For many racers, charging batteries is a fact of life on race weekends. With so many components relying on battery power, having a fully charged battery when you let go of the transbrake or line lock can be critical to how your weekend turns out.
With today’s modern battery technology, a smarter battery charger is needed to ensure that batteries are fully and properly charged in a timely manner. Moroso’s Power Charger (Part No. 74016) is an effective charging solution that is well suited for the demands of race weekend, but versatile enough to use back home for your tow rig, pit vehicle and daily driver.
This charger was developed after Rick Moroso, a drag racer himself, found he was unhappy with the current offerings on the market. “Working with our R&D department, Rick let them know what he expected in a battery charger and a list of requirements was written,” says Thor Schroeder of Moroso Performance. The R&D department came through and in 2003 delivered a charger that was up to their boss’s standards.
The design has evolved some for the last few years to keep up with the battery market, and today it offers many features not available on other models. “This was one of the first chargers that would charge both sixteen and twelve volt batteries,” says Schroeder.
One Charger For Multiple Batteries
Working with our R&D department, Rick let them know what he expected in a battery charger and a list of requirements was written. -Thor Schroeder
The Power Charger can charge any type of automotive battery (with the exception of lithium packs) – everything from flooded lead acid batteries, AGM (absorbed glass mat), Gel, wet deep cycle, and even Reactor-type batteries. It can also charge the 16 volt batteries used in hardcore racing applications, so you can use it not only on your race car but also on your tow and pit vehicles.
With regard to operating, Schroeder emphasized, “The biggest and most important step is to make sure that if a 12 volt battery is being charged, the switch is turned to 12 volts and if a 16 volt battery is being charged, the switch is turned to 16 volts.” Simply flipping the switch on the front of the control panel allows users to select either a 12 or 16 volt system. Easy to see LED lights on the front panel indicate status and warn of trouble.
The Power Charger uses microprocessor controls that work in three stages to allow batteries which may have been deeply discharged to be recovered. Many chargers cannot charge a battery that has gone below nine volts. The Power Charger’s low start voltage means it can charge a battery that has as little as .02 volts.
The Power Charger User Interface
Operation of the Power Charger is very simple. Once the battery is connected, charging operation is a matter of selecting whether you’re charging a 12 volt or 16 volt battery. The on board microprocessor controls handle the rest.
Needle type gauges on chargers are often fragile and after a few hard knocks, become unreliable. Racers rely on their equipment to tell them what’s going on, so Moroso designed the Power Charger with an LED ammeter to eliminate the trouble and confusion that can come from an inaccurate or busted gauge. The Ammeter’s simple design shows that a battery is charging, charged to 80%, or “Ready”, indicating a full charge.
The 30 amp output of the unit also means that it can charge batteries rapidly. In fact Moroso claims that the Power Charger can recover a battery to near full charge in about 14 minutes, allowing racers to prepare for the next round at the track even faster. The microprocessor also allows for detection of a shorted battery, as well as protection against reverse polarity. In either of these occurrences, the Power Charger shuts down.
Racing season tends to run from early spring to late fall in most parts of the country, and the temperature where you’re racing can affect how your battery charger performs. The Power Charger’s ambient temperature compensation ensures that it’s charging properly under virtually all temperature conditions that racers will likely use it under.
Storage periods, whether they’re long or short are also an inevitable part of racing. Whether it’s weeks or months between the next race or another reason, eventually something with a battery is left sitting in the garage or the trailer.
The Power Charger eliminates the need for a battery maintainer in these situations, as it can be connected to a battery continuously while it is in storage. After 24 hours the Power Charger will go into hibernation mode, wherein the charger stops supplying power to the battery. However, every 30 days, the unit will go into a maintenance mode, which allows the charger to run a maintenance charge on the battery, prolonging it’s life.
Parallel or Series Charging
Parallel battery systems aren’t uncommon in many race cars. The Power Charger can be used to charge two 12 volt batteries in a parallel fashion, provided that they are of the same type, such as two AGM or two lead acid batteries, and that they’re connected properly in parallel.
We know that it is not the cheapest charger out there, but like any quality tool we know that it has high quality components in it, and strong customer service to support it. -Thor Schroeder
Charging of two 6 volt batteries in series with the Power Charger in 12 volt mode is also possible. Just like in parallel, both batteries must be of the same type. But unlike in parallel, these batteries must be connected in series.
Racers count on their equipment to help get them to the next round. This equipment must be reliable and in many cases rugged, and able to withstand the rigors of a weekend at the track in a racing environment. The Power Charger is proudly built in the USA, and Schroeder also added “We know that it’s not the cheapest charger out there, but like any quality tool, we know that it has high quality components in it and strong customer service to support it.” The Moroso Power Charger provides a charger that racers can use at the track, and also back at home for all their vehicles, making it a versatile tool for any race team.