A battery’s performance is only as good as its charger. Over 50% of battery problems are caused not by the battery itself, but by wrong or insufficient charging. A proper charging regime is based on battery technology, temperature, state of charge and the application.
Deciding what charger to buy for your application can be a challenging decision to make. There are many variables that you have to consider when shopping for a new battery charger. The main two types of chargers used in the golf cart market are transformer or high-frequency. Transformer based chargers are the older technology and high-frequency chargers offer newer technology.
The transformer charger is big and heavy but most users feel it is a dependable charger that has been field tested throughout the years. Although it is not as efficient and does not maximize the full potential of the battery’s charge, it will work with all lead acid batteries used on golf carts and it is less expensive to fix if you were to run into issues. If you are looking for something trust worthy but do not mind the bulk, this is definitely a great charger to use on your golf cart.
A high-frequency charger is the new age of golf cart battery chargers. This is a very competitive product with many brands on the market. High-frequency chargers have an efficiency of over 90%, which makes them very cost effective. Because a high-frequency charger does not have a heavy transformer, its weight is generally a quarter to a fifth of a similar conventional charger. Most of the time if they fail out of warranty, they are more expensive to fix because of the complex design on the inside. Unlike the older transformer style chargers, these cannot be repaired in the field. Reliability has improved over the last few years as technology advances. When purchasing a high-frequency charger it is important to know the voltage of the vehicle, type and manufacturer of the batteries and what connector you need to attach to your cart.
Each of the battery charger technologies have their advantages and disadvantages. The requirements of the end customer in terms of performance, cost, longevity and size are what determine which technology is used. Whatever charger you decide on, it is important to maintain and take care of it to ensure its longevity. Most chargers are not environmentally sealed so it is not advised to leave it out during a rain storm. To ensure the best charger, it is recommended to fully discharge your batteries before each charge. Now that you have a little more information on chargers, your next purchase may be made easier.