If you’re a driver that loves gadgets, you’ll absolutely fall in love with portable jump starters. At XenonPro, we like to call these devices the Swiss Army knife for your car.
Not only can these small and light battery-operated devices boost your car battery but they often come with a whole bunch of extra features and functions that can prove to be quite useful when stranded on the road.
In this article, we’ll do a deep dive into multi-function jump starters and go over some of the most popular functions that can be found in these devices.
A multi-function jump starter is a battery-operated device that boosts car batteries and is typically equipped with various other functions such as an LED flashlight, portable air compressor, compass, and which can be used as a power bank to charge electronics on the go.
Portable jump starters were not all created equal - some are more basic while some are a lot more advanced in terms of feature sets.
Your typical jump starter will have the ability to jump-start a car (obviously!) and come equipped with a flashlight and at least one USB port.
Newer and better jump starters can come with multiple USB ports, an LCD screen (displays battery levels, voltage, wattage, etc), a portable air compressor, a compass, an emergency hammer, and some will even have a full electrical socket.
Below, we’ll go over each function that can be found in jump starters.
The most obvious and primary function of a jump starter is to boost a discharged car battery. If your jump starter does not have this function, well, it is not a jump starter!
Jump starters are essentially very powerful battery packs with a 12-volt port for specialized booster cables. The device draws power from its own battery and transfers it to a vehicle’s (car, truck, motorcycle, boat, etc.) battery using booster cables.
To learn more about this function, visit our guide on What is a Portable Jump Starter.
As mentioned in the previous section, jump starters are very powerful power banks. If it can boost your vehicle’s battery, why not your cellphone or laptop? You guessed it, it can charge your electronics too.
This function is one of our favorites because you can charge your electronics on long drives, when you’re out camping in the woods, or taking your boat out for a spin.
As specialized power banks, jump starters typically come with at least 1 USB port (sometimes up to 3) and some newer models even come with a full electrical socket.
USB charging has quickly become the norm for most electronics, making USB port super convenient in portable jump starters.
Whether you’re stuck on the side of a dark road at night, looking for that quarter under your seat or out in the woods camping, the LED flashlight really comes in handy and is one of the best secondary functions of a portable jump starter.
The LED flashlight is usually equipped at the front of the device, making it convenient to use and point towards the dark area you are looking to illuminate.
The LED flashlight also comes in handy when jump-starting your car or inflating your tire at night when it’s dark out or during other low light settings.
Although the majority of portable jump starters on the market do not come with air compressors, it is arguably one of the most important secondary functions of these devices.
The air compressor is a small accessory that connects to the same 12-volt port as the jumper cables. It is easy to carry and normally comes in a small and ergonomic case together with the jump starter that can easily fit under a seat.
The jump starter can inflate a tire in about ten minutes. Some, like ours, come with extra air compressor-specific accessories to inflate bicycles tires, sports balls, and more.
Having the air compressor function can really save you if you are stranded with a flat tire with no help around. Learn more on Jump Starters with Air Compressors.
All the XenonPro portable jump starters come with an air compressor add-on!
Although not as useful in a car now that we have phones and GPS’ that can provide us with this information, a compass can be useful when out camping or if our car and cellphones are out of battery. Despite not being an essential function, it is neat to have and can come in handy.
Some portable jump starters on the market will come equipped with a pointy metal edge. The edge is designed to break a car window in case of an emergency when one is trapped in a vehicle.
Although very useful, this is only practical if you have the jump starter handy in the event of such an emergency but none the less a nice feature to have.
As you can see, portable jump starters can be a lot more than meets the eye. These devices are really practical to have and can help you in many different environments, not only if your car’s battery is dead.
These devices are small, practical and even make for great gifts!