Monday, 7 March 2016

Product Review - Solar Battery Maintainer

So a few weeks ago I picked up a Coleman Solar Battery maintainer from Canadian Tire for about $15 on sale.  I figured it would be good to have something like this to keep the battery in the trailer topped up while its not in use.  I park the trailer in a fairly well lit area so I figured I would give it a try.

I'm not really able to give this a full review as its a product thats purpose is to extend the life of a battery that already has a 5 year warranty, I'm not using it in a vehicle with electronics such as a clock or alarm that are always on.  In fact with the trailer I can kill all the power virtually at the battery.  I only have it to A) put my mind at ease to just hook up the trailer and go without charging it each time, and B) feel better about the 'maintenance' of my battery.

During the install of this directly onto the battery leads I pulled the battery and popped it onto the Battery Tender I had in the shop being used on my brothers Jeep.  To my surprise the tender indicated the battery had a full charge after only a couple hours.  To put this into perspective, when I used the tender on my Jeep it took over a day to indicate a charge since it is only delivering .75Amps. I was quite impressed that after the hours of use of the lights in the trailer while working on it it only drew the battery down a very tiny bit.

Something else I noticed while the battery was removed was that this tiny panel was delivering around 22 volts (using the recently installed voltmeter) as well as was able to power a couple of the interior lights without issues.  Below is a quick video I took of the solar panel in action.

Overall I'm quite impressed with this unit, mainly because I can 'see' the power this was generating with my own two eyes. If it does what it says about keeping the battery topped up and in good health I think it will be well worth the $15.

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