7 things to consider when choosing the Best Jump Starter

Which portable power pack should you get? It depends on what you need. Some jump starters have more features or offer higher amperage than others. The unit you choose should reflect your intended uses, as well as its quality of construction and overall value.

1. The less bulky, the better

A power pack should portable. That means it should be easily stowed in the trunk of a Porsche or Corvette without taking up valuable space. JackPak, for instance, is small enough to fit under your car seat.

Compact, portable power pack

2. It should jump other 12V batteries

A jump starter’s peak amperage is relevant here. JackPack features peak amperage of 600A, which makes it perfect for most car, truck and SUV batteries, as well as the batteries on many boats and ATVs. Weaker battery packs are simply a waste of time and money.

3. USB charger

The ability to charge your phone is one of the great hidden features of a good power pack. Why let that lithium-ion battery just sit there waiting for an emergency to be of use? Now you can use your phone as a GPS for long road trips and keep your phone at 100% when you reach your destination.

JackPak charges multiple USB devices

4. Battery life indicator

Simple, but there needs to be some way to verify your battery is going to be useful when it’s needed. It’s recommended to charge the battery once a month just to be on the safe side. JackPak features four upfront lights to indicate battery life.

5. Built-in air compressor

Not every power pack has an air compressor feature, and the ones that do are often bulkier, heavier and less compact than JackPak. The compressor should be easy to use and high-powered enough to fill flat tires and most household inflatables.

JackPak is a power pack with a built in compressor

6. Flashlight

A flashlight is obviously handy in a nighttime roadside emergency, and if it’s built into the power pack, there’s no fumbling or guesswork when it comes to attaching jumper cables or filling a flat. JackPak’s light has three modes: high-powered beam, strobe and SOS. Each can help you navigate a dark area or signal passers-by for help.

7. Carrying case and accessories

A carrying case should be hard and durable. Think of how long your hard-cover books last compared to your paperbacks. Cloth cases attract grime and dust, and they stain. Hard cases can last for years without problems. JackPak’s hard case holds all the standard accessories, including a multi-prong smartphone/electronics cable, in case you forget to bring one along.