Optimate SMART battery chargers
Hook it up and walk away, OptiMate does the rest, automatically, safely. All models have 24/7 automatic long term storage control.
Important battery charger facts
Why do batteries become sulphated? TecMate has worked with OE's such as Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki, Yuasa and East Penn Manufacturing in learning why batteries sulphate & how to recover batteries from a deep discharged, sulphate d condition.
We confirmed the following:
When a battery is discharged, the sulphuric battery™ acid separates into lead sulphate and water. When batteries are left in a discharged state for too long sulphate crystals will form on the lead plates, increasing the electrical resistance of the battery. The higher the concentration of sulphate crystals the higher the electrical resistance which typically prevents current from being accepted by the battery at normal charge voltages (14,1 to 14,5V).
In winter the water separated from the acid in a discharged battery freezes at temperatures below 32°F / 0°C. When water freezes it expands resulting in bent & buckled plates or a cracked casing. Heat is a big killer of lead-acid batteries. At high temperature water evaporates, increasing the concentration of lead sulphate which speeds up the formation of sulphate crystals. At some point the concentration of sulphate crystals may become so high that permanent electro-mechanical damage (plates being short circuited) is caused inside the battery.
Why can OptiMate recover sulphate d batteries that other smart chargers cannot? If a standard smart charger that typically charge up to 14,1 to 14,5V is hooked up to a sulphate d battery the voltage will immediately rise from a very low level (typically less than half the battery voltage) to the maximum as the charger sees™ the sulphate d battery as a full battery due to its higher than normal internal resistance.
Current into the battery remains in the micro amp range, too low to reverse the sulphation process. A standard charger will indicate within seconds that the battery is fully charged and some may indicate the battery is faulty and should be replaced. OptiMate has a smarter charging method that first detects condition of a battery and then it decides how to charge it. It starts with forcing a small current pulse into the battery to see if the battery accepts charge. If not, then OptiMate engages the DESULPHATE mode and now the charging voltage is allowed up to a maximum of 22V in an attempt to force the battery to accept current. Usually within 5 minutes a battery with a chance at recovery will begin to accept current, causing the sulphate crystals to dissolve and combine with water remaining in the battery to again form high concentrate acid. If the OptiMate determines that the battery has recovered sufficiently it will increase the charge current and the program will advance to bulk, cell balancing and verification charging.
- How would I know if OptiMate has successfully recovered a sulphate d battery? The final charge stage of the OptiMate program is followed by a charge retention test to confirm if the battery has been adequately recovered. Indication of the result ranges from basic to comprehensive, depending on the OptiMate model in use.
Why do sealed AGM batteries recover from sulphation more effectively than filler cap / wet cell batteries? In sealed AGM batteries the water remains absorbed in the fibreglass mat separators whilst the lead sulphate remain on the plates. Due to this sulphation will occur at a faster pace on the plates itself compared to wet cell / filler cap batteries, but the water will not evaporate out of the sealed battery as it would with wet cell / filler cap batteries. AGM batteries therefore have a much higher chance of full recovery even if the battery has been left discharged for many months. The OptiMate charging method works best with AGM batteries, but will also recover filler cap / wet cell batteries that have not suffered visible mechanical damage (e.g. bulging or cracked case) or high loss of electrolyte.
The degree of effectiveness of the recovery depends on how soon after the battery became sulphate d is it hooked up to an OptiMate. We have letters on file from a number of OptiMate users testifying to effective recovery of batteries left discharged (and believed to be dead) for two years.
Can OptiMate™s high voltage desulphation mode damage vehicle electronics ? The simple answer is NO. A sulphated battery™s voltage will initially be in the 2 to 6V range. Vehicle electronics need 11V or more before current is drawn. Upon connection OptiMate will attempt to deliver current causing the battery voltage to rise, but if current draw is sensed before 14V is reached normal charge mode will engage for an OptiMate 3+ or 5 where-as OptiMate 4 & 6 with its more advanced program will allow desulphation charging up to 16V at a very low current for a maximum of two hours, allowing safe low level desulphation even with the battery in the vehicle.
IMPORTANT: For the best chance of full recovery a sulphate d battery must be disconnected from the vehicle wiring before connecting to the OptiMate.
- Can OptiMate maintain filler cap & AGM batteries at 100% for many months without damage? YES. The OptiMate rangeÃ¢Â€Â™s maintenance mode float voltage is set at 13,6V which is correct for modern sealed batteries, but the unique limited duty (30 minute charge, 30 minute rest) maintenance charging cycle reduces the average voltage to a level suitable for filler cap / wet cell batteries. The rest period further allows the acid to settle and cool which eliminates electrolyte loss in sealed batteries and significantly reduces water loss in filler cap / wet cell batteries.
- Can the OptiMate maintain a battery stored (in a vehicle) in very hot or cold temperatures? The battery does not have to be removed from the vehicle. OptiMate™s unique maintenance charge level with 30 minute charge and 30 Min rest periods allow safe long term maintenance charging in storage temperatures ranging from -4°F / -20°C to 95°F / 35°C. Long term maintenance charging down to -13°F / -30°C is possible with OptiMate 4 and 6. The level of the electrolyte in filler cap batteries should be regularly checked and topped up at storage temperatures above 86°F / 30°C.
Can OptiMate extend the life of my battery? A good quality battery that has been correctly initialized when new and is always maintained with an OptiMate when the vehicle is not in use, can last for 5 years or more whilst continuing to deliver the same power as if it was new. Even a battery that has been neglected and delivers poor performance will become stronger the longer it remains connected to an OptiMate.
These claims have been proven by OptiMate users and that is why 9 power sport / leisure vehicle manufacturers, including Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki, Triumph and Derbi endorse the OptiMate charging method.
Can the OptiMate test my battery? All OptiMate models include a 30 minute no charge™ voltage check to determine if a sulphate d battery could recover or not. OptiMate 4 & 6 includes a TEST LED panel that indicate 5 possible results, providing the user with more information on battery condition. The OptiMate 6 and the professional level OptiMate PRO-S & PRO2 include a further 12 hour extended overnight™ test that allows the battery to cool for a more accurate test result. ( a warm battery may indicate a higher voltage than is true )
OptiMate conducts daily tests that alternate with maintenance charging.
- Why buy an OptiMate instead of a simple plug in type trickle charger that is R50-R100 cheaper? Your choice of charger depends on your expectation of battery performance as well as guaranteed peace of mind when it comes to unsupervised storage of vehicles for long periods of time.
- Cost & time to replace a battery, especially sealed AGM batteries that are more expensive. The difference in price between an OptiMate that is guaranteed to extend the life and performance of your battery and a plug in trickle charger is but a fraction of the cost of any reasonable quality AGM battery.
I have no idea what type or size of battery is in the vehicle / craft.
OptiMate is designed to recharge and maintain filler cap / wet cell & all types of sealed AGM and GEL lead acid batteries automatically. OptiMate 3+ & 4 are recommended for batteries in small to medium sized vehicles (motorcycles, small cars, PWC / wet bikes) and OptiMate 5 & 6 are recommended for batteries in medium to large vehicles & boats (medium to large cars, boats).
Forgot to hook up the charger OR left the ignition / lights on and now the battery is sulphate d.
OptiMate can desulphate and recover neglected batteries that a standard maintenance charger cannot.
Your battery died on you, but your charger continues to say it is good.
Standard maintenance chargers cannot test batteries. OptiMate tests your battery daily and indicates if it can actually retain a charge or not. Over the life of the battery OptiMate 4 and OptiMate 6 will warn you when it is time to replace the battery - the LED indications will change from green to yellow to red as the battery wears.
6 A yellow indication means replace soon a red indication means replace now!.
Environmentally friendly chargers & saving batteries?
Today many people are looking for ways to recycle or reuse products and totally miss a golden opportunity to help themselves and the planet by desulphating & recovering their lead-acid batteries.
Lead-acid batteries that become discharged, (particularly in vehicles that are seasonally used) become sulphate d and can no longer receive a charge from a standard charger. So what does the average person do ? They buy a new battery and discard the sulphate d one !
If they only knew that by using an OptiMate charger they had more than a 90% chance of saving that battery. OptiMate chargers have been doing this for more than 15 years now and everyone in the know, uses & sells them. No small wonder that they are endorsed & sold by all the major powersport OEM`s.
Awards won - 9 Manufacturer Endorsements - 13 years development - 1 000 000+ happy customers