Carrying a car starter in your vehicle offers you the peace of mind of knowing that even if you run out of battery or leave the lights on:
You can resume the march in minutes.
You will not have to ask for help from an auxiliary car or connect the old starter cables.
The safety for you and your car when using a Jump Starter is indisputable, since it offers you various security mechanisms that do not offer a simple cable or starter clamps.
Topics in this buying guide:
How does a Jump Starter work?
Which Jump Starter do I need?
5 things to consider before buying a Jump Starter
How does a Jump Starter work?
How do I use my Jump Starter? Very simple! Thanks to the technology included in these devices its use is suitable for everyone, follow these simple steps and start your vehicle in minutes.
First of all we must turn on our battery starter and observe on the screen that the remaining battery percentage is at least 60%, since otherwise your vehicle may not start.
Secondly, connect your battery starter with the battery of your car or motorcycle, the red clamp with the positive ( +) pole of your battery, and the black clamp or cable, with the negative (-) pole .
Third and last, we must wait for the Jump Starter's LED help light to turn from red to green, at that time, we can start our car without further complications!
Once started, we simply have to carefully disconnect the battery clamps and continue the march !
It seems magic right? It's called technology!
Which Jump Starter do I need?
It is not an easy task to provide fixed values on the starting current that the different motors require due to the great variety of motor designs that we find in the market even having similar displacements. Even so, the following is an approximate guide depending on your gasoline or diesel engine:
Jump starter for gasoline engines
4-cylinder petrol engine -> 150A to 200A
6-cylinder petrol engine -> from 200A to 250A
8-cylinder petrol engine -> from 250A to 300A
Jump starter for diesel engines
The current required by a diesel engine is significantly higher than that required by a gasoline engine, more than twice that required by gasoline engines, so the amperage of the battery starter will always be greater:
4-cylinder diesel engine -> from 300A to 400A
6-cylinder diesel engine -> from 400A to 500A
8-cylinder diesel engine -> from 600A to 800A
5 things to consider before buying a Jump Starter
1. PRICE As with any purchase decision, price is one of the most important factors when choosing a car battery starter model. Fortunately, there are models available in the market in a fairly wide range of prices ranging from € 30 to € 1,500. However, most of the starters for personal use are between 30 and 150 euros , especially depending on the power and extra features that include such devices.
It is also good to keep in mind that depending on what we are looking for, it is likely that a starter of the low price range may not cover all our needs or be the most suitable for us, in the same way a very expensive one may have features that We will never use. That is why we must know in advance exactly what we are looking for and why we will need a car starter.
In general we can say that a model that is around 70-80 USD covers the expectations of most users of these devices . They are usually simple starters without many extra functions beyond having a flashlight and being a mobile charger, but capable of starting a normal gasoline or diesel car quickly.
In the same way for those occasional users a cheap 30 USD model can be useful if you have a compatible car with the starter. Likewise, advanced users or those looking to have a complete emergency kit in the car can count on the high-end ones that usually include in addition to the functions of the other ranges, some additional ones such as tire inflator or am / fm radio , ideal in extreme weather cases. Finally, the market offers possibilities adjusted to all needs and budgets.
Not all cars are the same. Although most batteries are 12V, not all starters are compatible with all cars. That is why before making any decision when buying a starter we must ensure that it works with the battery of our vehicle to avoid unpleasant surprises in an emergency or even prevent accidents when trying to start the car, remember that a Overload or a short circuit could cause damage to the car.
To make sure that a certain model is compatible with our vehicle we must look at the amperage of both the battery and the starter. For the most part, the low-end ones are able to start gasoline cars up to 2.5L about twenty times on a single charge, however, they may not be used with diesel cars.
For its part in the mid-range, the common thing is that they are compatible with both petrol cars up to 2.5L and diesel up to 2.0L , while the high-end cars are capable of starting up any type of car and even another type of vehicles such as boats, motorcycles, tractors, among others.
Compatibility must be one of the first factors to take into account when choosing a battery starter because in this way we can quickly discriminate the models that will serve us, in the same way we will be safe when using a device that is Designed to be used in emergency situations where we need everything to go well and so we can get the most out of our battery starter.
Finally, as we have said before it is also a matter of personal safety as well as for the proper functioning of the car and the device.
Despite how practical and easy to use a battery starter can be, starting up a stranded car is still a delicate operation in which we will be working with electricity.
Therefore, it is necessary, in addition to taking all necessary precautions to avoid accidents, to ensure that the chosen device complies with all safety measures for its use . In this sense it is important that the battery starter has tweezers made of insulating material designed to withstand the load when starting the vehicle.
Frequently these types of failures occur in unfavorable weather conditions, such as rain or snowfall. Also the area of the battery usually accumulates dirt, all this can play against us and cause an accident if the clamps do not have a good insulating material. On the other hand, it is necessary that the starter be designed to avoid overloads, short circuits and voltage problems that may result in unwanted discharges or even fires that could harm the user or damage the car.
Another safety measure that a battery starter must have is a good signaling of the positive and negative polarities since it is at the time of connecting the clamps it is essential that it be done with the correct polarity to avoid damage to both the car battery Like the starter. Finally, if the starter has several output voltages, we must be able to easily verify which one we are working on for greater user safety and tranquility. Safety has to be a priority both to choose a battery starter and to use it .
It is recommended before any use to review the instructions of the device, as well as the safety measures that we must take and thus avoid accidents or unnecessary breakdowns.
Just as there is a wide range of prices as far as battery starters are concerned there is also a negligible variety of sizes from which to choose them, from those that are the size of a mobile to those that occupy a good space in the trunk of the car.
Everything will depend on the capacity of the starter and the extra functionalities included, for example, if you bring an inflator it may be much more bulky than a starter with few functions.
If we have a large car or if we tend to travel light luggage we may be able to choose one of the largest sizes while if our car is compact we probably need to make the most of the space we have. Also, if we plan to use the starter for other functions such as serving as a mobile power bank or flashlight outside the car, then a smaller model will be right for us.
Of these last models we can find some that can even be carried in the glove compartment or in a bag . This detail, although it may seem unimportant, will allow us to choose a model that suits the needs of our car.
5. ADDITIONAL FUNCTIONALITIES
Current models of battery starters can have more than one function, offering users of these devices versatility and pragmatism.
Although the first thing we have to keep in mind is that the model to choose is compatible with our car, once we have defined it we can then look at what other options are offered and can be useful in an emergency or even in our day to day . We live in a highly connected society through internet and mobile phones, which is why the option of being able to charge these devices using the battery starter is one of the most requested and popular additional options on the market.
Although it can be used as a power bank at any time, it is in case of an emergency where this functionality will really be of importance as it will allow us to communicate via the mobile with the technical service or with someone who can help us.
Depending on the starter, the charging of mobile devices can be done using USB ports or even some of the most advanced directly have plugs. Apart from smartphones you can also charge other devices such as cameras, laptops, video game consoles, tablets and electronic readers, as well as any other device that can be charged via USB. The number of ports included may also vary between models.
Another equally popular and useful function is the possibility of using the starter as a flashlight. Generally for this function an LED light is used, which consumes little load and can be on for a long time without worry. The flashlight is especially useful when starting a car in low light conditions, also, if we are camping or outdoors we can also use the starter light. On the other hand, the LED light can also be used as an emergency signal if you are stranded and you want to signal our location.
Some battery starters can also complete the emergency kit with functions such as tire inflator, in this case it could help us at the time of an air leak or loss of wheel pressure to reach the nearest service station without having to Use the spare. However, if it is a flat tire or wheel explosion, it cannot be used.
Finally, some battery starters also include the possibility of using it as an AM / FM radio , which can be a useful function in an emergency, especially if it is adverse weather conditions, it can also be an entertaining option when camping or performing outdoor activities. As we have seen, battery starters can be much more than their basic function.
These devices can become a very practical tool both at the time of an emergency and in the day to day. Depending on our needs we can choose one that has mobile chargers, flashlight, tire inflator and radio. Without a doubt, a good investment for our road safety.