Have you carried a set of jumper cables in your car for years? It is time to get rid of the jumper cables and switch to the new way of getting your car started when your battery goes dead. Portable jump starters are safer to use and do not require a second car to get your car started and on the road.
Many portable jump starters can start a car, boat, or motorcycle up to 50 times before needing to be recharged. Recharging is normally fast, with some jump starters being ready to provide another jump in less than an hour.
The price of portable starters is higher than jumper cables, but their flexibility of use and convenience makes them a better value. You can pick up an inexpensive unit for under $50. You may want to invest in one for every car in the family.
What Features Should You Look For?
Portable starters are fairly simple, but there are a few features you want to pay close attention to.
• Peak Power
• Storage Capacity
• Added Features
Peak Power – Get It Started
The peak power gives you a clue to how much real cranking power you will get out of the starter. The higher the peak power, the more kick you get when you turn over the key. Low priced starters usually have peak power levels are around 500 to 600 Amps. This will get motorcycles and smaller cars started without a problem, but if you have a larger engine, you may want a little more power.
Higher priced starters hit peak powers of over 1000 Amps, with some of the top quality starters having peak cranking power over 1400 Amps. Choose a portable starter with enough amperage to make sure your car will start.
Storage Capacity – Keep Cranking Longer
We all know our cars can be stubborn to start on some cold mornings. Higher storage capacities allow you to continue trying to start your car longer than units with small capacities. The storage capacity affects how many starts you will get out of a single charge, too.
As an example, a low-cost BeatIt starter for under $50 has a 12,800 mAh storage capacity, while their $99 unit has a storage capacity of over 21,000 mAh. This means you will get almost twice as many starting attempts out of the $99 unit compared to the lower priced model. That few extra dollars could mean the difference between getting your car started in the morning to go to work or not.
A large percentage of portable starters have a bonus feature you may love. They can be used as a power bank for your USB charged devices. If you keep it charged up, you could use it to recharge your phones or tablets when you are out on a long trip. That could spell the difference between your kids complaining they are bored or quietly watching their favorite videos while you drive.
As a final note, check the length of cables on the charger you considering. You want cables that are long enough for you to use easy but don’t want too much excess cable for storage. Make sure to choose a charger with plenty of power and capacity for your needs.