Marine Battery Chargers: Buying Guide

If you’re keen on not letting your boat batteries die quickly, just buy any battery charger from a marine shop and hook them up with it. Chargers and batteries, like bread and butter, go hand in hand. The performance of a marine battery not only depends on the battery brand but also the brand and features of the charger. Having the right marine battery charger, therefore, is as essential as having a good boat battery.

The best marine chargers can charge the marine battery multiple times, as well as protect it from wear and tear. That’s why they’re as important as the batteries themselves. But how can you identify the right marine charger for your boat battery? We’ve done the legwork for you, spending more than a week researching and compiling a list of the top marine battery chargers out there. The names you’ll come across on our list are not only designed to securely charge your batteries, but also maintain, diagnose, and recover a wide range of them.

Considerations to Make Before Buying a Marine Battery Charger

Before presenting the list, we’d like to share a few guidelines on the steps you should take before buying a marine battery charger. Following these guidelines will ensure you don’t waste money on the wrong charger and are able to get the best bang for your buck.

Battery type: Before you select a marine battery charger, see what type of battery you have and the specs. Find out the type, amp per hour and input voltage. After you develop a good understanding of these things, choosing a charger would no longer remain a complex endeavor.

Voltage: It’s ideal to go for a charger that delivers the right voltage to the boat’s battery. 12V is the specification in most marine batteries, and the connection has to be parallel when it comes to multiple batteries. Also, marine batteries shouldn’t be charged in series because this could lead to a reduction in battery life due to unbalanced charge cycles.

Safety & Lifespan: Some models of marine battery chargers are epoxy-filled constructed, so they’re safe from water damage. Whatever brand consumers choose should, at the very least, make sure be capable of preventing potential shocks within outside the battery charger, as well as address sparkling-related vulnerabilities. Additionally, it should be in compliance with safety features like ABYC safety standards.

Best Marine Battery Chargers

Where to Buy
ProMariner ProSport
Battery Tender Plus 021-0128
Minn Kota On-Board Digital Charger
NOCO Genius GEN1
Schumacher SSC-1500A-CA Ship ‘N’ Shore

1. ProMariner ProSport

This is an upgraded triple bank waterproof marine battery charger that replaced the ProMariner Gen 3 ProSport 20 plus. Equipped with the revolutionized ProMar Digital Technology, this marine charger guarantees precise and extra fast charging of batteries. This comes with a heavy-duty tri-surface extruded heat sink design for optimum cooling while providing true rated current charging amps. It has two charge modes and its expanded LED display with completion status gauge is also very helpful in preventing overcharging. 

What makes it stand out?

The highlight of ProMariner ProSport is its unique ‘Distributed-On-Demand Technology’ that is responsible for making sure that all available charging amps are 100% utilized and evenly distributed. 

2. Battery Tender Plus 021-0128

This marine battery charger is a 1.25A design that can completely charge a battery and maintain it at the right voltage without the adverse effects brought on my fickle chargers. It’s quicker than the 3-amp chargers sold on the market, and includes a ‘quick connect hardness’ for areas that are hard to reach. 4.5 feet long is the cord length of DC powered output, while it’s 6 feet for the AC one. It offers 12V – 1.25 Amp, and can switch from completely charge to a ‘float’ mode automatically.

What makes it stand out?

The package includes ‘reverse polarity protection’. This technology keeps users safe by alternating between green and red lights in the condition.

3. Minn Kota On-Board Digital Charger

This marine battery charger has a microprocessor design that prevents the battery from getting damaged. It also enables quick charging, so the boat is able to stay in the ocean or lake for long. It has three banks, one of which connects to the battery, and the rest connect to the 12V batteries. The charge of negative and positive terminal for each battery is 12V even though the negative is wired with the positive to create 24V between the terminals. Additionally, the Minn Kota On-Board Digital Charger features enhanced status codes that show a notification for errors, maintenance and fully charge status, as well as display charge status.

What makes it stand out?

The charger is quite safe as it comes with an ‘auto shut-down’ feature which prevents sparks and promotes the lifespan of the battery.

4. NOCO Genius GEN1

The NOCO Genius brand offers 10 amp (amperes) per bank for 12VV batteries, and it’s also capable of maintaining and charging all sorts of lead-acid batteries (from 25-230Ah), including MF, Gel, AGM, and Wet. The charger itself is waterproof and entirely sealed (IP 68 rating). And the technology in it has a processor of vosFX, which does the automatic monitoring of the battery to charge it securely when it’s needed. Additionally, its rapid charging technology ensures that batteries charge 2x faster than the speed offered by traditional battery chargers.

What makes it stand out?

The charger is designed for complete security. It ensures the battery doesn’t generate a spark, as well as secures the user against short circuits, overheating, and battery hookups.

5. Schumacher SSC-1500A-CA Ship ‘N’ Shore

This is a highly portable marine battery charger that features a retractable handle. The handle makes sure the buyer is able to carry the charger around with ease. Various display settings and modes are also there to switch between battery types as well as charge rates.  Additionally, this charger is equipped with automatic charge control technology that secures the battery against multi-stage charging and overcharging. It can support 12-volt batteries with ease.

What makes it stand out?

This charger also has a digital meter that showcases the battery test results and status of the charge.

Final Verdict

Irrespective of the marine battery charger you use, it’s ready to do its job once installed. And you can be confident that it’ll extend the performance and life of your boat. Just make sure the purchase is compatible with the boat’s battery, and you’re good to go.