What is an offboard charger?

close up of two hands putting a battery into a red power wheelchair base

Pride Mobility Devices Use Off-Board Chargers

In a world teeming with rechargeable electronic devices, you’ve likely heard mention of off-board chargers and on-board chargers. The jargon can be a little hard to follow. 

Let’s catch you up on all charger-related topics, especially those that pertain to Pride Mobility scooters and power wheelchairs.

Off-Board Chargers vs. On-Board Chargers

The distinction between off-board chargers and on-board chargers is pretty basic. On-board chargers are housed entirely within the device. This technology is commonly used in electric cars.

Off-board chargers — as you may have guessed — are located outside the unit itself. Often, off-board chargers have a block between two cords — one that plugs into a wall outlet and the other that plugs into the mobility device.

What is an Off-Board Charger?

An off-board charger plugs into a wall outlet, which supplies alternating current (AC) power. AC power is the current that powers anything you plug straight into the wall like a hair dryer, blender or space heater. Rather than using the power right away like those devices, an off-board charger collects the AC power from the grid and converts it to direct current or DC power.

DC power delivers consistent voltage, but cannot travel far distances. It wouldn’t stay intact on the journey from power plant to the grid and ultimately to your home, the way AC power does.

When it comes to devices like cell phones and mobility devices, the charger acts as a converter. Once the AC power becomes DC power it can be stored in the battery. The battery then doles out DC power to your mobility scooter or power wheelchair.

What Pride Mobility Devices Use Off-Board Chargers?

Pride Mobility uses off-board chargers for our Jazzy power wheelchairs and mobility scooters.

Pride’s line of power lift recliners use AC power — allowing them to function using electricity directly from the wall outlet. In case of a power outage, our lift chairs have a 9-volt battery backup standard. Lithium-ion battery backup — a longer-lasting alternative — is available on select models.

How to Use an Off-Board Charger?

The majority of our power wheelchairs and electric scooters charge the same way. Position the device next to a standard electrical outlet. Once you’ve ensured the device is off, plug the off-board charger into the charger port and then into the wall. Once charging is complete — between eight and 14 hours later — unplug the charger from the outlet and then the controller.

The battery pack on some mobility scooters can be easily removed from the unit. In that case, you can plug the battery unit into the on-board charger without needing to drive the scooter up to the wall outlet. When charging a scooter’s battery pack, follow the above steps for plugging and unplugging it.

How to Order a New Charger?

Whenever you need replacement parts or accessories, contact your local Pride Mobility Dealer, or visit an online retailer. When you contact a provider, the more details you have about your device, the better.

Jot down the model name, serial number and charger type. Pride dealers will likely be able to get you a replacement charger based on the model name, but again, more info is better than less. Find a list of scooter charger types here. You can find specifics about your wheelchair battery the your manual.

2 thoughts on “What is an offboard charger?

  1. can you plug in the battery charger on the pride mobility when its unassembled

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