Replace Your Old Jumper Cables With a Modern Portable Jump Starter News Staff
by News Staff
A portable jump starter will make your life much easier
replace your old jumper cables with a modern portable jump starter

Own a vehicle for long enough and eventually you are going to find yourself in a situation where your battery is drained and you need a little help to get started.

Traditionally this has meant dragging out a set of jumper cables from the trunk or out from under your seat. Then you have to get another vehicle involved – one with a healthy battery – and hook up the cables to try and give your battery a boost. This is tricky at the best of times, but gets even more complicated when if it happens to be dark outside or, even worse, pouring rain.

This is why it’s possible to make a case for getting rid of your old-school jumper cables in these situations. Sure, cables have their places in certain circumstances, but modern technology has advanced to the point where small portable jump starters like the ones from the Hulkman brand pack more than enough juice to jolt even the largest engines back to life. In fact, the company’s most powerful product is rated at a stunning 32,000mAh battery capacity, made from a quartet of lithium batteries good for 8000mAh each, with a voltage of 3.7V.

Those numbers sound great, but how do they translate into the real world? Hulkman plows more than a moment’s notice into its R&D department, finding its largest offering – the Hulkman Alpha 100 – is capable of starting gasoline- or diesel-powered engines up to 10L in displacement. The latter is no mean feat, since diesel engine tend to require a healthy nudge in order to wake from the dead.

replace your old jumper cables with a modern portable jump starter

While wide swaths of gearheads can correctly and safely attach jumper cables with ease, those new to the art – or, some of us who are simply having brain freeze at the end of a bad day – reversing the connections on old-school cables can be ruinous for vehicles and potentially dangerous for humans. Polarity (positive and negative ends of a battery) is critically important to get right, which is why Hulkman places 10 built-in protections designed for a high level of safety.

Reverse charge protection shuts down the connection if it detects the alligator clips have been connected incorrectly, while over-current and short-circuit protections ward off freak accidents. Equally important, the unit protects against overcharging and overloading so the user doesn’t accidentally ruin a battery by trying to force feed too much electricity into the thing.

Batteries, in general, don’t like the cold. That’s why Hulkman has designed smart temperature control into some of its jump starters in an effort to ward off the power-sapping tendencies of frigid temperatures. This pre-heat tech automatically warms the unit to improve battery performance when temps are detected to have dropped below 32°F. As a device, the Hulkman 100 is designed to be operable in conditions as low as -40°F, a figure far below anything at which your author is designed to operate, actually.

All the same, don’t assume these things will last forever if left unattended. Every battery is affected by self-discharge, which is not a manufacturing defect but a battery characteristic. Batteries experience greater discharge in colder conditions, such as your vehicle’s cargo area at winter time. Hulkman’s low self-discharge design enables the battery in their portable jump starters to remain charged for up to 18 months on a full charge when stowed in the recommended temperature range of 32°F to 113°F. In other words, top the thing off with electricity occasionally during the winter if you live in the rust belt, and don’t store it on the top of your dashboard in the blazing sun if Arizona is your home. When it does come time to recharge the unit, the Hulkman 100 is capable of charging to 20% (enough for one boost) from flat in just five minutes. The whole thing can be topped off in about 90 minutes.

replace your old jumper cables with a modern portable jump starter

It’s also worth mentioning that Hulkman products are equipped with an easy-to-read LCD screen which displays all manner of user and operational information from state of charge to general readiness. Gone are the days when briefly tapping together the positive and negative alligator clips of the jumper cables, creating a spray of sparks in order to see if things are securely connected to a healthy battery before trying to start the dead car. These days, the jump starter will tell you, via the LCD screen, in no uncertain terms whether or not it is ready for work.

Keeping a jump starter, like one of the units from Hulkman, tucked away in the cargo area of your vehicle is a no-brainer.

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