CTEK: The smartest chargers in the world
  |  First Published: April 2009

After months of research you finally decide on which boat to buy, you then deck it out ready for the tournaments, you put the electric motor and batteries in, but then think, “What charger should I use?”

Choosing a charger is actually quite a big decision. Do you want to fix it to the boat? Do you need 12V or 24V? Do you want an automatic one? Does it need it to be waterproof?

Luckily for you, the range of CTEK chargers have you covered, with a model that does everything for everyone.

CTEK units are used by so many large boat owners, caravan owners and farmers. This was a big selling point for me as these users need something reliable and tough.

The CTEK battery chargers operate without interruption from fluctuating voltage and frequency that you can get from mains power at home or in the caravan park. This means they are well suited to be used with generators – great when you’re at the dam and away from main power.

And a great new feature that CTEK has introduced is that the voltage is automatically adjusted to match ambient temperature. The unit has an inbuilt temperature gauge that will automatically control its power usage, whether it’s outside, inside, in a shed, or under a tarp.

CTEK chargers do all the thinking for you! All you have to do is decide whether you want a 12V or 24V model.

Ctek Multi XT 14000 (24v)

The 24V model is for boaters that require two batteries for their electric motor. The compact unit is only 233mm long and 128mm wide and 64mm high – it’s small enough to bolt on to your boat in a console or hatch.

I could write about all the technical information, but quite frankly that stuff is far too confusing so I’ll keep it easy to understand.

The charger, once connected to the battery bank, thumps the charge in at up to 14 amps per hour (A/h), so after a big day on the water your batteries are back up to full charge in no time. When the CTEK is first plugged in, the charger goes through a de-sulphate stage to get the battery ready to take its full amperage. The charger then goes through the normal charging stages of bulk, absorption and float.

However, what sets the CTEK apart from the rest of the chargers on the market is that it will constantly analyse the battery before letting it go through to the next stage.

One of the best features of the CTEK is that it is designed for those of us who are, well… less than perfect with their maintenance duties. If, like me, you forget to put the charger on every now and again to make sure it’s working properly, then there’s no need to worry with the CTEK – just plug the unit in and forget about it. Not only does this charger keep the battery full but also holds it in a ‘float’ charge (keeping the battery 100% full). It pulses some extra current into the battery ever minute or so to keep the battery from sulphating – the major killer of batteries.

This means that you now have a charger that you can leave on 24/7 and not have to worry about it over-charging, which decreases the life of your batteries!

Once you hook the charger up, you can select from three charging modes. First is the normal setting that will suit most boating needs. Next is the supply mode where it thumps in a consistent voltage to provide power to devices when connected to mains power (commonly known in caravanning terms as a power supply). Finally, the third is the recondition stage. This is used to recover deeply discharged batteries, such as those that you leave on the garage floor over the winter season!

Thanks to indicators on top of the unit, you will be able to see each stage of charging. When it’s full the lights will show battery full, it’s that easy. Best of all, once you have initially selected the mode you require (normal, supply or recondition) you don’t have to do it again. Just plug the charger into mains power and, hey presto, it remembers what was set and away it goes charging your batteries.

Another favourite feature is the fault light on top of the charger. If you happen to incorrectly rig the charger to your battery, or if your batteries are on the way out, then this light lets you know. No more blown fuses or damage to the batteries just a handy little light to let you know something isn’t right.

These units are waterproof, and combine this with a two-year warranty, give you confidence in their reliability.

Ctek Multi XS 25000 (12v)

The 12V model is for electric motors that only require one battery to run, and is particularly built for rapid charging.

The unit will automatically adjust the charge to suit your batteries temperature, as this also has an inbuilt analysing system. The XS25000 has all the same features as the XS14000 (24V unit) but in a 12V configuration. This unit is also great for your caravan or camper trailer.

At just 233mm long, 128mm wide and 64mm high it could literally fit in your pocket so it would have no problem in any nook and cranny available on your boat.

As above, the unit is waterproof with a two-year warranty.

Batteries and chargers can be confusing technical items, however, with the CTEK chargers you’re not only getting a simple stylish high quality item but one that is going to increase the life of your batteries. At the current cost of most batteries a CTEK charger is cheap insurance and one that is going to last. They truly are the smartest battery charger in the world!

The full range of CTEK chargers can be purchased at Battery World and Whitworths stores all over Australia. For further information contact Bainbridge Technologies on (07) 3821 3333 or visit their website www.baintech.com.au


CTEK Multi XT 14000

Current ripple:4%
Cold cranking amps (CCA):500+
Minimum battery:28A/h
Max battery charging:300A/h
Max battery maintenance:250A/h


CTEK Multi XS 25000

Current ripple:4%
Cold cranking amps (CCA):500+
Minimum battery:50A/h
Max battery charging:500A/h
Max battery maintenance:550A/h

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