Our Top Picks
“I own a used car lot and when I need to jump a car […] this one always works.”
“Simple to use but clamps must be attached perfectly.”
“It had plenty of juice to start my cranky diesel Tractor at 25 degrees.”
“Built very solid. Excellent build quality.”
Jump starters are one of the most important devices drivers can have. If your car’s battery dies or has some failure, you could be stuck on the road. But with a jump starter, you can boost your battery in an emergency.
So without further ado, here’s a list of the best jump starters, which can save you not just frustration, but potentially disaster.
Clore’s Automotive Jump-N-Carry jump starter is one of the most popular jump starters online, and for good reason:
The 12-volt lead-acid battery packs plenty of power for the majority of personal cars, and thousands of reviews praise its reliable performance.
Plus the price isn’t bad for what you get—with all that considered, it’s no wonder it tops this list of the best jump starters.
- Built-in automatic charger
- 1,700 peak amps will be enough for just about everyone, including some owners of large vehicles
- 425 cranking amps will be enough for the majority of ordinary vehicle owners
- With a weight of 18 pounds, it’s lighter than many other lead-acid jump starters
- Highly rated: 4.7/5 stars with over 7,000 reviews to back it up.
- Despite being light for a lead-acid jump starter, it’s still heavier and bulkier than a lithium jump starter
- Several complaints that after some time from purchase it fails to hold a charge even without being used. There are not too many of these complaints, however.
- Truck and commercial vehicle owners may want more cranking amps, though this would still be good for many large vehicles
Here we have an option that is actually by the brand Clore. This is one of the most highly rated jump starters around, next to the other Clore jump starter on this list, so it should be no surprise they’re near the top of this list of the best jump starters.
This product has several variations with higher peak amps: 1100, 1500, 3000, and 3000 amp for 24 volts. But in this case we’ll be reviewing the 1100 amp one.
It’s one of the best jump starters around because it basically does everything right, and is very well-received.
- Automatic recharging
- Can jump up to 5 vehicles on a single charge
- 1100 peak amps is great for the majority of consumer vehicles and even for some larger ones
- 300 cranking amps should be fine for most vehicle owners
- Relatively physically small for a lead-acid jump starter
- Very highly rated: 4.7/5 with over 2,000 reviews to back it up
- Consistent complaints that the product will not hold a charge even if it hasn’t been used before. However there are very few of these and they are usually 1-2 years old
- People with ordinary-sized vehicles may not need all the peak amps, and could probably get something cheaper with less peak amps
- 300 cranking amps MAY not be enough if you own a larger vehicle or a commercial vehicle
While most of the options on this list are lead-acid jump starters, this one is a lithium-ion jump starter. That means it’s more modern, smaller, and more efficient with power.
It has some features that other jump starters don’t have, because it’s also basically a power bank for electronics.
But most importantly, it’s effective at its main job—jump starting cars. Combine that with its low price, and it easily earns its high spot on this list of the best jump starters. Beyond that, it’s one of the best jump starters with a lithium-ion battery source.
- Affordable in general relative to power and quality, and very affordable with a Prime discount.
- 2000 peak amps will be fine for just about every normal consumer vehicle and even trucks
- It’s hardly the most important thing, but it looks cool
- Very lightweight: less than 1.5 lbs. It’s also physically small (7.64” long, 3.48” wide, 1.48” deep)
- LCD display
- Has two USB ports and a Type C port for charging phones, tablets, and even iPods
- Can also wirelessly charge most compatible smartphones/tablets
- Flashlight built-in with three modes (regular flashlight, strobe, and SOS)
- 2 year warranty
- Highly rated (4.6/5) with over 2,800 ratings to back it up
- Consistent complaints that the device indicated it was fully charged but failed to deliver power as promised
- Although wireless charging is convenient in certain instances, it’s not very practical for emergencies
DBPOWER’s portable car jump starter is a bit different from ordinary jump starters, and that’s not surprising because of how different it looks.
It’s a lithium-ion jump starter, which makes it a bit more modern, and it packs a ton of features. As with BEATIT’s jump starter, DBPOWER’s is one of the best jump starters with lithium-ion power, and it’s also one of the best jump starters for multipurpose functionality.
But most importantly, it’s one of the best jump starters around IN GENERAL, and doesn’t cost much.
- Very affordable—about half the price (or less) of most of the jump starters here
- 800 peak amps will be plenty for most consumer vehicles
- Handy LCD screen describes charge level
- Built-in flashlight (with SOS and strobe modes) and built-in compass
- Multiple charging ports for consumer electronics, and it can charge many phones more quickly than usual. It also includes an 8-in-1 laptop adapter for charging laptops
- Lightweight and physically small
- 3 year warranty
- Very highly rated: 4.6/5 with over 13,000 ratings to back it up
- Not as ideal for people who just want a straightforward jump starter for large vehicles
- May not be able to start engines with less than a 50% charge (though that’s not too unusual)
- Does not hold a charge well when not in use
Item 5: Schumacher DSR118 DSR ProSeries 125 Amp 6V/12V Fully Automatic Pro Smart Battery Charger with Engine Starter
As a 12-volt, lead-acid jump starter, Schumacher’s DSR ProSeries model is pretty good. There are several product variations available, but the jump starter itself is pretty good.
It’s earned its spot on this list of the best jump starters for being reliable and decently priced—it’s only held back by a few minor points.
In particular, though, it offers a ton of peak amps, making it one of the best jump starters with lead-acid power.
- Very reasonably priced, with a Prime discount
- Option to buy just a jump starter or a charger plus engine starter combo
- 1800 peak amps power will be more than enough for most people and can even be useful for those with large vehicles
- LED indicators show charging status
- Relatively compact for a lead-acid jump starter
- Highly rated: 4.4/5 with hundreds of reviews to back it up
- On the pricier side without a discount
- Needs to be plugged into A/C outlet to work
- Consistent complaints that it failed to work, but these are very rare
This product isn’t about delivering an insanely high amount of amps—it’s about delivering the amount of amps you need for an ordinary car, and being simple and affordable.
In that respect, it’s very good, and thus is a great option. If you’re not looking for all the bells and whistles and drive a normal car, DieHard’s jump starter is one of the best jump starters around. It’s also one of the best jump starters within the “affordable lead-acid” category.
And by the way, if it seems good but doesn’t pack enough power for you, there are a couple other variations of this same product that deliver 950 and 1150 peak amps.
- Easy to use, with labels and descriptions for the various knobs and buttons
- Can also charge electronic devices with USB port
- 750 peak amps will be more than enough for most consumer vehicles
- Well received: 4.4/5 with just under a thousand ratings to back it up.
- 750 peak amps usually won’t be good for people with large vehicles
- Some complaints that it stops working after a few uses, or even none. Though there are not many of these
Like the other lithium-ion jump starters on this list, this AUTOWN jump starter is sleek, small, light, and packs a lot of features in addition to jump starting.
And like the others, it’s still good at the key focus here, jump starting car engines. What holds it back on this list of the best jump starters are more mixed reviews, though the reception is still very positive.
- Generally very affordable, and Prime discounts make it even cheaper
- Color choice of red or orange highlight
- 800 peak amps will be great for most ordinary vehicle owners
- LCD screen shows charge level
- Several safety features, like short-circuit protection and over-charge and over-current protection, and more
- Lightweight and physically small
- Can charge electronics with USB ports, including a Type-C port
- Generally well received: 4.1/5 with dozens of reviews backing it up
- Though there are still dozens of reviews, more would be better
- Complaints that it won’t hold a charge after little or no use; however these are quite the minority
So when all’s said and done, the winner on this list of the best jump starters is the Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry JNC660 1700 Peak Amp 12 Volt Jump Starter.
Clore’s jump starter wins because it’s gotten the best reception and is generally good at everything: it packs a lot of power, isn’t too expensive, and is fairly straightforward to use.
However, that’s just the winner of our OVERALL list. Your needs will be unique, so the best jump starters for you may be ordered a bit differently.
If portability is your top concern, for example, the BEATIT G18 QDSP 2000Amp Peak 12V Portable Car Jump Starter is one of the best jump starters you can have.
Still not sure? Don’t worry. Check out our buyer’s guide below.
The vast majority of jump starters can be filed under one of two categories: lithium-ion or lead-acid.
Lead-acid batteries are the sort of older-school, original model of jump starter. They’ve been around for a while and are still in use today. Lithium batteries are newer—they started showing up in the market within the last decade.
As for which is better, for most people, the best jump starters are lithium-ion. There are a few reasons for that:
Lithium jump starters are usually smaller and lighter than lead-acid ones, but are still very powerful. They also last longer in general, and retain their charge longer even when you’re not using them.
By the way, when I say that lithium jump starters are lighter than lead-acid jump starters, I don’t just mean “a little lighter.” A battery-acid jump starter can weigh up to 40 lbs, whereas a lithium one will usually weigh just a few pounds at most. Frequently, even less.
And in addition to being light, they’re also physically much smaller than lead-acid ones, making them significantly more portable.
So why would anyone still buy a lead-acid jump starter?
Well, for one thing, although lithium starters CAN pack an equivalent charge, and are significantly more efficient overall, battery-acid starters still have a generally higher range of power.
Some lithium jump starters can start large vehicles, but overall lead-acid jump starters are more reliable for large vehicles.
As for price, overall lithium jump starters are less expensive than lead-acid ones. However, there are wide price ranges for both, so a high-end lithium jump starter can cost more than a low-end lead-acid one.
Lastly, lithium jump starters may need more charging between uses, and lead-acid ones may hold their charge longer. However, that’s a generalization, and bad lead-acid jump starters will have more difficulty holding a charge than good lithium ones.
So it should go without saying that the best jump starters can be lead-acid or lithium ion—what matters first and foremost is performance.
The engine your car has affects what jump starters you should be prioritizing in your search.
Basically, if you have a bigger engine, you need a more powerful battery. If you have a diesel engine, you’ll also need a more powerful battery than if you have a gas engine.
Sounds simple, right? It mostly is! To give you an idea of what “bigger” means:
- A 4-cylinder gas engine would need 150-250 amps
- A 4-cylinder diesel engine would need 300-450 amps
- A 6-cylinder gas engine would need 250-350 amps
- A 6-cylinder diesel engine would need 450-600 amps
And what if you have an electric car? The process of jump starting an electric car or even a hybrid is not very different from an ordinary gas car.
In fact, most electric cars and hybrids actually have two batteries. One is a lithium-ion battery (usually, or at least something similar), which is the one that gets charged via charging stations and holds the power for electric motors.
The second is usually a lead-acid battery, the same one found in gas cars. The second battery, which is generally smaller and usually 12 volts, powers other car features but also supplies power to the “main” lithium-ion battery.
This second battery is the one you’d need to jump-start, if you need to jump start your electric vehicle. So because of that, the typical range of jump starter power will usually be fine.
You can always research a little more about your specific car model to get a better idea of which jump starters are best for it, however.
But the good news is that most jump starters, and definitely the best jump starters, will usually have enough power to start ordinary consumer vehicle engines.
If you look at the descriptions of all the options here on this list of the best jump starters, you’ll find that they list numbers next to peak amps and cold crank amps, or cranking amps.
Here’s the difference:
Peak amps measure the maximum power a jump starter can discharge. A peak discharge like that will usually happen very quickly, a rapid burst.
In contrast, cranking amps refer to the power that a jump starter can discharge steadily, over a longer period of time. That “longer period” though is only longer compared to a peak amp discharge: usually it’d be around half a minute.
Cold cranking amps (CCA) are not very different from cranking amps—as the name implies. It just refers to the cranking amps needed to power up a vehicle in cold weather. It can also refer to what’s needed to start older vehicles or batteries that are completely dead.
So, how much do you need?
As you can imagine, it varies depending on your vehicle. You could contact your seller or even manufacturer, or look it up online, to see how many amps you’d need.
However, speaking generally:
If you have an ordinary consumer vehicle and you’re jump-starting your car in normal conditions, 400-600 amps would be fine.
If you have a commercial vehicle, especially a truck, you may need 1500-2000 amps.
If we’re talking about CCA, 400-500 CCA amps will jump start most vehicles, even some larger ones (maybe not trucks, but SUVs). If you have a normal or smaller sized car and a smaller battery, you might need just 200 amps or even less.
Both peak amps and cranking amps, including cold cranking amps, are important. As far as it relates to your product search, however, you should keep an eye on both but prioritize a higher CCA rating as it can cover more of your bases.
You might wonder if you need to match your jump starter’s CCA to your car battery’s. The answer is not really, because jump starters automatically limit and cut off power based on your battery’s capacity. So it’s unlikely you’ll transmit too much power.
Generally the best jump starters will have a regular power current and discharge for cranking amps. Also, generally, the best jump starters will have more than enough peak amps and cold crank amps for an ordinary consumer car.
And there you have it, folks! Our list of the best jump starters is topped by a lead-acid jump starter from Clore, but it’s a generalized top spot.
Remember to pay attention to your needs, particularly as it relates to the strength of the charge you need: do you have a large vehicle, an ordinary one, or even a small one? Do you live in a very cold environment? And so on.
But no matter what your circumstances, chances are at least one of the items on this list is great for you—these are, after all, the best jump starters.
You might want to hear this:
“This is a real nice unit and has charged my cell phone successfully. It is nice and compact.”