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Any tips or recommendations for choosing a reliable Jump Starter to carry around in the trunk by the spare tire?

Are the Jump Starter/Air-Compressor combo's gimmicky or something worth considering?
 

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2016 3.6 Limited with ES
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Lots of good brands out there, covering different needs and of course various prices to address those needs.

I have the Antigravity XP 10 and I've used it on mulitple vehicles. Worth every penny, IMO and while pricey, I was happy to pay it. I've used to jump a Prius, Accord more than one, a very dead Explorer and I'm sure more uses. Some of those were multiple uses from my SIL leaving interior lights on.

Would I use this to replace regular cables? Without a doubt.

The technology is proven and it works. You only need to put a little battery on the dead one and you don't have to manuever a vehicle around another one to hook up cables and out in the middle of nowhere when you need a jump, you might not have cell service or no one is around to help you. I've been in those place and yes, the jump pack can be a lifesaver.
 

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Are the Jump Starter/Air-Compressor combo's gimmicky or something worth considering?
I would recommend a separate compressor and a lithium jump starter.

The models with built-in compressors typically have low quality compressors. Get a good compressor and a good jump starter, and if one fails, then you don't need to replace both.

Another benefit to using a jump starter instead of jumper cables is the small but real possibility of electronics damage from car-to-car jump starting. I was shocked to learn that this was a thing.
 

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I have two of the Antigravity units and they are very nice. My only suggestion is to buy them directly from the manufacturer. There are a number of comments on Amazon about counterfeit products. This is becoming more and more common on Amazon for many things.
 

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just remember to check them periodically so they're fully charged. The battery chemistry in the most common ones is affected by heat if left in a car... can lose a charge a bit faster. If they are really cold they won't work. My XP-10 started to swell and split the case, after that I haven't bought that brand anymore (I've owned 4 different ones, and still have a small one for the motorcycle). Happened just after the warranty was up, so it's an expensive 20 months of ownership. Storing them in a very hot vehicle will shorten the lifespan of them a bit too (maybe go less expensive and figure you'll have to replace it sooner if you store it like that).

Many of the chargers you see out there will use the same clamps - saw one review of 20 different ones, 16 (maybe 17) had the exact same clamps (including the antigravity batteries ones). On the XP10 the few times I used it, the wires would get very warm to the touch... the clamps themselves weren't the greatest quality either on something that expensive. The quality of the MyWeego 66s is much better than the antigravity batteries in that regard (that's my current recommendation over the XP-10). Both have similar warranties.

I've had good luck (and a little bad) with anti-gravity batteries. Make a decent product, a little high priced for what you get. The XP-10 has one of the highest tested cranking amps I've seen (this is important because they are not doing what they do at 12 volts, it's around 7.5 volts, so the amperage becomes important to get things going). I'd buy the very small sport one again for a motorcycle or ATV. Size/price it's a good trade off (costs more than some but it's small and does the job for the motorcycle).

Weego makes some good jump starters - I've owned the 44 and 66 series, and they're great (clamps are awesome - thicker real copper wiring, and copper clamps). They don't have the little "boost" button on the clamps like antigravity batteries has - that just bypasses the safeties so you can jump a totally dead battery (also be careful using that feature)...for weego, they go down really low, but not totally flat... for that you have to buy a little harness that has 2 clamps and uses the DC output to put a very low charge on the battery (takes 2 minutes) and then it goes right away. If I were to replace the one I have in the car, it would be another weego. Larger ones if you have the storage space, they last longer before having to be recharged (true for any of them).

Others have had good luck with the NOCO Genius series - and have good things to say about them, I have never used them before. I would be willing to give them a try.

Make sure whatever you get can start a totally dead battery - many have safety features requiring at least a few volts. Some require just a minimal charge (like 0.5-1v) to detect the battery. A workaround with a few is if they have a DC output, you can get a small set of battery clamps, let the unit give the battery a tiny bit of a charge, enough for the jump starter to recognize that it's there.. the brands with a "boost" button on the clamps will typically bypass the part that needs to sense the battery is connected with that small amount of voltage (check the user's manual for whatever one you are looking to buy to confirm)... it's no fun to get a flat battery and then realize your pricey bumpin' jump starter won't get you going (I always carry a set of jumper cables in the car, even though I have a portable jump starter... too easy not to do so).
 

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I did this one. Worked on the outback and the truck once. One time didn’t work on the truck as it was way to dead.
483509
 

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My XP-10 started to swell and split the case, ...
That’s nasty. That sounds like it has been overcharged, similar to what can happen to batteries in Laptops. Perhaps the current limiting circuit when the battery gets fully charged doesn’t work too well on that brand.
 

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Thinking out loud here but this kind of device seems like either : a) something else to regularly maintain with testing and charging or b) something that will be discharged when I need it after 2 years years of lugging it around in the tire well. If dead batteries are a concern, wouldn't it make sense to have something that stays plugged in/charging until needed? Maybe under the hood?
ps. Personally, I replace my batteries every 4 years regardless of condition. Over the years, I've found this helps avoid problems to begin with.
 

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...

Weego makes some good jump starters ...
They don't have the little "boost" button on the clamps like antigravity batteries has - that just bypasses the safeties so you can jump a totally dead battery (also be careful using that feature)
...
Actually...some of them do.

After reading your comment above, I checked them out last night and ordered one. Apparently they are 20% off with free shipping right now but as far as I know they are always that price with free shipping. Anywho...the 66.2 model does have a bypass button.
 

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Actually...some of them do.

After reading your comment above, I checked them out last night and ordered one. Apparently they are 20% off with free shipping right now but as far as I know they are always that price with free shipping. Anywho...the 66.2 model does have a bypass button.
Yeah... they've been "on sale" for a while now.

The 66.2 does have that button, but that's a very new model (mid 2019 I think). The 66.1 or the 66 didn't come with those clamps. You can get replacement clamps for the 66 series, but they are the earlier revision without the bypass (and are $35) ... I have the earlier 66.1 version. Previously, the 66.2 was only listed on their other site, MyWeegoPro, you had to know that there was a different updated model on that site, and it wasn't discounted like the items on myweego. Now it's the same revision on both sites. (There even exists a 44.2 on myweego pro that isn't listed on the myweego site... not sure of the differences - possibly the clamps on that one too, but there aren't any indications on any online reviews or the user manuals or specifications listed... and the pictures are the same ones used on the myweego site for the 44.1). The 44.1 is a good unit too. Clamps aren't quite as large, but are still really good quality. Also more compact if that's a concern.

The biggest thing if looking for them elsewhere, like amazon, to know that the 44.1/66.1 and 44.2/66/2 both have a lower working voltage where they can detect the battery attached, the 44/66 it's 3 volts. And the older 44/66 haven't been made in a few years (2017/2018). The lower working range for the newer models allows you to either get the accessory clamp, and put a minimum charge on there (I think it's half a volt, I can't remember where I read that though)... The larger capacity of the 66.1/66.2 is nice if doing that over using a 44.1 in that manner - there is more available to give the battery a minimal charge before attempting to start (although the 44.1 has enough capacity to do this in a pinch)... OR opt for the 66.2 which has the bypass button on the clamps and not worry about it.

I keep waffling on getting the 66.2 and selling the 66.1 on ebay.
 

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My XP-10 started to swell and split the case, after that I haven't bought that brand anymore (I've owned 4 different ones, and still have a small one for the motorcycle). Happened just after the warranty was up, so it's an expensive 20 months of ownership. Storing them in a very hot vehicle will shorten the lifespan of them a bit too (maybe go less expensive and figure you'll have to replace it sooner if you store it like that).
Mine did the exact same thing and right at about the 20 month mark. I keep mine in the car since that's where I'll need it.

Anitgravity is here in the LA area so I contacted them and explained the issue. They weren't surprised at all, as in they've heard this more than once.

They declined warranty replacement but did sell me an entire XP package for a little more than $100. I went to their offices and talked with the sale rep and he said that they know people keep them in the trunks but shouldn't. He said they're finding that if you take it out every 3-4 months and use it to charge something, that seems to cut down on the swelling.

I'm doing it to charge up phones and an iPad and so far there are no swelling issues but I'm still in that 20 month window. We will see.
 

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I did this one. Worked on the outback and the truck once. One time didn’t work on the truck as it was way to dead.
...
NOCO Boost Plus GB40 ...
I’m impressed with the reviews over here about the NOCO jump starters & was thinking about purchasing one to replace the SJS SSC05 Lithium Polymer jump starter I’ve had for 4 ½ years, which to date I haven't used for jump starting.

The reason I’m thinking about replacing the SJS is because I’m concerned about a lot of bad customer reviews on-line about SJS support & SJS jump starters not working when needed.

I’m considering either the NOCO GB40, the NOCO GB50 or the NOCO GB70. It will be for our Outback 3.6R so I think the NOCO GB70 with its 56 Watt-Hour battery & 2000A peak current will be an overkill (& is quite expensive over here), so it is a toss-up between the GB40 & the GB50. No doubt the GB40 will do the job, however I like the idea of having a bit extra in reserve, but I don’t know if that is required with this brand.

The GB40 is rated at 1000A peak current, has a 24 Wh Li-ion battery, & suitable for up to 6lt petrol engines.
The GB50 is rated at 1500A peak current, has a 35 Wh Li-ion battery, & suitable for up to 7lt petrol engines.

Do you wish you had purchased the GB50 instead of the GB40? And has anyone heard of any problems with the NOCO jump starters, in particular the above three models?
 

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One other thing to consider with the NOCO units is that SOME of them can be used with the settings keeper attachment when you change out your battery. A hard case makes for easy storage of the jumper pack. GB-40 & settings keeper.jpg
 

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One other thing to consider with the NOCO units is that SOME of them can be used with the settings keeper attachment when you change out your battery...
The 12V outlet feature is one of the main reasons I went with a GB70 - you can use it to power any 12V accessory that draws less than 15A. Works very well with my power-hungry Viair pump (which I like to run off it once or twice a year just to give the cells a nice workout, and to make sure they're still able to hold a decent amount of charge). It also provides a nice workaround for the one weakness of the GB70 - USB outlets that don't support fast charging for phones and other devices. Many of the Chinese brands have far better USB outlets, but some don't include a 12V socket adapter, I suspect because they output too much voltage (probably to compensate for cheaper cells with higher IR - I have one that gets close to 17V on a full charge). Having a 12V outlet allows you to use any standard car USB charger you want. It's a pricey unit, but worth it to me (FYI, Amazon has had a nice Black Friday discount on GB70s the past few years).
 

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I plugged a devise into one of my outbacks power ports for the 1st time and discovered that it is dead with the engine not running. If the Power Port was live with the car off, a Solar Tender would work great sitting on top of the Dash, and Plugged in to backfeed the Battery. I guess if you really needed to, a little re wireing would remedy this. I cant understand why you cant even operate the windows without starting the engine in the 2020 OB
 

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I plugged a devise into one of my outbacks power ports for the 1st time and discovered that it is dead with the engine not running. If the Power Port was live with the car off, a Solar Tender would work great sitting on top of the Dash, and Plugged in to backfeed the Battery. I guess if you really needed to, a little re wireing would remedy this. I cant understand why you cant even operate the windows without starting the engine in the 2020 OB
You can operate the windows without starting the engine. Press your start button without your foot on the brake, and it fhat doesn't work, press it twice to fully wake up the car.
 

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One other thing to consider with the NOCO units is that SOME of them can be used with the settings keeper attachment when you change out your battery. A hard case makes for easy storage of the jumper pack.
Thanks for that info. I was going to build a small settings keeper power pack to clip onto the alternator +ve & the engine block whenever I need it, but for the price of the NOCO one added to a suitable NOCO jump starter, it’s not worth going to the effort.

The 12V outlet feature is one of the main reasons I went with a GB70 - you can use it to power any 12V accessory that draws less than 15A. Works very well with my power-hungry Viair pump (which I like to run off it once or twice a year just to give the cells a nice workout, and to make sure they're still able to hold a decent amount of charge).
Now that’s a good idea, I hadn’t thought of that. That would save me hooking up my portable air compressor to the heavy spare battery every time I need to pump up the tyres. Depending what my compressor’s start & run currents are, that may put the GB70 back into consideration.
 
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