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This handheld power bank is powerful enough to jump-start your car

The Topdon JS1500 can alleviate one of the biggest worries all drivers share, while keeping your devices fully charged at the same time.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor
Topdon JS1500 Car Battery Jump Starter

Topdon JS1500 Car Battery Jump Starter 

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

ZDNET's key takeaways

  • The Topdon JS1500 portable jump starter is available on Amazon for $70.
  • It's compact, relatively lightweight, and can double as both a power bank and flashlight.
  • The LED indicator lights are a little small and hard to read in bright sunlight.

Emergency gadgets are more likely to be remembered in case of an actual emergency if they're useful the rest of the time. All too often, I've seen people forget they owned a helpful tool simply because it was out of sight and out of mind. And there's no better void of lost and forgotten devices than your car's glove box.

Also: My favorite power bank for traveling is waterproof and surprisingly lightweight

This is why I love the Topdon JS1500 car battery jump starter. Not only is it a very capable when it comes to starting vehicles with a dead battery, but it also doubles as a 10,000mAh power bank and a flashlight, all while fitting inside your trunk or glove box. 

View at Amazon

Topdon JS1500 Car Battery Jump Starter tech specs

  • Peak output current: ‎1500 Amps
  • Vehicle support: 12V batteries on for gasoline engines up to 6.5L, and diesel engines up to 4L
  • Battery capacity: 10,000mAh (37Wh)
  • USB ports: QC 18W USB-A port, 5V/2.4A USB-A port, and 5V/3A USB-C
  • Built-in protections: Reverse polarity, reverse charging, short circuit, over current, over temperature, and over discharge
  • Flashlight: Yes, 300 lumen LED
  • Weight: 2.09 lbs 

The entire kit comes in a convenient nylon pouch, which includes the jump starter, battery cables, the device's charging cable, and instructions. I definitely recommend familiarizing yourself with these before you find yourself trying to jump-start your vehicle in the dark during a rainstorm, by the way.

Convenient carry case keeps everything together

The convenient carry case keeps everything together.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

The JS1500 features a handy LED flashlight -- useful since, as I've mentioned, you're likely to be jump-starting your car at night and possibly in the rain. It also includes two USB-A ports and one USB-C port, which serves both as input and output.

The Topdon JS1500 jump starter can deliver 1500 peak Amps to restart lead-acid batteries in 3 seconds, and it supports all 12V batteries for gasoline engines up to 6.5L, and diesel engines up to 4L. All in all, the device is suitable for cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, yachts, lawnmowers, ATVs, and more.

USB ports and LED flashlight

USB ports and super handy LED flashlight.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

The battery leads that come with the kit are good quality silicone leads with decent crocodile clips.

Good quality battery leads

The battery leads are high quality.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Using this kit is straightforward. Just attach the battery leads to the jump starter pack, then connect the crocodile clips to the battery -- red to the positive terminal (+) and black to the negative terminal (-).

Also: The best portable power stations you can buy

Battery leads attach here to the jump pack

Battery leads attach here to the jump pack.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Next, press the boost button. If you see a green light, you're good to go and can try starting the vehicle. If you see a red light, check that the leads are connected correctly and try again. These lights are a little small and dim, so you might need to look carefully if you're using the device in bright sunlight.

Green means good to go!

Green means good to go!

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

ZDNET's buying advice

The Topdon JS1500 is a good kit. Unlike some other jump starters I've looked at, this one isn't too big or heavy, and well-suited to keep on hand for the inevitable situation where you find yourself needing to jump-start a vehicle. The Topdon JS1500 is a smaller jump starter, as the bigger ones are better suited for tow trucks, mechanics, and hobbyists with a real interest in car repair. 

It's a handy device that you'll be thankful for when you actually need it, and coming in at well under $100, represents good value for the price.

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