portable jump starters

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go_mets
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portable jump starters

Post by go_mets » Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:04 pm

I was flipping through the channels and saw a portable jump starter being presented on one of the shopping channels.

With weather upon us and the battery in my car being at least 3 years old, I am wondering whether I should get one.

There are so many on Amazon. It is hard to decide.

Also, the one being sold on the shopping channel claims that the jump starter can charge the car's battery through the cigarette lighter.
Is this for real?

CedarWaxWing
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by CedarWaxWing » Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:12 pm

Most likely not a great idea.

Many of those items are not high quality, and not likely to work when needed.

You may consider making sure you have a good car battery that holds a charge, and have a good set of 4 gauge high quality battery cables for jump starts if need in a pinch.

A good battery charger for those unexpected issues it nice also.

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TxAg
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by TxAg » Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:15 pm

I have one. It was less than $50 from costco. It is awesome and has saved me a lot of trouble.



https://www.costco.com/Lithium-Jump-Sta ... 83979.html

Edit: i used the cables/clips directly on the battery terminals (not the cigarette port)
Last edited by TxAg on Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Teague
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Teague » Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:18 pm

go_mets wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:04 pm
I was flipping through the channels and saw a portable jump starter being presented on one of the shopping channels.

With weather upon us and the battery in my car being at least 3 years old, I am wondering whether I should get one.

There are so many on Amazon. It is hard to decide.

Also, the one being sold on the shopping channel claims that the jump starter can charge the car's battery through the cigarette lighter.
Is this for real?
Personally, I just buy a new battery every 4 years and don't have to worry (probably) about a failed car battery. If your 3 year old battery needs jump starting, it's time for a new battery anyway.

With the above said, I carry one of those things on long trips. So far I've only used it to recharge a cell phone.

Yes, these things can, eventually, get some amount of charge through the cigarette lighter and into the car battery. But that cigarette lighter and wiring is of limited capacity, a pretty low amperage circuit. You certainly cannot jump start a car this way. The far quicker method is to jump start the car and then let the car's alternator charge the battery as you drive - ideally to a place that can replace your 3 year old battery.

Just an aside - should you ignore the instructions and try to jump start your old 6 volt tractor (yes, the polarity was correct) they tend to get really hot and blow up. Err, just mentioning this for a friend. :oops:
Last edited by Teague on Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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random_walker_77
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by random_walker_77 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:19 pm

I've got a Li-ion jump starter, which also serves as a usb pack for recharging my phone. It really does work well surprisingly well for jump starting. The lithium battery packs can put out an incredible amount of current, which enables a tiny package to jump start a big car. Mine can be recharged from a wall plug or from the car's 12v ("cigarette lighter") port. You wouldn't be jumping the car through the 12v outlet, nor would you want to be charging the car from the battery pack; cigarette lighter ports can handle 10-20A before blowing a fuse. The jump starter packs are meant to provide high current for a few seconds to quickly start your car. Any more than that, and they might overheat.

Speaking of overheating, you wouldn't want to leave one in a hot car. Remember hearing about those name-brand exploding laptops/phones? Yup, Li-Ion batteries are tricky to keep safe, and they do not like high temperatures.

That said, I really like my jump starter, and it serves its purpose well.

Whether you should get one? If you are in doubt, you could go get your battery tested. Many auto parts stores, including Walmart auto centers, will test your battery and alternator for free. For ~$16, you could also test it yourself with a load tester like this one: https://www.amazon.com/Schumacher-BT-10 ... oad+tester

I might add that Walmart will also install a new battery for you. Myself, I take some tools and get my batteries from costco, swapping it out in the parking lot in order to return the old battery for the core deposit.

RobZ
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by RobZ » Fri Dec 07, 2018 12:50 am

I bought a 15000 mAH lithium jump starter in 2015 after an acquaintance jump started my friend's boat while we were out on the water. Now I'm that guy.
The one I bought was about $50 on Amazon in 2015. They're probably even better now. I've had about a 75% success rate with it on vehicles and once on a boat. Its important to keep it fully charged before taking it out, and also like mentioned above, I do not store mine in a vehicle due to overheating concerns. Money well spent.

Ztx
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Ztx » Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:11 am

I was skeptical about portable jump starters and got a rather large battery jump starter from costco (it was about the size of regular car battery, even slightly bigger). It worked fine few times but then once failed to start the car even though it was full charged.
Then I recalled about a portable jump starter (https://www.amazon.com/NOCO-GB40-UltraS ... rter&psc=1) I got during white elephant gift exchange. It started the car in no time! Have used it several times since then - worked perfectly. Highly recommend.

RCL
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by RCL » Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:47 am

random_walker_77 wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:19 pm


Whether you should get one? If you are in doubt, you could go get your battery tested. Many auto parts stores, including Walmart auto centers, will test your battery and alternator for free. For ~$16, you could also test it yourself with a load tester like this one: https://www.amazon.com/Schumacher-BT-10 ... oad+tester

I might add that Walmart will also install a new battery for you. Myself, I take some tools and get my batteries from costco, swapping it out in the parking lot in order to return the old battery for the core deposit.
IMO, a 100 amp load tester is pretty much useless. The required cranking amps to start a car is much higher. You need to load test at 200-300 amps. And yes, I have owned and used the 100 amp tester and it tested the battery as "Good", but the battery would crap out while trying to start the car
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goodlifer
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by goodlifer » Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:55 am

My husband has a tendency to leave the lights on in cars. If the headlights shut off automatically, he will somehow leave the dome lights on. I used to buy the Peak jump starters every other Black Friday because I used them enough to justify the price, and they went bad after about 18 to 24 months. I bought one of the tiny ones 2.5 years ago and love it. It more than paid for itself when he left the dome lights on in the airport parking lot and we came back a week later to a dead battery. I bought it from Woot for $35 and it was a steal. I always buy the ones with the air compressor, light, and USB charger because we use them a lot more than we thought we would. Just make sure that you buy one strong enough to handle your vehicle. I bought a 6000mAh, which can handle a 3 liter engine or smaller.

friuli_croatan
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by friuli_croatan » Fri Dec 07, 2018 3:11 am

Someone mentioned the Li-ion jump starter above. I have recently read that the beatit g18 pro is the great. Can start a diesel truck up to 30x and is 1.5 lbs. also serves as a 21000mAH phone recharger. You can find it on amazon for 99$.

Beatit Black G18 PRO QDSP Wireless Charger 2000A Peak Gas and 8.0L Diesel 21000mAh 12V Portable Car Jump Starter Auto Battery Booster with Smart Jumper Cables https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07FTG9PBK/re ... cCbYFHY2CK

Rupert
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Rupert » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:08 am

TxAg wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:15 pm
I have one. It was less than $50 from costco. It is awesome and has saved me a lot of trouble.



https://www.costco.com/Lithium-Jump-Sta ... 83979.html

Edit: i used the cables/clips directly on the battery terminals (not the cigarette port)
I also have this one. I have had to use it a couple of times, and it works great.

squirm
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by squirm » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:39 am

A week ago I helped a lady in the parking lot. She had one of those, didn't help her, I had cables and jumped her car.

Nate79
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Nate79 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:43 am

Each of our vehicles has a battery jump started and compressor. At a minimum the battery packs act as a backup power source to charge our cell phones in case of power outage.

sport
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by sport » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:55 am

A word of caution: Although it seems to be routine, jump starting an auto battery can be dangerous. Be sure to follow the instructions and wear eye protection. This applies to jump starting devices and ordinary jumper cables.
sport (a former battery engineer)

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Peculiar_Investor
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Peculiar_Investor » Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:06 am

Ztx wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:11 am
Then I recalled about a portable jump starter (https://www.amazon.com/NOCO-GB40-UltraS ... rter&psc=1) I got during white elephant gift exchange. It started the car in no time! Have used it several times since then - worked perfectly. Highly recommend.
That's the one we have and it has worked well in several instances where it was required. There are going to be at least two more under the Christmas tree this year for parents and siblings.

Helpful hint, since these devices are usually out of sight, out of mind, put a reminder in your calendar to top up the charge. We have been doing this every 3 months. Nothing worse than needing a jump start and discovering your handy device itself needs a jump start.
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RedDog
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by RedDog » Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:00 am

The largest draw back with jump starters is remembering to keep them charged. I just carry a set of old fashion jumper cables but if I weren’t comfortable using them I’d consider this batteryless capacitor only jump starter. It charges its self using the dead batteries residual power. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07F8 ... 305453c71f

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=cq3ihYJ4rbE&t=305s

Glockenspiel
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Glockenspiel » Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:19 am

In my experience, these things never work when needed. You have to keep them charged and usually they just sit in your trunk and slowly lose their charge. Unless you're going to take them out of your trunk and remember to charge them every month, I'd much rather have a set of nice thick gauge jumper cables.

Rupert
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Rupert » Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:31 am

Glockenspiel wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:19 am
In my experience, these things never work when needed. You have to keep them charged and usually they just sit in your trunk and slowly lose their charge. Unless you're going to take them out of your trunk and remember to charge them every month, I'd much rather have a set of nice thick gauge jumper cables.
Actually, having both is a good idea. Sometimes there's no one around to jump you off. But, yes, you do have to remember to keep the portable jump starter charged, or it's useless.

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by bloom2708 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 12:08 pm

I keep mine out in the open in the garage year round to remind myself to charge it often.

I use it quite often. It has USB chargers and I use it for camping/charging devices. It has an air compressor. Although small/slow, it works.

Several jump starts. I even used it to drive my kids car (alternator died) it wouldn't run so I left the jump starter attached, closed the hood as far as it would go and drove it a few blocks to the car repair place.

If you don't charge them, they get to a point and are dead. If charged, they are a nice versatile tool.
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rg422
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by rg422 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 12:16 pm

Be sure to get one that's rated for your vehicle. Bigger engines/higher compression requires a much higher CCA, especially if the vehicle's battery is completely drained.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by FrugalInvestor » Fri Dec 07, 2018 12:22 pm

I also have one that I purchased at Costco a couple of years ago. I've noticed them in the store recently on sale for $50 or less.

I've used mine to jump my own cars as well as another guy's in a parking lot. It works very well. My wife has also used it to power her phone. It's light enough to carry in her purse so very convenient. I keep it in my vehicle at all times and re-charge it a couple of times a year.
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queso
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by queso » Fri Dec 07, 2018 3:48 pm

I have an Antigravity XP1. I carry it on long motorcycle trips and just used it last week to jump my wife's Accord. Works flawlessly so far and it doubles as a large powerbank for charging stuff when traveling.

https://www.amazon.com/Antigravity-XP-1 ... ywords=xp1

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by willthrill81 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 3:55 pm

Nate79 wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:43 am
Each of our vehicles has a battery jump started and compressor. At a minimum the battery packs act as a backup power source to charge our cell phones in case of power outage.
:thumbsup

IMHO, every vehicle on the road should have a li-ion jump starter and an air compressor. The cost of both is minimal, and they take up very little space.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Soaker » Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:10 pm

Ztx wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:11 am
I was skeptical about portable jump starters and got a rather large battery jump starter from costco (it was about the size of regular car battery, even slightly bigger). It worked fine few times but then once failed to start the car even though it was full charged.
That might be something like this Schumacher unit, which I have. It was about $100. It started the car just fine the one time I needed it for that purpose. A nice feature is the inverter function; during a power failure I bring it inside to power a LED table lamp. In addition to the bulk it is a little heavy, something like 25 lb.

IMhooked
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by IMhooked » Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:13 pm

I use Noco products with success on my vehicles. Take the time to read specifications (and directions) for the unit and accessories that will serve your needs.
https://no.co/

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by sport » Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:26 pm

sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:55 am
A word of caution: Although it seems to be routine, jump starting an auto battery can be dangerous. Be sure to follow the instructions and wear eye protection. This applies to jump starting devices and ordinary jumper cables.
sport (a former battery engineer)
I am a little concerned that no one has picked up on my comment. It should be noted that the space inside the battery above the liquid (electrolyte) level is filled with an explosive mixture of hydrogen and oxygen gasses. One spark in the wrong place, and the battery can violently explode in your face. A chunk of plastic shrapnel in ones eye can cause irreparable damage. :!:

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Nearly A Moose » Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:05 pm

I have a Clore. Got it for like $60 off Amazon several years ago. We only have one car and until recently have parked it outside. It’s come in handy several times, including when our dealer botched a battery replacement and I had to jump the car every time I started it for a day. It let me still manage getting the kids to and from school and such in the winter without having to harass passers by for a jump start each time. I’d highly recommend having one, even if you also carry jumper cables. Get one that charges from your AC wall outlet, charge it twice a year, and you’re set.
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by 6miths » Sat Dec 08, 2018 12:13 am

TxAg wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:15 pm
I have one. It was less than $50 from costco. It is awesome and has saved me a lot of trouble.



https://www.costco.com/Lithium-Jump-Sta ... 83979.html

Edit: i used the cables/clips directly on the battery terminals (not the cigarette port)
Got two of these for sisters last Christmas. They were on sale IIRC.
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by 747driver » Sat Dec 08, 2018 9:45 am

I also have a couple of the Costco Li Ion batter jumper kits. I highly recommend them. People complain that they need to be charged, and that's true. However, I leave ours under the center console, plugged into a spare usb port, which trickle charges the battery whenever the car is running. That way, when I need it, it will be charged enough to jump start us.

I also keep a set of jumper cables in the trunk, as those never need to be charged. :thumbsup
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Teague
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Teague » Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:06 am

sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:26 pm
sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:55 am
A word of caution: Although it seems to be routine, jump starting an auto battery can be dangerous. Be sure to follow the instructions and wear eye protection. This applies to jump starting devices and ordinary jumper cables.
sport (a former battery engineer)
I am a little concerned that no one has picked up on my comment. It should be noted that the space inside the battery above the liquid (electrolyte) level is filled with an explosive mixture of hydrogen and oxygen gasses. One spark in the wrong place, and the battery can violently explode in your face. A chunk of plastic shrapnel in ones eye can cause irreparable damage. :!:
I'll second your valuable warning. Folks should understand that battery electrolyte solution is a strong concentration of sulfuric acid that can rapidly cause severe skin burns and permanent blindness. Basically, a lead-acid battery is an potent anti-personnel chemical weapon, should it explode, which happens all too easily. A friend, when I was a teen, had a car battery explode on him. Acid instantly sprayed everywhere. Fortunately, he was wearing sunglasses, and had ready access to running water to immediately hose off. Still, he had significant burns.
Last edited by Teague on Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by willthrill81 » Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:08 am

Soaker wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:10 pm
Ztx wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:11 am
I was skeptical about portable jump starters and got a rather large battery jump starter from costco (it was about the size of regular car battery, even slightly bigger). It worked fine few times but then once failed to start the car even though it was full charged.
That might be something like this Schumacher unit, which I have. It was about $100. It started the car just fine the one time I needed it for that purpose. A nice feature is the inverter function; during a power failure I bring it inside to power a LED table lamp. In addition to the bulk it is a little heavy, something like 25 lb.
Those use lead acid batteries, and while they can obviously work, all lead acid batteries self-discharge at a rate of 3-5% per month. And every day that a lead acid battery isn't fully charged, it's building up sulfate crystals that do irreparable damage to the battery. To combat this, a lead acid battery should be recharged very frequently, constantly is ideal, but at least weekly. Most people aren't going to do that with a backup battery in this situation. Lithium-ion batteries don't have this problem, so they are now the preferred tool for the job. And they are far lighter.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Smoke » Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:13 am

Have the battery and charging system checked (most auto parts will do it for free) Change the battery aprox. every 3 yrs.
For the life of the car 21 yrs? We are talking 5 additional batteries. Not including the one that comes with the car and not including a new battery at age 21.

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Watty
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Watty » Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:52 am

squirm wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:39 am
A week ago I helped a lady in the parking lot. She had one of those, didn't help her, I had cables and jumped her car.

+1000

Just carry jumper cables and know how to use them.

As another poster said you do need to follow the instructions, in college my roommate managed to blow up a battery by doing it wrong. We were lucky that no one was hurt.

That can happen with a one of the portable jumpers too.

squirm
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by squirm » Sat Dec 08, 2018 3:48 pm

Watty wrote:
Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:52 am
squirm wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:39 am
A week ago I helped a lady in the parking lot. She had one of those, didn't help her, I had cables and jumped her car.

+1000

Just carry jumper cables and know how to use them.

As another poster said you do need to follow the instructions, in college my roommate managed to blow up a battery by doing it wrong. We were lucky that no one was hurt.

That can happen with a one of the portable jumpers too.
She was appreciative but I wasn't there for that, I saw her struggling. She said she could call AAA I said, I'd have her car jumped in two minutes...That was that, I gave her a quick demo on how to be safe with the cables and hooking them up.

I always wear safety glasses when working with batteries, but obviously I didn't have any at that time so just was pre-cautious.

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by spitty » Sun Dec 09, 2018 7:54 am

As a refresher, here's the proper way to use jumper cables:
Step 1: With both cars OFF and in "park," connect the jumper cables in the following order:

Connect one red clamp to the positive (+) battery post of the "dead" battery.
Connect the other red clamp to the positive (+) post of the good battery.
Connect one black-end clamp to the negative (-) post of the good battery.
Carefully connect the other black-end clamp to some large metallic part of your car's engine block. Never connect it to the negative (-) post of the "dead" battery. This causes sparking, which could ignite battery gases.

Step 2: Start the working car and run it at idling speed for a few minutes. After letting it run, start the "dead" car. Once your "dead" car has started and is running, immediately disconnect the jumper cables in the reverse order.
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GreatLaker
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by GreatLaker » Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:20 pm

spitty wrote:
Sun Dec 09, 2018 7:54 am
As a refresher, here's the proper way to use jumper cables:
Step 1: With both cars OFF and in "park," connect the jumper cables in the following order:

Connect one red clamp to the positive (+) battery post of the "dead" battery.
Connect the other red clamp to the positive (+) post of the good battery.
Connect one black-end clamp to the negative (-) post of the good battery.
Carefully connect the other black-end clamp to some large metallic part of your car's engine block. Never connect it to the negative (-) post of the "dead" battery. This causes sparking, which could ignite battery gases.

Step 2: Start the working car and run it at idling speed for a few minutes. After letting it run, start the "dead" car. Once your "dead" car has started and is running, immediately disconnect the jumper cables in the reverse order.
Thanks. Over the years I have managed to memorize that sequence, but it never hurts to have a refresher.

One issue with newer vehicles, especially luxury cars is the engines have so much plastic shrouding there is very little exposed metal, especially on the engine block. The manual says to remove some of the shrouding to expose the block. In the type of cold weather that batteries usually fail that would be difficult. :annoyed

On a somewhat related topic, since vehicles are so complex these days and the manuals are about 2" thick, I printed specific pages related to battery boosting, tire changing and towing and keep them easily accessble in the glove box. Hopefully I'll never need them.

Teague
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Teague » Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:33 pm

GreatLaker wrote:
Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:20 pm
On a somewhat related topic, since vehicles are so complex these days and the manuals are about 2" thick, I printed specific pages related to battery boosting, tire changing and towing and keep them easily accessble in the glove box. Hopefully I'll never need them.
Don't forget the 10 pages under "Operating Your Glovebox."
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by GreatLaker » Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:39 pm

Teague wrote:
Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:33 pm
GreatLaker wrote:
Sun Dec 09, 2018 4:20 pm
On a somewhat related topic, since vehicles are so complex these days and the manuals are about 2" thick, I printed specific pages related to battery boosting, tire changing and towing and keep them easily accessble in the glove box. Hopefully I'll never need them.
Don't forget the 10 pages under "Operating Your Glovebox."
Yeah. And also the section on "How to unlock your car when the battery dies for the smart fob / keyless entry system". Need to memorize that one since I won't be able to get into the car to read it.

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Re: portable jump starters

Post by dwickenh » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:25 pm

go_mets wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:04 pm
I was flipping through the channels and saw a portable jump starter being presented on one of the shopping channels.

With weather upon us and the battery in my car being at least 3 years old, I am wondering whether I should get one.

There are so many on Amazon. It is hard to decide.

Also, the one being sold on the shopping channel claims that the jump starter can charge the car's battery through the cigarette lighter.
Is this for real?
I used one for several years to jump start stolen and recovered vehicles to determine if any engine transmission damage.
I bought mine at Sams for about 65.00 and am still using it 6 years later. It is great for jump starting vehicles, lawn tractors, and just
about any 12 v system.

Buy a good brand name and I think you will be happy with it. Great idea to charge it up, and put it in the trunk.
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smackboy1
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by smackboy1 » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:38 pm

I have several Li-Ion booster batteries for my cars for few years. They all work great and hold a charge better than my old sealed lead acid jump starters. Small and lightweight they are easy to use and can be recharged via a USB phone charging port inside the car.

I used to carry jumper cables, but I don't anymore for these reasons:

1) We have plug in hybrids with 2 x 12V AGM and high voltage Li-Ion pack and more CPU power than the space shuttle. Li-Ion booster has only 2 clamps which are color coded to match the terminals under the hood. So a lot less chance of destroying my car electronics.

2) Some cars with modern electronics should not jump start another car because the electronics can be damaged. The the plug in hybrid manufacturer states the delicate electronics can be damaged used as a donor jump start vehicle.

3) I've noticed that many more people will refuse to assist with a jump start because of #2. Then even if it's safe, some people are ignorant about how a car works and will refuse to help because they think it will damage their car.
Disclaimer: nothing written here should be taken as legal advice, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

Wakefield1
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Wakefield1 » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:53 pm

sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:26 pm
sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:55 am
A word of caution: Although it seems to be routine, jump starting an auto battery can be dangerous. Be sure to follow the instructions and wear eye protection. This applies to jump starting devices and ordinary jumper cables.
sport (a former battery engineer)
I am a little concerned that no one has picked up on my comment. It should be noted that the space inside the battery above the liquid (electrolyte) level is filled with an explosive mixture of hydrogen and oxygen gasses. One spark in the wrong place, and the battery can violently explode in your face. A chunk of plastic shrapnel in ones eye can cause irreparable damage. :!:
I wonder if the new "AGM" batteries that seem to be getting more popular (such as AutoZone's "Duralast Platinum" or the more expensive and heavy Oddysey are less apt to explode than the typical auto batteries?
Do the AGM batteries really offer any advantage to the average driver over regular wet liquid acid batteries?

Wakefield1
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Wakefield1 » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:59 pm

A battery can potentially explode even if you do everything right! Even if not being jump started!
Ones that I have seen only blew off the top

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Watty
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Watty » Mon Dec 10, 2018 12:31 pm

It is not directly related but one other thing you should do is to occasionally open the car door and trunk with the metal key, not the key fob. If the lock is not periodically used it can get stuck and not work and you do not want to find that out when you are having a problem with the key fob.

N10sive
Posts: 605
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by N10sive » Mon Dec 10, 2018 1:27 pm

The noco brand has been a popular item for one of my car forums I frequent. Amazon did have it for $69 but has since gone up to $79 from $125.

I've used a different brand with success. You just need to make sure the battery your buying has the capability to jump start your car. Plus keeping it fully charged. As others state I would just set a reminder every 2 months or the like and charge it.

https://www.amazon.com/NOCO-GB40-UltraS ... queryr1-20

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Sasquatch
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by Sasquatch » Mon Dec 10, 2018 2:41 pm

Ztx wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:11 am
I was skeptical about portable jump starters and got a rather large battery jump starter from costco (it was about the size of regular car battery, even slightly bigger). It worked fine few times but then once failed to start the car even though it was full charged.
Then I recalled about a portable jump starter (https://www.amazon.com/NOCO-GB40-UltraS ... rter&psc=1) I got during white elephant gift exchange. It started the car in no time! Have used it several times since then - worked perfectly. Highly recommend.
Thanks for the tip.Just ordered the noco unit for my mom. My dad passed 3 years ago so she is on her own. With her living in a snowy climate this is perfect.

renue74
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by renue74 » Mon Dec 10, 2018 3:19 pm

I have one and used it 2x on my SUV. Works fine. I think it's a Duracell unit I got at Home Depot.

I also used it on my riding lawnmower. My mower's battery sucks. Even after buying a new battery...in the fall when it's cooler and I use the mower less, the battery will die.

I used it a couple times on the mower. I was told it would be OK.

Well...after the 2nd time, the 3rd time....it fried my fuses and I had to replace them in the mower. Lesson learned. I just use a trickle charger a day before I use the mower in the Fall/Winter.

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willthrill81
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Re: portable jump starters

Post by willthrill81 » Mon Dec 10, 2018 5:05 pm

Wakefield1 wrote:
Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:53 pm
sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:26 pm
sport wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:55 am
A word of caution: Although it seems to be routine, jump starting an auto battery can be dangerous. Be sure to follow the instructions and wear eye protection. This applies to jump starting devices and ordinary jumper cables.
sport (a former battery engineer)
I am a little concerned that no one has picked up on my comment. It should be noted that the space inside the battery above the liquid (electrolyte) level is filled with an explosive mixture of hydrogen and oxygen gasses. One spark in the wrong place, and the battery can violently explode in your face. A chunk of plastic shrapnel in ones eye can cause irreparable damage. :!:
I wonder if the new "AGM" batteries that seem to be getting more popular (such as AutoZone's "Duralast Platinum" or the more expensive and heavy Oddysey are less apt to explode than the typical auto batteries?
Do the AGM batteries really offer any advantage to the average driver over regular wet liquid acid batteries?
AGM batteries are completely sealed and do not vent unless under extreme duress. They are safe enough to fly legally with in a commercial airplane. They are better in every possible way than flooded lead acid batteries except in cost (e.g. better cold cranking amps, lower self-discharge, better cycling ability, safer). I've never even heard of a rumor of one blowing up.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

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jharkin
Posts: 1900
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Location: Boston suburbs

Re: portable jump starters

Post by jharkin » Tue Dec 11, 2018 12:16 pm

willthrill81 wrote:
Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:08 am
Soaker wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:10 pm
Ztx wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:11 am
I was skeptical about portable jump starters and got a rather large battery jump starter from costco (it was about the size of regular car battery, even slightly bigger). It worked fine few times but then once failed to start the car even though it was full charged.
That might be something like this Schumacher unit, which I have. It was about $100. It started the car just fine the one time I needed it for that purpose. A nice feature is the inverter function; during a power failure I bring it inside to power a LED table lamp. In addition to the bulk it is a little heavy, something like 25 lb.
Those use lead acid batteries, and while they can obviously work, all lead acid batteries self-discharge at a rate of 3-5% per month. And every day that a lead acid battery isn't fully charged, it's building up sulfate crystals that do irreparable damage to the battery. To combat this, a lead acid battery should be recharged very frequently, constantly is ideal, but at least weekly. Most people aren't going to do that with a backup battery in this situation. Lithium-ion batteries don't have this problem, so they are now the preferred tool for the job. And they are far lighter.
However, whereas lead acid batteries achieve their best lifespan being stored at full charge (or even better on a constant float charge) - LiIon batteries experience their worst lifespan being stored fully charged.

So if you buy a LiIon jump starter, and leave it 100% charged in your car all the time... in a couple years when you need it out of the blue it might be dead.


Not saying don't get one - just be aware of this limitation. Its possible some of units may have built in charge protection limiting them to only 80-90% charge to increase the battery life like lots of power tools and electric vehicles do.


-------------------------

PS. I looked at that Schumacher unit. The "1200amp peak" rating is total BS - a little google searching confirmed my suspicion that it has a tiny battery inside, an 18Ah unit like is used in scooters and computer UPSs. That battery would struggle to handle 100 amps peak, much less 1200. And if it did it would melt the wires.

https://batteryclerk.com/products/schum ... er-battery

And 185CCA (which I don't believe either) is on the weak side unless you are driving a small 4 cylinder compact.


$180 bucks for a $30 battery in a fancy plastic box? I'd rather spend the money replacing the cars primary battery more often.

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