Last Updated on June 21, 2021 by Donnell Henderson
A couple of marine batteries will not be able to keep your boat operational indefinitely. They need to be recharged and maintained.
You need the best marine battery charger to make sure your crank and trolling batteries do not get depleted. This type of charger is capable of reviving a near-dead or completely dead marine battery. It will automatically detect acid stratification and sulfation to help restore optimum boat battery performance.
There are way too many battery chargers out there advertised as multi-purpose with a few specified as marine battery chargers. This makes things a little bit confusing, especially for a new boat owner. So, in my top marine battery charger reviews, I have considered all the important features a marine battery charger should have.
My Top Pick
NOCO GENIUS2X2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Charger is my first choice. This new release stands out with its rugged design and unmatched performance. It has proven to be the go-to marine charger for resuscitating dead batteries. It detects acid stratification and sulfation to boost performance and longevity.
- Here are Our Best Marine Battery Charger Reviews…
- 1. NOCO GENIUS 2X2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Charger — Overall Best Boat Battery Charger
- 2. ProMariner ProSport 2-Bank Generation 3 Battery Charger — Best Energy Saver Mode
- 3. Minn Kota Digital On-Board Marine Battery Charger — The Best 3-Bank Model
- 4. CTEK MXS 5.0 Fully Automatic Battery Charger — Most Portable Design
- 5. Guest ChargePro On-Board Battery Charger — Best DC Wire Protection
- 6. NOCO Genius GENM2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Marine Charger— Most Rugged and Waterproof Design
- 7. Schumacher SC1280 Fully Automatic Smart Battery Charger— Best Reverse Hook-Up Protection
- 8. LST Automatic Battery Charger Maintainer — Most Intuitive LED Indicator
- 9. BMK Smart Marine Battery Charger— The Best Value Model
- How to Choose Marine Battery Chargers
- Final Thoughts
Here are Our Best Marine Battery Charger Reviews…
These are the products we’ll cover:
- NOCO GENIUS 2X2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Charger — Overall Best Boat Battery Charger
- ProMariner ProSport 2-Bank Generation 3 Battery Charger — Best Energy Saver Mode
- Minn Kota Digital On-Board Marine Battery Charger — The Best 3-Bank Model
- CTEK MXS 5.0 Fully Automatic Battery Charger — Most Portable Design
- Guest ChargePro On-Board Battery Charger — Best DC Wire Protection
- NOCO Genius GENM2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Marine Charger — Most Rugged and Waterproof Design
- Schumacher SC1280 Fully Automatic Smart Battery Charger — Best Reverse Hook-Up Protection
- LST Automatic Battery Charger Maintainer — Most Intuitive LED Indicator
- BMK Smart Marine Battery Charger — The Best Value Model
1. NOCO GENIUS 2X2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Charger — Overall Best Boat Battery Charger
This incredible fully automatic smart charger comes with everything you need to get your marine battery replenished. It is the best battery charger for deep cycle marine batteries onboard.
- A 2-bank battery charger
- A smaller footprint
- Automatic detection of sulfation
- Integrated thermal sensor
- Compatible with 12-volt and 6-volt batteries
The GENIUS2X2 is a two-bank marine battery charger and maintainer, which is great because it can charge as well as maintain multiple marine batteries. The individual banks are rated at two amperes each for marine batteries. It does a great job of monitoring battery activity for efficient, fast, and safe charging without the worry of overcharging. The charger is compatible with 12-volt and 6-volt marine batteries.
I appreciate the highly innovative start voltage sensor, considering how easy it detects and revives dead marine batteries with as low as one volt. You can also recover extremely dead batteries that have a charge of lower than one volt by manually turning on the force mode.
Another good feature is thermal compensation, which allows for more precise charging in different climates. It automatically monitors as well as adjusts the charging cycle depending on the ambient temperature fluctuations. This ensures you get an optimally charged boat battery.
What I do not like about GENIUS 2X2 is the inadequate instructions manual.
- It can charge and maintain two separate marine batteries
- Thermal compensation prevents overcharging or under-charging
- It can revive boat batteries with as low as one volt
- Redesigned clamps have needle-nose profiles for improved clamping
- Has a superior waterproof construction
- The instructions are inadequate
- No warranty information is provided
Do you have two dead marine batteries you want to revive? The NOCO GENIUS 2X2 is your best bet. It isn’t just a high performing trickle charger, it is also an innovative battery maintainer.
Overall Rating: 4.9
2. ProMariner ProSport 2-Bank Generation 3 Battery Charger — Best Energy Saver Mode
Are you tired of dead marine batteries that have you pulling off the water early? With ProMariner ProSport, every battery on your boat stays charged and maintained.
- Digital multi-stage performance charging
- 2-bank battery charger
- Energy saver mode
- Distributed on-demand technology
- Pre-wired for ease of installation
This incredible boat battery charger uses software and microprocessor-controlled pulse charging technology, which is great because you get faster charging. The ProSport is a 2-bank battery charger, which means you can use it to charge the cranking battery and trolling motor battery of your boat. You can even connect two trolling motor batteries in series when charging. You can boost the charge time by parking your boat for a while between outings.
The charger comes with a battery bank trouble status indicator that shows that battery and system connections are OK or not. You’ve got LED indicators (that are extremely easy to read and interpret) for conditioning, charging, and auto-maintain modes.
I appreciate the digital multi-stage performance charging, considering how effective it extends the life of your marine batteries. This advanced technology automatically conditions, charges, and safely maintains your boat batteries. With its unique energy saver mode, the ProSport will only monitor and automatically maintain your marine batteries when necessary.
What I do not particularly like about this model is the fact that some models may come without installation hardware.
- Great for charging two marine batteries
- The LED indicators are super easy to read and interpret
- It monitors and auto-maintain batteries only when necessary
- Battery and system connections are displayed on the status indicator
- It has built-in over-temperature, overload, and over-voltage protection
- It may not come with any installation hardware
- Possible to receive a model with quality issues
The ProSport is designed to deliver the fastest charge time and proven to extend the life of your crank and trolling batteries. But make sure you receive a model with no quality issues.
Overall Rating: 4.8
3. Minn Kota Digital On-Board Marine Battery Charger — The Best 3-Bank Model
If you have been looking for a high performing marine battery charger that is digitally controlled, look no further than this on-board model from Minn Kota.
- 3-bank system
- Digital control
- Automatic multi-stage charging
- Automatic temperature compensation
- LED status display
This marine battery charger has a multi-stage charging feature, which is great because it is in control of the amount of voltage. The multi-stage system senses the requirements of your boat battery and it switches automatically to the ideal charging mode. This guarantees optimum battery charging efficiency and battery life. It can also recover and recharge deeply depleted batteries.
The innovative digital control feature of this charger prevents under or overcharging of your marine batteries. It will optimally charge and maintain your crank and trolling batteries to improve overall battery life.
This model has automatic temperature compensation. This feature ensures your marine batteries are charged optimally whether in extreme hot or cold weather.
But the thing is, high-end models are pretty costly and the battery leads are a little short.
- The multi-stage operation allows for faster and fuller charging
- Charges optimally in either cold or hot weather
- It is digitally controlled to eliminate under or overcharging
- The casing is fully corrosion-resistant
- Easy to read and interpret LED status display
- Some models may have short battery leads
- High-end models are a little bit costly
This digitally controlled marine battery charger ensures your boat batteries are optimally charged to keep you on the water longer.
Overall Rating: 4.8
4. CTEK MXS 5.0 Fully Automatic Battery Charger — Most Portable Design
This great charger is designed to give your marine batteries advanced charging and maintenance with temperature compensation.
- Eight-step charging program
- Built-in temperature compensation
- Has minimum battery voltage of 2 volts
- Works for all 12-volt marine batteries
- Short circuit proof
The MXS 5.0 from CTEK is one of the most technologically advanced smart marine battery chargers on the market. This unit has an eight-step battery care and charging program that is designed to restore depleted marine batteries to peak condition and then maintain them indefinitely. You can leave it connected while the battery is in the boat. It will not damage the advanced marine electronics.
It works for all types of 12-volt marine batteries including wet cell, gel cell, AGM, calcium, and EFB. What makes the MXS 5.0 even more powerful is its temperature compensated charge voltage. In hot or cold weather, it will adjust the output to keep your boat battery protected at all times. The improved software ensures your boat batteries get charged faster.
It has a steadfast AGM battery mode that uses six percent less energy from the mains. It also has a multi-mode selection, which gives you increased function and charge-efficiency.
In the box, you will find everything you will need, including the battery charger, a set of battery clamps, and a set of eyelet connections.
But here is the thing, the MXS 5.0 is not powerful enough to revive long-dead marine batteries.
- AGM battery mode uses six percent less energy
- Has an easy-to-read LED display
- Adjusts output in different climates to protect your marine battery
- The battery is dust, splash, and short circuit proof
- It is reverse polarity protected
- It cannot revive a boat battery that has less than two volts
- The provided clamps are of terrible quality
If you have been looking for a good marine battery charger that can charge and recondition your crank and trolling batteries, then the MXS 5.0 fits the description.
Overall Rating: 4.8
5. Guest ChargePro On-Board Battery Charger — Best DC Wire Protection
The ChargePro from Guest Industrial is designed to recharge your marine battery and extend its life. It has a dedicated charging system and control per bank.
- Two bank battery pack
- Digital charging technology
- Auto-maintain energy saver mode
- Pre-wired modes
- Fully automatic five-stage charging
This is a five-stage marine battery charger, including a bulk charge, an absorption charge, and a float charge. This charger is electronic and completely automatic and it is designed to be silent. Each output is capable of generating 12 volts DC at either a full five amps or ten amps, depending on the model. It also uses much less AC than conventional battery chargers.
This model has several safety features, including overvoltage, overcurrent, and over-temperature protection, which make it one of the safest options on the market. It has various inline fuses to keep your wire safe.
It includes a clear LED display that indicates the status of the individual battery banks through the entire charging process. The red display indicates charging, the yellow display indicates conditioning, and the green display indicates auto-maintain. The casing is 100 percent waterproof and shock-resistant.
Quality control; however, seems to be an issue with this model. It is possible to receive a product that you did not order.
- It can charge two marine batteries at the same time
- The digital charging system is fast and efficient
- Inline safety fuses improve the care of your wires
- Has overcurrent, overvoltage, and over-temperature protection
- It has superior waterproof and shock-resistant features
- You might receive a model that you did not order
- It tends to get warmer when charging very dead marine batteries
This is a great charger for all you 12-volt marine batteries. Just make sure you get the ChargePro you ordered and not something else.
Overall Rating: 4.7
6. NOCO Genius GENM2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Marine Charger— Most Rugged and Waterproof Design
This is a smart fast charger that will revive all your marine batteries. Its fully automatic high-frequency operation will charge any 12V lead-acid marine batteries.
- 2-bank battery system
- Charges all 12-volt lead-acid boat batteries
- Spark-proof technology
- Inbuilt battery desulfator
- Saltwater-tested and waterproof
This model is great for charging two 12-volt marine batteries. It is going to mount directly to your boat generator or any other equipment with the battery. It is ideal for batteries that are rated up to two hundred and thirty amp-hours. You can also use it to maintain marine batteries that are already fully charged. It is specifically engineered to charge 12-volt lead-acid batteries.
I appreciate the fact that the charger is waterproof, crush-proof, vibration-resistant, and shock-proof. The very rugged design is submersible up to three meters and it has been salt-water tested to ensure it resists corrosion.
It has built-in battery maintenance technology that is going to monitor your boat batteries and it begins charging when needed. This model allows for continuous operation with zero risks of overcharging.
What I find disappointing about this brand are their shady warranty and poor technical support.
- It delivers fast and efficient charging
- It is temperature-controlled for worry-free operation
- Great for recovering lost capacity and low voltage
- Helps stabilize and optimize internal battery chemistry
- It is highly corrosion-resistant and waterproof
- Has a shady warranty
- Possible to encounter poor technical support
It is designed tough with superior shock, water, and crush resistance. Its charge time is incredibly fast compared to conventional models.
Overall Rating: 4.6
7. Schumacher SC1280 Fully Automatic Smart Battery Charger— Best Reverse Hook-Up Protection
Disulfate, charge, and maintain all your marine batteries with this amazing charger from Schumacher.
- Fully automatic
- Microprocessor controlled
- Auto-voltage detection
- Float mode monitoring
- Reverse hook-up protection
This model is ideal for charging both 6-volt and 12-volt marine batteries. It is also a great charger for deep-cycle, gel cell, and AGM batteries. The charger is fully automatic, which is great because it selects charge rate automatically for charging and maintenance. It has a superior auto-voltage detection feature that automatically detects both 6 and 12-volt marine batteries.
The charger has a float monitoring mode that maintains optimum marine battery charge automatically. It achieves this by compensating for any self-discharge that may occur. Another good feature is the reverse hook-up protection that safeguards both the charger and battery from damage.
But here is the thing, it is possible to receive a defective model that will not charge your marine batteries completely.
- It automatically detects both 6 and 12-volt marine batteries
- It adjusts amperage automatically to deliver the optimum charge
- The float voltage helps maintain battery health after full charge
- Reverse polarity protection prevents damage
- It is compatible with deep-cycle, gel, AGM, and standard batteries
- It is possible to receive a defective charger
- May fail to automatically switch to trickle
Do you have dead marine batteries that need charging and maintenance? The Schumacher SC1280 is best suited for the job. Just make sure you do not receive a defective charger.
Overall Rating: 4.6
8. LST Automatic Battery Charger Maintainer — Most Intuitive LED Indicator
This incredible charger is capable of replenishing two depleted marine batteries in twenty-four hours. The small, compact size is great for your boat.
- 7-stage charging process
- Zero current draws from the battery
- Low power consumption
- Intuitive LED indicator
It features a seven-stage charging process. It starts with desulfation to dissipate sulfates, soft start voltage increases slowly, uses high current to charge up to 80 percent, absorption up to 95 percent, measures battery voltage, recovers a marine battery from a deeply discharged status, and finally maintains battery health to improve longevity. It has an easy to understand LED display that shows the charging status (red, yellow, or green). It will not draw current from your marine battery.
It protects your battery from reversed polarity, short circuit, overheating, over current, over-voltage, over-discharge, and overcharge. It also complies with the highest standard of energy saving.
What I do not like is the questionable quality of the provided cords and jumpers.
- Does a great job of dissolving sulfation
- Helps recover marine batteries from the discharged status
- Maintains full charge condition without overcharging
- It has multi-protection safety features
- It does not draw current from your marine batteries
- The cords and jumpers are not of the highest quality
- It may take a little bit longer to charge a dead battery
With this model, you will be able to dissolve sulfates, charge, and maintain the health of your boat batteries. But it may take longer to revive dead batteries.
Overall Rating: 4.5
9. BMK Smart Marine Battery Charger— The Best Value Model
You might find that the BMK will become your constant companion on the water because it has an upgraded defective battery detection system and fast charging.
- 4-stage operation
- Fully automatic battery charger
- Easy to read LED indicator
- 72-hour safety feature
- Quick disconnect harness
This is a fully automated marine battery charger that works in four stages. First, the charger loosens up sulfates in the battery with an eighteen-volt pulse. Second, it charges your marine battery with a high current until it is 80 percent full. Third, it stabilizes the internal chemistry of your battery until it is full to enhance performance and longevity. Fourth, it maintains your marine battery (floating) through pulse charging.
The included LED indicator will show the battery’s different charging modes. This marine smart battery charger features a fuse and waterproof design to protect your battery against power misbehavior. It has a 72-hour safety feature that will start working immediately when you switch on the charger to protect your battery against overcharging.
But the thing is, the BMK Smart Marine Battery Charger may not be capable of reviving batteries that have lost capacity.
- It uses high-frequency pulses to get rid of sulfate buildup
- The LED indicators display different charging modes
- It increases battery performance and longevity
- It uses pulse charging to maintain the health of your marine batteries
- Built-in safety feature prevents overcharging
- May not be capable of restoring batteries that have lost capacity
- The provided cables are a little bit short
This amazing marine battery charger guarantees fast-charging and efficient maintenance. It also has several safety features, including over-charge, over-current, and over-temperature protection.
Overall Rating: 4.4
How to Choose Marine Battery Chargers
In using marine batteries, you have to give as well as receive. You have to put back what your lights and appliances take out. Here is how to choose a marine battery charger.
Know What Kind of Charger You Need on Your Boat
A survey of your power needs, an estimate of the time you spend onboard, and your budget will help you decide what to buy.
To find out how much power you use, you must know the consumption of all your equipment in the boat, including lights. This is usually marked on the nameplate of each piece of equipment in amperes or watts. You need to estimate the time each appliance will be in use and multiply the amps by the time in hours. Then add all of them for total consumption.
If you have a 12-volt system and three 25-watt lamps in the boat and light them for four hours, the consumption will be about 24 amp-hours. If you have only one 12-volt marine battery with 60 amp-hours, this might affect your reserve power. But a small 4-amp marine charger will replenish your boat battery in a little over four hours.
To get more performance from a marine battery charger, you will need to choose a model with higher amperage, such as a 10-amp. This will charge and maintain your marine batteries for up to 24 hours a day, putting out 240 amp-hours of electricity. So, if most of your time on board is just on the weekends, then a small portable marine battery charger will be more than enough.
Determine the Type of Battery You Have
There are many types of marine lead-acid batteries, including AGM, gel cell, and wet cell. Beware, Gel cell, and AGM batteries need different types of chargers. In most cases, a fully automatic 12-volt marine charger will work on an AGM boat battery.
Unlike AGMs, gel cell marine batteries need a slightly higher voltage during charging, such as 14.4 or 14.1 volts. So, this means gel cells require a gel-suitable or gel-selectable marine charger.
Determine the Ideal Charging Performance
The faster you want to charge your boat batteries, the bigger the marine battery charger you would need.
The best marine battery charger will have at least three crucial stages in its charge cycle to boost not only the charging process but also the health of the battery. This includes desulfation (to dissipate sulfates from a dead battery), stabilize the internal chemistry to improve performance and longevity, and floating (to help maintain the health of the battery after full charge).
Can I charge a completely dead marine battery?
Most conventional battery chargers may fail to revive completely dead marine batteries. That is the problem faced by most boat owners out there. But if you invest in the best marine battery charger, you should be capable of reviving a dead marine battery. A completely dead battery; however, should never be allowed to stay dead for any period before charging.
Can my marine battery explode when charging?
A marine battery under charge gives off oxygen and hydrogen that can explode if touched off by a spark. When the boat is moving, the ventilation system will dispel the gas. But the gas will build up when the boat is anchored. In this case, the battery compartment must have adequate ventilation.
The winner of this roundup is NOCO GENIUS 2X2 2-Bank Fully Automatic Smart Charger. What makes this marine battery charger stand out is its efficiency during charging and consistency during maintenance. It is a versatile model that is designed for both 12-volt and 6-volt boat batteries and it is fully automatic with zero overcharge issues.
This marine battery charger is suitable for charging marine, lead-acid, and deep cycle batteries, including AGMs, gel cells, flooded, Li-ion, and maintenance-free. It is great for removing sulfates and stabilizing the internal chemistry of your boat batteries. NOCO GENIUS 2 X 2 is not only a trickle charger but also an advanced battery maintainer.