If you’re looking for a 3 bank battery charger, it’s likely that you have a marine application. A 3 bank battery charger allows you to automatically charge and maintains your engines starting battery while distributing all remaining charging amps to trolling motor or house battery for example. The challenge is to find a high-quality, high-performance, feature-laden boat battery charger for a budget price.
There are many specifications you need to be aware of before you buy a 3 bank battery charger:
How much power you need in a battery charger is closely related to the batteries you have and their applications. Here is a generalized look at some possible applications with their corresponding recommended amperage requirements:
- Low Output – (6 amps or below) A low output charger may be applicable for maintenance use or any low amp hour battery application.
- Medium Output – (9 – 15 amps) A medium output charger would be applicable for medium use or occasional use perhaps only on weekends for a trolling motor.
- High Output – (15 amps or above) 1) A high output charger would be used in high amp hour battery applications (150 Ah for example), or any situation where repeated rapid recharging is required.
By independent outputs we mean separate positive and negative output leads for each battery bank with separate and independent control. By providing separately controlled outputs from each charger bank, the battery charger is able to simultaneously charge batteries of different size, type, and charge status. This is particularly important if for instance you’re charging a 12V starting battery, a 12V house battery, and a third deep-cycle battery.
Interested in other marine-style battery chargers? Be sure and see our other articles about some of the best!
- 3 Bank Marine Battery Charger: 5 Top Rated Boat Battery Chargers
- Boat Battery Charger: Best Rated 2-Bank Marine Charger
- Deep Cycle Battery Charger: 5 Top Rated Smart Chargers
- Waterproof Battery Charger: Top Rated 12V Battery Charger Maintainer
- Best Onboard Marine Battery Charger 2-Bank Options
- Marine Battery Charger: Battery Tender 12V Battery Charger
Which brings us to battery chemistry. If you’re using your 3 bank battery charger in an on board charger marine application, you’re more likely to encounter deep cycle, gel cel, or AGM batteries. Make sure the 3 ban battery charger you buy can handle the chemistries of the batteries you have or plan to have. Gel cel batteries, for instance, require a special charging profile that can only be provided by a charger designed to charge gel cel batteries. Beware chargers that claim gel cel capability when they are really only AGM or deep cycle capable.
Many larger boats feature enclosed engine compartments and battery locations that can accumulate fumes both from batteries and fuel that if not properly ventilated pose a real explosion and fire risk. If that’s your situation, make sure that the 3 bank onboard charger you buy has an ignition protection feature that prevents sparks. Check for compliance with ISO 8846 and U.S. Coast Guard Title 33 CFR 183.410 ignition protection specifications which specify that compliant devices:
- will not ignite a flammable hydrocarbon mixture surrounding the device when and ignition source causes an internal explosion
- are not capable of releasing sufficient electrical or thermal energy to ignite a hydrocarbon mixture
- or the source of the ignition is hermetically sealed.
Also look for other safety features including protection against over-voltage, overload, over-temperature, and reverse polarity.
Some multiple-bank battery chargers have the added capability of providing built-in inverted AC outlets that can support onboard AC devices. If that is a feature you need, make sure the charger you choose has it.
If you find more than one perfect 3 bank battery charger for your application, the warranty may be the tiebreaker. Battery chargers in the marine environment are subject to some of the harshest conditions of any environment. The risk of premature failure is real. Make sure the manufacturer of your battery charger backs it with a generous warranty. It tells you that they have faith in their materials and workmanship. You should expect a minimum 2-Year limited warranty on any model you buy.
We searched retail sites, forums, consumer sites, social media sites, manufacturer sites, and customer review sites to find a highly-rated 3 bank battery charger that has the performance and features we want at a price we can afford.
Take a look at our choice and see if it’s the best battery charger for your needs!
For over 35 years ProMariner has been a trusted brand in robust, mount-and-forget, fully-automatic, onboard marine battery chargers that eliminate the need to store or carry portable battery chargers aboard. Part of their Gen 3 Heavy-Duty Recreational Series Onboard Marine Battery Charger lineup, the ProMariner ProSport 20+ Generation 3 20-Amp 12/24/36-Volt 3 Bank On Board Battery Charger is a digital microprocessor controlled battery charger that is 100% waterproof and shockproof while weighing 40% lighter, running cooler, and providing better reliability than older epoxy-filled chargers. Its Distributed-On-Demand Charging Technology distributes total charging amps to any one or combination of connected batteries as needed to maximize charging efficiency. Its compact and rugged extruded aluminum design is corrosion-resistant, lightweight, and along with its 2-Year limited warranty should give you peace-of-mind. Advanced technology eliminates time consuming troubleshooting by providing automatic installation feedback with a unique “System Check OK” and individual “Battery Bank Trouble” LED indicators. Safety features include protection against over-voltage, overload, over-temperature, reverse polarity, and ignition protection. Here’s what you need to know.
3 Bank Battery Charger Features
- 20-amp, 12/24/36-volt, all-digital microprocessor-controlled, pulse charging, 3 bank battery charger
- Distributed-On-Demand Charging Technology distributes total charging amps to any one or combination of connected batteries as needed to maximize charging efficiency
- For example, it can automatically charge and maintain your starting battery while distributing all remaining charge amps to a trolling motor or house battery
- Power Factor Correction synchronizes voltage with current draw so that all power available to the battery charger is used efficiently
- Compact and rugged extruded aluminum design is corrosion-resistant and lightweight
- Four digitally-selectable charging profiles includes a once-a-month storage reconditioning mode that provides longer battery life
- Advanced Energy Save Mode monitors and Auto Maintains batteries only as needed maintaining a full state of charge
- ProMar Digital Technology uses microprocessor-controlled pulse charging to deliver a 100% waterproof and shockproof battery charger that charges faster, is 40% lighter, runs cooler, and provides better reliability than older epoxy-filled chargers
- Advanced technology eliminates time consuming troubleshooting by providing automatic installation feedback with a unique “System Check OK” and individual “Battery Bank Trouble” LED indicators
- Informative LED indicators provide charging, conditioning, and Auto Maintain mode status in addition to AC power and selected battery type
- Dual in-line DC safety fuses for trolling motor and house battery banks
- Safety features include protection against over-voltage, overload, over-temperature, reverse polarity, and ignition protection
- Unit comes pre-wired for easy installation
- Dimensions are 12.1L x 7.25W x 2.75D inches and it weighs in at 6 lbs.
- 2-Year limited warranty
Also available is a very popular accessory in the advanced charge inlet device NOCO Genius GCP1 Black 13 Amp 125V AC Port Plug that offers optimal flexibility and ease of installation.
3 Bank Battery Charger Comparison
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