Can You Charge a 16V Battery With a 12V Charger?

Can You Charge a 16V Battery with a 12V Charger

In addition to the ever-increasing price of batteries, the equally high cost of battery chargers raises questions about the functionality of more affordable but naturally lower-voltage battery chargers. In this direction, an article has been produced addressing the issue of whether a 12V battery charger is helpful in the energy storage of 16, 18, and 20V batteries.

What Is the Difference between AGM and Standard Batteries?

It is essential to know what type of battery your vehicle has when you need to repair or replace it or even when you need to charge your battery. Depending on this, you can buy a battery suitable for it, whether it is AGM or standard, or you can choose an adapter for the subject in question here.

Namely, the choice of boat batteries and car batteries, in general, is mainly made of lead-acid batteries. However, this standard battery type has many shortcomings, unlike AGM, and therefore they do not have a long life.

AGM batteries unlike traditional gel batteries, which do not contain any liquid acid, are much more effective, and their popularity is increasing daily. In this context, while most standard batteries support 12V and above for charging, this figure is 14.7V on average for AGM batteries. Accordingly, you can fill 80% of your AGM-type battery with a 12V charger.

12 Volt Batteries & Chargers: 12V batteries, which are used in many automobile batteries, especially RV and boat batteries, can be connected in two ways, either in series or parallel, to obtain more storage capacity. If 12V batteries are connected in series, a 24V system emerges; On the other hand, when they are connected in parallel, the same 12V system continues, but it provides twice the energy on the device, still the single 12V battery.

16 Volt Batteries: 12V is quite low, especially for racer cars batteries. For this reason, many drag and circle track racers prefer 16V batteries. These batteries help to propel the water pump, fuel pump, or trans-bakers by providing more power and energy, thus allowing the vehicle to move faster and benefiting more from the energy source. In this direction, as one of the frequently asked questions, it comes to mind whether this type of battery especially needs a specific charger.

Each battery can last longer when charged with devices suitable for its voltage. As we mentioned above, AGM-type batteries provide an average of 14.7V energy, while a 12V charger can only fill 80% of this battery when it comes to charging. This filling rate will decrease for 16V, especially for the battery types used in racing vehicles, and it will not be a guaranteed option in terms of battery life.

Can You Charge a 16V Battery with a 12V Charger?

The Regular Battery Chargers or Trickle Battery Chargers?

Primarily, you should know that no two chargers are the same. As it can be understood from the points mentioned above and the details explained, a regular charger is required to charge a 14V or 16V battery with a 12V charger.

In this context, regular battery chargers transfer higher constant voltage to the battery and, in this context, energy storage. On the other hand, however, trickle chargers are used to store the energy shortly and intermittently in line with the slower battery charging.

As for transmitting the energy, even when the battery is fully charged, regular chargers continue to send energy, causing damage to the battery due to overcharging and shortening its life in line with this damage. In this context, trickle chargers become more advantageous with their short and intermittent transmission of energy functionality.

What Happens If I Use a 12 Volt Charger on an 18 Volt Battery?

Now, in line with this brief information, we have just mentioned that it is not healthy to charge the 16V battery discussed above with a 12V charger. Likewise, we can say that this situation is also valid for 18V or 20V batteries.

That is when it is examined in general terms, charging the 18V batteries with the 12V charger will be very time-consuming, and the battery remaining in the charge for a long time will be damaged. So much so that perhaps you will only be able to fill only 66% of your battery in this long period. In other words, your battery will never reach enough energy, even if it fills some of it.

Can I Charge a 20 Volt Battery with a 12 Volt Charger?

When the details described and given are reviewed, using a 12V battery charger to charge a 20V battery will not be a very economical and helpful way. 12V battery chargers take a long time and do not fully charge even when charging 14, 16, and 18V batteries, making this situation the same for 20V batteries. As a result, its use is not recommended due to its inauthenticity by both the battery and the user.

Technically, the answer to all 3 main questions in the article is yes; in any case, you can charge your battery up to a certain amount with a 12V battery charger. However, on the other hand, although you have provided an energy source to your battery, this energy source causes the battery to remain charged for a long time, thus shortening its life.

Long story short, it will not be a healthy move to use a low-energy source, such as a 12V charger, for batteries that require high energy, such as 20V.


In a nutshell, in the energy storage of these three-volt type batteries, 12-volt battery chargers provide technical functionality. That is, up to a certain point and again within a certain time, which increases as the voltage increases, enabling your battery to be charged by providing energy storage.

But whether this is a healthy way is debatable. Because the batteries, which use a much lower source than the energy at the voltage required to be stored, suffer certain damages and shorten their life when exposed to overcharging for a long time. So if we collect all these in a short sentence, we can say that you can use a 12V battery charger on your 16, 18, or 20V batteries, but it will not be helpful.


  • Bayram Sarıkaya

    I am very curious about batteries, devices that charge batteries and these topics. I share reviews, comparisons and news for people who are curious about these issues.

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