I think we can all agree making toast is one of the simplest tasks one can do. A toaster is a simple appliance that produces excellent results. The only adjustment is a simple slider switch that allows you to make the toast lighter or darker. Now, imagine your future toaster that requires a PC connection so that you have to download upgradeable software, and that sends you through a myriad of menu screens so that you may select the brand of bread you are toasting so it can be matched with the correct algorithm composed of a complicated series of timed heat and cool down cycles so that you will achieve the perfect piece of toast. Sound crazy? It does to us too. This is what we call technology run amok, taking a simple task and complicating it with layers of technology creating frustration, and anxiety, yet that's what some brands of chargers are now requiring you to do.
The old, crude lead acid battery that's design has been around about 150 years hasn't changed, at least not in a way that requires complicated algorithms to achieve a full charge. To charge it requires a simple manipulation of time and voltage. Those of us that have been in the business for a while know this very well. Newer companies with fresher minds now want to complicate this simple task by marketing technology for the sake of technology, useless as it is. Oh we do acknowledge that some brands of of batteries may like a little longer time, or different voltage, and like the slider switch, we provide the ability to tweak the end result without the use of other devices, but our core "algorithm"....we prefer to call it a simple profile, is bordering on 40 years old! In the case of battery charging, a simple process to a simple product is better.
Finally, we promise that if you buy one of our chargers, we will not complicate your life by sending you to a computer, smart phone, or forum. At worst we might ask that you read the instructions, but you don't even have to do that, we are happy, and available to discuss your application anytime.
Quick Charge Corp.
Unlike many disposable products on the market today all of our products are designed for industrial duty use and are "non-landfill compatible." We still get a kick seeing our products reliably doing their job for 10 years or more. If you have any of our products that are not working, we would much rather repair it than sell you a new one. It's almost always cost effective to do so, and we can both help put a little less stress on the environment in the process. Thanks for your cooperation.
So should your charger or accessory need service, it can be returned to us, or sometimes trouble shooting and repair can be done over the phone, or by E-mail. If you think this is possible, you may call or E-mail us. Please have your model number, and date code from the charger ready. If the charger is under warranty, we may choose to send parts to be installed by a qualified technician. There will be no charge for the parts. Quick Charge Corp. is not responsible for labor charges. If your charger fails within 30 days of purchase, and it is a failure due to parts or workmanship, we will pick the charger up via UPS at our cost, make the necessary repairs, and return it at our cost.
If field servicing is not possible, the item may be returned to us. Please print out this PDF RMA form, and fill it out. Pack the item, with the form carefully in a box suitable, and strong enough to avoid damage. Quick Charge is not responsible for damage caused by insufficient packing. Send the package freight prepaid by the carrier of your choice. Once received, we will get the item repaired ASAP, usually within a couple of days to 1 week. If the item is under warranty, we will pay for the cost of repair, and the return freight. If the item is out of warranty, we will contact you with repair charges, you will also be responsible for return freight cost. A credit card will be needed for those customers not having an open account with Quick Charge.
Call us at 800 658-2841 Monday - Friday, and try us on Saturdays, we are in and out.
E-mail us at email@example.com Most of the time we will get back to you within a few hours, weekends included.
How do I size a charger to my batteries?
With lead acid batteries you usually use the 10% rule. That is, the charger rating should be about 10% of the amp hour capacity @ the 20 hour rate, so if your batteries are rated at 250 amp hour you would select a 25 amp charger. This is not a hard and fast rule, and you can stray from it with the understanding that the farther you stray, the less life and or performance you will receive from your batteries.
*See "How long will it take to charge my battery" below.
My On Board charger get's so hot I can't keep my hand on it, is this normal?
Yes, the On Boards are not ventilated so all the heat generated is dissipated through out the aluminum housings that are a heatsink. A temperature of 160-180F is not uncommon.
I put a volt meter across the charger output leads and nothing comes out, Is something wrong?
No. All of our chargers require some battery voltage across the leads to turn on, so if your battery is stone dead, the charger will not come on. If yours is an On Board with a single green LED then approximately half the chargers rated voltage will be required to turn it on. If yours is a portable or stationary with a dial face ammeter, then the same is required. All other models have a much lower turn on threshold. If your batteries are in a series string, get some voltage into the batteries by charging them individually. (you don't need to disconnect all the batteries)
How long will it take to charge my battery(s)?
The answer varies widely. Factors include:
Size of charger to battery, temperature, age of battery, depth of discharge, and chemistry. A deep- cycle battery will take longer than a starting battery. If you use the 10% rule as described above, and figure the battery is completely dead, count on 8-10 hours, with the time increasing with the increase in battery size. In other words, a 10 amp charger on a 100-120 amp hour battery will take the 8-10 hours, but if you put a 60 amp charger on a 600 amp forklift battery, it will take around 16 - 18 hours, so it's okay to bend the 10% rule in favor of a larger charger as battery size increases.
For lead acids, slower charging allows the battery to store more energy, and give more back. However, some manufactures specify a charge rate much higher than 10%. This can be problematic for pack voltages in the 36, 48, and higher ranges because the required charger becomes large, expensive, and the power to operate it is often not available.
How often should I charge my deep cycle batteries?
This is another answer with widely variable factors and opinions. On a deep cycle set, the deeper you discharge, the fewer the cycles. A deep discharge would be considered around 1.95 open circuit volts per cell in our opinion. Some consider discharging more than 50% to be excessive. Shallow discharges result in more cycles, but can reduce capacity due to sulfation. The user must weigh the cost of deeper discharges, and more frequent battery replacement against longer life and limited usefulness, whether that's the range of their electric vehicle, or run time on their floor scrubber.
Firm statements we feel comfortable making are:
Always recharge if your batteries are discharged more than 20%. A volt meter, or fuel gauge will be needed to measure this.
Do not leave your batteries in a deep discharged state. This is probably the number one cause of premature battery failure. We provide a battery LVI alarm to prevent this here. Recharge as soon as you can, but not if the batteries are warm, allow a cool down time.
If you're not going to use your batteries for extended periods, leave the charger plugged in and let it float/maintain. Lead acids self discharge, and in some cases you can return to find your equipment disabled, and your batteries ruined, if the charger is not left on.
Do I need temperature compensation on my charger?
First, what is it? The voltage that batteries should be charged to depends on the ambient temperature the batteries are exposed to. Colder temperatures require a higher charge to voltage, while hotter temps require it to be lower. Too high a voltage at high temps will result in over charging/water usage. Too low a voltage in cold temps may result in undercharging, so it depends on your application. Two examples would be, If you're charging batteries in a warehouse for your pallet jack, then no. If you're float charging batteries for a standby generator which is exposed to wide temperature swings, then yes. This feature is standard on our strictly float type chargers (OBE) we offer it as an option on everything else.
Do your chargers have a desulfation circuit, or do I need to use a desulfator device in conjuction with my charger?
When you charge a battery you desulfate it. Hard sulfation occurs when a battery sits around discharged, or is constantly undercharged. Desulfator products claim to remove this type of sulfation. If you charge your battery soon after discharge, and use the maintain profile, hard sulfation can be averted, and therefore additional products are not needed for use with your Quick Charge charger. Above all, do not allow your batteries to go stone dead. Our LVI alarm is great for this. here.
Is Quick Charge a smart charger?
There are many terms used today to describe one brands technological superiority over another. When absorbing this information, remember the rechargeable lead acid battery was invented over 150 years ago, and they haven't changed very much since that time, neither has the need for new charging methods. Charging a battery is a simple matter of manipulating time, voltage, and sometimes current. We use a basic three stage profile that continues to work very well in optimizing your batteries life. There is simply no need for extreme technology here, and any brand that claims to extend battery life by leaps and bounds, or fully charge a battery in half the time of a comparably sized charger should be viewed with suspicion. In addition, there are so many variables a battery is exposed to, it's very difficult to measure battery life outside of lab testing, that's why battery manufactures generally rate the life at 3-5 years, and that is what you should expect.
How do I know what charge profile to set my charger to?
As stated, we use a basic three stage charge profile for deep cycle wet cells and AGM lead acid batteries. However, we provide adjustments to the last 20% of the charge cycle referred to as the absorption, or gassing cycle. We do this because pure logic circuits cannot fully compensate for the variables such as charger to battery size, age, brands, and the way the battery is being used. For instance, this part of the cycle needs to be lengthened for some battery brands. They include:
Not lengthening the cycle for these batteries will result in undercharging, and underachieving maximum battery life. See your manual for how to lengthen the cycle.
Small chargers on big batteries can also benefit from a longer cycle.
Sometimes this part of the cycle should be shortened. For example, deep cycles that are used for standby power or are shallow discharged, say to around 20% don't need the same gassing/absorption time as ones that are fully cycled. This setting can save energy, and excessive water use for wet cells. It can also be useful on batteries that are old and have reduced capacity. Excessive water usage, case heating and warping are indications of aged batteries.
Large chargers on small batteries may also need a shorter cycle.
In addition to the three stage profiles, we also provide a single stage profile for gel batteries having critical voltage limits, or starting batteries that just need to be float maintained.
Will using the wrong profile setting harm my batteries?
It can if you use a higher setting that exceeds the battery manufactures maximum voltage limits. For example, using the wet cell profile on AGM batteries can harm them. Using anything but the gel setting on gel batteries will overcharge and damage them. Therefore:
ALWAYS CHECK THE CHARGER PROFILE SETTING BEFORE USING.
I'm switching to a lithium ion pack. Will my charger work?
For Lithium Iron Phosphate 3.2 volt LiFePO4 cells, we need to establish how many cells you need to match the charger.
IF 12 volt charger, use 4 lithium cells
24 volt = 8 cells
32 volt = 11 cells
36 volt = 12 cells
48 volt = 16 cells
64 volt = 22 cells
72 volt = 24 cells
96 volt = 33 cells
120 volt = 40 cells
144 volt = 49 cells
Using fewer cells will make the charger run hotter, and shorten it's life. Using more cells will cause weak output and extend the charge cycle or the charger will fail to fully charge the cells.
These cells are charged to 3.65 volts. Your charger would need to be calibrated to this max voltage, and then to terminate once the current falls to a targeted set point. Therefore it needs to be specifically calibrated at the factory.
If you require a charger to operate from a different number of cells, or with a different nominal voltage a different charger may be needed. Please contact us with your specific need.
Once the charger is calibrated for Lithium ion, you won't be able to go back and use it on lead acid with any level of precision.
Do I need a BMS (battery management system) for my pack?
Opinions vary. Check with the battery supplier.
High frequency switch mode power supply chargers. What's the difference with traditional transformer based chargers?
Quick Charge manufactures transformer based chargers. High frequency chargers are designed using complex electronics. HF chargers are lighter in weight, and generally smaller. They are basically unrepairable and should be viewed as a disposable appliance. They also have a shorter life span averaging 1-3 years. A transformer based charger can last 10 years or more, and can usually be repaired feasibly. However, they are heavy. Neither has an advantage in charging a battery better than the other.
The application often dictates the choice of one over the other.