In the last few years there has been an expanding market in portable jump starters and battery packs designed to keep you on the go while being small enough to pack for use on the road. While at Icast 2015, I talked to the guys at Weego, a company that offers several such systems for just about every adventure.
Gerry Toscani, the company President, says it best on Weego’s website, “Everyone who uses a cell phone knows the inconvenience of low to zero power. Anyone who drives a car has firsthand experience of dead batteries, a mess of jumper cables, or poor-performing jump packs. These familiar issues needed a solution as portable as our fast-paced lifestyle – we answered with Weego”.
Weego jump starters and battery packs are indeed small, but pack a large punch. For testing purposes I used a brand new Weego Heavy Duty Jump Starter Battery. It weighs less that a pound and wields 200 to 400 amps. Its small size, 6.3" x 3" x 1", makes it possible to carry in your pocket. It comes with battery clips for use with auto or marine batteries as well as adapters for many common smart phones, laptops and Apple products. The retail price of this unit is $129.99.
As luck would have it, I happened to have a battery to jump. My mother has a Toyota Solara that has been sitting for “14 weeks”. After a quick check to confirm the battery was dead, I opened the box housing the jump starter and observed the contents. The box purported that the unit came pre-charged. After turning the unit on, I found that it was only partially charged. I checked out the rest of the contents and purposely did not read the directions or quick start guide.
According to the website, it takes about 3 hours to fully charge the device. Its long lasting battery only looses about 2% of its charge per month while stored. The unit can be recharged up to 1000 times. I am buying extra jump starters so my wife and son will never be stuck in a parking lot asking strangers for a jump. Weego has three jump starter devices and four battery packs for recharging and running a multitude of electronics starting at just $14.99, so there is really no excuse not to put one in every vehicle you own.