If you are in the market for a boat battery charger, there are several that will meet your needs and not break your budget.
There are few things worse than preparing to spend the day on the water, only to find out that your boat’s battery is dead. Even worse, you realize you have no way to charge it. Having a quality boat battery charger would solve this problem, but there are so many on the market that it may be challenging to determine which model is going to best suit your needs.
The 6 best boat battery chargers are:
- the NOCO Genius GEN5X2
- the ProMariner 43012 ProSport
- the Minn Kota Digital 3-Bank
- the NOCO Genius G4 4-Bank
- the ProMariner ProSport Heavy Duty
- the ProMariner ProNautic 1250
Even the most avid boating fans don’t usually like to deal with boat maintenance and problems. We buy boats for recreation and fun, not to repair or stress over taking care of. Having certain tools that make boat ownership more enjoyable are worth the price, such as investing in a good quality and reliable boat battery charger. But trying to decide which one to purchase can be as hard as deciding which boat to purchase. Luckily, I’ve taken the guesswork out for you and have compiled a list of battery chargers that can meet a variety of needs and budgets.
I love boating and being on the water, enjoying family and friends while lapping up the sun and waves. What I don’t love, however, is when I show up at the dock with a load of people, coolers, toys, and an agenda full of fun and my boat won’t start. Not too long ago, I rectified this problem by purchasing my own battery charger that stays on my boat at all times. I’m going to share with you some of the different models I considered, so you can make a wise choice and never worry about disappointing your boat crew again.
What is the Best Boat Battery Charger?
Anyone who has the privilege to own a boat knows how much fun they can be – and how much work. From maintenance to repairs, boats require the same sort of attention any motorized vehicle does, with even more specialized challenges, thanks to the different elements that boats are exposed to on a constant basis.
Having a good idea of how a boat operates is not necessary in order to own and enjoy one. But most boat owners will have at least a working knowledge of boat care and maintenance and will have learned (sometimes the hard way!) what are some of the key items that a boat should have on hand in case of trouble or if basic repairs need to be made.
One of the best items a boat owner can invest in is a battery charger.
Boat battery chargers are similar to a car battery charger. They are important for ensuring that a boat battery is operating at its optimal capacity, so that all the various systems on the boat will be fully functional. Just like a car battery, a boat battery is necessary for the vessel to operate properly, and when the battery isn’t charged, or isn’t holding a charge, your boat is either not going to run, or won’t run well.
Any boat owner should know the importance of a strong battery and a reliable battery charger for when a problem arises that may either be inconvenient, or actually harmful to the boat or the people on it.
So, when looking for a good battery charger, you will want to think about what size boat you have, how often you will need to use it, and how easy it is to use. You’ll also want to know what your budget is for the battery charger, since they can range in price.
Finally, you want to think carefully about what size boat battery charger you want to buy, since chargers can be heavy and add weight to your vessel, making it more cumbersome to maneuver and take up precious space that smaller boats don’t always have.
Now that you’ve thought through your specific boat’s battery charging needs, let’s look at some different models of battery chargers and see which one will be best for you and your boating needs.
1. NOCO Genius GEN5X2
The first battery charger on my list is a favorite amongst all types of boaters, and it’s no wonder. The NOCO Genius GEN5X2 is an excellent choice when it comes to boat battery chargers, thanks to its durability, reliability, and how simple it is to use.
The NOCO Genius GEN5X2 weighs in at just over five pounds, making it one of the lightest weight chargers in the popular NOCO line of battery chargers.
It’s a 240 Volt battery charger and is ideal for charging a variety of different types of marine batteries, like 12 Volt, 12 Volt Lithium, and many others. The multiple charging modes mean it can charge different batteries at the same time, even if they are different types.
It’s also designed to detect where a battery is in its charging stage and prevent any over-charging from happening.
Another big perk to the NOCO Genius GEN5X2 is that it can be mounted for easy use, or stored and brought out only when needed. It’s also fully waterproof and can withstand a fair amount of activity thrown at it.
The NOCO Genius GEN5X2 retails for around $130 and can be bought online or usually in various boating supply stores, depending on the area.
2. ProMariner 43012 ProSport
Another big favorite amongst boating enthusiasts is the ProMariner 43012 ProSport battery charger, known for its reputation for being powerful, fast, and versatile.
The ProMariner 43012 ProSport weighs in at about 5 pounds and runs on 240 Volts, like the model above.
Whether you mount it to your boat or only pull it out when needed, the ProMariner 43012 ProSport will be easy to set up as a charging station, thanks to its thin size and longer-than-average power cord.
The ProMariner 43012 ProSport is equipped to charge both trolling and cranking batteries and can bring a dead battery back to a full charge in less than four hours. It is also equipped with an energy-saving mode, which means that it will automatically shut off when your batteries are done charging, but you aren’t around to disconnect them.
This battery charger sells for just below $200, making it a sound investment when you want to guarantee that your next boating experience will start with batteries that are fully charged and ready to go.
3. Minn Kota Digital 3-Bank
The Minn Kota Digital battery charger is a terrific option for those who want versatility and a reliable option at a reasonable cost.
The Minn Kota Digital can be bought in a couple of different styles. Whether you want a charger that has 2 banks or 3 banks, the same brand of Minn Kota Digital can be bought with either option available to you.
Smaller boats may not accommodate the Minn Kota Digital as well as larger boats, since this boat battery charger is a bit larger than some of the others. It also weighs an impressive 11 pounds, making it substantially heavier than some of the others on my list.
But with that added size and weight comes a battery charger that will fulfill its duties well, especially on boats where there is a need for a bigger battery charger like this one.
Any good boat battery charger is going to have to be corrosion-resistant, and this model definitely is. It’s also waterproof, and still performs as expected in saltwater, too.
Thanks to the green and red blinking lights, you’ll always know where your batteries are in their charging status. And, like some of the other models I’ve mentioned, the unit is designed to automatically shut off when the batteries are fully charged.
It’s easy to buy the Minn Kota Digital for around $135 at many boat supply stores, or online shops. The company offers a three-year money-back guarantee on all parts and tends to have good customer service, according to most previous customers.
4. NOCO Genius G4 4-Bank
Another great charger from an awesome company is the NOCO Genius G4 4-Bank boat battery charger.
As its name implies, the NOCO Genius G4 4-Bank is an exceptional boat battery charger when you want to charge multiple batteries at the same time. Whereas many charging units only have two banks, this workhorse has four total.
This battery charger works with any sort of 12 Volt or 6 Volt battery. And – even though this battery charger meets all marine requirements to be used as a boat battery charger, you can use it on other outdoor recreation vehicles or lawn equipment as well.
This means that – while not being used on your boat – the NOCO Genius G4 4-Bank can be used to charge lawnmower batteries, 4-Wheelers, and even batteries stored within your RV.
The unit will automatically shut off when all the batteries are fully charged. There are also sensor lights for each bank, letting you know if a battery is still charging (light blinks green), or the battery is fully charged (light blinks red.)
NOCO prides itself on the batteries and battery chargers it creates, and its five-year warranty proves that. This battery charger is a great option if you need something substantial and like the idea of having the flexibility to use it for other equipment.
The NOCO Genius G4 4-Bank sells for less than $150, making it a reasonable battery charger purchase compared to others on my list.
5. ProMariner ProSport Heavy Duty 20 Amp
Another well-liked charger by a reputable favorite is the ProMariner ProSport Heavy Duty 20 Amp charger.
As its name implies, the ProSport Heavy Duty is going to be a gem when you have a large boat or know you’ll have multiple batteries you want to charge at once, and you need a powerhouse that can do the job, and do it effectively.
Not only is the ProSport Heavy Duty a charger that is shockproof and waterproof, but it’s also quite light for its size, weighing in at a mere seven pounds and capable of being mounted under a seat, or being used as a transportable unit, capable of charging larger batteries like those in other recreational equipment and lawn care items as well.
The function lights are clearly displayed, allowing you to know exactly how far into a charge you are before disconnecting the batteries from the charger.
There is also a 12 Volt and 24 Volt output, as well as the ability for this charger to perform at a 20 amp capacity, making this an accessory that will be ideal for any boat owner to invest in a battery charger that they know will stand the test of time.
ProSport has a great reputation for the types of battery charges it manufacturers. Though this boat battery charger sells for around $250 (a bit more expensive than some of the others on my list) it’s definitely one to consider when you need optimal output, but size and weight still matter to you, as does the name behind the design.
6. ProMariner ProNautic 1250
Finally, if you are looking for the charger of all boat battery chargers, look no further than the ProMariner ProNautic 1250 for some serious power and charging capabilities.
This charger has three charging banks, so you’ve got plenty of options when it comes to charging multiple accessories at once. Plus, and 50 Volts, this charger can handle just about any device you hook up to it.
An easy-to-read digital display lets you know how many amps and volts are being expelled, and the charger immediately shuts off when a battery is fully charged. You can also charge a variety of battery types at the same time without affecting the charger’s output accuracy or ability.
Being that the unit is completely waterproof and shockproof, you’ll never worry that the unit is being damaged, no matter what kind of elements you expose it to.
This charging unit is larger than some of the others and weighs in at just under seven pounds. It can be set up to be transportable, but since its size is more cumbersome, most owners like to mount it to make using it a bit easier.
ProMariner knows how to make quality products, and this one is no exception. At a price tag of over $600, this may not be the best boat battery charger for smaller vessels or boat owners who don’t need a charger of this caliber. But if battery charging is a high priority to you, this charger may be exactly what you’re looking for.
About THE AUTHOR
I have a deep love of houseboating and the life-changing experiences houseboating has brought into my life. I’ve been going to Lake Powell on our family’s houseboat for over 30 years and have made many great memories, first as a child and now as a parent. My family has a passion for helping others have similar fun, safe experiences on their houseboat.Read More About Brian Samson