Jumping Into the New Year
While attending a training session last year, I learned about newer versions of power bricks (USB chargers) that can also jump start cars. After doing some online searching and waiting for a product to earn some good reviews for performance and longevity, I finally purchased a ChargeIt! Jump from Amazon.
We currently use Solar Jump-N-Carry 660 starter packs for jump starting cars. These perform very well but do take awhile to fully recharge. The ChargeIt! Jump is rated for 200A starting current with a peak of 400A, and claims a recharge time of a few hours. Needless to say, I was eager to test the ChargeIt! Jump in my lab and compare it to the Solar pack.
Soon I had a test case: Our 1998 Civic with a 1.6L needed a jump start. The ChargeIt! Jump was fully charged and ready for action and got the Civic cranking and started with ease. Since this piece of info is virtually worthless by itself, it was time to do some real testing.
The test vehicle is the same 1998 Civic, 1.6L with a NAPA 5051 battery that had an OCV of 11.7V. Figure 1 shows the cranking voltage and amperage for the same car, using the Solar jump pack and a remote starter switch. Figure 2 is with the ChargeIt! Jump as the power source. Both patterns look about the same.
Figures 3 and 4 add voltage and amperage measurements with both showing initial battery voltage and the average low voltage. Both jump packs produce nearly identical patterns. Figures 5 and 6 are similar but highlight the peak-to-peak cranking voltage of both packs. Again, they're nearly identical.
Figure 7 overlays the two captures and shows each producing nearly identical voltage and amperage readings. I offset the two for clarity but are otherwise the same.
Both the Solar and the ChargeIt! Jump were showing fully charged though both had been used at least once or twice prior to my testing the Civic with the PICO attached.
So in round one of this comparison, the ChargeIt! Jump performed just as well as a full-size jump pack, which is good news if you want a small, lightweight option for jump starting small displacement vehicles.
Next month, the ChargeIt! Jump will be tested to it's 400A limit as I take on testing other vehicles in our fleet.
DISCLAIMER - I'm not selling, endorsing, or otherwise promoting this particular product (ChargeIt! Jump) nor receiving any compensation from its manufacturer or Amazon.