Having a portable jump starting battery pack is a good idea if you’re an outdoors enthusiast. Whether camping or hunting in a remote wooded area, fishing in the middle of the lake, or on the side of the road, no one wants to get stranded because of a dead battery. The latest generation of battery boosters are compact, lithium-powered, and start at about $100. They make it safe and easy to bring a dead battery back to life and may offer additional features for portable devices, depending on the model.
Jump Starting Battery Packs That are Compact and Portable
For years, many relied on booster cables to jump start road vehicles, but the crux is one needs help from a good samaritan with a charged battery. This process gets a heck of a lot more complicated when the dead battery is in a boat, ATV, UTV, RV or snowmobile that’s miles away from help.
GB40 USB: Some portable booster battery packs can be used to charge other devices via USB photo credit: NOCO
Carrying a NOCO Genius Boost series, a Schumacher 12V 1000 Peak Amp Lithium Ion Jump Starter,or a Weego High Performance Jump Starting Power Pack changes the game. They make you self-reliant. Compact enough to fit in a travel case, glove box or backpack, these units are powerful enough to quickly boost a dead battery so you can get back on your way.
Extra Tip: Kenzy Kundrat, a spokesperson for NOCO, notes that the lithium Genius Boost GB40 outperforms traditional lead-acid battery booster packs while being eight times smaller and lighter.
Jump Starting Power Packs are Safe, Worry-Free Boosting
NOCO Genius Boost GB40 Lithium Jump Starter Power Pack photo credit: NOCO
Connecting two batteries using booster cables can be intimidating for some, especially when one sees sparks fly. These worries are a thing of the past when using a modern portable jump starting power pack with built-in safety features. “The patented, unique design of our Smarty Clamps ensure a foolproof jump that takes all fear out of jump starting for the novice,” said Brian Bell, Weego Brand Manager.
NOCO clamps are also safety-focused. Kundrat explains the no-melt and smoke-free clamps are reinforced with all metal construction versus generic clamps’ plastic construction.
Beyond safe, easy-to-use clamps, the above NOCO, Schumacher, and Weego products have other safety features. These may include anti-spark protection, reverse polarity security against backwards battery hook-ups, and other fail-safes to prevent common jump-starting mistakes.These brands’ units have a simple interface. Follow the illuminated display prompts for a safe and easy battery boost procedure.
Extra Tip: The NOCO Genius Boost series and the Weego High Performance Jump Starting Power Packs have an IP65 rating for water, dust, and dirt resistance, making them suitable for use in marine, fishing, hunting, and trail-riding environments.
Consider Engine Size When Choosing a Jump Starting Power Pack
Weego High Performance Jump Starting Power Pack photo credit: Weego
Bell recommends prospective buyers consider engine size, along with the desired capabilities and features of a product when shopping for a unit. “The Weego 44 power pack conservatively will jump a 7 liter gas and 3.5 liter diesel engine,” Bell said. To put this into context, the Weego 44 (about $149.99) will easily jump start a bass boat with a 4.6 liter, 300 horsepower motor as well as a typical towing vehicle, like a truck with a V8 5.7 liter engine.
“The GB40 Boost Plus1000A UltraSafe Lithium Jump Starter (about $134.99) is NOCO’s top-selling model,” said Kundrat.“As it is the product that is most suitable for all vehicles. Supplying 1,000-amps, it jump starts dead batteries in seconds. Designed for a car, boat, RV, truck and more with gas engines up to 6 liters, and diesel engines up to 3 liters.”
If these units offer more power than needed, the NOCO Genius BoostSport GB20 or Weego 22 Jump- Starting Power Pack may be a better fit. Conversely, consider the NOCO GB70 Jump Starter Power Packor Weego 66 Jump-Starting Power Pack for heavy-duty use and larger engines.
Extra Tip: “Knowing the cranking amps of the vehicle battery is also helpful to know when selecting the best model,” said Bell. Detail amp outputs are available in the product specs of each brand’s respective models at myweego.com, no.co and www.batterychargers.com (Schumacher).
Some Jump Starters Double as a Power Pack for Portable Devices
“Not only is it a powerful battery booster, it doubles as a portable power source for recharging USB devices, like a smartphone, tablet, and more,” said Kundrat, referring to NOCO’s Genius Boost series.
We can add portable GPS, satellite communicator, LED lamps, and several more outdoor-focused electronics to Kundrat’s list. Certainly, there’s no shortage of high-tech gadgets for the outdoors enthusiast. The added power a battery booster offers is useful during long days when another device, like a cellphone, may not have enough primary power to last the entire outing.
Noteworthy is certain large portable jump starting power packs feature a 12-volt output. This is handy for powering items like a tire pump or fan, for instance.
Extra Tip: Portable power packs without jump starting capability are another category of electronics. Look to GoPro and Weego for compact devices with USB outputs, while the larger Bass Pro Shops All-Purpose 12V Power Pack provides ample power and features three customizeable quick-disconnect connector plugs with pigtail wiring. Bass Pro Shops All-Purpose 12V Power Pack supplies the juice on demand. 10 amp fuse protection and 7 amp-hours performance gives you the energy you need for boats, kayaks, canoes, vehicles, camping, and emergency power supply.
Some Jump Starters Come With a Bonus Light
Some NOCO such as the GB70 unit, Schumacher, and Weego products feature a LED flashlight, which is never a bad thing to have on hand in the outdoors. Certainly, illuminating the working area when boosting a battery in the dark is useful. All brands also have flash modes for emergency situations.
Extra Tip: The flashlight LED max lumen output varies based on model and is another feature worth considering when choosing a model.
For anglers, hunters, RV enthusiasts, car campers, and other outdoors enthusiasts owning a lithium battery booster pack is a wise decision. Popular models retail for under $150. This is a small price to pay to avoid being stranded with a dead vehicle battery or left with a drained cellphone after listening to music and podcasts all day while sitting in a deer stand.