If you don't want to find yourself stranded in a polar vortex while you watch helplessly as other drivers zip by, a car jump starter is a must-have. A jump starter is a large portable battery that can start up your car's battery in place of another running car. Having one in your car at all times means you won't have to depend on another driver to bail you out. We break down what to look for when choosing your car jump starter and provide 4 options with high power outputs for you to choose from.
What to Look For
According to CarBibles, there are several features you should look for when choosing a jump starter. Power output will be the most important, but you also want to look at cranking amp rating and voltage. For the power output, look for the peak amperage of the portable car jump starter to make sure it is powerful enough for your specific vehicle's battery. Check your vehicle owner's manual or contact your dealership to get an accurate amp requirement before you buy a jump starter. You'll also want to consider the voltage number. Most vehicles come with either 12-volt batteries or 24-volt batteries. Light (passenger) vehicles typically use 12-volt and heavy-duty trucks use 24-volt batteries.
1. NOCO Boost Plus Car Jump Starter
The Noco Boost Plus portable car jump starter ($99-$300) lets you choose from 5 peak amp ratings (400, 1000, 1500, 2000, and 4000) so you can find one that works for your vehicle. This jump starter works with 12-volt vehicles to help you quickly jump your dead battery. The spark-proof technology and reverse polarity protection keep you safe while you're bringing your battery back to life, and its compact design makes it easy to store and transport. This jump starter can be used for a variety of sticky situations by doubling as a portable power bank and LED flashlight.
2. DBPOWER Car Jump Starter
If you drive a large or a diesel vehicle, the DBPOWER car jump starter ($90) will be a great addition to your emergency vehicle kit. The 2,000 amp jump starter is designed with your safety in mind thanks to advanced intelligent protection clamps for over-current protection, short circuit protection, over-load protection, over-voltage protection, and over-charge protection. This jump starter will power batteries for 12-volt vehicles with gas engines up to 8.0L or diesel engines up to 6.5L. If the dead battery plaguing you is in your phone or iPad instead of your car, you can use the smart USB output for fast charging of your portable electronic devices.
3. Arteck Portable Car Jumper
Frigid temperatures can make your car more susceptible to dead batteries, especially if you drive an older vehicle. If you want to make it through the winter without stressing out about a dead battery leaving you stranded, the Arteck jump starter ($71) will put your worries to rest. It provides up to 2,000 amp power and gives you up to 40 jumps on a single charge. At only 2.5 pounds, this car jump starter is compact but heavy-duty to offer a solution to your winter woes. The Arteck also multitasks as a flashlight if you get a dead battery after dark, as well as a charger for your portable devices.
4. Jump-N-Carry Car Battery Jumper
Whether it's the cold or a mechanical issue that drained your battery, the JNC660 car jump starter ($125) will come to the rescue. With a peak amp of 1,700, it is ideal for both passenger and light commercial vehicles. This reliable jump starter features heavy-duty #2 AWG cable leads and industrial-grade clamps that can ensure a good electrical connection when you're rushing to get your car started. A fully automatic built-in charger with a voltmeter shows the charge status and gives you confidence that it will be powered up when you need it most.
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