V MIG (~$500). I used it to build my garage doors, a frame for an enclosed barbecue grill and wall in the sides of a steel building. The results seem to have lasted and aside from some crappy plastic used on the drive mechanism, the welders have held up (let's just say it functions better than my skills).

    The TIG welder seems to get good reviews from outside the HF website and I really don't want to spend $2700 on a piece of equipment just to see if I like it. If I can find a used Lincoln, Miller or Hobart, I might go that way.
    Sounds good, welding skills is just about training, and a lot goes on being relaxed. I'm not familiar with the newer Miller and Hobart, but the old class is really great machines. I've used Hobart on hardface welding on jet engine turbine blades. It was manual pulse-TIG with Cobalt base wire, and the pulse procedure was very restricted to minimise heat input to achieve a satisfactory metal mixture. The Hobart had very consistent output characteristics.

    Well, the above is a bit overkill for common homemade welding, but the quality level on various brands often follow throughout their entire product range. But yes, the price is also higher.
    Last edited by 500AMM; 2 Weeks Ago at 03:59 AM.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    The 3A Battery Tender maintainers arrived from Costco yesterday.

    Interesting bit of info I have learned... I was hoping to hook one vehicle up to the maintainer via the OBD port, but the limit is 1.25A. I will pick one up and use the 3A units elsewhere.

    Also, the in-store price was the same $30 as online with free shipping.
    2014 MB E63S, 2008 Tundra, 2006 Lotus Exige S, 1989 FJ62 Land Cruiser, 1996 Ford Bronco, and some other interesting and not so interesting vehicles.

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by 500AMM View Post
    Sounds good, welding skills is just about training, and a lot goes on being relaxed. I'm not familiar with the newer Miller and Hobart, but the old class is really great machines. I've used Hobart on hardface welding on jet engine turbine blades. It was manual pulse-TIG with Cobalt base wire, and the pulse procedure was very restricted to minimise heat input to achieve a satisfactory metal mixture. The Hobart had very consistent output characteristics.

    Well, the above is a bit overkill for common homemade welding, but the quality level on various brands often follow throughout their entire product range. But yes, the price is also higher.
    The guy that shares the space with me has a huge (Euuuuge) Water cooled Miller TIG welder. It looks old enough to have been used on the Pyramids. I think he's getting close to retiring. Maybe the smart money is to buy his.

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  58. #32
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by ace10 View Post
    The 3A Battery Tender maintainers arrived from Costco yesterday.

    Interesting bit of info I have learned... I was hoping to hook one vehicle up to the maintainer via the OBD port, but the limit is 1.25A. I will pick one up and use the 3A units elsewhere.

    Also, the in-store price was the same $30 as online with free shipping.
    Are you saying that it is possible to charge modern vehicles via pins on the OBD port?!!?!?!?!?
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jlaa View Post
    Are you saying that it is possible to charge modern vehicles via pins on the OBD port?!!?!?!?!?
    Yes.

    http://products.batterytender.com/Ac...Connector.html

    But only using low Amp units according to the manufacturer. Useful in vehicles that dont have always-powered cigarette lighters or where the engine hood could have an alarm pin on it or a courtesy light.
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  61. #34
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by ace10 View Post
    Yes.

    http://products.batterytender.com/Ac...Connector.html

    But only using low Amp units according to the manufacturer. Useful in vehicles that dont have always-powered cigarette lighters or where the engine hood could have an alarm pin on it or a courtesy light.
    Thanks! Man, like, jlaa -> please meet the year 2018. Its not 1990 anymore.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jlaa View Post
    Thanks! Man, like, jlaa -> please meet the year 2018. Its not 1990 anymore.
    I know the feeling.
    I've got more vehicles Pre-OBD2, than OBD2. And that's a good thing!


    Curiously, Deltran does not mention this Amperage limitation on their OBD accessory page. But I found the disclaimer on the AMZN page selling the part.


    • This connector should not be used with any battery charger 3.0 amp and greater, as it could damage the OBDII port


    https://www.amazon.com/Battery-Tende.../dp/B007KJ2RZK
    Last edited by ace10; 1 Week Ago at 04:26 PM.
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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    If the OBD2 port is damaged, do we get a pass with the state on emissions?


    Robert

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    Re: Battery trickle charger recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by ace10 View Post
    I know the feeling.
    I've got more vehicles Pre-OBD2, than OBD2. And that's a good thing!
    It's only a good thing if you're planning to charge your car battery through one

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