Top motorcycle battery chargers

Selection of chargers and conditioners that will help keep your battery in tip-top condition

the best motorcycle battery chargers

by Jim Blackstock |

There's a strong case for a dedicated motorcycle battery charger. Most batteries will become discharged if the bike is left alone for a period of time (sometimes as little as a couple of weeks) and this is particularly true for bikes that have trackers fitted, as these inevitably draw power from the battery to offer their protection. So although only a small amount of current is drawn, it's inevitable that an unattended bike will have a flat battery before long.

This can be annoying at best and scrap the battery at worst. It is annoying because you come to the garage for your first ride in some time and the battery is dead. If you’re lucky, you can jump-start it and go for a run – hopefully the charge you get back into the battery will see you through your ride.

However, in the worst-case scenario, the cells in the battery can become damaged to the point where they simply cannot hold a charge and the only solution here is to replace it. And while motorcycle batteries generally are less expensive than car batteries, for example, it’s still an expense you could do without.

How to avoid flat batteries on your motorcycle

The solution, of course, is to leave your bike with its battery on charge when it’s not being used. This is particularly true for bikes that are laid-up for winter and in this case, a battery optimiser/maintainer can be useful, as it not only charges the battery but it carries out a series of conditioning cycles. These put some load on the battery so that it isn’t simply under constant charge, as this can also, paradoxically, damage the battery and reduce its capacity as well.

One point you should consider is what kind of battery your motorcycle uses. Lithium batteries are becoming more popular as they can offer better performance than traditional lead-acid ones. However, they require very different charging characteristics and as such, you should be careful not to pair the wrong charger with the battery, as this can have a negative effect on the battery and can even be dangerous.

The best motorcycle battery chargers

Best small motorcycle battery charger

This diminutive smart charger is designed for motorcycles, quads, snowmobiles and more and looks

NOCO GENIUS2UK, 2-Amp Fully-Automatic Smart Charger
Best value for money motorcycle battery charger

Tested by Adam Binnie for two months on one motorcycle. Quality 4/5, Value 5/5. Reading up on

Ring Automotive RSC806 Smart Battery Charger
Best money-no-object motorcycle battery charger

Tested by Richard Newland for five months across six vehicles. Quality 5/5, Value 3/5. Dead

CTEK CS ONE battery conditioner
Best portable motorcycle battery charger

Tested by Richard Newland for 4 months. Quality 5/5, Value 3/5. Bike batteries are getting

CTEK CS FREE Solar Set
Best for CAN-Bus

With any motorcycle using CAN-Bus technology (Controller Area Network Bus, which allows systems to

OptiMate 4 BMW
Most versatile battery charger

CTEK has an enviable reputation for chargers and conditioners and this is its bread and butter

CTEK MXS 5.0 Battery Charger
Recommended

Perfect for bikes kept in a shed or a portable garage-style shelter with no access to mains power,

Oxford Solariser
Best budget battery charger

The entry-level charger/optimiser form OptiMate will maintain any kind of 12V battery, including

OptiMate 1 Duo
Best solar battery charger

Using a 10W solar panel (bigger sizes up to 80W are available), this charging system will also

OptiMate Solar 10W
Recommended

This unit looks after all types of battery, including lead-acid, lithium and gel and has three

Oxford Oximiser 3X
Recommended

At the other end of the charging scale from Oxford is the 601, a charger/optimiser that is

Oxford Oximiser 601

New generation of battery care

Oxford Oximiser 900

8 stage automatic battery management

Oxford Oximiser 3X

Portable waterproof charging solution for charging and maintaining batteries

Battery Tender Waterproof 800 mA Charger

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