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5 Best Portable Jump Starters for 2024

Discovering your car battery is dead is rarely a cause for celebration. At best, you have a car full of groceries — hopefully without screaming children, melting ice cream, or worse. The worst-case scenario could have you stranded a day’s drive down fire roads without any cell service, a limited water supply, screaming children, melting ice cream, or… you get the idea. Regardless of the circumstances, a dead car battery is a pain. 

Calling a tow truck, AAA, or tracking down a friendly passerby with jumper cables is a hassle and not always realistic. A portable jump starter is an excellent investment for anyone who spends time off the beaten path in their vehicle or who wants an extra degree of self-sufficiency in case their grocery-getter suddenly lacks its get-up-and-go. With so many options to choose from, it’s hard to distinguish the best portable jump starters from ones that might leave you stranded. If you need help with your search, take a look through our list of the best portable jump starters. 

How We Chose the Best Portable Jump Starters

No two portable jump starters are the same, and that’s fine since no two use cases are the same. When we reviewed the portable jump starters on the market, we evaluated our picks based on their price, user reviews, and first-hand experiences, alongside each product’s specific technical specifications, features, and limitations. 

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Our Picks for the Best Portable Jump Starters


Best Overall: Hulkman Alpha 85 

Hulkman Alpha 85

Pros:

  • Enough power to start almost any vehicle
  • Charges quickly and holds charge
  • Features like a USB-A, USB-C, flashlight, and 12-volt socket adapter

Cons:

  • Mildly expensive
  • Fewer ports and features than others

Photo Credit: Amazon

About the Hulkman Alpha 85 

The Hulkman Alpha 85 is a 2,000 amp portable jump starter that features a 3.3-inch screen for all the information you might need and to guide you through starting your car. It also has a USB-A port, USB-C port, and 12-volt cigarette lighter socket adapter. According to Hulkman, it will charge from zero to 80% in just an hour (and to 100% in 90 minutes) and will hold that charge for up to 18 months in order to start gas engines up to 8.5 liters and diesel engines up to six liters. The Hulkman Alpha 85 costs $199.99 typically.

Why We Like It

The 2000 amps on offer from the Hulkman Alpha 85 is enough to start darn near everything on the road (except the biggest and burliest engines, but we have more for you diesel boys down below). Its fast charging time and lasting battery make it a convenient, low-maintenance pick for anyone to stash in their glovebox or under their seat in case they ever need it. The included USB ports mean you can keep all your devices charged, and the 12-volt adapter means you can even power a small air compressor or fridge. The onboard screen and simple instructions make it so that anyone can jump-start their car in a pinch.


Best for Budget Shoppers: Type S 12V 6.0L Battery Jump Starter

Type S 12V 6.0L Battery Jump Starter

Pros:

  • Price
  • Small and easy to store

Cons:

  • Lower amperage than other models
  • Not as durable as other options

Photo Credit: Amazon

About the Type S 12V 6.0L Battery Jump Starter

This budget beauty only costs $99.99 normally and features a 1,000-amp battery with an integrated screen and flashlight alongside USB-A and USB-C ports. According to Type S, this jump starter can start gas engines up to six liters and diesel engines up to three liters. 

Why We Like It

Like the Hulkman Alpha 85, the Type S offers step-by-step instructions on its integrated screen, making it easy for everyone to use regardless of their level of automotive knowledge. The included “Safe and Smart” jumper cables come with spark-proof clamps and overheat protection to further add to your peace of mind. The industry standard features are all here, too – flashlight and USB ports of both sizes. If you don’t have a huge engine to start or just need something to keep your phone topped off while you’re away from it all, the Type S 12V 6.0L Battery Jump Starter is an inexpensive solution.


Best for Nasty Weather: Noco Boost Plus GB40

Noco Boost Plus GB40

Pros:

  • Rugged construction
  • IP65 water resistant

Cons:

  • Low battery capacity
  • Only one USB port

Photo Credit: Amazon

About the Noco Boost Plus GB40

The Noco Boost Plus GB40 is a rugged, 1,000-amp portable jump starter that usually costs $124.95. It will start gas engines up to six liters and diesel engines up to three liters. It includes a powerful 100-lumen LED flashlight with a strobe and SOS mode, a USB-A port, and is IP65 water resistant. 

Why We Like It

If you live like an extra in a modern-day “Indiana Jones” movie, this is the best portable jump starter for you. If you live someplace where you face frequent exposure to the elements, like rain or snow (or spend time in the cold for fun), then this is still the best portable jump starter for you. Electricity and water are a nasty mix, and this particular jump starter means you won’t have to worry about the two mixing at all. It doesn’t come with the world’s largest battery capacity, but as long as you charge it after you use it, you should be fine.


Best for Big Engines: Gooloo GT4000S 

Gooloo GT4000S

Pros:

  • Massive amperage starts big engines
  • Fast-charging and long-lasting
  • Lots of ports to power your devices

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Bulky

Photo Credit: Amazon

About the Gooloo GT4000S 

This 4,000-amp jump starter has everything you need to start whatever dead engine you find in front of you. The Gooloo GT4000S can start gas engines up to 12 liters and diesel engines up to 10 liters, which means you can start anything short of a semi-truck. This jump starter will charge from zero to 100% in just over an hour, can perform 60 jumpstarts on a single charge, and has a 24-month standby time, so you can charge it and forget about it until it comes time to use it. A large display feeds you the appropriate battery information, three USB ports keep your devices topped off, and you can power both 15- and 12-volt devices like power inverters and air compressors. All this comes at a cost, though, for typically $189.99.

Why We Like It

Have you seen how gargantuan a 12-liter engine is? This can start one. Sure, it’s a little bigger than your average portable jump starter (coming in at a chunky 2.3 pounds), but if you’re rolling around in a 12-liter engine, you should have enough horsepower to haul an extra two measly pounds. And if you can afford the gas to drive something that large, you can afford the Gooloo GT4000S, too.


Best for Going Offroad: DeWalt DXAEJ14 Power Station

DeWalt DXAEJ14 Power Station with a charging cell phone

Pros:

  • Includes an onboard air compressor
  • Tons of outlets and USB ports

Cons:

  • It’s absolutely massive
  • It won’t stop beeping 
  • Wonky control interface

Photo Credit: Amazon

About the DeWalt DXAEJ14 Power Station

The 1,400-amp jump starter featured in the DeWalt DXAEJ14 Power Station is only half the picture: the onboard 120 psi air compressor is the real star of the show. This portable jump starter also includes two USB ports, built-in LED work lights, and an integrated screen to spit out all the information you need. It comes with a one-year warranty and usually costs $179.99.

Why We Like It

If you spend a lot of time car camping, offroading, or just live in a more rural area, you might have been stranded with a flat tire – the dead battery’s older, angrier, more labor-intensive cousin. If you could throw one device in the back of your car or truck to take care of a dead battery and a flat tire, wouldn’t you? Enter the DeWalt DXAEJ14 Power Station. Never find yourself stranded again, regardless of what the road or the trail has to throw at you. Be warned, however — the DeWalt DXAEJ14 Power Station is the heaviest on our list by far, and some reviewers have complained about the information display and how much it beeps when you use it.


Factors to Consider When Choosing a Portable Jump Starter

Amperage

If your portable jump starter doesn’t have enough amperage, it won’t turn your engine over. Make sure you select a jump starter that is powerful enough to start your engine. 

Reliability

Nobody wants to try to use their portable jump starter only to find that its battery has died, too. When shopping for a portable jump starter, make sure you select a model that can last a long time between charges or top off your charger regularly. 

Charging Ports

When your car battery dies, you can’t use it to charge your phone either, and even if your portable jump starter can’t start your car, it might have enough juice for you to charge your phone. If you’re an avid camper, you might have lights or small appliances to use as well. Either way, find a portable jump starter that suits your specific needs.


FAQ

What Is the Best Portable Car Jumper?

The best portable car jumper depends on the size of your engine and many other factors surrounding how you use it. The Hulkman Alpha 85 is one of the best portable jump starters on the market for most cars. 

How Many Amps Is Best for a Jump Starter?

Different-sized engines need different amounts of power to start, and this power is measured in cold-cranking amps (often just referred to as “amps”). Smaller passenger cars only need between 150 and 200 amps to start their engines, but full-size trucks and SUVs need upwards of 450 amps. The biggest, beefiest engines take as much as 2,000 amps to get started. 

What Size Portable Car Jump Starter Do I Need?

The size of the portable jump car starter you’ll need will depend on various factors: the size of your engine, the number of external devices you plan to power, the frequency with which you charge your jump starter, and the space you have to store it in. The bigger the engine and the more devices you need to power, the bigger jump starter you need, but bigger devices become more cumbersome to stash away when not in use.  

Can You Jump Start a Completely Dead Battery?

Yes, you can jump-start a completely dead battery. The whole point of jump-starting a car is to use an outside source of electrical current to power the car’s starter. As long as you’ve connected your battery to a strong enough power source, like a portable jump starter, you should be able to start your car.

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