Owning a portable jump starter is a no-brainer. They're peace of mind wrapped up in a neat little carry case with a few cables and an instruction book. It's what saves you from waiting on '24/7 roadside assistance' that takes hours to get to you or calling up your (almost definitely angry) significant other late at night to drive to you with some jumper cables.
Just like when purchasing any electrical item, there's a few things you'll need to look for. Here's a quick guide to choosing your portable jump starter pack:
Traditional jump starter kits are big, bulky and heavy. They're not convenient to carry in your car. Modern jump starters are far smaller but haven't compromised on power. New designs are compact, sleek, and efficient, as well as really easy to keep stored in your glovebox or boot. Look for a jump starter with a lithium-ion battery because they're commonly the smallest you can buy.
Don't worry - just because it's small doesn't mean it can't do the job! There are two main factors to consider when figuring out what level of power you'll need:
Engine size: A compact or small car battery can be jumped with as little as 1200mAh. Fully sized trucks and SUV's need around 15000-18000mAh.
Engine age: Assuming similar sized vehicles, the older the vehicle the more amps are needed to jump it. This is a result of improvements in engine design and newer starter motors.
As a general rule, 12000mAh should start most passenger vehicles. But remember, your car isn't the only on you might be jump starting so choose a portable jump starter that allows you to help friends or other cars stuck on the side of the road, or engines on other motor run equipment.
A flashlight is a common feature on most larger and smaller portable jump starters. For obvious reasons, this is a great addition to have during the night or in low light situations.
COLD WEATHER CAPABILITY
If you live in a warm climate year-round, this may not be as much of a factor. However, for many places such as in Victoria and NSW, winter can drop to some pretty cool temps so a jump starter that works in those temps is necessary.
Take a look at its extra features. Does it have USB charging? Multiple power outlets? Additional things that will make your life a little bit easier in those unexpected situations is always a bonus.
Another key item is the warranty - make sure it's got one! The standard for most jump starters is a one year warranty.
With this in mind, take a look at our range of portable jump starters available now.