This is such a great price. I have been looking for Makita chargers for awhile but they are so expensive. I found this one and the price seemed too good to be true. I was sure it was going to be really cheap, but it's great. It charges quickly and for the price it is so worth it.
This charger is awesome! I have a single battery charger, the double, and this one now. I do own a lot of batteries as I am constantly using them and have invested heavily in the Makita 18v line. At the end of my day when I leave in the morning, I take all of my batteries out of the chargers and put another set of batteries in. I keep my double charger with me and take it to the worksite, but leave this as its now mounted on my shop wall. This is great for leaving batteries in when you're not in a rush to get them charged up. There's a few reviews saying that it should charge faster and do all four at onc. I'm a believer that although expensive, having extra batteries (especially the higher aH) is essential for really working with these tools. Let the dead ones charge while you have extras to use in your tools. I highly recommend this charger.
5Tech that works
I have a collection of cordless tools. The only Makita tool I have is the variable speed drill this charger is meant for. Well, at least in this case, you get what you pay for. My other tools take a lot longer to charge, don't have the power of the Makita and don't last as long on a charge. Considering that you can get a whole Ryobi tool set for less than the price of one Makita tool I would say that most do-it-yourself, occasional users would be better off with the Ryobi. But if you need a few targeted tools and will, even if only infrequently, need extra duty then I think the Makita is worth it. As fast as this charger works, you can probably get by with one batter and charger for multiple tools, unless you are using a number of tools during the same task.
Recently, and on the suggestion of a friend, I have migrated over to Makita cordless as well as Makita corded tools. This is after years of using Milwaukee and Craftsman equipment. I have found the Makita tools to be superior to what I had been using. The duel charger did not disappoint at all! This charger will certainly stream my projects. Thank You!
5Great Addition for Everything Makita
Granted, most Makita people don't need this. However, if you have 12 Makita LXT tools and Batteries with matching Makita luggage, THIS IS FOR YOU! It neatly holds and automatically charges 4 Makita batteries, it will charge 2 of those batteries at a time, then switch to the other two. It has integrated mounting holes in the bottom, so it can be mounted on a wall, clearing up workbench space. The directions state that batteries can be safely stored on the charger, the computer will keep them charged appropriately, this has worked for me.
5Makita brand over no name brand anytime.
Works great. Ordered generic ones twice and you get what you pay for. They didn't work for 1 charge. This has been working continuously for months and there is nothing like having a charged battery available at all times. You don't realise how necessary it is to have until you can't use your drill because of a dead battery. I got a once in a lifetime deal on mine and am very happy I went with the Makita brand this time.
Charger works very well for the 18 volt MAKITA battery I have. Price was right.
5A lot quieter than the regular charger
This unit is silent compared to the regular charger. The other viewers are right, it only charges two at a time, but it apparently keeps all four charged, which the regular charger doesn't appear to do. I have taken dead batteries off the regular charger several times. Has very convenient provision to be hung on the wall so it doesn't take up counter surface.
5Inside the battery
There is one new feature on this charger. When the battery reaches 80% full, both lights stay on.In related news, in addition to 1.5 Amp/Hour and 3.0A/h battery packs, Makita has released 4.0A/h and 5.0A/h packs.Let's try to get some real information about maximizing battery lifetimes and preventing failure. It's an extremely complicated subject so I'll try to boil it down. First, some general rules that apply to all common lithium battery chemistries, and then I'll talk specifically about Makita 18V batteries.The most important thing to remember about any lithium battery is to never store it in a discharged state. Recharge it as soon as it's "dead" and you will avoid many problems.A lithium battery does not need to be fully charged every time. In fact, you will get more cycles if you do not fully charge it. The battery is happiest when it's between 20 and 80 percent full. When the battery is less than 80 percent it can take more charge voltage input, so thats what the charger does, gives it more. As the battery becomes 80% full, the charger switches to a lower voltage, meaning half of the charge time is the last 20% of power. To maximize battery lifetime you should pull it off the charger before it's completely charged. This new Makita charger has a both-lights-on indication for when the battery has reached 80 percent full, when you see both lights steady on, pull it off the charger. This is an important new feature of this charger, if you use it you will extend the useful lifetime of your battery packs.Putting a lithium battery on a charger while it's at any random charge level will not harm it.The battery can stay in the charger long-term without harm, but this is a fire risk. Remove it from the charger and unplug it. In 2008 there were a lot of fires and lawsuits, and manufacturers have improved lithium battery safety since then, but there is no type of battery that is 100% safe to be left unattended on a charger. The failure is called VWF - Vent With Flame.Cold temperatures will not harm a lithium battery. It won't run your gadgets for as long while cold, but there will be no permanent damage. Still, it's not a bad idea to bring your batteries inside when the temperature approaches zero F. Lithium batteries can be stored in a refrigerator because the cold will lower the self-discharge rate, but this should be used only for long-term (over six month) storage. Put them fully charged inside a ziplock bag or other airtight container. Never put them in a freezer.Extreme heat will definitely shorten a lithium battery's lifetime. Temperatures above 140F or 60C should be avoided at all costs.There are several ways to kill a lithium battery.1. Charge it too fast, at too high a voltage. This should never happen with this charger.2. Overcharge it. Again, this should never happen with this charger.3. OVER DISCHARGE is usually how you kill a battery. More on this soon.Some further reading.http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/do_and_dont_battery_table#at_pco=smlwn-1.0&at_si=546227c9c0cf4ada&at_ab=per-2&at_pos=0&at_tot=1Now, Specifically about Makita Batteries:I'm pretty sure Makita was the first to introduce batteries in an all-lithium format for power tools . So they should get congratulations for that. But now, to retain backwards-compatability we must deal with an out of date cell-balancing scheme.Inside each 3.0 Amp/Hour 18V Makita battery case are ten smaller cells utilizing Lithium-Manganese chemistry. The cells are 18mm wide and 65mm long, commonly known as 18650 sized batteries. These are a lot more common than you might think, chances are that your laptop has the same 18650's inside. They are becoming common in high performance flashlights. Tesla is putting them in those fancy auto-mobiles that drive stock prices to himalayan heights, and Tesla's "giga-factory" being built in Texas will produce 18650's. The cells in Makita batteries were made by Sanyo until Panasonic bought Sanyo. Now Makita uses Panasonic brand batteries. There may be Sony-made cells inside some older Makita batteries.Let's get back to the problem of OVER-DISCHARGE. Inside the Makita battery there are ten 18650's, and a small circuit board, called a PCB, Protection Circuit Board. Now I have a long quote from a guy who goes by the handle ToolMon." Lithium batteries can burn or explode if abused. They need monitoring, for safety reasons. So Makita put in a smart control board in the battery pack. The control board monitors charging voltage, current, battery temperature, number of charges, and remembers all that. Good idea, right? But... There is a design bug. The battery control board draws power only from the first cell of the 10 cells in the battery. If you leave it sitting for a while, the control board will deep discharge that first cell to zero, while the others remain charged. To the control board or possibly the charger, that looks like a shorted cell, which could overheat, and the control board remembers it. If you then try to charge the same battery more than 3 times with an apparently deep discharged cell, the conservative software in the control board locks the battery permanently! The control board tells the Makita charger that the battery is unsafe to charge, and prevents charging in the Makita charger.Once "bricked", the battery cannot be reset."Did you get that? The control board consumes a small amount of power, all the time, from only the first cell out of ten. If that first battery voltage drops below 2.5V, the charger reads that as a shorted cell, and will not charge the battery. If you then attempt to charge it a total of three times the control board bricks the battery forever, even though only one cell out of ten is depleted.Fortunately, there are ways to overcome the bricked battery. You can get an off brand charger that does not read the control board, which can lead to other problems... or use a dangerous way that I won't discuss here. But the real solution is DON'T LET THE BATTERY OVER-DISCHARGE IN THE FIRST PLACE. Put it on the charger immediately after it's been used and you'll never have a chance to brick a battery. Also, charge it if it's been sitting for a few months, don't let it sit forever.Seeing STARS:Another problem with older Makita lithium batteries is the lack of cell balancing. Some cells in the pack could be fully charged while others are not. I don't have a date for when Makita introduced the "STAR LOGO", I have tools with the star that predate by a year anything I saw in Makita literature mentioning the star. If your battery and/or tool has either a star or the little yellow tab seen on this charger, that means your pack is cell-balanced.Some tool/battery combinations with and without the star are not possible. I have found that the yellow tab is a better indicator of tool/battery compatibility than the star. If they both have the tab, you're good.Another Way to brick a battery:Almost all Makita tools communicate with the battery's PCB, but some do not. I have around 20 tools, and most of them, when the battery wears down, they keep full power until they suddenly stop. But my little blower is not like this, the motor speed will get slower and slower until I release the trigger. I haven't tried it but I bet the vaccuum is the same way. I know someone with an early radio, and his will keep playing until the sound is really fuzzy and low volume, but my newer radio will get a little fuzzy for 10 minutes, then suddenly shut off. He says he bricked a battery in his radio when he left it on overnight, mine won't do that.DON'T OVER-DISCHARGE YOUR BATTERY!For safety, Makita leaves some power leftover. The cells could easily be charged to 4.5 volts, but the charger stops at 4.2v... (at least with the older (green) chargers.) This will not only be much safer, it should prolong the life of the battery. I do not know if this newer black charger stops at 4.2v, or the 80% charge indicator (both lights solid on) means it just hit 4.2v and it is continuing to 4.5v. I'll update this review when I find out.I could go into the chemistry of why the battery is dead forever if its depleted, or the low/high voltages of each cell, but I think that's enough for amazon.Read here if you want to get in over your head. http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?280754-Makita-18V-LXT-batteries/page
5Both the older DC18RA and this DC18RC Can Charge 5.0Ah Makita Batteries
Great charger. I bought it to charge a couple of new Makita 5.0Ah batteries, thinking my two older DC18RA chargers could only handle the original 2.0Ah batteries.I was wrong.My old DC18RA chargers can charge the 5.0Ah batteries fine, and just as fast. Not sure what the real difference in capability is between the DC18RA and the DC18RC. Couple more LED readouts.So now I have three chargers. Oh, well. I use them all.
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