How To Use A Portable Jump Starter (& Best Ones For Survival)

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By Just In Case Jack |
Last Updated: March 3, 2022

How to Use Portable Jump StarterAre you looking for a portable jump starter to keep your vehicle running, no matter what?

Today, we are leveling up your knowledge on how to use a portable jump starter. And the best ones on the market today.

Specifically, we’ll be covering:

**Note: If you want to see our favorite Portable Jump Starters, feel free to SKIP AHEAD HERE.

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Why EVERYONE Needs A Portable Jump Starter

Even in normal times, a dead vehicle battery is a massive inconvenience.

Sure, no one’s going to die, but you might be late to an important meeting. Or you may have to postpone a weekend getaway you’ve been planning for weeks.

BUT in a real emergency, you can’t afford a dead vehicle battery. The outcome quickly moves out of the “inconvenience” bucket to more severe results.

Perhaps it amounts to:

  • Being stranded in the mountains during a blizzard
  • Getting stuck when a fast-moving wildfire is approaching
  • Having a buddy fall in the wilderness and can’t get them to help fast enough
  • Or perhaps it undermines your bug out plan (this is a survival and preparedness site!)

The bottom line is this:

Every responsible adult MUST invest in a powerful backup to get your vehicle started. Why? Because there may not be any other car around to jump-start your battery in a crisis.

If you own a vehicle, it’s irresponsible not to invest in a way to jump it in a pinch.

You need your own portable jump starter.

And portable jump starters have come a LONG way over the years. In the past, you had to carry large, clunky power stations or thick jumper cables.

But those units were cumbersome to store, and jumper cables required a second vehicle to use.

Nowadays, innovation in battery technology and portable power has eliminated these problems. And as you’ll learn shortly, the safety of these devices has skyrocketed as well.

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12V battery bank 1

What’s a PORTABLE Jump Starter

First, what is a portable jump starter?

It’s a compact battery pack that’s powerful enough to boost a dead vehicle’s battery.

Now, you can get them with a host of other features like:

  • USB ports
  • LED lights
  • Radio
  • Plug-ins

But those features are just icing on an essential survival cake. The jumper should be your primary focus.

Ok, so you went out and bought one. Awesome. Now what?

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How To Use Portable Car Jump Starter

The good news is, with portable jump starters, you don’t need a mechanical engineering degree to use one. Unlike older intimidating portable jump starters, nowadays, they’re convenient, safe, and simple to use.

But each unit has unique instructions. So while they’re all very easy, they are not universal.

However, with that said, below are the general set of instructions for MOST portable jump starters today:

Here’s how:

1. Turn Off Vehicle And Any Power Draining Accessories

A portable vehicle charger is designed to give you full voltage in the first few attempts. Then it will, unfortunately, decrease in power.

You need to make sure the first jumps count, so take the keys out of your vehicle.

2. Connect The Jumper Cables

Your Portable Jump Starter has two cables coming out of it with alligator clamps. These clamps allow for a secure connection to your battery posts.

Make sure you make the proper connections. Red clamp to positive and black clamp to negative.

3. Turn On The Portable Jump Starter

Always turn on the jumper starter unit first. This will send the flow of electricity to your battery so your vehicle can use it.

Give it a few minutes BEFORE attempting to start your vehicle.

Note: Some portable jump starters use a sequence of beeps to signal when it’s ready to “start your vehicle”.

4. Then Start Your Vehicle

Once ready, turn the key over for about 5 seconds max. The portable jump starter will send a short burst of electricity. And most of the time, this will allow enough power to turn your engine’s starter.

But, if it doesn’t within 5 seconds, stop.

Try again if needed until it starts. But each successive failed attempt will reduce your chances of a successful jump.

This is why it’s critical to KEEP your portable jump starter full of juice at all times…

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How to Charge A Portable Jump Starter

Your portable jump starter is there for when you need it, but it is only as good as the power charged in its battery.

When you buy your jump starter, it may have some charge, but you don’t want to take any chances.

Take it out of the box and plug it in until it reads fully charged.

There will be a power adapter to plug into any standard outlet. Once charged, you are good to go.

Put it back in the box and into your trunk or lockbox in your vehicle. The box will protect it from getting bumped around and stack well with your other gear.

At least once a month (or more often), make sure it still has a full charge, so you never get stuck without juice.

And if you use it to charge a phone or small electronic device in a pinch, make sure to top it back up the next chance you get.

Sure, it’s a nice feature to use some of the portable power for convenience. But NEVER let convenience undermine the REAL reason you’ve invested in it!

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Can I Use A Portable Jump Starter On My Motorcycle?

Yes. You can use your portable jump starter on a motorcycle. Even a motorcycle that’s been sitting for a while,

All motorcycle batteries are 12 volts, just like your car or truck. And your portable jump starter is also a 12-volt system.

Jump starting your motorbike is safer this way, too, because its battery is smaller. AND trying to jump it from a car or truck may damage the electrical system or battery.

It’s easy to use and pretty affordable as well.

Now you can see how versatile a portable jump starter is and why you need one. It’s a great emergency tool for your car, truck, motorcycle, as well as ATVs and snowmobiles.

Now, maybe you don’t have a portable jump starter yet. That’s ok; we’re going to show you the best ones on the market today.

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6 Best Portable Jumpers On The Market Today

1. Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry JNC660

Clore Automotive is a company that specializes in jump and carry jump starters. And they’re a trusted brand.

Their 1700 Peak Amp 12 Volt Jump Starter is precisely what you need when your vehicle’s battery is dead.

It is a 22Ah Clore Proformer battery that gives you multiple jumps per charge. And has a powerful 1700 peak amps of starting power.

It also has auto-recharging circuitry. So you can leave it in and always have charging capabilities when needed.

It has 42” heavy-duty #2 AWG welding cable leads with industrial clamps. And a DC outlet for charging 12-volt accessories, all housed in a heavy-duty case.

It also has a voltmeter to check the status of the battery by pressing an onboard button.

This is a great portable jump starter for your 12V vehicles.

2. DEWALT DXAEJ14 Digital Portable Power Station Jump Starter

We all know the Dewalt name, and while they make exceptional tools, their jump station won’t let you down either.

The DXAEJ14 has added bells and whistles to your standard portable jump starter unit.

It has 1400 peak amps and 700 instant starting amps to get you up and running in no time.

It also has a patented alternator check function. This is especially handy to check that your alternator is working correctly.

This unit can do much more, though.

It has a 120 PSI digital compressor to pump up low tires with its surefit nozzle and auto-stop features.

It has 2 USB connections that allow you to charge multiple devices.

And it also comes with a powerful LED light and an LCD screen that has real-time information you see in the dark.

Make sure to charge up the unit every 30 days to ensure you have total capacity.

It comes with a 1-year warranty, and the Dewalt brand speaks for itself.

3. Autowit SuperCap 2 Jump Starter

How about a portable jump starter that doesn’t require recharging? Sound too good to be true? Nope.

The SuperCap 2 has a built-in supercapacitor. That means it only requires hooking up to your weak battery to take a quick charge.

There are no worries about remembering to charge it up because it is always ready to go. Just stow it in your vehicle and forget about it until you need it.

Besides the SuperCap 2 jumper, in the box, you get:

  • a carrying case
  • connections for a cigarette lighter
  • USB charging cable
  • alligator clamps
  • and a user manual

It will protect you from sparks and explosions. Why? Because there are no internal batteries.

And it also has over-current protection, overload protection, over-voltage protection, and reverse-polarity protection.

Operational temperatures include -40C/40F to +70C/158F. So don’t need to worry about it failing you with extreme weather.

And with 100,000 repeated use that it can withstand during its long, ten year+ lifespan.

Plus, it comes with a one-year warranty, so you won’t regret buying this portable jump starter.

4. NOCO Boost Plus GB40

NOCO has a 24 Watt-hour lithium-ion battery jump starter that has 1000 amps. So it can quickly jump cars, boats, lawnmowers, and so much more.

You will get up to 20 dead battery jumps with a full charge. And with its reverse polarity protection and spark-proof technology, it’s safe.

Having a lightweight compact portable jump starter is ideal for smaller cars. Why? Because you can easily stow it in the trunk and be ready when your battery goes dead.

It’s made for almost any environment and has a water-resistant enclosure. And rubber over-molded casing, making it a rugged unit that can stand up to all your adventures.

Included on the unit are some great additional features like:

A 100 lumen, 7-mode, high-output flashlight. It also flashes and sends out SOS emergency signals.

A USB charger for your devices and a 12-volt car charger. That means you can charge it on the run.

Rounding it out is this USA-designed jump starter comes with a 1-year warranty.

5. GOOLOO Jump Starter Battery Pack 1200A

Gooloo has been around since 2012. And they’ve dedicated themselves to manufacturing:

  • Battery chargers
  • Power stations
  • And yes, jump starters

This model is their 1200A peak 18000mAh supersafe car starter, and you need one.

It’s going to quickly start up your dead 12 V battery and get you running fast.

It comes with intelligent jumper cables that include multiple safety features like:

  • High-temperature protection
  • Hover-current protection
  • Overload protection
  • Over-voltage protection
  • And over-charge protection

We’ve run out of possible things this unit can protect because it’s that good!

The unit includes twin USB charging ports for any gadgets you need to get back online and a 12V plug.

Do you need a powerful LED work light? It’s included onboard with three settings; a flashlight, strobe, and SOS signaling.

All this, and it only weighs 1.2 pounds and is just 6.4” X 3’ X 1.4 inches, so it fits right in your pocket or stowed in your go-bag.

With Gooloo’s innovation and detail, they can supply you with any portable power solution.

6. Imazing Power Portable Car Jump Starter

Another manufacturing leader in the jump starter space is Imazing Power.

They’ve been in the game for 20 years, and it shows with this 2000A peak 1800mAH unit.

They use high-rate lithium power systems to get you up and running fast.

They also have advanced protection jumper cables that feature:

  • Reverse polarity
  • Reverse connection
  • Over-current, overload, over-voltage, over-charge, and over-discharge
  • And short circuit protection

So you never have to worry again if you’re doing it “right” or “safe.”

Built into the jumper unit is a bright LED flashlight with three settings.

And dual USB ports allow you to charge multiple devices at once. And includes options for charging via a cigarette lighter.

Imazing Power’s team has up to 100 R&D designers. And they hold over 180 core patents and 178 international certifications.

They know what they are doing!

Wrap Up

Now go gear up with your own portable jumper starter. It should be an essential piece of your bug out checklist, prepping checklist, and survival gear checklist!

Prepare, Adapt & Overcome,

“Just In Case” Jack

P.s. Do you know where the closest nuclear bunker is from your home?

There are a lot of natural nuclear shelters in the US that are absolutely free. And one of them is near your home.

Click on the image above to find out where you need to take shelter.

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