CTEK is a popular Swedish company that manufactures a plethora of quality battery chargers. However, picking the best CTEK battery charger from the lot can be difficult.
Best CTEK battery charger
|Editor's Picks||Product||Our Rating|
|Best Overall||CTEK 56-158||9.5/10|
|Runner Up||CTEK 56-353||9.5/10|
|Best Budget Buy||CTEK 40-206||8.5/10|
|Best Value||CTEK Tester 56-959||8.5/10|
1. CTEK 56-158 fully automatic 12V battery charger
CTEK 56-158 is a small battery charger that can fit in the palm of your hand. However, do not let its small size fool you.
This piece of beauty can provide a lot of power (7A and 12V) with some kickass features.
Cold mode: The increase in cell reaction times can make it challenging to charge batteries in cold weather conditions. This, however, will not be a problem with this unit as it offers a cold mode that allows you to charge batteries in winters, too.
4 step charger: This battery charger offers a “connect and forget” charging method that makes life easier. Here’s how it works:
- Bulk: Charges 75% to 80% of the battery to full charge.
- Absorption: The remaining charge is completed in this phase.
- Pre-float: Prevents overcharging once the battery is fully charged.
- Float: Maintains the battery charge.
This means that once you connect the charger, it will take the readings automatically and begin charging. When fully charged, it will switch to the maintenance phase and make sure the battery doesn’t get overcharged.
This is a safe charging method as it works automatically and puts no pressure on you.
Sulfation: When batteries are not in use, they degrade in performance as their life is shortened due to sulfation. CTEK 56-158 can solve this problem due to its ability to recondition a sulfated battery.
This feature adds life to the battery and makes sure it continues to perform well for a long time.
Safety: It has some fantastic safety features, including:
- Circuit proof
You can use it without any worries or concerns.
- It offers a 5-year warranty.
- The scanner displays a red light when the battery is not connected properly.
- It can restore the battery’s capacity.
- The CTEK 56-158 produces clean voltage and also checks the battery’s condition.
- It can keep charging a battery while it’s running.
- It doesn’t save settings.
- The cord may tangle a lot.
CTEK 56-158 MULTI US 3300 12 Volt Fully Automatic 4 Step Battery Charger works with most batteries, including the ones found in vehicles, motorcycles, ATV’s, RV’s, boats, lawnmowers, and tractors.
Its extended warranty can be a good reason to give it a try.
2. CTEK 56-353 12V car battery charger
This is one of the best CTEK battery chargers in terms of power, safety, and maintenance. It can charge a fully depleted battery quickly and safely by using the 8 step charging method.
8-step charging: It performs the job in 8 various stages:
- Desulfation: Reconditions the battery.
- Soft start: Keeps charging until the battery’s terminal voltage reaches a preset level.
- Bulk: Charges 80% of the battery.
- Absorption: Charges battery to the present level.
- Analyze: Suspends charging and measures voltage.
- Recondition: Feeds the battery with 1.5A current and 15.7V.
- Float: Maintains consistent voltage.
- Pulse: Provides pulse charging if the voltage drops below 95%.
You do not have to understand all the steps as the charger works automatically. They play a vital role in keeping the battery and the charger safe and well-maintained.
Extends battery life: The pulse charging option helps extend the battery’s life by keeping it in optimum condition. Moreover, the charger also reduces sulfation and protects the battery so that it can run for a longer time.
Safe: This charger is dust, weather, water, shock, and spark proof. Hence, you can use it in all conditions without any concerns.
It also has a reverse polarity feature that protects the battery even if it’s connected incorrectly. Hence, there’s no risk of the battery or charger sustaining damage. New users can connect without any problem.
- It has various charging modes.
- The CTEK 56-353 works well in all weather conditions.
- It has a low ripple.
- It offers a 5-year warranty.
- It also comes with two interchangeable leads.
- It is slow at charging desulfated batteries.
- It cannot start a car.
CTEK 56-353 MULTI US 7002 12-Volt Battery Charger is perfect for users who want a charger that’s suitable for all conditions and comes with an extended warranty.
For us, it is the best CTEK battery charger for all these reasons. Plus, it can also act as a supply for RVs or cars.
3. CTEK 40-206 12 V battery maintainer
CTEK 40-206 offers all that quality chargers are known for. It’s a durable product that is known for its incredible speed.
Powerful charger: It is one of the most powerful battery chargers out there. It can charge batteries up to 110 Ah and can maintain larger batteries up to 160 Ah. There aren’t many battery chargers that can provide such power but this one.
Safe: The product is spark-proof and goes into reverse polarity mode if connected in the wrong manner. This prevents the battery from sustaining damage and also ensures you sustain no loss.
8-step: This battery charger follows the 8-step process explained above. It is reliable and perfect for large batteries.
Recond mode and temp sensing: CTEK 40-206 lets you recondition the battery and extend its life. Moreover, it also has a sensor to read battery temperature.
- It offers a 2-5 year warranty.
- It is suitable for start-stop systems.
- It comes with robust strain relief cables.
- It is ideal for larger batteries.
- It does not overcharge.
- It is lightweight and compact.
- It doesn’t work with the CTEK cigarette lighter adapter.
- It also does not charge lithium batteries.
CTEK 40-206 MXS 5.0-12 Volt Battery Charger and Maintainer can be a good pick if you want a charger that is quick to do the job. However, there appears to be some confusion regarding its warranty.
4. CTEK tester 56-959 12 V fully automatic charger
If you are looking for a smaller, affordable battery charger, then this one fits the bill. It is an automatic 8-step charger that’s known to be reliable. Connect it to the battery and let it do its job.
Performance: You can charge and test batteries by using the charging mode. It allows you to charge 1.2Ah up to 110Ah batteries.
Desulfation option: With this battery charger, you can power up a sulfated battery in no time as it can de-sulfate batteries.
Modes: The charger offers various modes, including:
- Testing mode: It will allow you to test the battery’s voltage, starting power, and health.
- Recond and snowflake: These two modes are very important:
- Recond mode lets you recondition the battery.
- Snowflake mode enables you to charge the battery in cold conditions.
- Float/pulse: This mode ensures that the battery stays well maintained for a long time.
Safe to use: New users are often afraid of using a battery charger due to the risk of faulty terminal connections damaging the battery. However, there are no such concerns with this beauty as the charger can reverse polarity and prevent damage.
- It comes with insulated cables, making it safe and durable.
- It can charge a fully discharged battery.
- It has sensors to sense battery temperature.
- It comes with long cables (3 feet.)
- It has a 5-year warranty.
- It is not suitable for charging big car batteries.
- The tester does not show actual figures.
CTEK 56-959 MUS 4.3 TEST&CHARGE 12 Volt Fully Automatic Charger and Tester can be a great pick for users who want a safe charger. It has long cords. Hence you will face no difficulty in using it.
5. CTEK 56-864 12 V fully automatic battery tender
If you desire to extend a battery’s life and performance, this automatic charging 8-step charger can cater to your needs. It will not only charge a battery quickly but perform maintenance as well.
Snowflake mode: It lets you charge AGM batteries in severe cold conditions with great ease.
Quick charging: If you own a larger AGM battery, you must know how long it can take to charge one fully. This fantastic charger can help you save time as it can do the job in just 12 hours.
Superior reconditioning: It can charge unused and weak batteries like a pro and make them usable and efficient again.
Safe: It’s a spark and circuit-proof charger, so it is very safe to use.
- The CTEK 56-864 offers reverse polarity protection.
- It works on an 8-step reliable charging method.
- It removes sulfate particles from lead plates.
- The LED display shows charging results.
- It has a 5-year warranty.
- It can overheat a bit.
- It is a bit more expensive than other products.
CTEK 56-864 MUS 4.3 12 Volt Fully Automatic 8 Step Battery Charger is good at charging AGM batteries and other lead-acid batteries.
The final thoughts
Pick a charger that you feel is the best CTEK battery charger for you. While all the CTEKs are the best, the CTEK 40-206 MXS 5.0 can be the right choice if you need a powerful charger.
Similarly, CTEK 56-353 MULTI US 7002 can be a good option for users who want a balanced product.
Read more: Best Car Battery Chargers Honest Review 2021