Over 80% of battery failures come from insufficient charge. Whether you’re about to hit the lake in a boat, fire up your RV, or cruise the roads on your motorcycle, the last thing you want to deal with during your precious free time is a dead battery. Schumacher Electric spent the last 70 years making high quality Schumacher battery chargers for all types of batteries.
How do their latest products stack up?
Let’s take a look.
- 1 Editor’s Top 3 Picks of Schumacher Battery Changer
- 2 7 Best Schumacher Battery Chargers
- 2.1 1. Schumacher SC1281 6/12V Battery Charger
- 2.2 2. Schumacher SC1280 6/12V Battery Charger
- 2.3 3. Schumacher SC1319 1.5A 6/12V Battery Charger
- 2.4 4. Schumacher DSR131 6V/12V 250A Battery Charger
- 2.5 5. Schumacher SP1296 6/12V Battery Charger
- 2.6 6. Schumacher SC1304 6/12V Battery Charger
- 2.7 7. Schumacher SC1305 12V Battery Charger
- 3 How do you use a Schumacher battery charger?
- 4 Final Thoughts
Editor’s Top 3 Picks of Schumacher Battery Changer
Schumacher SC1281 6/12V Battery Charger
Schumacher SC1280 6/12V Battery Charger
Schumacher SC1319 1.5A 6/12V Battery Charger
|Voltage||6V and 12V||6V and 12V||6V and 12V|
|Amperage||6<>2 A||2 A for 6 V |
15 A for 12 V
|Max. Charging Current||12 A||15 A||1.5 A|
|Min. Charging Current||Trickle charge||Trickle charge||Trickle charge|
|Wet cell, AGM, Gel Cell||Wet cell, AGM, Gel Cell||Wet cell, AGM, Gel Cell|
|Multiple connection options||Battery clamps||Battery clamps||Eye terminals, Battery clamps, 2V DC adapter|
|Information on |
|LED indicators||LED indicators||Battery charge status indicators only|
|Reverse polarity |
|Can start engine||✔||--||--|
7 Best Schumacher Battery Chargers
1. Schumacher SC1281 6/12V Battery Charger
The Schumacher SC1281 remains an excellent all-around battery charger. The SC1281 can handle charging a wide variety of batteries including AGM, Gel, and standard batteries. The microprocessor inside will detect whether the battery is a 6V or 12V and adjust its power output appropriately. No matter what battery you’re charging, the Schumacher SC1281 can charge it well and keep it charged.
Advanced Diagnostic Test
The SC1281 comes standard with a diagnostic testing device that can detect a bad alternator. Therefore, it helps you saving a trip to the car shop if multiple batteries are dying and don’t know why. Few battery chargers included this feature.
100A Engine Starter
The Schumacher SC1281 can crank up to 100A to help batteries in large trucks, and SUVs turn over. This makes it exceptionally versatile at starting nearly any non-commercial vehicle.
Another excellent feature included in the Schumacher SC1281 is reverse hookup protection. It’s a standard feature on Schumacher chargers but this simple safety feature can do wonders. It prevents the charger from operating if the clamps are reversed. In the heat of the moment it can be easy to forget if you’re got the nodes correct, and this small feature can save your battery from a bad time.
- Works with nearly all varieties of vehicle batteries
- Reverse hook-up protection in case the clamps are switched
- Engine starter with enough amps to start larger vehicles
- Easy set and forget design
- Large LED percentage display is easy to read
- Needs access to a 120V grounded outlet to use
- Limited display for troubleshooting purposes
The Schumacher 1281 is an excellent battery charger for all types of vehicles and includes some game changing diagnostic tools with a powerful engine starter. The 1281 is a versatile charger and works with a wide array for batteries that make it great for long term use across many vehicles.Check Price at Amazon
2. Schumacher SC1280 6/12V Battery Charger
If you don’t want to spend your precious weekend time on the water dealing with a dead boat or jet ski battery, the Schumacher SC1280 is a great choice. The Schumacher SC1280 is a lightweight, portable charger at only 3 lbs weight. It’s one of their more portable yet robust models. The SC 1280 is also rated for 800 cold cranking amps which is excellent for reviving batteries that have spent all winter waiting for use.
The microprocessor in the SC1280 conveniently controls the voltage and charge rate. It adjusts without worry. The SC1280 can handle charging standard, gel, or AGM batteries. The digital display on the Schumacher SC1280 is easy to read and use. The central start/stop button means that you don’t have to fidget with knobs and dials on the charger. Just select the battery type and charge rate and hit start to let the electrons flow.
Rapid Battery Charger
The 15A rapid charge mode of the Schumacher SC1280 restores a dying battery to live in only a few hours. The Schumacher SC1280 is ideal for marine batteries.
This model has a 3 amp maintainer which is great for keeping larger batteries charged over long periods of time.
- Light and portable
- Detects connection to 6V or 12V automatically
- Great for marine batteries
- Set and forget design
- A large LED display is easy to read
- Plastic components more breakable than metal counterparts
- 3A maintainer is unnecessary for smaller batteries
The Schumacher 1280 battery charger may look small, but it packs a punch. The 1280 is portable enough for trips to the marina, and powerful enough to be used at home. Weekend warriors should consider this portable charger the final word in their battery charging needs.Check Price at Amazon
3. Schumacher SC1319 1.5A 6/12V Battery Charger
The Schumacher SC1319 is a great charger for motorcycle, ATV, boat batteries, and smaller car batteries. The SC1319 also comes with ring connector quick connect harnesses and clamp connectors to ensure that you have the right tool to connect your battery correctly.
The Schumacher SC1319 functions automatically thanks to a microprocessor which can detect a 6V or 12V battery and adjust its charging rate automatically. Just choose the type of charge and the type of battery and then leave it to do its thing. The SC1319 also detects and runs through a multi-stage charging program to make sure that the battery does not become overcharged. It comes with battery clamp connectors as well as ring connectors depending on what works best for your battery.
Reverse hookup protection means you can’t destroy your battery do to the mishap of clamping the battery polarities incorrectly. Another important safety issue with any battery is overcharging. The automation built into the SC1319 prevents it from overcharging a battery, and building up to dangerous gases.
1.5 A Automatic Battery Maintainer
The SC1319 moves into maintenance mode and keeps the battery from dropping below a specific voltage. If you have a battery you use infrequently or simply don’t want to mess with checking the charge constantly, and the Schumacher SC1319 makes preserving this battery a breeze.
- Charges a huge range of vehicle batteries
- Maintains battery charge almost indefinitely
- No frills, set and forget
- Lightweight at 1 lb
- The simple display can make troubleshooting difficult
- Needs monitoring when used long term
Reliable, affordable and easy to use the Schumacher 1319 is a welcome addition to any garage. The 1319 charges most vehicle batteries quickly and completely without harming them. If you’re looking for a small, simple battery charger this one is your best bet.Check Price at Amazon
4. Schumacher DSR131 6V/12V 250A Battery Charger
The Schumacher DSR131 is the ultimate in heavy duty battery chargers. This car shop grade charger would find a right home in a repair garage. Motor home loves this charger as it’s able to meet the variety of its battery needs. It’s just under a commercial trucking grade battery charger and powerful enough for any vehicle on the road.
The DSR131 rolls around on its own stand and comes with heavy-duty 300A color-coded clamps that bite terminals hard for a perfect battery connection.
The Schumacher DSR131 comes with 250A of engine starting power which is enough juice to turn over large engines. If you’ve got a large vehicle with a dead battery, the DSR131 is your best bet.
Automatic Battery Charging
Deep-cycle, Gel, AGM, and standard batteries are all compatible with the DSR131. Float-mode monitoring ensures that a battery remains optimally charged but never overcharged.
- 12-foot cables reach into larger vehicles
- 300 A clamps
- Quiet while charging
- 240 A starter enough for almost any vehicle
- Great for motorhomes
- Large and clunky
- Nowhere to wrap cables while rolling it
The Schumacher DSR131 brings serious battery charging power. The DSR131’s heavy duty build and 250A of engine starting power make it comfortable charging and maintaining the largest vehicles on the road. If you’re in the business of charging batteries day in and day out without harming them, consider the DSR131 your solution.Check Price at Amazon
5. Schumacher SP1296 6/12V Battery Charger
The Schumacher SP1296 Automatic Battery Charger is the close cousin to the SC1319 we reviewed above. Both are in the same family of products with the same simple design and solid track record. The SP1296 is an excellent charger for all varieties of vehicle batteries—from boats to cars to motorcycles.
The automatic function means that you can set and forget your Schumacher 1296. The processor inside analyzes the battery needs and, as long as it’s not dead, the charger can choose the correct recharge stage and work step by step to recharge your battery.
Reverse Hook Up Protection
Reverse hook up protection means it’s impossible to destroy your battery due to a mishap of clamping the battery polarities incorrectly. The charger will simply not turn on and an indicator light will let you know it’s been hooked up wrong.
2A Battery Maintainer
The Schumacher SC1296 will turn itself to maintainer mode when it detects the battery is fully charged. From a full charge the SC1296 will drip up to 2A into a battery as needed to prevent loss of charge. It’s a great comfort to know that the battery will always be ready when you need it no matter how long it’s gone without use.
- Easy set and forget design
- Excellent for seasonal vehicles that spend time in storage
- Reliable and sturdy
- Comes with three adapters including cigarette lighter
- Charges faster than its 1.5A cousin
- No screen to indicate charging problems
- Needs to be monitored if left plugged in for long periods of time
If consistency and simplicity are what you need in a battery charger, the Schumacher SP1296 was made for you. Once charging, the SP 1296 will automatically ensure your battery is charged but not overcharged, allowing you to deal with something other than the headache of a dying battery.Check Price at Amazon
6. Schumacher SC1304 6/12V Battery Charger
As a cousin to the Schumacher SC1280, the Schumacher SC1304 shares many of the same features and functionality. The SC1304 is extremely lightweight and portable. The main difference from it and it’s cousin is the body of the charger. The SC 1304 features a larger handle and blue colored panel.
Automatic Battery Charger
The Schumacher SC1304 combines the versatility of a 6/12V charger with the smarts of a multi-battery type charger. The SC1304 can charge standard, gel, and AGM batteries with the push of a button. The charger will move through all four stages of charging if needed to complete the battery recharge without overcharging.
The Schumacher SC1304 has much juice as far as maintainers go. As a 3A maintainer, it can keep a battery tucked away and charged up fresh for months. Don’t overlook how important it is for a maintainer to have good amps to keep an unused battery from going bad.
The Schumacher SC1304 comes with reverse hook up protection. Standard on nearly all Schumacher chargers this feature makes sure you never destroy a battery due to reversing the clamps. It’s a small feature, but definitely a great one to have in case a hurry or distraction causes you to reverse the polarity.
- Trilingual option available
- A large LED screen is easy to read
- The microprocessor does all the work
- Lightweight and small
- Land handle for easy transport
- Needs monitoring in rare cases to prevent overcharge
The Schumacher SP1304 adjusts to nearly any battery make and model which makes it welcome in any home garage. The SP1304’s versatility means it will last between makes and models of cars as well as provide charging for any seasonal needs including RVs, boats, and ATVs.Check Price at Amazon
7. Schumacher SC1305 12V Battery Charger
Last on our list comes the Schumacher SC1305 Automatic Charger and Engine Starter. This charger works specifically with 12V batteries and is all around great for car batteries. The SC1305 is capable of a 10A boost or a powerful 50A engine starter. This combined with the 6<>2A charger makes it fantastic for extending your vehicles’ battery life to the maximum.
50A Engine Starter
The Schumacher SC1305 contains a 50A engine starter. This allows you to get a large engine running on a severely depleted battery.
12V Automatic Battery Charger
The SC 1305 features float monitoring which automatically maintains optimum battery charge. Once the battery is charged the charger will begin float monitoring to keep the battery from overcharging.
Like many of the Schumacher batteries the SC1305 has reverse hook up protection. It will also shut the charge off when it reaches full charge to prevent damage to the battery due to overcharging.
- Heavy duty steel case
- Generates both 10A boost and 50A engine starter
- Can charge a battery in as little as 3 hours
- Simple to use
- Multi-stage charging
- 6 foot long cords may require an extension cord
- Restricted use to 12V batteries
- No LED screen to explain problems
The Schumacher SC1305 works exclusively with 12V batteries, but it does everything your 12V battery will ever need. The 10A boost will charge batteries in the blink of an eye and the engine starter is just icing on the cake. Consider this charger if a no-fuss, reliable 12V charger is what you’re looking for.Check Price at Amazon
How do you use a Schumacher battery charger?
Each of the Schumacher chargers listed above come with a manual to help guide you through any problems you find. Don’t let frustration at the inconvenience of a dying battery override due diligence in understanding the Schumacher product you’ve purchased. Read and make sure that the battery you are connecting matches the specifications of the charger you are using.
As long as you have the correct battery for the charger you are using the microprocessor in the charger will adjust accordingly. It’s simple and worry-free.
Batteries run the machines that run our lives. They only make themselves known when they’re failing. Schumacher Battery Chargers make sure that never happens. They help you properly access the voltage health of batteries and prevent upsetting surprises. They’re dependable, reliable, and they’ve been trusted by consumers for over 70 years. If you’re in the market for battery chargers there’s definitely one on our list for you.