Can I use a trickle charger on my Honda CRV using an extension cord? Do I need a surge protector? It will be stored all winter and it won’t be monitored. Is this safe?
Yes, No - but it couldn’t hurt, and Yes.
As long as the extension cord is the proper gauge for it’s length and for the load.
It’s better to remove the battery from the vehicle and store it in a cool/dry area with a trickle charger on it.
When I was young, my dad stored his Jeep in a shed for the winter with a trickle charger on it.
The trickle charger shorted out/overheated and set the Jeep/shed on fire.
Everything was lost.
I’m confused. If the cool dry area is in your house, it sounds like you’d rather set your house on fire than a detached shed.
Cool/dry area usually means a garage or basement with a concrete floor.
And there’s no vehicle to catch fire first, as in my dads case.
What’s a battery cost anyway if it won’t take a charge when you come back? Some folks we know just lost their shed to fire. 40 years worth of tools, fork lift, couple 4 wheelers, etc. plus substantial cash. Undetermined cause so far.
First make sure your trickle charger is a float charger. A float charger wont over charge your battery. They are also called battery maintainers.
I second @Tester’s suggestion to remove the battery, but if you do the following, you may not need to. Either at the circuit breaker panel or at the wall plug where you plan on plugging in the charger, put an arc-fault circuit interrupter. These are a little pricey at around $40 or so, but if there is either a ground fault detected or there is an arc that would start a fire, it will shut off the circuit. This is much safer than a regular circuit breaker. It is a level of protection higher than GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) also.
It wouldn’t hurt to also use a surge protector but for the most part, I don’t think it is needed. However they are cheap and if there was to be a surge in voltage caused by a lightening strike on the power line, the surge protector does protect by arcing the power to ground and that would trip the arc fault detector giving you double protection.
BTW, new codes for residential and commercial wiring require arc-fault circuit interrupters on all circuits that go to wet areas, i.e. bathrooms and kitchens, outdoor receptacles, and in some cases basements. So an upgrade would not be out of line.
GFCI’s are required in damp areas, basement garage and bath. Arc fault breakers are required in living areas by code.
@keith eith has the right idea using and arc fault breaker but a garage would also need a GFCI. There are combination GFCI and arc fault breakers available. Perfect for use with a battery tender used on a car in a garage.
That’s the only kind I have seen, but I’m not an electrician by trade.
My nephew is an electrician and when I asked him about upgrading to arc fault breakers, he didn’t encourage it at this time. I don’t remember anymore why but seems to me there were a lot of false tripping of them just like my GFCIs often have to be reset after a lightening storm.
So I dunno, I paid $125 for a new Delco battery a few weeks ago and when I stored my Pontiac for 6 months years ago, the battery was dead, but it charged up just fine again. So if the breaker trips or the furnace goes out half-way through, the result is the same if you never turned it on.
Not a lot of pros seem to be accepting of arc faults. I’ve added an arc fault breaker and two arc fault outlets daisy-chained to following outlets when doing a bit of renovation to my 50 year old house. No issues with false trips. The electrical inspector didn’t even check for them.
Arc fault breakers are required for bedrooms around here. My house is 16 years old, the breakers have been nothing but a PITA for false tripping. I should amend that, they detect arcs alright but react to any electro-mechanical switch action carrying any appreciable current above a light switch. Like a portable oil filled heater or even a humidifier switching on or off. I got rid of most of them because of that. Have you priced one? Dang!
I recently rewired most of my house and added a bunch of arc fault breakers for about $35 each from Amazon ( where I get most electrical and plumbing supplies) I don’t think that’s a high cost.
If there’s nobody around to monitor the situation , imo safest to just remove the battery and place it in a dry place indoors, somewhere near normal room temperature, no charging equipment connected. You can charge it next spring before you re-install it in your CRV, using a normal battery charger. Electronics parts can fail. And sometimes they fail in a bad way.
Congratulations. The ones for my house run around $80. I think that’s a high cost.
Sounds like a potential law suit.
This was back in the sixties!
I store my lawn tractoe in an unheated shed from earlt November to May in the Buffalo area. No charger and I don’t remove a cable because there is nothing to cause a parasitic draw. This is a 1998 mower I bought used about 5 uears ago and the battery is the one that was in it.
For a car, if the battery is any good, it will be fine if you just remove a cable unless it gets to -25F where you live.