CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Hi-Tech Automotive owner Tom Barrows purposely left a car's headlights on to run down the battery for our test. It's been dead about three hours now, with just enough juice for the door to still ding.
We should be able to simply plug the Jump Up jump starter into the car's accessory power, or the lighter plug in this case,, then wait 20 minutes and start the car.
That doesn't happen. Tom pokes around, making sure all the connections are good. We still get nothing, even though the green light indicates we should be good to go, and we've followed all the directions.
"If you're going to spend $20, you want it to work."
Tom questions whether the little 30-volt starter was charged well enough from the factory and decides to help it out a bit. He charges the car's battery the way he normally would here in his shop. He's going to give it just a little power. We want to see if the Jump Up jump starter can start anything at all.
"If the car does not start, charge another ten minutes."
So, we do...
Keep in mind, we could've already used jumper cables or even called for help by now, if we were really stranded on the road. After another round of charging, as instructed, we turn the key. The car tries to start but ends up using up all the power in the Jump Start. It does not have enough power to start this car engine. We're making progress with each round of charging the Jump Up, but this is becoming a hassle.
Remember, this battery wasn't even fully dead when we started, and we gave it extra power with Tom's 1500-power pack.
"I think we know our answer."
The 30-volt jump up may work if your battery's new and without power for say an hour, but we don't think it's enough to rely on. While its size may be handy, you'd also have to keep it charged from time to time.
"Give it an 'F'. Not even a D! Save your money."
Keep the jumper cables on-hand. The Jump Up jump starter doesn't pack the punch to pass. It fails this Does it Work test.