Most of us have a number of battery-powered devices that we would struggle to live without. One crucial battery you may not regularly think about is the one in your car, truck, boat, tractor, etc.
If you have an automobile that isn’t run regularly, you should consider hooking up a battery maintainer. These devices help extend the life of your battery and ensure it has some juice when you go to start the engine.
The power of the sun…
The best solar battery maintainers can be used anywhere the sun shines; however, traditional battery maintainers require an accessible wall socket that you can plug into. If you live off-grid or don’t have power connected to your shed, this can be an issue. Luckily new technology is here to save the day.
So we decided to review the top five solar battery maintainers for the money currently on the market. So, let’s go through them and find the perfect one for you…
- 1 Top 5 Best Solar Battery Maintainers on the Market in 2021 Reviews
- 1.1 1 SUNER POWER 20 Watts 12V Off Grid Solar Panel Kit – Best Premium Solar Battery Maintainers
- 1.2 2 Schumacher SP-200 2.4 Watt 12V Solar Battery Charger and Maintainer – Best Rated Solar Battery Maintainers
- 1.3 3 Aeiusny 12V Solar Car Battery Trickle Charger and Maintainer – Best Budget Solar Battery Maintainers
- 1.4 4 ALLPOWERS 18V 18W Solar Panel Trickle Battery Maintainer – Best Mid Range Solar Battery Maintainers
- 1.5 5 GIARIDE 7.5W Solar Battery Trickle Charger Maintainer – Best Value Solar Battery Maintainers for the Money
- 2 Best Solar Battery Maintainers Buying Guide
- 3 Looking for more superb battery charging options?
- 4 Which of the Best Solar Battery Maintainers should you buy?
Top 5 Best Solar Battery Maintainers on the Market in 2021 Reviews
1 SUNER POWER 20 Watts 12V Off Grid Solar Panel Kit – Best Premium Solar Battery Maintainers
Suner Power makes one of the best Off Grid Solar Panel Kits no matter what your needs are. That’s because it’s available in a range of configurations, making it your first step in getting off-grid.
What is it designed for?
This solar power kit is ideal for a wide variety of applications. We like it for supplying power to an off-grid cabin, shed, or garage. It’s also ideal for connecting to your car, truck, RV, boat, etc.
The unit is designed to function with any 12V battery, which means you can connect it directly to your ride. It features an intelligent solar charge controller with built-in algorithms.
What does this mean?
This provides a 3-stage charging system for optimal efficiency. It also protects against overcharging, short-circuiting, and voltage or discharge concerns. We also appreciate the Work Time Setting function. This allows you to set the number of hours of operation per cycle. It’s a great feature that allows you to set the unit to run from 1 to 13 hours per cycle.
You should note there are different mounting bracket options, as well as varying wattage options. This means there’s something for everyone, no matter your specific requirements. Plus, it’s backed by a 12-month warranty, which is always rather comforting. In a world where cost is usually prioritized over quality, warranties suggest a higher level of dependability.
- 12Volt battery maintainers.
- Available in 20W, 30W, and 50Watt options.
- 3-stage charging system.
- Work Time Setting function.
- Backed by a 12-month limited warranty.
- Not the cheapest option available.
2 Schumacher SP-200 2.4 Watt 12V Solar Battery Charger and Maintainer – Best Rated Solar Battery Maintainers
You may not necessarily need the heavy end 50W supply, which is why Schumacher makes the SP-200. We think this is one of the best low-watt solar battery maintainers for the price.
What makes it so good?
As with the option we explored just above, this unit is available in multiple outputs. However, the SP-200 Solar Battery Charger and Maintainer from Schumacher runs a much lower wattage.
Here you have the option of 2.4W up to 10W, making the largest option on par with the smallest above. That makes these small solar battery maintainers ideal for smaller batteries.
Do you have a snowmobile, boat, ATV, or other toy sitting in your garage?
If so, then you’ll want to get one of these units hooked up. The low 2.4-watt output will maintain most 12Volt batteries. It’s a nice low trickle that will keep just enough juice flowing into the battery.
Plus, the photovoltaic panels on this unit are sophisticated enough that they will even work in cloudy conditions. It’s water-resistant as well, which means you can leave it connected through incremental weather.
Are there downsides?
This is one of our favorite budget solar battery maintainers, but there are a couple of things we’d change. The connection cord feels really cheap, and while we didn’t experience any issues, we can’t expect it will last.
The unit also does not feature any kind of power regulation system. A number of users have noted that it may actually drain the battery if left attached to a battery when no sun is available.
- Available in low watt output.
- Priced aggressively.
- Easy to operate.
- Water-resistant design.
- Not the highest quality construction.
3 Aeiusny 12V Solar Car Battery Trickle Charger and Maintainer – Best Budget Solar Battery Maintainers
One of our favorite uses for a battery trickle charger is out on the farm. Units like this one from Aeiusny work perfectly where there is no power supply at hand.
But is it the best solar battery maintainer for farm equipment?
If you’re after something small and portable, this is likely one of your best options. It is, according to Aeiusny, the smallest of its kind at 6.6 x 10 inches. Since it only weighs just over half a pound, you can easily take it with you everywhere.
This means you can make it part of your regular kit, so it’s with you when you happen to need it. As long as the sun is out, this unit will deliver 5Watts of power to maintain a 12Volt battery.
Can a solar panel this small really work?
Yes, thanks to some amazing new mono-crystalline silicon solar cell technology. This unit can deliver a 20% higher photoelectric conversion rate. Even better, this trickle charger features an indicator light showing it’s working.
However, one of the most important features is certainly the reverse diode. This is built into the charger to ensure it doesn’t discharge when the sun is hiding.
And it’s not just for farm equipment…
In fact, this is one of the best solar battery maintainers for the money. It’s designed to operate with Gel, Wet, Deep Cycle, and just about any other 12V battery.
That makes it ideal for your motorcycle, RV, boat, car, or truck. It’s also backed by a 12-month warranty, so you can trust the windproof and rainproof label. And if that’s not enough, it also comes supplied with multiple styles of connection.
- Small and lightweight.
- Available in 5Watt and 10Watt options.
- Mono-crystalline silicon solar cells.
- Highly compatible design.
- Backed by a 12-month warranty.
- Not the easiest to mount.
4 ALLPOWERS 18V 18W Solar Panel Trickle Battery Maintainer – Best Mid Range Solar Battery Maintainers
AllPowers makes another great option for anyone searching for the best solar battery maintainer for an automobile. This unit provides a bit more power, but it does have a few limitations.
What size is your battery?
Most of the other options we looked at topped out at 12Volts, but this unit features a load voltage of 18V. It also pushes 18 watts of energy, which is ample for maintaining most tractor, car, and boat batteries.
AllPowers also claims that their panels capture 23.5% of the sun’s energy. This is considerably higher than the 17% norm.
However, there is a big drawback…
These units are not waterproof. They will stand up to a light touch of rain, but we’d recommend keeping them dry. It’s just not worth the risk of shorting out your ride. On the other hand, there is a built-in blocking diode that helps limit any chance of a reverse discharge. This helps to extend the life of your battery.
Having said that, some users have noted an issue with this. It seems that the diode can easily short, causing the panel to pull energy from your battery when it’s dark. Not a lot of power, but it can be an issue. Luckily, the unit is backed by an 18-month warranty. This and the supplied cigarette lighter plug and a clip line make a good option for the price.
- Built-in blocking diode.
- Highly efficient energy conversion.
- Multiple connection options.
- Backed by an 18-month warranty.
- Occasional diode shorting issues.
5 GIARIDE 7.5W Solar Battery Trickle Charger Maintainer – Best Value Solar Battery Maintainers for the Money
The final option in our review of the top solar battery maintainers is produced by Giaride. We think this is one of the best portable solar battery maintainers for the price.
Why is that?
This unit is super lightweight and small enough to carry with you. It’s constructed using SunPower solar cells that are held in place with an ABS plastic housing.
This keeps the unit lightweight and provides a durable panel that won’t easily bend. It also comes equipped with suction cups for attaching the unit to a window. We think this makes it a great option for any RV, tractor, boat, or vehicle.
How much energy does it provide?
This particular option from Giaride is designed to provide 7.5watts of energy to 12Volt batteries. As long as the sun is shining, you can be topping up the power in your ride’s battery.
Like many other options, this solar battery trickle charger maintainer features a built-in diode to stop reverse discharge. And like many other options at this super low price point, this is known to occasionally short.
What does that mean?
That means you’ll want to keep periodically checking the unit isn’t draining your battery at night. It shouldn’t, and the 18-month warranty should cover any issues that do arise.
Considering all of this, we think it’s worth the chance and one of the best cheap solar battery maintainers out there.
- Provides a steady 7.5watt output.
- Blocking diode built-in
- Window suction cups provided.
- Backed by an 18-month warranty.
- Diode is known to occasionally short.
Best Solar Battery Maintainers Buying Guide
Now that you have looked over our list of options, let’s discuss which features to prioritize. After all, while each item reviewed is certainly one of the best, not all options are created equal.
The first point to consider is your power supply requirements. This will require you to check your battery and the vehicle that it is hooked up to. Most solar battery maintainers are designed for use with the typical 12Volt car battery.
This makes things fairly simple for us, except that you still have the option in terms of the wattage output.
Volts and Watts
If you don’t understand Volts and Watts, don’t fret, you don’t really need to. What you should understand is the more watts put out by the solar panel, the faster your battery will charge. However, there is one important caveat with this.
You can damage, ruin, and even explode a battery by overcharging it. So, while a higher wattage output will charge up the battery faster, it can also damage it faster than a low wattage trickle charger.
What does this mean?
If you have a healthy battery that you want to maintain, your best bet is a lower wattage output. On the other hand, if the battery is dead, a low output will take ages to recharge the battery.
Auto shutoff technology can solve this issue, but it tends to push up the cost. In our opinion, it’s more than worth the extra expense. If nothing else, it provides a much higher level of comfort that we won’t end up with a dead battery.
How to mount it?
Mounting options are another major consideration. Some options we reviewed will easily mount just about anywhere. There are a few that come with suction cups that allow you to hang the unit on a window.
Others don’t come with a mounting bracket at all or a more permanently fixed kind. We prefer units that can easily be moved from vehicle to vehicle as needs be.
Looking for more superb battery charging options?
If so, check out our reviews of the Best Car Battery Charger, the Best Trickle Chargers, the Best Deep Cycle Battery Charger, the Best Motorcycle Battery Chargers, and the Best Car Jump Starters you can buy in 2021.
Also, be sure to check out our reviews of the Best Car Wash Soap, the Best Carburetor Cleaners, the Best Buffing Pads, the Best Rear View Mirror Glues, and the Best Car Compasses currently on the market.
Which of the Best Solar Battery Maintainers should you buy?
When it comes right down to it, there can only be one option which is the best solar battery maintainer for your needs. However, we all have slightly different needs. Therefore, any of the products we reviewed could be the best solar battery maintainer for you?
Hopefully, our product reviews and buying guide have helped you find the perfect product. But, if you’re still overwhelmed with making a decision, don’t fret. We’d recommend the…
…for anyone looking for the most versatile option. It’s well-built and provides more juice than most other options we looked at.
We think that makes it the best for those working further from a wall socket.
Happy solar charging!