5 best rv battery tenders reviewed

5 Best RV Battery Tenders Reviewed

Updated November 2, 2022

- By Tim Harris

As much as you love your RV, there will be periods when you put it in storage or don’t use it. And these periods are when your RV’s battery loses a lot of charge. 

RV batteries aren’t like phone batteries – you can’t plug a dead RV battery into a wall and expect it to perform the same. When a deep-cycle battery dies, it starts to degrade and might lose some of its capacity permanently. 

This is where RV battery tenders come in. They maintain or “tend” the battery’s power level to keep it in its prime for as long as possible. 

There’s an ocean of these battery tenders available everywhere. But not all of them are reliable and worth spending money on. 

rv battery tenders

We’ve shortlisted and reviewed some of the best RV battery tenders on the market below.

5 Best RV Battery Tenders Money Can Buy

You cannot go wrong with these RV battery tenders:

#1 BLACK+DECKER BM3B

BLACK+DECKER BM3B
$26.96

The most affordable option on this list, the BM3B battery tender is an impressively durable battery tender that will serve you for years. It boasts automatic high-frequency charging and a sturdy housing. 

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You can charge 6V and 12V batteries with it. The tender will stop charging when your battery reaches full capacity and switch to float mode. The nice thing about this battery tender is that it allows you to connect it to the battery in three ways.

Since it’s equipped with an AC low voltage compensation mechanism, it’ll perform equally well regardless of the mode of connection.  

All these features, coupled with its LED indicators, safety features, and built-in mounting bracket make it one of the best RV battery tenders in the market.

Pros

  • Most affordable option
  • AC low voltage compensation
  • Charges both 6V and 12V batteries

Cons

  • Does not recharge batteries that have fallen under two volts

#2 Schumacher SP1297

Schumacher SP1297 Fully Automatic Battery Charger
$49.99

Capable of delivering up to three amps, there are many reasons why the Schumacher SP1297 makes it to our list of best RV battery tenders.

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Its multi-stage charging functionality protects your battery and extends its lifespan. You can charge standard, deep-cycle, AGM, and Lithium-ion (LiFePO4) batteries with it.

It comes with a hook attachment, allowing you to hang the battery tender without hassle.

Furthermore, it has several safety features, keeping your battery from overheating, over or undercharging, and short-circuiting. There’s no need to worry about reverse polarity damaging the battery, either.

Pros

  • It features a microprocessor
  • Good safety features
  • Mounting hook included

Cons

  • Does not detect battery type automatically

#3 NOCO GENIUS2

NOCO GENIUS2
$49.95

The NOCO GENIUS2 stands out as one of the most advanced battery tenders available. It’s fully automatic, boasts several safety features, and works with 6V and 12V wet, gel, deep-cycle, and AGM batteries, making it one of the best RV battery tenders.

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It can charge batteries with as low as one volt. Also, it can detect sulfation and acid stratification, then work to restore some of the lost capacity.

What’s most impressive about the GENIUS2 is its integrated digital thermal sensor. With it, the tender detects the ambient temperature and adjusts power delivery to prevent over or undercharging. 

Pros

  • One of the most advanced battery tenders in the market
  • Works with all kinds of batteries
  • Can charge and restore dead batteries

Cons

  • No SAE connection 

#4 Battery Tender Junior 

Battery Tender Junior 12V Charger and Maintainer
$34.95

Battery Tender Junior outputs .750 amps at 12V and comes equipped with technology that prevents overcharging.

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When the battery’s fully charged, the tender will only charge the battery to maintain its power level. It’s affordable, easy to attach, and its LEDs make monitoring the battery simple. 

Both a battery tender and a trickle charger, Battery Tender Junior is one of the best RV battery tenders for lead-acid, gel, and AGM batteries. 

Pros

  • Works with gel, lead-acid, and AGM batteries
  • Maintains charge level with float mode
  • Easy to attach

Cons

  • Can take a lot of time to charge the battery

#5 Battery Tender Plus 

Battery Tender Plus 12V Battery Charger and Maintainer
$59.95

Battery Tender Plus might be just the product you’re looking for if you value efficiency. It charges flooded, AGM, gel, and lead-acid 12V batteries at 1.25 amps. 

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The ten-year warranty is great to have, and it protects your battery from sparking, short-circuiting, and reverse polarity. One of the best things about it is its quick-connect harness, which makes connecting the tender fast and easy.

With its automatic float-mode feature, there’s never a worry about overcharging your battery. All you’ll need to do is set it and forget it.

Pros

  • Automatic float mode
  • Ring terminals and alligator clips make it easy to attach
  • Fast and efficient 

Cons

  • Sub-par durability

Frequently Asked Questions

When should you use a battery tender?

If you’re not going to be using your RV for a while, using a battery tender will ensure it retains its performance and is ready to use when it comes time to use the RV again. 

Is a battery tender better than a trickle charger?

Trickle chargers have been around for decades and are different from battery tenders. These chargers do not keep track of the charge the battery is holding and keep charging it continually. On the other hand, battery tenders are smart devices that only charge the battery when needed.

Is it OK to leave a battery tender on all the time?

Battery tenders are designed for long-term, constant use. You can leave the battery tender on with your battery connected for as long as you want without worrying about damaging the battery.

Conclusion

Taking good care of your battery when it’s not in use ensures that it will serve you for years. And doing this is a lot easier when you get your hands on one of the best RV battery tenders. 

Remember that RV batteries are only one of the few things that will keep you charged up on the road. Having the right generator and power-efficient lights can make a big difference in how long your batteries last.

best battery tenders for your rv

We hope you found this article helpful in your search for the right battery tender. If you still have questions, you can ask them in the comments below.

Tim Harris
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