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Full Version: Li-Polymer Jump Start Battery
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I just wanted to report a "thumbs up" on the very small jump starter battery that I decided to get before being a snowbird this winter.  It's the Pilot Automotive Lightning 12v Rechargeable Power Jump Starter.   I left my passenger door open all day, and I'd forgotten that would drain a Prius' 12v starter/accessory battery (more info here).  Not only did this little device save the day by jump starting my very dead battery (while boondocking in the National Forest), but it has also recharged my smart phone and hotspot device when their power was running low.  I've never needed its LED light, but glad to know that it's there just in case.

Since the jump start, I've recharged the little li-polymer battery; so, it's ready to go again if needed.
I too have become a believer in carrying a good Jump Starter. Mine is a different make and model, but have used it several times. I will not be without one!
I have resisted buying one so far despite wanting one to play with. I'll never need one personally with my system, but I could have used one to jump others who have asked..

To any electrical Newbies reading, please Note that while these can deliver high currents briefly to crank engines, and can be used to charge a laptop once or so before requiring a recharge, they do not have high capacity and cannot substitute for a larger capacity house battery.

They are not ultra powerful high capacity house batteries, they are powerful low capacity batteries to save the day in an emergency and are very good at that task as long as they are not too cold.

Since they are relatively new products on the market, I wonder how long they can effectively do their job.

For the price, I'd probably choose one of these over a Lead acid jumper pack, if I required one.
Thanks for that explanation of the limitations of li-polymer jump start batteries Sternwake.

I guess what is astounding to me is that something so small could do the job.  The li-polymer jump start battery itself is only 6.75" x 3" x 1.5" and weighs about 2 lbs. In comparison, my "regular" jump start battery is about 10" X 9" X 9" and weighs almost 18 lbs (but, also includes an air compressor).  
The shelf life of a Li-poly is about three years weather they are used or not!. Depending on the appliance you may or may or not be able to replace the pack.
The monthly self discharge is typically less than 1% so they will sit a long time without the need to be charged and will be ready to do the job.
They do loose some "ump" in cold weather and they should be stored where temps don't go over 110.

There are a lot of variables in the use of Li-Po's and I'm not even going to go into the possible dangers, I'm assuming the manufactures have taken the needed safe gaurds. They are indeed one hell of an energy source. They can deliver up to 90C of there ratings and be recharged in less than an hour! that means a battery as small as 5 amps can deliver 450AMPS! in bursts and 250 for up to 5 or 6 minutes without harm to it.

I've been using these batteries now for over 8 years maybe more and have seen them develop into an amazing energy source. Oh and I have seen them used as a jump start battery by paralleling a few in a pinch with some 12 gauge wire LOL.

Mike R