It may not have been lost to you that 18650 Batteries have grown in popularity over the last few years. They are still utilized to power flashlights and power vapes. However, their use has exploded over the last few years to include other specialized devices.
If one way or another you find yourself using some of these batteries, then you quickly realize you also need a charger. The catch is in choosing the best charger. There is a wide selection of them on the market that it can sometimes be pretty hard to figure out the best one for us.
In the following review, we look at some of the best 18650 battery Chargers on the market to make your choice easier. We also discuss how you go about choosing the right charger and some basics on how to safely and correctly make use of them.
- 1 Top 4 Best 18650 Battery Charger 2018 Review
- 2 Selecting a Perfect Battery Charger
- 3 How to Use Battery Chargers
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions on 18650 Battery Charger
- 5 Conclusion
Top 4 Best 18650 Battery Charger 2018 Review
18650 Battery Charger Nitecore i2 Intellicharge
This is without a doubt one of the cheap 18650 battery chargers out there with a price that is pretty favorable.
It has the capacity to charge two batteries simultaneously while also telling you how far you are through three indicator lights.
And another good thing about Nitecore i2 Intellicharge Charger is that it can juice up a wide variety of batteries out there making it pretty versatile – this is one of the factors that make it one of the best chargers for 18650.
It automatically detects the kind of batteries you insert into the slots and applies the right charging for them – quite the smart one.
The charger has built-in protection that shuts down the device when you are done charging.
However, you should learn to remove these batteries from the charger once you are done. And if you need to charge on the move, the charger has a 12V port for charging in the car. It is without a doubt something to have around the house.
Well, this charger is a bit more expensive than your average chargers, but it is for a pretty good reason – quality doesn’t often come cheap.
It comes with nifty little features that account for the cost, and that is not so bad.
The first element you notice is the LCD screen which keeps you in the know how matters are regarding charging and all. And what’s more, this model is quite the versatile one as it can charge a wide variety of batteries.
The charger can handle four batteries at a go making it quite functional. And to avoid the situations where the cell is ramped up with a higher current, the charger has a feature that prevents this.
It comes with three different modes that play an important role in prolonging the life of your battery. Without a doubt, this one deserves to be on the list for the best 18650 battery charger in the market.
It takes about five hours to charge four 18650 batteries simultaneously and half that time when charging the two of them.
EBL Smart Battery Charger for 18650
If you are among those always on the lookout for cheap and quality products, then this EBL charger fits the category.
It is one charger that shuts down after the battery is all pumped up with the necessary power.
This is fast and can handle a wide variety of batteries. It has all the essential protections to maintain the battery in excellent condition.
The only noticeable drawback with this charger is that it lacks some of the useful features you find in more expensive products.
You also need to ensure that you have placed the batteries in the right manner to avoid associated risks.
Foxnovo F08 8-Slot LCD Battery Charger
If you are looking for something intelligent, versatile and charges fast, then foxnovo F08 8-Slot LCD Battery Charger may be your thing – and the cost tells it all. It is one dependable charger that keeps your batteries fully juiced up whenever necessary.
The LCD shows just how far you are with charging and has the charge protection needed to prevent overcharging or undercharging.
This product can hold up to eight batteries at a go meaning that you don’t have to wait as a pair charges. It automatically detects the type of cell you insert in the slot, and the battery status then applies the right charge mode. And when charging is complete, this charger shuts everything down to ensure the protection of the batteries and safety.
Selecting a Perfect Battery Charger
Apparently, there is a wide variety of products in the market, and each may come with its own features. The goal of each manufacturer is to capture customers by offering attractive functionalities, and that makes it a bit difficult to determine the right features.
The most important among them is the shut off feature. This was a common problem when lithium-ion batteries were first introduced into the market.
And as long as your charger comes around with this feature, then you are in good stead and sure that nothing bad can happen – something like accidental fires from overheating.
Another important feature you need to look out for is the Amp draw. Basically, the higher it is, the better. It would mean fast charging and a shorter wait period.
However, it should not be too fast as it would mean overheating and stuff. But you shouldn’t worry too much as long as you are purchasing the right brand.
Convenience features that indicate the charge level are also important as they inform you how far the charging is and the much you need to wait.
If the battery also has different charging modes, the better, as it would mean prolonging the life of the battery. This latter feature might slow things a bit, but it is all worth it if you consider it for a while.
The number of ports is down to the number of batteries you use. If the number of cells is significant, then you need a charger with several slots.
Of course, the person that only has a flashlight battery to charge may not see the reason to have many ports.
How to Use Battery Chargers
Using the chargers may seem like a walk in the park – easy – but there are some things you need to be aware of and among them is that they are directional.
This means that they need to be put the right way to avoid such problems as fire risks and discharging. However, this factor may not be a problem if you choose the right brand – like the ones we have listed above.
However, should you decide to go for the cheaper models out there, then you must be careful how you place them on the charger.
Another critical thing to note is that you should never leave the chargers unattended. Better and innovative chargers are hitting the market once in a while, better and safer.
However, that does not diminish the importance of not leaving your charger unattended. Anything can still happen, the quality of the charger notwithstanding. The failsafe may malfunction leaving you with losses or worse still, injuries.
That does not, however, imply that lithium-ion batteries are unsafe. If anything, they are quite safe, but it doesn’t hurt when you take extra precautions.
Frequently Asked Questions on 18650 Battery Charger
What is the meaning of 18650?
18650 is typically the battery size. In other words, their classification is 18mm by 65mm –see where the name comes from? If not, look again.
If you hold one lithium-ion battery in your hands, you will notice that it’s almost the same with AA batteries. The main difference between the two, however, is that the 18650s are bigger, but the shape is the same. The AAs are also known as 14500 – you can now guess where this comes from, can’t you?
The name denotes diameter and height – 14mm x 50mm. But all lithium-ion batteries follow the same naming procedure by picking their sizes. But what does the 0 at the end mean? Well, it is said to suggest that the battery is round – this is the belief among some technical quarters.
There is also 2032. Now, you don’t need an explanation on this, or do you? Typically, there is a small difference of 0.7mm with their counterpart the cr2025. But all these batteries are 3V.
Can you use AA batteries instead of 18650?
The main difference between the AA batteries and 18650 is in the output voltage. As a matter of fact, the devices that use AA batteries have a lower output voltage compared to those that use the 18650s. Replacing your AAs with 18650 is a sort of overkill.
Another factor that comes into play, in this case, is the design of the device. Can it support the higher voltage you are seeking to jump into? Will this cause excessive heat and eventual malfunction? These are the kinds of questions you should be asking yourself because they are a possibility. But what does that mean?
You will need to know the power supply design. Otherwise, trying to force a 18650 battery may malfunction the device, or worse still, create a dangerous situation – this is definitely not what you want.
However, you can pull this feat off by dropping the voltage down by utilising a diode – you may need an electrician for this.
How many watts are in a 18650 battery?
The 18650 batteries are gradually growing in popularity in an age of electrical devices. But how many watts do these batteries have? This is like asking what the amp rating of the rechargeable battery is, apparently.
Major brands like Samsung have output bursts of 60amps per every ten seconds. Instead of the constant rates, some misreading marketers publish these burst rates.
But in simple terms, a fully charged 20A 18650 has four volts and can put out 80 Watts. That means a pair in parallel can produce 160 watts – this is from the 8 volts battery arranged in parallel.
As we have said above, a continuous rating is usually lower than the burst rating. Depending on the vaping, you are picking a few seconds hit. However, in reality, most 18650s can vape at high watts.
What type of battery is a 18650?
Without a doubt, the 18650 batteries are now the most used varieties. If not, they eventually will be. But what type are they? We know the named 18650 is coined from its dimensions but what else should we know?
The lithium-ion batteries are the latest generation, and they are now used by many devices. Unlike the conventional cells denoted by the later A, these only have the figure 18650 and may be confusing for some people – technology has a way surpassing our knowledge, and we are always catching up. The AA and AAA are of standard sizes, but the lithium-ions may be a little longer when they incorporate the additional protection.
The main ingredient in the 18650 is lithium cobalt oxide. However, there is also a lithium-ion phosphate which solves the initial safety issues associated with the lithium metal.
How much is Mah a 18650 battery?
Well, there is a large variety of 18650 batteries on the market, and each of them may have a different rating. However be wary of cells that state a mAh rating of over 4000 – it is not currently possible. The highest confirmed rating is 3400mAh and is usually lighter.
It is always a good idea to choose the major brands, and you can never go wrong. For example, Samsung distributes their batteries with cyan colour with a rating of 2000mAh. But you will also find 2200mAh, as well as, 2400mAh. The light blue ones are usually 2000mAh, and the Samsung’s light greens are 2200mAh and 2400mAh. Sanyo’s 2000mAh is red, and 2200mAh have true-red cap unlike the rest of the battery body.
But the majority of cells colour coded Cyan are 2200mAh. The DarkSkyblue varieties are 2400 mAh. Samsung has a pink battery with the rating of 2600 mAh. Sanyo has up to 3000mAh.
What is the voltage of a fully charged 18650 battery?
The new generation lithium-ion batteries have the same dimensions as your conventional batteries. However, these are usually rechargeable and so have a longer life. The initial voltage of the 18650 is 3.7V. You can still come across others that are 3.6V. This may not be too important. What is critical to know is the rating of fully charged batteries.
A fully charged 18650 is 4.2V. You should consider them empty at 3.3V – discharged. The extremes of either side are not healthy to the life of the battery. In other words, avoid a total discharge, as well as, overcharging.
But the above charging information applies to some of the major brands. There are others with completely different specifications. For example, you should charge the LTO variety to a maximum of 2.82V and the LIFEPO4 to 3.65V. Ideally, always check with the manufacturer to avoid the associated complications, if you know what I mean.
How long does it take to charge a 18650?
The majority of batteries in store shelves are typically at half charge. This helps keep them in good health as they wait to be bought. Then it goes without saying that they will take a shorter time to charge. The very first charge should not exceed three hours.
However, after the first charge, the total amount of time it takes should be slightly higher. But there are also other factors that may affect the charging time. For starters, the capacity of your battery in mAh is critical – this is the milliAmp hours. The more the mAh, the more time it will take to fully charge the batteries, apparently.
Another factor influencing the charging time is the kind of charger you are using. If you have an external charger, you’ll need to look at the specifications to determine the amount of power it is supplying.
Internal USB chargers have the benefit of quick charging. However, always keep in mind that batteries have a longer life when charged consistently and slowly – typically, a rate of 0.5amps is decent.
If you have several of those devices using lithium-ion batteries, then you will need a charger. It is better to spend extra and get the best 18650 battery chargers than get a cheap knock-off putting you at risk and prove expensive in the long run.
If you think about it, a good quality battery charger is worth every cent as it will give you a considerable amount of service years and maintain your batteries.
Hello! I’m Mike Maclennan and I live in Phoenix, Arizona. I work in the construction and home remodeling industry. Having used many tools over the years, I’ve decided to start this website and share my personal tools review. Thanks for reading my articles and I hope you’ll find the best tool for your needs.