Probe, South Africa’s battery experts are the factory appointed distributor of a tried and tested a range of user-friendly boosters, testers and chargers for all vehicles from international manufacturer Schumacher. Probe CEO Rick Rovelli takes us through the range.

A drained battery can be inconvenient, risky and in the case of fleets, bad for business. Fortunately, you can prevent this by investing in a reliable booster and jumpstarter to get your vehicle on the road again. Make the investment worthwhile by choosing an easy to use, durable charger from a reputable brand that can deliver adequate voltage and works with different batteries. 

For cars, the handy SL1317 Schumacher battery booster and jump-starter offer a nice compact design in a neat carry case and can deliver up to 30 jumpstarts without needing to be recharged.  Its Lithium polymer battery holds a charge for 6 months.  It has a 3-mode LED light, useful for emergencies at night. The charging cable makes sure you can charge your devices fast, useful if you’re stranded with a flat cell phone.  It’s really worth being prepared – so we recommend investing in one of these and checking that it’s charged every six months. 

Modern commercial trucks can have a range of additional equipment such as navigation and tracking systems, satellite TV, seat heaters, fridges and microwaves– all adding to the intense demands placed on the battery.  To avoid losing time and money, it makes sense to be equipped with a robust battery booster.  

The 1200AMP heavy-duty SOS Booster by Schumacher only weighs about 24kg and can jump-start a heavy-duty truck, bus, combine harvester, plane, boat or even heavy civil engineering equipment – basically anything from 12V to 24V battery. It works for petrol and diesel vehicles, and at extreme temperatures.  It is durable, mobile and you can expect some great features across the range, including the heavy-duty rotomoulded case that has a lifetime guarantee. There is an LED lamp on the clamps for safe use, especially in the dark. The switch and a reverse polarity warning ensure that users don’t injure themselves or damage the battery or vehicle electronics. The flat, puncture-proof wheels make it the perfect tool for workshops, depots and parking lots. The SOS Booster range can be maintained and repaired making it a true asset for your business. 

A vehicle’s battery, charging and starting system may appear fine, but you won’t know until you thoroughly test it.  The Schumacher range of testers from Probe makes it easy to test and proactively prevent problems with the battery and systems simply using the tester and a smartphone. 
The Schulink App can be easily downloaded and paired with the wireless SBT1, which tests Calcium, AGM, Start and Stop and EV batteries for 12V or 24V charging systems. This makes it ideal for testing a wide variety of vehicles from golf carts to trucks. There is also a model available which includes a thermal printer, so you have an instant printout of the test results. A fully charged battery will read 12.6V and above. 
It’s good practice to charge a vehicle’s battery while it is being serviced, as well as keeping batteries in unused vehicles or on the shelf charged. These easy-to-use testers are essential tools for service technicians. It’s advisable to schedule periodic battery, charging and starting system tests for customers and e-mail them the results, building trust, securing more repeat visits and ultimately generating more revenue. 

Avoid choosing a poor quality charger as you can really damage batteries and systems. Schumacher smart charging means that these chargers are regulated with multi-stage charging for added precision, safety and battery life  – giving you the right voltage over the time period needed to avoid overcharging.  
This SP range from Schumacher ticks all the boxes – right from SPI 1 to SPI 15 depending on the capacity you need and the type of batteries you need to charge. These are great all-round chargers for AGM, Standard, Gel Cell, Calcium, and Start/Stop batteries. The SPI3 through to the SPI1224 all have an LED scrolling display. The display gives the operator absolute clarity in relation to the batteries status of charge and the mode of the charger. The powerful SCI90 also has a desulphation function with slow and fast charge capabilities – up to three times faster than a normal charger. The animated display provides step-by-step instructions and once batteries are charged; the charger will automatically maintain optimum battery charge.
A high capacity battery (100 amps or more) requires a bigger charger compared to a low capacity type (50 amps or below). The tried and tested rule is to have a charger with an output of 10% of the capacity of the battery – for example, a 100 Amp battery should be charged with a 10 Amp charger. For a small to medium car – 6-10 amp will do it – but trucks would need 10 Amp plus.  With Schumacher, even the smallest batteries can be charged with the biggest charger, which is not necessarily the case with other brands. So go big, and buy one charger for all your needs.