Since it's launch in 1995, OptiMate has received wide acclaim as an outstanding compact automatic charger, maintainer and recoverer for 12V starter batteries of motorcycles, ride-on mowers and similar seasonal vehicles, as well as for sealed lead-acid gel and deep-cycle batteries used in back-up power support applications. The OptiMate 3 takes the proven OptiMate interactive charging programme another step further in an affordable package.
OptiMate 3 is totally automatic and fully protected against user error. There are no switches. Short-circuiting the charger output resets the programme, without sparks or blown fuses. Affordable, compact, intelligent and forgiving of errors, OptiMate 3 is the perfect tool for regular or long-term maintenance of batteries not in daily use.
How it works
1. Battery check: OptiMate 3 must be connected to a battery (retaining a minimum of 2V) to activate its output.
2. Desulphation and recovery stage: Tests the battery for possible deep discharge or sulphation. If necessary, OptiMate 3 automatically engages a special high voltage recovery mode (up to 20V) with a very low fixed current to desulphate the battery.
3. Bulk charge stage: Charges at 0.8 Amps constant current until such time as the battery is normally able to crank the engine.
4. Verification stage: A 30 minute charge & check cycle ensures that even well-used batteries are brought to full charge saturation. If necessary the programme reverts automatically to the bulk charging stage, repeating steps 3 & 4 as many times as may be necessary until the battery is thoroughly charged.
5. Voltage retention test: During a 30 minute pause the charging circuit monitors the battery's voltage to identify batteries unable to retain an adequate charge without charger support. The green LED indicates that the battery has passed the charge retention test and the red LED indicating that the battery voltage failed to remain above 12V. (A fully charged, undamaged lead-acid battery should normally retain a voltage of at least 12.5V.)
6. Maintenance / float charge stage: Irrespective of the voltage retention test result, a maximum voltage of 13.6V is applied with up to 200mA available to support connected electronic alarms or other small loads.
The voltage retention check (step 5) is repeated every 30 minutes and alternates thereafter with step 6 for as long as OptiMate 3 remains connected to the battery.
Delivered with two interchangeable connection sets, one with clamps for bench charging, the other with in-line protection fuse and eyelet terminals for permanent attachment to in-vehicle battery to allow easy reconnection of charger when necessary.
Optional accessories include additional fused permanent connection leads (O1); cigarette lighter plug lead (O2) to charge via the cigarette lighter or DIN socket (as found on some BMW, Honda& Triumph touring motorcycles); 1.8m and 4.6m extension leads; weatherproof sockets to provide a convenient 12V supply for sat-nav, MP3 player, mobile phone charger PDA etc. and much more.