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Trickle Charger or Jump Start : Which is the Best?

Everybody has been there; when hopping into our car and turning on the ignition only to discover nothing is happening, your battery has died. So now what? Should we reach for a trickle charger or jump start?

Car batteries often die at inconvenient moments, and it’s essential that drivers know how to revive them quickly. Both trickle chargers and jump starts have their own benefits and drawbacks; trickle charging requires trickling power directly through to your battery, while jumping-starting does have additional advantages.

When dealing with a dead battery, it’s essential to understand the differences between trickle chargers and jump start to make an informed decision and quickly return your vehicle on the road as soon as possible. We will explore their respective pros and cons so that you can make an informed decision and get back out there as quickly and safely as possible. In this article, we’ll also cover their potential advantages and disadvantages so that you can make an educated choice that allows you to get back behind the wheel again quickly.

What is a Trickle Charger?

Trickle chargers are devices used to maintain the charge on a battery for extended periods by providing a low, steady current. These chargers can help vehicles that are not being used regularly or stored for an extended time period keep their charge from diminishing and prolong their lifespan by keeping their charge from dissipating over time.

How to Use a Trickle Charger?

Below are the steps for using a trickle charger:

  1. Connect the charger to the battery
  2. Plug into the power source
  3. Turn on the charger

Check your charger’s instructions to see the recommended charging time, then monitor the battery and charger during the charging process. When your battery has reached full charge status, disconnect both from the power source and switch off the charger immediately.

How long Does it Take to Charge a Car Battery With a Trickle Charger?

The time required to charge a car battery using a trickle charger fully will depend on its size and amperage output; typically, 24 to 72 hours for a full charge up. To ensure safe battery charging it is important to monitor voltage to avoid overcharging, which could potentially cause permanent damage.

Why Trickle Charging is the Better Option?

Trickle charging is considered the better solution as it can extend battery life while simultaneously being energy-efficient, using less electricity than fast charging methods – helping save on electricity costs in the long run. Additionally, trickle charging uses less power, making this approach an eco-friendly method that could save on future electricity bills.

Who needs a Trickle Charger?

Below are a few individuals who could require a trickle charger, including:

  • People whose vehicles are rarely driven.
  • People live in cold climates where batteries quickly lose charge.
  • Anyone looking to extend the lifespan of their battery and avoid costly replacement costs should use proper battery care practices.


  • Trickle charging helps extend the life of your battery
  • It can prevent battery damage caused by overcharging or undercharging
  • Trickle charging is a convenient and easy way to keep your battery charged


  • Trickle charging can be time-consuming
  • Overcharging can still occur if you don’t monitor the process
  • If you don’t use the right charger or follow instructions carefully, you could damage your battery

What is a Jump Start?

Jump starting includes utilising another car’s battery to boost your car’s battery and start the engine. This method should only be used if your car’s battery has died or been severely compromised and you can’t start its engine.

Simply connect them using jumper cables and let one of the working vehicles charge your dead battery for several minutes until its charge levels return sufficiently. After that, your engine should start, and you should be back driving normally without tow truck charges or expensive repairs! Jumpstart might save you a callout or expensive repairs!

Why Did Your Car Battery Drain Out?

Here are the key reasons why your car battery may have died prematurely.

1. Car Headlights Left On After Parking

One of the primary causes of car battery drainout is leaving headlights on after parking; these draw power from your battery even after your engine has been shut off, leading to a dead battery and leaving you without power for your electrical systems.

2. Charging Electronic Devices For Extended Periods

For extended periods, charging devices such as phones and tablets can quickly drain your car battery. They draw power directly from it even when no engine is running, ultimately leading to a dead battery and eventually, your entire car may stop starting altogether!

3. Letting Your Music System

Run Leaving the car stereo and other electrical systems turned on after parking can also drain out its battery quickly, taking power away even though no engine is running.

Why Do You Need to Jump Start Car?

Jump starting is necessary when a car’s battery has lost charge and cannot provide enough power to start its engine. Jump starting provides a temporary boost from another vehicle’s battery that helps restart and charge both vehicles simultaneously.

How to Jumpstart a car?

Jumpstarting a car may seem daunting, but it’s actually an easy and straightforward process that will have your car running again in no time. Here are the steps for jump-starting a car:

  1. Starting an engine with a working battery: Place one car with a working battery close to another with dead batteries, turn off its engine, and wait. In turn-off the working car’s engine.
  2. Connect the batteries using jumper cables: Start by connecting one end of a red positive wire (typically red) to the positive terminal of a dead battery and the other end (usually black) to its negative terminal in one automobile and one end away from both batteries in another car. Finally, connect negative cables (usually black) straight from each functional battery to metal surfaces on both automobiles away from their negative terminals and to each negative cable linked directly with it from their dead counterparts.
  3. Start Your Car: With an intact battery in place, start your car engine and allow it to run for at least several minutes before shutting it off.
  4. Carefully disconnect both batteries: Switch the jumper cables back over once both cars have been turned off. Starting with the dead car first and the working car second, remove both negative cables before taking steps to disconnect positive ones and vice versa from both cars before starting up with dead battery car to ensure full charge has taken place before starting it up again with fully charged battery and let run for several minutes to ensure battery is full charged.

Why Do You Need to Keep the Engine Running After you Jump Start the Car?

After jump starting your car, keep the engine running to allow the alternator time to recharge the battery completely. Your car’s battery may have been completely depleted, and its optimal level must be restored through alternator activity. If you turn off the engine immediately after jump starting it again, its charge may not replenish properly, leading to repeated problems with charging.

Differences Between the Trickle Charger and Jump Start?

Below are the differences between trickle charger and jump start systems. Take a look:

1. Purpose

The primary distinction between a trickle charger and jump start lies in their respective functions; one serves to maintain battery charge levels while the other offers quick power boosts when needed to start vehicles with dead batteries.

2. Charging Time

Trickle chargers are designed to charge batteries gradually over an extended period, such as 24 hours or more, whereas jump starts provide quick bursts of power to quickly jump start vehicles within minutes.

3. Battery Type

Trickle chargers are perfect for maintaining an extended charge on deep cycle batteries found in boats and RVs, while jump starts are designed for use with standard automotive batteries found in cars, trucks and motorcycles.

4. Safety

Jump starts can be extremely hazardous when used improperly, as their sudden surge of power can spark sparks and explosions. Trickle chargers offer greater safety as they gradually charge the battery over time to reduce overheating and damage risk to its cells.

5. Portability

Jump starts are generally more portable than trickle chargers as they’re designed for emergency use in a vehicle’s trunk, while trickle chargers usually require power sources that restrict their portability.

6. Cost

Trickle chargers tend to be less costly than jump starts due to their long-term use and reduced power requirements; on the other hand, their quicker charging capabilities and portability make jump starts more costly.

7. Maintenance

Trickle chargers typically need no ongoing upkeep as they’re designed to remain connected for extended periods. Jump starts, however, require regular charging and maintenance checks in order to stay ready in an emergency situation.

Trickle charger or Jump start, which is better?

Trickle chargers deliver a continuous low charge for long-term charging and maintenance. Jump starters are better for emergency situations or when instantaneous power is needed, while trickle chargers provide uninterrupted battery charge without physical interaction. Both options have pros and cons depending on their use.

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