Adventures in Van Life: Five New Products for the Summer
With summer now upon us (in most parts of the country anyway, it’s still snowing at our cabin in Nederland), we are starting to spend more time out traveling and living in our custom camper van. It’s a 2013 Econoline we’ve been converting into a “sportsmobile” for the last two years. We are constantly studying and working on innovative ways to improve our #VanLife; as well as testing new products and reviewing them to help improve yours.
Here’s a look at five new pieces of gear we put through the ringer on a recent road trip to Joshua Tree National Park, Palm Springs and the Salton Sea in Southern California.
THE WEEGO JS12
This jump starter/device charger/emergency flashlight is now a must-have for my van kit. These types of portable jumpers have only been around for about two years, and only recently have they been powerful enough to jump start larger vehicles. The JS12 ($129) will start gas engines up to 6.4 liters and diesel engines up to 3.2 liters.
This thing is so much simpler, easier, cleaner and more functional than traditional jumper cables, that there really isn’t any comparison. Ummmm, not to mention the fact that you don’t need a second vehicle to jump your van or truck with the Weego. You can even charge your laptop with it, although I didn’t try that (see Enerplex below).
The Weego only loses about two to five percent of its charge per month, meaning it can sit in your vehicle untouched and still be charged when you need it, and according to its manufacturer it operates in temps ranging from -4 to 140ºF. The brand also touts the built-in circuitry protection and an 18-month warranty. So there’s almost no reason not to give this product a try.