How to Read a Battery Charger Amp Meter: Simple Steps

Being able to read your battery charger is always the best thing in day-to-day life. However, you can imagine where one cannot read a battery and only sits to wait until the battery goes off due to lack of power for him or her to recharge. This could be such a boring life. Other than that, in circumstances where one cannot read the meter and the battery is fully charged, this will overcharge the battery, and it gets damaged in less time than it should have been.

 When one can read the battery charger Amp meter, it is usually a simple task to also diagnose some other problems connected to the battery. However, this should again not bother you too much if you are unaware of how to do it, as this article will guide you on the essential steps to follow.

Connecting the battery charger

Before you even use your battery, you first need to connect it to a charger until it is charged ready for use. Since you are handling electric appliances, some precautions need to be followed when connecting the charger.

Simple steps to be followed when connecting your battery chargerRead A Battery Charger Amp Meter

Step 1; ensure that all the battery’s terminals are clean since once the battery has been well fitted to your car, it will automatically be well covered in the road grime. So, you should first ensure they are well cleaned.

Step 2; ensure that your working area has good ventilation. This is because the batteries will emit hydrogen gas, which is usually explosive, so you need a good ventilated area to free air.

Step 3; you should always be aware that batteries contain acid. Due to this, you always need to wear protectives. Examples of such protectives are mainly eye protectors and also gloves. The protectives will help in cases where the acid may spill accidentally or when you touch an area with naked gas unaware.

Step 4; everything in the car should be turned off once the battery is fitted to the car. Things that require energy, to be specific. Examples include radios and also the fitted interior lights.

Step 5; get to know where the positive and the negative terminals are. Most of the terminals are usually labeled black for the negative terminal and red for the positive terminal.

Step 6; the positive terminal (labeled red) should be connected to the charger via the red cable. If you accidentally connect it with the negative terminal, sparks may be caused, igniting any hydrogen gas present in the air from the battery. To avoid these inconveniences, it is always advisable to connect the negative terminal far from the battery.

  • If the battery is already fitted to the car, the black cable should be connected to the engine block from the charger. Ensure it is connected in a faraway place from the battery.
  • If the battery is not fitted to the car, you should connect a 2ft battery cable to the black terminal and then the black charger cable to it. It should also be away from the battery.

Step 7; after everything is correctly done, you can now comfortably switch the power on where the charger is connected and have a look at the Amp meter.

Reading a battery Amp meter

Reading the battery meter can be somehow confusing as it contains various sets of numbers. Therefore, it would help if you were very careful when reading the meter to avoid recording the incorrect figures or reading the inappropriate figures.

The charge Rate

The charge rates figures or numbers are located at the bottom of your battery meter. The appearance of the numbers mostly depends on the type and the design of your battery meter. Most meters contain the amp numbers flowing between zero and twelve. If your meter is of a different model, all you need to know is that the figures at the bottom of the meter represent the charge rates.

Charge as per percentage

The percentage charge is usually located at the top or just above the scale. When charging continues to take place, the position of the needle keeps moving to the left side. When the needle moves from the right side to the left side, it shows a reduction in the number of the flowing amps, causing an increase in the charged percentage.

The red and the green triangles

There are two different charging rates. There is usually a large red triangle that shows the current flow to the battery from the charger. The increased charge causes a decrease in the flow rate, making the needle move to the left near the green area. If the battery gets fully charged, it indicates 6amps.

How to tell whether the battery charger is responding to chargeHow to tell whether the battery charger is responding to charge

Immediately the connection is made and the power is turned on, the needle should sharply move to the right side, and then it will start adjusting to the left side after some time. After a short time of unpredictable needle position, it will then point at the steady charging position. If the needle of your meter behaves in such a manner, then this shows that the battery charger is charging.

  • When charging is complete, the needle should settle at the 6amps when the charging setting is 12amps. If the charging setting is 2amps, the needle should stop near the end of the red triangle. In simpler terms, the needle stops almost near the middle of the charging setting.

Problems that may occur when reading a battery charger gaugeProblems that may occur when reading a battery charger gauge

The charger needle may keep on jumping. This shows that the connection is poor or could be the battery is damaged.

The charger needle may refuse to move. It could be caused by a damaged meter. To test whether the meter is damaged, connect it to a good working battery, and the results will give you the correct condition of your meter. However, the battery charge could be extremely low. You need to change the battery and replace it with one that is charged for the best results.

If the battery’s terminals are dirty, they easily rust and can make the needle not move. If it happens, make sure you clean them. The needle could just be stuck. This mainly happens if the charger has been in use for a long time. It would help if you gently tapped the meter. It could be the AC outlet is damaged, and to test this, you need to connect it to another device and see if it works.


If you follow all of the above steps and procedures and still miss finding the correct result, it is advisable to contact a professional or go through your manuals guide. The above steps should help you spot any problem with your charger and handle it efficiently. If it does not work, it could be a great problem, and you need not try fixing things out by yourself.

Observe all precautions keenly to avoid burns, electrocutions, or even other risky actions when dealing with these appliances. Always make sure that your hands are off water or no water around you since water is a good conductor of electricity and can cause electrocution. If followed well, you should be able to troubleshoot any problem across your way when dealing with batteries.

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