By Erik Watkins

What Is A Trickle Charger? Regular vs Trickle Chargers

Last updated: May 11, 2023
What Is A Trickle Charger

The tendency to periodically reserve a full quantity of battery is very common among car users. That way, you can feel safe and ready for the upcoming road trips. However, the possibility of overcharging or a flat battery happens at high risk. And it will certainly harm your vehicles.

That’s why we need a substitute method – the release of the trickle charger. Have you ever come across this term? This article seems to be a wonderful answer to your concern. 

What Is A Trickle Charger?

A trickle charger refers to a dedicated battery maintainer commonly used for cars. Like optimized battery charging on an iPhone, we install it to slowly recharge the battery and prevent our road vehicle from energy depletion.

The time of charging mode is unknown. It varies depending on different situations. You have your modern vehicle with unused battery left in the garage for the whole winter, for example. Then relentlessly turning on the charger is a must. 

Otherwise, your vehicle battery may get damaged. After all, the proper trickle charger can cost you tons of guesswork regarding keeping idle batteries fully charged.

How Does A Trickle Charger Work? 

The whole operating process is not too complicated. 

There are three indispensable parts in this current standard battery charger: a simple box (where the engine is attached), a power cable, and two alligator clips in black/red color. This battery tender uses the battery regulator to adjust the charging speed of the battery. More specifically, the compensation principle seems like an amazing tool to prevent the overcharging issue.

This maintenance charger can generally recharge and store 6-volt or 12-volt AGM batteries, conventional lead-acid batteries, and gel or wet batteries.

This regulator will deliver the same charge level of the battery to refill the battery’s self-discharge energy. The process keeps constant charge to make your battery capacity remain full. The quick charge, on the other hand, will significantly shorten the battery life.

Preparation For Safety Charging With A Trickle Charger 

Safety operation will always be the top priority when it comes to electrical usage like this type of charger. Hence, you must set everything in a ready state to avoid unfortunate accidents.

To do the charging mode, move your car into the ventilated area. And be alert to stay away from somewhere raining. Because a large amount of hydrogen gas produced while charging becomes excessive. In an enclosed space, they may turn out extreme temperatures, leading to a fiery explosion that seriously harms you and everything surrounding you.

More importantly, ensure the car has turned off completely for a safe charging process.

How To Connect A Trickle Charger

How To Connect A Trickle Charger 

The solid connection between this type of battery charger and a stored battery includes three steps that you need to follow:

Step 1: check the given voltage on the battery. Then adjust the charger switch for the exact number. 

Step 2: similar to jumper cables, make sure to attach the right battery clips to the terminals. In particular, the black clip should go with the negative terminal and the positive red cable for the battery’s positive 


Step 3: come near to an outlet and plug in the battery tender.

Trickle Charger Vs Battery Charger

These two types of chargers both aim at recharging the battery. Nevertheless, they also differ according to the user’s main preference.

A regular battery charger is a suitable option if you desire a short period of time for charging and immediate use. In this way, remember to recharge the battery every month or every 45 days.

A trickle charger on the opposite side allows you to recharge for an extended period of time. After the battery self-discharges, it will serve as an automatic battery charger to make up an equal amount. Moreover, the process also accordingly stops once the battery is full. This smart feature helps prevent overcharging or flat battery and extends battery life.

Besides, there is one crucial thing we want to remind you of. Regardless of the standard charger you choose, please always have an idle battery fully recharged before putting it away. 

Battery Charger vs Battery Maintainer vs Trickle Charger

Bottom Line 

After the all-around information above, you no longer have to wonder the meaning of trickle charger.

This battery charger truly serves a great benefit to your vehicle battery and is more convenient than any other of its rivals. Thus, you can enjoy a smooth experience driving around. 

If your current battery is out of use, we highly recommend you try this trickle charger or find a battery conditioner.

Automotive Mechanic at PowerAll

With 7 years experience in management positions leading automotive mechanics at PowerAll, Erik Watkins wishes to share useful knowledge and information about automotive mechanical equipment.


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