Ripped Off

I recently purchased a BatteryTender Jr. largely because of reviews in I should have looked here, and especially here first. Apparently BT has quality control issues.

Mine was defective out of the box. When I asked Deltran if they would refund my shipping costs to return the first one they refused. (The customer service rep is apparently rather thin-skinned, so tread lightly.) The net result is that in order to get a functional unit I was forced to pay out an extra $12.

You will too, and apparently (read below) this is not the rare occurrence they claim it is. My advice, don't take a chance, get a better product ( I wish I had found these reviews earlier). Deltran seems to be really happy to take your $ and not too eager to do much else.

excerpted from:
Web Bike World Review

From "JTG" (1/09): "It is interesting for me to note that you are measuring the Optimate 4 against the Battery Tender, presumably because you have had such stellar luck with the Battery Tender. I am interested in the Optimate 4 for exactly the opposite reason. I own a fleet of six small batteries (they are installed in my motorcycles). Since I can only ride one of them at a time, the Battery Tender was attractive to me. I have had 5 out of 6 fail within two years of purchase! (In case you think I have a systemic problem, you should know that I don't live on the Tundra with my only electricity being provided by a cranky old generator. I live on the power grid with buried power lines. I availed myself to the much adored 10 year warranty. I need to ask Bill C. if he can put his hands on his original 8 year old invoice for the purchase of his Battery Tender. If not, he should be prepared to shell out 50% of list price to replace his Battery Tender under the Del Ray warranty program - or about the street price at a deep discounter. Well, they had me, so I bought the 5 replacements (they did graciously discount the purchase somewhat in light of my volume of failures). Guess what? A year later my fleet of Battery Tenders is currently down to 3 operational units and three defunct Tenders "with their slotted metal cases" looking back at me - no lights - no nuthin. I'm not going back to Del Ray. I may just buy a fleet of Optimate 4s and try them out."

From "F.M." (12/08): "Thanks for the review of the OptiMate 4. I am an Integration and Test Engineer with (a major engineering and scientific firm). Much of my time is spent testing and monitoring batteries and charging systems. In fact, I am getting ready to ride my motorcycle out to do a daily check on a battery that is trickle-charging on a soon-to-be-launched satellite. I monitor battery pressure (~930psi), temperature, active cooling, pack voltage, and cell balance. I also write software that tests the battery charging subsystem in the spacecraft. I can tell you that there are some significant differences between battery chargers sold for motorcycle use. I own a Battery Tender, a Schumacher (1.5A), and a Yuasa Smartshot (1.5A). I'm convinced that the Yuasa is the best of them and that the Battery Tender is the worst. Here is an older article - (link appears to be inactive 7/17/09) (Wing World Magazine) that compares the various chargers and you will note that the Battery Tender does not fare particularly well. The Yuasa does quite well. If one wants to maximize battery life, the cycling that Yuasa does is very desirable. Let's think about this, too: Of all of the manufacturers selling battery maintainers, how many of them actually design, produce, and sell lines of batteries? I count one: Yuasa. And those are about the most respected batteries in the motorcycle industry. Yuasa employs full-time scientists and engineers who fully understand battery chemistry and design, as well as battery charging. I hope that you find the article helpful. It the best comparison of motorcycle battery chargers that I've yet seen, though I'd love to see an update to it. To the best of my knowledge, the Yuasa chargers (1.5A and 900ma), Battery Tender Plus, and Schumacher chargers have not undergone significant redesigns since that article was published."