What is a Wind Charger?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

A wind charger is a device for charging batteries with wind power. Such devices provide a source of renewable energy for refilling rechargeable batteries, and come in a variety of designs and sizes. Very small, portable models can be used for gadgets, while larger models can provide a source of backup power to a home or business by charging batteries when the wind is blowing. Numerous companies make wind chargers, and people can also build their own from scratch.

A wind charger uses wind power to charge batteries.
A wind charger uses wind power to charge batteries.

Wind chargers harness the energy of the wind for electrical generation. The wind passes through blades. As the blades turn, they rotate a shaft, creating a miniature turbine. As energy is generated, it passes through batteries for storage. People can swap out batteries as they fill up, or connect the wind charger directly to battery-powered devices for charging if they have the appropriate fittings to do so.

A wind charger for gadgets can be small enough for people to carry around or mount on a bicycle to take advantage of wind currents generated as they move around. Larger chargers may still be portable, allowing people to position them around the yard or on a roof to take advantage of prevailing currents. Larger wind chargers are fixed in place, requiring people to select a place with appropriate wind currents so the device will operate consistently.

A commercial wind charger may come with adapters and attachments people can use to charge different kinds of devices and batteries. These can also be purchased separately and attached to a custom-built wind charger. Charger kits are available for people who want to try building their own with some guidance, and people may also purchase raw materials and start from scratch. There are guides online for people interested in wind charger construction. Places like bookstores and alternative energy information centers may also carry pamphlets and other publications discussing wind chargers and other methods of alternative energy generation.

Proper maintenance of a wind charger includes periodic checks for loose, warped, or damaged blades, along with lubrication of the moving parts. It is also important to check all the lines and connections for signs of corrosion or other problems, as this may cause damage when the wind charger is connected to something. For devices with metal blades, the blades may periodically need to be wiped down to remove rust and treated with new paint to keep them in good condition.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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