I am considering a Harbor Freight battery charger on sale for $ 29. The
specs show 10 A charging current, 2 A trickle charging and 50 A emergency
Will 50 Amps start modern cars? I thought it was higher than that.
It takes quite a bit more than 50 amps to start a car and a charger like
that could only produce 50 amps for (perhaps) a fraction of a second.
That said, if your battery is in good condition but simply too cold or
run a bit too dead to start your car...an inexpensive charger like that
would certainly be useful.
Basically you'd need to allow it to charge your battery...at least
partially...to get your car going.
Ten minutes might be enough...might take longer.
You probably got that back when Sears was still a good brand name.
Many of those cheap chargers can only put out a lot of current
momentarily...but at any rate...for a battery that is only partially
discharged such a charger is probably good enough.
Jump packs are becoming very popular now, since the charge lasts for
months (lithium ion battery), you can jump multiple times between
charges, and they're small enough to keep in the glove compartment.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
Where I work, we can call our company's parking dept. if we need a
jump or a tire change. I once called the assistance guys needing a
jump, and instead of maneuvering their truck next to mine for a
conventional jump start, they just used one of these jump packs. I was
taken aback - but it worked.
A neighbor swore by one of these! I've not looked into them in
detail -- and suspect a lot depends on the state of charge in the
battery in question.
Most of the times that I've needed to jump a vehicle I discovered
a dead alternator (which led to the battery's demise) *or* loose
cables at the battery (big IR drop there, poor charging, etc.)
On 9/28/2015 6:52 PM, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Here, we lose batteries to the heat. If car doesn't start -- or, starts
to act sluggish when turning over -- check the date on the battery
case and drive directly to the store for free replacement under warranty.
Previous Monte Carlo would eat diode bridges in alternator pretty
regularly. Cheap fix -- except for the time to pull it off the
Last Christmas, I gave a friend one of those. It looked too small (at
1*3*5 inches) to start a vehicle, but it did (the vehicle was a Jeep SUV).
BTW, this battery also has a USB port for cellphone charging. During
last May's power outage, it ran a USB fan most of the night (maybe
longer, but then it got too cold and I didn't need a fan).
88 days until the winter celebration (Friday December 25, 2015 12:00:00
AM for 1 day).
On Mon, 28 Sep 2015 17:42:16 -0400, Stormin Mormon
will fit in the armrest box on my ranger, and will start a 6.0 liter
Suburban several times - even 6 months after it was charged. ANd it
won't stretch your arms carrying it.
It's the CCA that's critical, not the amp-hours when it comes time to
"kick butt" and get an engine started.
On Sunday, September 27, 2015 at 5:57:57 PM UTC-4, Walter E. wrote:
50 amps would provide 600W. I recall typical starter today being
around twice that.
I have a charger like that and I use it by first charging the battery
for as long as I can at 10A. If you have enough time, you can charge
it in a couple hours so that the car will then start. If I need to
start it right away, then I charge it for whatever shorter time I
have, even 10 mins, then put the charger on 50A mode while cranking it.
Whatever you can put in the battery before the attempt, can help
supplement the charger. It's always worked for me. If you had no
battery assistance at all, 50A might be enough, but I think it
might be marginal.
Depends on the car, state of the engine, outdoor temperature, etc.
The starters on small cars are obviously less demanding than on
bigger engines/diesels. A big diesel that's been soaking in a
-10F Chicago winter obviously presents a bigger load.
FWIW, I think a Civic's starter is in the 1KW ballpark (worst case).
That doesn't mean it is running *at* capacity each time you start the
It also ignores any charge available in the battery -- as well as any
charge that your charger *dumps* into the battery between the time
you hook it up and the time you turn over the ignition.
On Sunday, September 27, 2015 at 6:48:38 PM UTC-4, Don Y wrote:
over 40 years ago i bought a expensive sears 100 amp charger 200 amp boost battery charger. my mom and grandma yelled at me to return it. boy am i glad i didnt i must of used it 50 ties, for me, neighbors, friends etc.
there are on rare occasions something you buy and make very good use of.
for me its that battery charger.
with chargers go big.
i had one diehard battery that died hard at less than a year old.
a connection must of seperated internally. i came home, picked up some parts and upon leaving within 10 minutes battery was stone dead.
so i used the charger, and went directly to sears who did a free replacement..
without the 200 amp boost i wouldnt of gotten to the store
I keep a couple of charged batteries in the garage (to power an
irrigation pump, act as a bulk power source for UPS during outages,
act as a "spare car" to "jump" another).
SWMBO has discarded one of her golf caddies (is that what it's called?
just a little two wheeled cart to drag golf clubs around behind you).
I plan on converting it to carry the batteries so I can just wheel
them to <wherever> they are needed.
Golf club cart might work. I suspect it will be
top heavy, clumsy, and might tip over.
Kids' Red Ryder wagon might work better. More
flat, and bigger foot print.
Christopher A. Young
learn more about Jesus
A caution when using 12 volt boost. Please don't
wiggle, move, or unclamp the terminals when using
boost. I did see an old farmer explode a battery
one time. Using boost, and then squeezed one of
the charging terminal clamps. The resulting spark
lit off the hydrogen. It sounded like a gun shot.
I may never forget the next words "get some
water for my eyes."
Unplug the charger and wait a couple seconds before
wiggling or removing either of the cable clamps.
Christopher A. Young
learn more about Jesus
I bought that charger but brought it back because it didn't have an ON/OFF
switch. Personal quirk but I believe all electrical devices, especially
potentially dangerous ones, should have at least an ON/OFF switch and
hopefully an ON/OFF indicator as well.
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