We have been undertaking a test pilot with motorcycle owners, which has identified a positive shift in attitudes to battery charging, an attitude strongly influenced by previous experiences of dead batteries.
Preliminary results of the test pilot revealed that nearly all participants had at some point experienced a flat battery – and all respondents acknowledged that battery care was worth the time; reassurance of a quick start and reduced spend on batteries were identified at the main reasons for this attitude.
The survey did identify however that whilst there is a commitment to regular maintenance charging, motorcycle owners were unaware of developments in battery technology and therefore weren’t aware of the importance of choosing the right charger – only 50% understanding the risks involved in unmonitored ‘trickle’ charging and only 25% of those surveyed knew about the dangers of sulphation, the single biggest battery killer.
Whilst it is really encouraging to see that motorcycle owners are placing an importance on winter maintenance charging, our survey really highlights the need to use the right charger. Motorcycle owners don’t just need a traditional ‘trickle’ maintenance charger but instead a charger to condition and charge and also hold a battery at maximum capacity to ensure optimum performance – this is something that can’t always be achieved by using some of the chargers out there in the market. By delivering too little charge the battery can become discharged and if the charger delivers too much charge there is a risk of the battery drying out – both of which can kill the battery. In other words – don’t get tricked by a trickle charger!
Whilst 100% of those surveyed were committed to winter maintenance charging, there was very little awareness of the dangers associated with improper summer charging – only 45% of those surveyed were committed to regular charging over the warmer months. Motorcyclists are lulled into a false sense of security when it comes to the state of their battery during the Summer months. Regular charging is still essential – it is a common misconception that the regulator will fully charge the battery, it won’t! If the battery is undercharged during the warmer weather it will still probably be able to start the vehicle as it doesn’t need as much energy to get the engine started. Motorcycle owners don’t realise therefore that their battery is becoming discharged, resulting in a flat battery at the end of the summer, the moment temperatures begin to drop.
When charging during the summer months however, consideration should be given to the way that a charge is delivered – there is big risk that you could dry out the battery through overcharging, particular if using an unmonitored trickle type charger. When a battery is getting full the current should be reduced to slowly finish filling it. A CTEK charger for example undertakes this ‘absorption’ in a unique way to safely deliver 100% charge to the battery. Many trickle type chargers will undercharge at this point – combatting the problem of drying out the battery but placing the battery instead at risk of sulphation through undercharging – the biggest battery killer.
The CTEK XS 0.8 charger was developed to offer advanced battery recovery for motorcycle batteries and a sophisticated maintenance programme for all batteries up to 100Ah.
A key benefit of the XS0.8 is that it uses ‘switched-mode’ technology to perform its functions. This advanced microprocessor controlled inverter technology offers far more flexibility over traditional ‘linear’ transformer type units which remain popular in the motorcycle battery maintenance market in particular.
The patented CTEK six-stage battery charging system maintains and conditions the battery and can be left attached indefinitely without risk of over, or under charging. Intended for unsupervised use, the XS 0.8 is simple to connect, spark proof and reverse-polarity protected to protect the user and also the battery. Furthermore, there is no need to disconnect the battery before use as it regulates mains voltage to protect any sensitive electrical equipment.
For more information or to find your nearest stockist, visit www.ctek.com