Weego Jump Starter Battery Heavy Duty review: It actually works!
The Little Box Jumped Absolutely Dead Batteries, and Reminded us to Invest in a Trickle Charger.
I decided to hop behind the wheel of my personal parts gopher — a 2005 Kia Sedona — after months of it sitting in the basement of One Autoweek Tower, curious to see if it would actually fire off. The answer came as soon as I cracked the door open: No dome light. Instead, I was met with the darkness that comes from a completely drained battery.
I’m not a stranger to bump boxes, also known as portable jump start batteries or jump boxes, but I was doubtful the little Weego Jump Start Battery Plus, about the size of a smart phone, would do anything besides overheat and melt the leads; however, it never hurts to try something, even if you know it won’t work.
I connected appropriate leads to the battery under the hood of my lowly Sedona and had Autoweek intern Zac Palmer turn the key. Much to my surprise, the cables didn’t melt, the box didn’t burst into flame and the engine cranked over — albeit slowly. After letting the Weego feed some electricity to the stone-dead battery, we tried again and brought the engine to life.
Sure, the 3.5-liter V6 in my Sedona isn’t the toughest engine to spin, but a completely drained battery can cause issues with jump starting. For the $130 or so this box will set you back, its small size and potent power might save your butt the next time you leave your lights on at the mall…or abandon your car in the work parking garage for months on end.
— Wes Wren, associate editor
Because I am a terrible monster who doesn’t appreciate what he has, I sometimes let my old Grand Wagoneer sit for months collecting dust in Autoweek’s cavernous underground parking garage without driving it. Then, when the spirit moves me and I go to start it up, it’s usually 50-50 that the battery is deader than a doornail.
If I had room at home (and if my pathetic, decaying garage actually had electricity), I’d hook the Jeep up to a trickle charger and keep it ready to rock at a moment’s notice…in which case, I’d never have any need to use this Weego contraption.
So, for the record, I don’t recommend using this pocket-sized jump box on your car regularly — if you do, it means that you, like me, are doing it all wrong. But, for the sake of testing out the product, I’d say the big AMC 360 V8 was a formidable opponent. And, as in Wesley’s case, the Weego worked flawlessly.
My battery wasn’t totally devoid of spark, but there wasn’t nearly enough to stir the engine. With the Weego hooked up, the V8 turned over and fired right up eagerly (or at least as eagerly as a long-dormant carbureted engine can fire). This heavy-duty pack is good for gasoline engines up to 6.4 liters, and diesels up to 3.2 liters, so it should have no trouble kicking over your hatchback’s dinky motor.
But that’s not all! The battery pack comes with a built-in flashlight plus 12- and 19-volt outputs for charging laptops, etc., and a USB port for charging cell phones and the like. And, since it’s powerful enough to crank over a big engine, it’s probably got enough juice to coax intel out of recalcitrant enemy spies.
Again, I don’t recommend letting vehicles sit long enough to require the use of one of these in the first place, but I could see one being handy if, say, you spend a lot of time out in the field; a dome light left on overnight could leave you stranded far away from anyone willing or able to give you a jump. Even in the comforts of suburbia, it could get you on the road in the morning and on your way to work if your battery drained overnight for whatever reason.
Think of it as cheap insurance — just remember to top off its charge every few months.
— Graham Kozak, associate editor