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Best Portable Jump Starters, Tested By Experts
The best jump starters in 2023 are the NOCO Boost X Series, JF.EGWO Versatile Jump Starter ULTRA, Clore Jump-N-Carry, Fanttik T8 Apex, and TOPDON JS3000.
Will Moore has been driving since he was first allowed behind the wheel of a golf cart. He’s written for several major auto sites including Motor1 since 2020, unraveling the intricacies of auto insurance policies and products for the everyday driver. Will has logged hundreds of hours researching and testing products ranging from child car seats to torque wrenches. After completing a PhD at the University of Missouri, Will moved to North Carolina with his wife, daughter, and two semi-obedient beagles.
- The best jump starters in 2023 are NOCO’s Boost X Series. The GBX55 and GBX155 are compact, durable, and feature well-made alligator clips.
- The JF.EGWO Versatile Jump Starter ULTRA comes with a wall charger, car charger, and carrying case. It can also work as an air compressor, making it one of the most versatile jump starters around.
- Those who want a jump starter that’s safe to use on unleaded gas engines should consider the Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry, which boasts a peak amperage of 1,700.0 amps.
It’s always a good idea to keep jumper cables in your vehicle if your car battery dies. Having one of the best jump starters is even better. Unlike traditional jumper cables, a portable jump starter can restart your battery without needing a second car, providing extra peace of mind. But what makes a good car jump starter, and which jump starters are the best?
Best Car Jump Starters
To help you find the best jump starter for your vehicles, our team spent countless hours testing the best portable jump starters. We’ve narrowed the list down to 10 and provided recommendations for options with different uses and price points. Based on a high volume of positive consumer feedback and our own personal experience using these products, we assessed each device in rating categories including ease of use, durability, and power.
What Are The Best Jump Starters?
According to this criteria, the best jump starters are the NOCO Boost X Series, JF.EGWO 6000A, Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry, Fanttik T8 Apex, and TOPDON JS3000 Jump Starter. The table below highlights the portable jump starters’ performance in each review category:
Jump Starter Reviews: Testing Process
The jump starters in this article went through two rounds of reviews. We started by searching retailers like Amazon, RealTruck, and Advance Auto Parts for top products, looking at factors such as cable length, battery type, customer ratings, and prices. Our product testing team then ordered the jump starters that best met these standards. A team member tested over a dozen jump starters, taking note of how easy the jump starter was to use, its power, and its durability. Each jump starter was given a rating out of 5 stars based on these criteria. For testing, we unpacked each jump starter and charged it fully. Then, we attached it to a carbon pile battery tester to measure voltage and check the battery power. A carbon pile battery tester can measure the current a battery can discharge through its resistor. We attached each recommended jump starter to a carbon pile tester, which can help gauge a battery’s cold-cranking amps and voltage. The sections below detail the assessment process for each testing category:
- Power : Simple and straightforward to understand, we first judged the advertised voltage and cold-cranking amps of each jump starter. Then, we put that to the test by attaching each jump starter to our carbon pile tester.
- Ease of Use : When left with just a dead car battery and a jump starter, how easy was it to use said jump starter to get our testing vehicle running again? This was a question our team asked as we figured out just how useful and intuitive to use each jump starter was.
- Durability: Ultimately, a jump starter’s durability comes down to three factors: materials used in its creation, build quality, and design. Jump starters that demonstrated high quality in at least two of those three factors scored best in this test.
Each year, we test over 350 auto products on vehicles and in our testing lab. Our team of product testers thoroughly researches top products, unboxes and puts our hands on each component, and tests the items on real vehicles before making recommendations to readers.
We publish hundreds of product and service reviews to bring car enthusiasts detailed guides on automotive tools, detailing kits, car seats, pet products, and much more. For more information on our testing methodology and how we evaluate every product, check out our methodology page here.
Top-Rated Portable Jump Starters
After we tested several options ranging in price, we determined that NOCO offers the best jump starter with the Boost X Series because the products are easy to use, powerful, and built to last.
Compare Jump Starters
While the NOCO Boost X Series is the top-rated device overall, the best jump starter for you will depend on your needs and budget. In the table below, you can compare the top 10 jump starters on our list:
Because cost data fluctuates, the in the table above are approximate values that our team regularly updates.
For those interested in learning more, we’ve provided a detailed review of each of the top portable power stations in the sections below:
NOCO Boost X Series: Best Jump Starter
- Cost : About 370
- Amazon Review Score : 4.5 out of 5.0 (over 2,000 customer reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 1,250.0 to 4,250.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight : 3.0 – 7.1 pounds
Customer review scoring applies to both X Series models. (The GBX155 model has the same score from over 3,000 customer reviews.)
NOCO Jump Starter Review
We’ve tested a number of NOCO jump starter products, and across the brand, NOCO products are some of the most well-built jump starters on the market. These batteries are strong, compact, and feature a thick, durable housing. The included clamps are always high-quality, especially on the larger models.
You can see how the NOCO Boost X Series performed in each of our testing categories below:
The Boost X series stands out among other NOCO jump starters because of cold cranking capacity and quick charge times. Below are the pros and cons of the NOCO Boost X Series:
NOCO Boost X Series: Our Experience
We tested a number of jump starters in the Boost X line, and two of our favorites are the GBX55 and the GBX155. Both feature a similar design, with USB-C output charging ports, heavy-duty alligator clamps, and a convenient override function (good for putting juice into a completely dead battery). The X series can be used with both gasoline and diesel engines. The primary differences between the GBX55 and GBX155 are output power and cost. While both can charge gas and diesel engine batteries, the GBX155 has nearly four times the peak amperage, making it suitable for larger vehicles. If you are only planning to jumpstart your own small to mid-size vehicle, the GBX55 is a good, relatively low-cost option. If you’re trying to charge large vehicles with 10.0-liter engines, you’ll want to pick up the GBX155.
NOCO Boost X Series: What Customers Are Saying
The NOCO Boost X series jump starters get high praise for their reliability and strong starting power. Many are surprised to find that these can even (sometimes) juice up dead batteries. Especially considering the compact size of NOCO jump starters, many feel these are life savers. These batteries are easy to keep in your car for emergencies, and can also charge your electronics. Some complain that the GBX55 doesn’t provide enough boosts per charge. The battery can drain out quickly when charging electronics, at least according to a few reviewers. We didn’t encounter this problem during our testing so it could be a quality control issue. Others don’t like that these jump starters (both the GBX55 and GBX155) lack a voltage gauge.
JF.EGWO 6000A: Best Jump Starter With Air Compressor
- Cost : About 270
- Amazon Review Score : 4.6 out of 5.0 (over 300 customer reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 6,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 3.4 lbs.
JF.EGWO Portable Jump Starter Review
With a massive offering of 6,000.0 peak amps, the JF.EGWO is capable of jump starting vehicles with the largest batteries, including vehicles with 13.0-liter diesel engines. Along with excelling as a jump starter, the compact device can also function as an air compressor and be used to top off your tires.
You can see how the JF.EGWO 6000A performed in each of our testing categories below:
If you need a jump starter with a lot of power, the JF.EGWO 6000A may be your best bet. Due to the JF EGWO’s impressive output, we recommend this portable power station if you need something especially powerful and budget is not a consideration. Below are the pros and cons of choosing the JF EGWO:
Pros Includes wall charger, car charger, and carrying case Can also work as an air compressor Compact design
JF.EGWO 6000A: Our Experience
The JF.EGWO 6000A has a square shape that is a bit different from the more common brick design. It is still small and compact and fits nicely in the included hard shell case. The charging and jumping cables are of good quality, on par with those typically included with portable jump starters. We like the easy-to-use, large-sized clamps, though they have plastic coverings. The air compressor hose is thick, and an extension is included. This device is very easy to use – simply attach the clamps and the JF.EGWO will start to deliver a current. It immediately registered 15.0 amps on our carbon pile tester, indicating that the jump starter could be used to deliver charge to a completely dead battery. The JF.EGWO has a four- to six-hour charging time. It does not have overcharge protection, which means you can’t plug it in and leave it overnight.
We tested the air compressor mode as well, and this works well – but this device won’t compete with a high-quality tire inflator or one of the best portable air compressors on the market. The display gives an accurate pressure reading, and the JF.EGWO inflates tires quickly. We did notice that the pressure reading during inflation is a little high, and the device only registers the correct pressure when not actively pumping air. This does not present much of an issue – it just means you need to occasionally stop pumping to check the pressure.
JF.EGWO 6000A: What Customers Are Saying
Hundreds of customers say the JF.EGWO 6000A is easy to use and works as advertised. Many also comment on the air compressor feature, which is good not only for pumping up tires but also includes attachments for bike tires and basketballs. Complaints about the JF.EGWO tend to FOCUS on the air compressor.
Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry: Best Lead-Acid Jump Starter
- Cost : About 145
- Amazon Review Score : 4.7 out of 5.0 (over 15,000 customer reviews)
- Battery Type : Lead-acid
- Peak Amperage : 1,700.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 18.0 lbs.
Jump-N-Carry 660 Review
The Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry is a heavy-duty, powerful portable battery starter. It’s the only product in this review that uses a lead-acid battery, meaning the starter has a high peak amperage of 1,700.0 and can jump larger vehicles such as pickup trucks and SUVs.
You can see how the Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry performed in each of our testing categories below:
The product comes with one outlet you can use to charge your electronics. It also has one cord you plug into a wall outlet to recharge the device. We rank it among the best jump starters for cost, reliability, and longevity.
Below are pros and cons for the Jump-N-Carry:
Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry: Our Experience
The first thing we noticed with the Clore is it’s heavy. At 18.0 lbs., it’s not so heavy one person can’t carry it, but it’s noticeably heavier than the other jump starters we tested. There aren’t many buttons or extra features, but that also makes the Clore easy to use. The jumper clamps are attached to the sides of the jump starter and are easy to unwind and attach. A “test” button can quickly tell you the remaining charge. Ours came fully charged out of the package. When we linked the Clore to our tester, it performed as expected and more consistently than any other jump starters we tested, consistently operating at 12.6 volts. The clamps are durable and easy to attach.
Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry: What Customers Are Saying
Customers say the Clore holds a charge well. You can leave it in your car for several months before using it, and it still works. You can also use it many times after a single charge. Some unsatisfied users suggest the addition of an on/off switch to prevent injury when jump starting, especially considering the Clore’s price tag.
Fanttik T8 APEX: Best Value Jump Starter
- Cost : About 95
- Amazon Review Score : 4.6 out of 5.0 (over 2,000 customer reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 2,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 5.0 lbs.
Fanttik T8 APEX: Best Value Jump Starter
The Fanttik T8 APEX is our top recommendation for a jump starter in the 100 range. Choose this jump starter if you are looking for a mid-cost jump starter that is reliable and will last you a long time. You can see how the Fanttik T8 APEX performed in each of our testing categories below:
Similar to other jump starters in this price range, the T8 features a compact design and delivers around 2,000.0 peak amps. What makes the T8 stand out is better build quality and an excellent storage case. The case is well-organized, and the cables (both charging and jumping) are thicker and more durable than those included with similar jump starters.
A 2,000.0-amp jump starter may not be able to revive a totally depleted battery that’s been idle for months but is useful for roadside emergencies. The T8 is known to hold a charge for a long time, so it won’t have drained out by the time you need it.
Like many jump starters, the T8 can be used to power devices, which it charges rapidly. It can even be used to power a laptop computer. It has a number of safety features to protect your devices and batteries such as overload, overcharge, and overvoltage protection.
Below are pros and cons for the device:
Pros Includes hard shell carrying case, block, USB-C cable, and USB-A cable Can also be used as a portable charger Durable jumper cables
Fanttik T8 APEX: Our Experience
Handling the Fanttik T8, we were immediately impressed with the carrying case. This is a relatively minor consideration, but it is an example of the attention to detail that’s been put into the design of every part of this portable jump starter. With some jump starters, the included power cords and clamps seem like an afterthought, built as cheaply as possible. Not so with the T8, which uses the highest quality cables, meaning both faster charging and improved longevity. The included clamps were the best of any we saw – they are large and easy to attach, and the cabling is thick to prevent premature wear. The jump starter itself is heavy and rugged.
Fanttik T8 APEX: What Customers Are Saying
Reviewers appreciate that this jump starter is reliable and will hold its charge for some time. Those looking for an emergency jump starter highly regard the Fanttik, and most reviewers note the high quality of the cables and case. According to reviewers who were shipped missing or faulty parts, Fanttik’s customer service is reliable and responsive. Another common note from customers is that the plastic covering over the jumper clamps is weak and prone to breaking.
TOPDON JS3000: Most Reliable Jump Starter
- Cost : About 160
- Amazon Review Score : 4.8 out of 5 (over 300 customer reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 3,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 5.0 lbs.
TOPDON JS3000 Review
The TOPDON JS3000 is a compact, powerful jump starter that is compatible with diesel engines and appropriate for use with large vehicles like trucks and even yachts. It is easy to use and solidly built, making it a good choice for a first jump starter.
You can see how the TOPDON JS3000 performed in each of our testing categories below:
This portable car battery charger is compact and includes a hard shell carrying case. Leave it in your trunk and forget about it until the need arises. It has useful safety features such as reverse polarity protection. Below are pros and cons for the TOPDON JS3000:
TOPDON JS3000: Our Experience
The first thing we noticed about the JS3000 is the rugged design. Not only is the battery itself hefty, but the clamps are large and made from very thick plastic. The clamps seem to be of higher quality than many of the other jump starters we tested, clearly made with thicker plastic. Our carbon pile tester immediately registered the JS3000 when we used the boost mode, which is able (for a short period of time) to deliver well over 12.0 volts. This mode is for providing energy to jump-start totally dead batteries.
TOPDON JS3000: What Customers Are Saying
Reviewers claim that the TOPDON works excellently in all weather conditions. Some are especially impressed by its ability to provide a jump start in freezing temperatures. Most people like this jump starter because it is powerful, reliable, and easy to use. A few specifically mention the clamps, which are larger than those typically included with jump starters. Fewer than 10 people have left negative reviews of this car battery charger. These negative reviews claim that the JS3000 failed to work or burned out after a single use.
NOCO Boost HD: Best Heavy-Duty Jump Starter
- Cost : About 200
- Amazon Review Score : 4.7 out of 5.0 (approximately 20,000 customer reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- PeakAmperage : 2,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 5.0 lbs.
NOCO Boost HD GB70 Review
The Boost HD from NOCO is a high-amp jump starter that works with a wide range of cars and is one of the best jump starters for vehicles with high-capacity batteries, Because of its high-peak amps (2,000.0), this portable car jump starter can jump everything from a small sedan to a large pickup truck or SUV.
You can see how the NOCO Boost HD performed in each of our testing categories below:
With the GB70, you can even charge electronic devices (including smartphones) with its two ports. You can recharge this device’s lithium battery using a USB port. The battery takes up to six hours to charge, but one charge can last up to forty jumps.
The rubberized casing also makes this jump starter water-resistant. Below are the device’s pros and cons:
Pros Features a built-in LED flashlight with emergency strobe Offers reverse polarity protection Safe for unleaded or diesel engines Comes with a one-year warranty
NOCO Boost HD: Our Experience
As with the Clore, the NOCO Boost HD cables are permanently attached to the jump starter. We did notice that the cables are rather short. This means you will need to place the jump starter close to your battery to attach it to the terminals. The clamps are robust and easy to use. The included carrying case is fabric, making it almost pointless since it provides no protection. When we tested the NOCO Boost HD, it functioned but topped out at 11.4 volts rather than producing the promised 12.0 volts.
NOCO Boost HD: What Customers Are Saying
Because this jump starter’s peak amperage is 2,000.0, even customers with heavy-duty vehicles such as trucks and SUVs can start their car using the device. The few negative reviews typically involve complaints from customers receiving defective jump starters that stopped holding a charge after a few months.
JF.EGWO F40: Best Jump Starter Flashlight
- Cost : Around 150
- Amazon Review Score : 4.8 out of 5.0 (over 20 customer reviews)
- Peak Amperage : 4,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Weight: 3.7 lbs.
JF.EGWO F40 Review
The JF.EGWO F40 jump starter is reliable, quick-charging, and durably built. It is broadly comparable to other similar-sized jump starters though with an above-average power output. The battery housing and alligator clamps are both very durable. It should also be noted that this jump starter had the best flashlight that we used.
This portable jump starter also offers a higher peak amperage than other options in the 100 to 200 price range. You can see how the JF.EGWO F40 performed in each of our testing categories below:
One feature that makes the F40 jump starter stand out among others on this list is the display screen. It is noticeably larger and easier to read than any other portable jump starter we tested. That makes the F40 a good option for those who have trouble with tiny readouts. Below are the jump starter’s pros and cons:
Pros USB-C charging and output ports Large, easy-to-read display 1.5-hour charge time Fast device charging
JF.EGWO F40: Our Experience
The JF.EGWO F40 is similar to other jump starters that we tested of this size. As mentioned, it does offer a bit more power than similarly priced options. There are only a few buttons and the operation of this device is straightforward. We like the modern feel of the F40 jump starter. It features exclusively USB-C charge ports, which offer the fastest charging speeds and are generally superior to the USB-B standard. Most of all, we appreciate the extra large display screen which shows battery status, battery power level, voltage, and wattage readouts.
JF.EGWO F40: What Customers Are Saying
As a relatively new product, the F40 isn’t as thoroughly reviewed on Amazon as some of our other picks. We’ve placed it a bit further down on our list of recommendations because the longevity of this product hasn’t been as thoroughly proven. That said, we expect F40 jump starters to be long-lived based on the obvious build quality along with our experience with other JF. EGWO electronics, which have always been reliably built. Most reviewers like this jump starter because of the easy-to-use design, sturdy feel, and reliable performance. Some are impressed by how quickly the F40 can deliver power and recharge a battery. A few people complain about the touch screen buttons, which aren’t always responsive. While it works nicely brand new, the F40’s buttons may require a little extra force as they age.
NEXPOW 2,000A: Best Compact Jump Starter
- Cost : Around 60
- Amazon Review Score : 4.5 out of 5.0 (over 18,000 reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 2,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 2.2 lbs.
NEXPOW 2,000A Review
The NEXPOW 2,000A Jump Starter is a good option if you need something that’s not too expensive to stow in your car emergency kit. It is compact, powerful, and has several USB output ports for phone charging.
You can see how the NEXPOW 2,000A performed in each of our testing categories below:
This relatively low-cost jump starter is similar in size and function to the TOPDON jump starter. It does not have quite the power and seems a little less robust. However, it is more thoroughly reviewed than the TOPDON. The NEXPOW also comes with a hard-shell carrying case.
Below are pros and cons for the NEXPOW 2,000A:
Pros Includes wall charger, car charger, and carrying case Features a built-in LED flashlight Lightweight and compact design
NEXPOW 2,000A: Our Experience
The NEXPOW is very small and compact but made of light plastic. While it isn’t fragile, the NEXPOW lacks the durability of NOCO jump starters. A drop to the floor could break this device. That said, the provided clamps are of decent quality. They are made of plastic, but it’s a thick, well-constructed plastic. The included carrying case is also made of a hard shell design so should keep this jump starter safe when not in use. When connected to our battery testing device, the NEXPOW delivered a consistent 12.0 volts. However, as the battery power decreased, the power output was less consistent. But with 2,000.0 amps, this jump starter is capable of powering even large batteries and cars with diesel engines.
NEXPOW 2,000A: What Customers Are Saying
Positive reviews (and they are largely positive) typically praise the NEXPOW jump starter because it is compact and functional. This is not a heavy-duty jump starter, but it gets the job done. Those unhappy with the NEXPOW complain that they have difficulty operating the device.
NOCO Boost Plus: Best Rated Jump Starter
- Cost : About 100
- Amazon Review Score : 4.7 out of 5.0 (approximately 76,000 reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 1,000.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 2.4 lbs.
NOCO Boost Plus GB40 Review
While the NOCO Boost Plus GB40 is a middle-of-the-road jump starter overall, it is one of the best jump starters if you’re looking for a reliable and easy-to-use tool. It is mid-priced at 100, has two charging ports, and has a peak amps of 1,000.0, which is enough power to jump-start most vehicles. It also has one of the highest customer ratings and the highest number of reviews of any jump starter we tested.
You can see how the NOCO Boost Plus performed in each of our testing categories below:
Like most other jump starters with lithium batteries, you recharge the Boost Plus using a USB port. While it doesn’t have the same battery capacity as the NOCO Boost HD, this car battery jump starter has the shortest charging time of just three hours.
Below are pros and cons for the NOCO Boost Plus:
Pros Includes car charger, USB cable, and storage bag Features a built-in LED flashlight Comes with a one-year warranty
NOCO Boost Plus: Our Experience
Like the other NOCO batteries on this list, the NOCO Boost Plus comes with a carrying case, but it’s fabric and not durable. Unlike the NOCO Boost HD, the Plus doesn’t have built-in jumper cables, but it comes with a set that plugs into the device. This helps make it lighter and slightly more portable. However, these jumper cables are pretty short and the clamps are not quite as good as the NOCO Boost HD. Still, they do the job, and the NOCO Boost Plus is probably a better value, depending on how many peak amps you need for your jump starter. The Boost Plus tested well, consistently putting out 12.5 volts.
NOCO Boost Plus: What Customers Are Saying
Customers say the NOCO Boost Plus is fast charging and that the power bank can hold a lengthy charge. Several customers say they used this jump starter on batteries that were dead, not just weak, and managed to get the car started after using the manual override on the unit. Some customers say their NOCO didn’t work and that the manufacturing date was from two years prior, suggesting NOCO doesn’t go through its inventory to purge outdated jump starters.
Gooloo 1,200A Peak Car Starter: Best Budget Jump Starter
- Cost : About 55
- Amazon Review Score : 4.6 out of 5.0 (over 4,000 reviews)
- Battery Type : Lithium
- Peak Amperage : 1,200.0 amps
- Voltage : 12.0 volts
- Weight: 1.2 lbs.
Gooloo Car Jump Starter Review
Gooloo ’s jump starter has a lithium-ion battery, which explains the product’s small size at just over a pound and its affordable price of about 55. This jump starter comes as a kit with a jumper cable, wall charger, car charger, USB to Type-C charger adapter, and carry bag.
You can see how the Gooloo 1,200A Peak Car Starter performed in each of our testing categories below:
You can recharge the Gooloo by plugging it into a USB port. The device takes about five hours to charge, but the full charge will last up to three months.
Being so lightweight, the Gooloo is one of the best portable jump starters. Below are it’s pros and cons:
Pros Features two USB ports to power accessories Charges in only 5 hours Safe for unleaded or diesel engines Features a built-in LED light Comes with an 18-month warranty
Gooloo 1,200A Peak Car Starter: Our Experience
The Gooloo is lightweight, and the included carrying case is durable but not quite as robust as the case included with the TOPDON jump starter. The Gooloo case resembles an old CD collection book. Like most lithium-battery jump starters, the Gooloo jump cables are short. The clamps are also on the small side. When hooked up to our battery tester, the Gooloo performed as expected, consistently delivering 12.0 volts.
Gooloo 1,200A Peak Car Starter: What Customers Are Saying
Most customers who’ve reviewed the Gooloo say this small battery jumps their cars after only a few seconds. Reviewers also speak highly of the Gooloo’s portability, saying it easily fits in their car’s glove box. Some customers say the Gooloo doesn’t suit larger vehicles, and some reviewers say that after having it a while, it won’t charge up to 100 percent.
Jump Starter Buying Guide
Our team members have spent day after day researching and testing the top-rated jump starters on the market. Consider the following criteria to find the best jump starter for your vehicle.
Buying A Jump Starter: Expert Tips
We spoke to Zac Salerno, Technician at Import Performance and certified Safety Inspector, about what he looks for in a jump starter. He said, “I think most jump boxes are pretty good. I have a 20 one, I have a 400 one – I use them both, they both work great.” Salerno recommends you keep a jump starter in close proximity when out on the road. “I always keep one in my car in case something happens. “You never know when something’s going to go out and you might not make it to work or home.”
How To Pick A Jump Starter
“How often do you use it?” and “How long do you need it to be charged for?” are the first two questions he asked. If you are someone who needs to use a jump starter more frequently or works in a job that depends on high quality like Salerno, you will likely want to opt for a more expensive, durable option that will last.
Ultimately, Salerno sees a time and a place to use both a budget-friendly jump starter and a more premium option. Along with considering durability and estimated frequency of use, think about what other needs you may have from the equipment, which could include added features like air compressor functionality or extra USB ports.
“Where’s your budget?” While it’s important to have a jump starter handy so that you are safe, also take into account what you can and cannot afford. If you don’t need extra functionality or won’t be using more advanced features, a standard jump starter may be the best option for you.
What To Look For In A Jump Starter
In the sections below, we go into further detail about the most important things to consider when shopping for a portable jump starter.
Types Of Jump Starters
Car battery starters usually come in two types: lead acid and lithium-ion batteries. Though they’re more rare, you can also find supercapacitor jump starters on the market.
While lead-acid jump starters have been around for many years, lithium-ion and supercapacitor jump starters are both relatively new on the market. Below are descriptions for all three types:
- Lead-acid jump starters : Jump starters with lead-acid batteries have been around for years and are more durable and powerful than lithium batteries. However, they are bulky, making for a larger jump starter.
- Lithium-ion jump starters : Lithium ion jump starters are more compact and usually weigh only a few pounds. Along with being able to fit them into your car, the more versatile lithium ion jump starters can charge other devices like phones and laptops.The biggest downside to lithium ion jump starters are they are generally less powerful and more expensive than lead versions with the same output.
- Super capacitor jump starters : Instead of using a separate battery that you have to charge, supercapacitor-based jump starters use the weak charge from your vehicle (or other power source) to recharge the capacitors within the unit. While supercapacitor-based jump starters can have a longer life and can charge quickly, they often can’t hold a charge as long as lithium and lead-acid jump starters.
Jump Starter Power Output
Power output is how much current the jump starter supplies. You’ll want your starter to have enough power to restart your battery and get the engine to take over the recharging. With that in mind, one of the most important things to look at when buying a jump starter is the amount of cranking and peak power it produces.
While a unit’s cranking power refers to the amount of amps that can be delivered if more cranking is needed, its peak power is the overall max power it can deliver. Below are descriptions of all three types:
Though a general rule of thumb is that higher peak amps are better, knowing a jump starter’s peak amps is usually less helpful than knowing it’s CA or CCA. That said, some manufacturers only give you this number.
Finally, it’s also important to keep in mind that cold-cranking amps are more important if you live in colder climates where you may have to jump your vehicle at lower temperatures.
What Size Jump Starter Do I Need?
In general, it takes roughly 150 to 250 cranked amps to jump a small 4.0-liter gasoline engine and up to 600 to 750 cranked amps to jump a larger diesel engine. To be sure of how much power your vehicle needs, refer to the owner’s manual of your car battery.
Jump Starter Voltage
You’ll want enough voltage to match your vehicle’s battery and reliably jump off a dead power source. The size of your vehicle’s battery will determine the correct voltage for your jump starter. While some vintage vehicles operate with 6.0 volts, the voltage of most vehicles is 12.0 volts. If you drive a larger vehicle or truck, you may even need 24.0 volts.
Jump Starter Features
New jump starters typically offer more functionality than simply jumping off a dead battery. Before purchasing a jump starter, you’ll want to decide which features would be useful and which work best for your car. If you have more intended use cases for your equipment, consider the following use cases when looking for a jump starter:
- USB ports : A versatile lithium battery typically has USB charging ports that allow it to act as a portable power station. This combo can allow jump starters to act as a more flexible form of portable power that can be used to charge items like cell phones or hiking accessories.
- Air compressor : Some jump starters can even double as an air compressor, which allows you to do other useful things like inflate your tires
- Charging modes : The most common charging modes are an electrical outlet, USB ports, and solar panels. For some advanced models, you can use all of the above to charge your jump starter.
- Flashlights and displays : Many portable jump starters come with flashlights and/or well-lit displays, which could come in handy if you have to jump your vehicle at night.
Jump Starter Portability
Jump starters can range from 20.0 to 30.0 lbs. all the way down to 1.0 to 2.0 lbs. If you drive a sedan and don’t have much room for a jump starter, you may want a smaller one. However, if you drive a heavy-duty vehicle and need a battery charger with more power, or have a portable power station to power your jump starter, larger jump starters may work best for you.
Best Length For Jumper Cables
Your jump starter will come with cables that you attach to the battery terminals to send electricity from the starter to the car battery. While cable lengths of 16.0 feet or less will work in most situations, experts recommend a cable length that is at least 12.0 ft. long.
When using a jump starter when one vehicle is behind the other, you will want a cable that is 20 to 25 ft. long, with 30-ft. cables being for more extreme situations.
Jumper Cable Durability
Finally, drivers of diesel and V08 engines will want heavier, thicker cables. Keep in mind that if you use cables that are thicker or longer than average, they will take up more trunk space.
Some jump starters are safer than others. To help ensure safe usage over the life of your jump starter, look for portable jump starters with features like:
- Back-feed protection
- Short-circuit protection
- Anti-spark technology
- Overcharge protection
- Reverse polarity
How Do You Jump Start A Car?
To jump start a car, follow these steps from the Texas Department of Insurance :
- Turn off your car and remove the key from the ignition.
- Check your battery to ensure it’s fully charged and off.
- Find the positive and negative terminals of your car battery and remove any corrosion.
- Connect the red clamp on the jump starter to the positive terminal on the car battery.
- Connect the black clamp on the jump starter to a clean, unpainted, and non-moving, metal part. This should be on the car’s frame or engine block away from the battery, carburetor, and fuel lines.
- Turn on the jump starter.
- Try starting the vehicle. If it doesn’t start after cranking for five seconds, wait another two to three minutes before trying again. If it doesn’t start after four or five attempts, you need a new battery.
- Once the engine starts, turn off the jump starter.
- Remove the black clamp and then the red clamp.
You can also jump a car by attaching cables to the functioning battery of someone else’s vehicle. However, using a portable jump starter is easier because you don’t have to worry about finding another person to help.
Best Jump Starters: Bottom Line
Our team of experts has spent countless hours researching and physically testing the best jump starters. After a thorough jump starter testing process, we decided the NOCO GBX155 is the best jump starter in 2023.
We stand by all the top brands we tested, including JF.EGWO, Clore, TOPDON, and NEXPOW. Here is a recap of the top portable jump starters in 2023:
- Best Jump Starter : NOCO Boost X Series
- Best Jump Starter with Air Compressor : JF.EGWO 6000A
- Best Lead-Acid Jump Starter : Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry
- Best Value Jump Starter : Fanttik T8 APEX
- Most Reliable Jump Starter : TOPDON JS3000
- Best Heavy-Duty Jump Starter : NOCO Boost HD
- Best Jump Starter Flashlight:JF.EGWO F40
- Best Compact Jump Starter : NEXPOW 2,000A
- Best Rated Jump Starter : NOCO Boost Plus
- Best Budget Jump Starter: Gooloo 1,200A Peak Car Starter
Jump Starters: FAQ
Below are some commonly frequently asked questions about jump starters:
Can I use a jump starter on any vehicle?
As long as the jump starter’s power output and voltage meet the specifications of the car battery and engine, you can use the starter on any vehicle.
How long should you jump a car for?
This depends on the jump starter, your car battery, and the temperature. The lower the power output of your jump starter, the longer it will take to jump your car. The same is true of a battery that’s closer to being dead. It may also take longer to jump your car in cold temperatures.
Can you jump start a car in the rain?
Yes. While it’s unpleasant to jump a car in the rain, it’s unlikely you’ll be electrocuted. Your car’s electrical system is only 12.0 volts. This is much lower than the 120.0 volts of electricity in household outlets, which can electrocute you.
Can jump starting damage my car?
As long as you follow the instructions for jump-starting your car and use a jump starter with a power output and voltage that meet your vehicle’s needs, you won’t damage your car.
What is the best jump starter to buy?
Our recommendation for the best car starter is the Clore Automotive Jump-N-Carry due to its powerful internal batteries. It also works with gas and diesel engines.
How many amps is a good jump starter?
Automotive experts say the best jump starters for normal, consumer vehicles range between 400.0 to 600.0 amps. Commercial vehicles like box trucks and buses may require a high-power battery pack in the 1,500.0 amps range.
Are portable jump starters worth it?
If you want to avoid waiting on a service truck, a portable power pack can be useful, although getting a full charge can take a few hours. For the best jump starter, make sure you purchase one with the appropriate power output for your vehicle.
How many amps do you need to jumpstart an SUV?
Between 400.0 and 600.0 amps is typically a sufficient power source to start an SUV.
Can I use a portable jump starter on a motorcycle?
Most portable jump starters offer enough power to recharge a motorcycle. Motorcycle batteries typically carry less power than car batteries.
Can a dead battery damage an alternator?
No, a bad battery typically won’t typically harm your starter or alternator. However, both of these components get their voltage directly from the battery. If the battery is underperforming, the performance of the starter and the alternator will be affected.
Data accurate at time of publication.
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Electric Fat Bike
The RadRover 6 Plus is the latest advancement of our flagship fat tire model and a next-level riding experience. Get more uphill capabilities with the custom geared-hub motor, better stopping power with all new high-performance hydraulic disc brakes, and a semi-integrated battery that easily pops in and out. rider refinements maximize comfort, making this the biggest evolution in RadRover history!
Our world-class Customer Experience team is here to answer all of your questions and make your buying experience rad.
Expanded Shipping Window
You may have noticed that the shipping date for some models is currently listed as several months away.
While we understand that this is a long time to wait, we wanted to make sure that these bikes were available to purchase for any rider who had their heart set on a preferred model and wanted to secure theirs well in advance.
The dates listed are as accurate as possible, but please note that the entire manufacturing world is in the middle of a global supply chain challenge. As a result, there are some variables that are out of our control (like container shortages, port delays, and the Suez Canal incident).
We know how excited you are to get your new ebike and we are continually scaling up our operations to get it to you as soon as possible.
Anyone Can Do It Leave It To The Pros
Our riders say that this model is easy to assemble, our ebike assembly service will have you ready-to-ride
LET A PRO BUILD IT FOR YOU
Have Your Bike Built By a Professional.
To meet the needs of our busy riders, we offer on-demand ebike assembly, pickup and delivery. Rad electric bikes come mostly assembled in the box, however some ebike models are more difficult to assemble than others. The Assembly Difficulty indicator above can give you an idea of how difficult this bike is to assemble.
Free Shipping On Orders Over 150
If your order value is 150 or greater, you qualify for free shipping.
Due to their nature, these products are excluded from our free shipping offer and will incur shipping charges.
Electric Bike Shipping
Available shipping options are determined by postal code. You will be able to select your preferred shipping option during checkout.
Standard Shipping: Free
Available to all customers.
Your new ebike will be delivered directly to your door by the parcel service (FedEx, Purolator, etc.). While the bike is 85 percent assembled before it leaves the factory, additional assembly is required prior to your first ride. Rad Power Bikes provides helpful online resources to assist you in this process, including in-depth videos and an extensive digital Help Center.
Built Delivered by Rad Mobile Service: 199 CAD
Available to customers in select areas.
A Rad Power Bikes Mobile Service Ambassador will build, tune, and accessorize your new ebike before delivering it directly to your door. Upon arrival, our RMS Ambassador will walk you through how to use your ebike and answer any questions you might have.
Includes a free 30-day/150-mile tuneup. Rad Mobile Service will work with you directly to schedule a preferred date/time for delivery.
Bike Delivery, Build, Tune by velofix: 249 CAD
Available to customers in select areas.
Your new ebike will be fully built, tuned, and delivered to your door by a velofix Mobile Mechanic. The velofix Mobile Mechanic will work with you directly to schedule a preferred date/time for your delivery and can install accessories for an additional fee.
Hydraulic Disc Brakes for Greater Stopping Power All-new hydraulic disc brakes provide superior stopping power, respond to a lighter touch, and give you more control over your ride. The ergonomic design reduces rider fatigue and can be adjusted to accommodate the size of each rider’s hand.
Easy to Remove Semi-Integrated Battery The sleek, proprietary semi-integrated battery has been engineered in-house for an enhanced user experience. It’s now easy to pop in and pop out with one hand to take with you on the go. It features a user-friendly 10 LED display to keep an eye on your charge and a practical grip for greater portability.
A Simplified User Interface for Easier Functionality The intuitive Rad User Interface improves operability. The large, practical buttons offer a simplified riding experience, and the Rad Display depicts real-time stats, including mileage and power output. It features both trip time and a clock so you can leave your watch at home.
Redesigned, Ergonomic Frame for Added Comfort The frame has been re-engineered in-house to better accommodate riders at the bottom end of our height recommendation range. The enhanced ergonomics and improved handling promise a smoother, more confident ride.
Custom Geared Hub Motor With Enhanced Hill Climbing Capabilities Our engineers have fine-tuned the all-new 500W geared hub motor to provide more power, more efficiently. You can now conquer hills faster, get up to speed quicker, and experience a consistently stronger ride — even at lower speeds.
Robust, Versatile Suspension To help you navigate difficult roads with even greater ease, the durable Rad Power Bikes custom suspension fork has preload adjustment for the spring’s stiffness, as well as a lock-out lever. With 60mm of travel, it’s capable of complementing a wide range of rider weights and terrain.
Auto-Activate Lights for Safer Night Rides The RadRover 6 Plus comes standard with a halo headlight, tail light, and integrated brake light for improved visibility. The lights activate when the bike turns on for greater peace of mind.
Durable 26” x 4” Fat Tires Take on more with the classic, puncture resistant, rugged fat tires with built-in tire liners and reflective sidewalls.
Custom Cable Covers for Easy-Access Maintenance Custom, sleek cable covers protect shifting, brake, and electrical connections and ensure easier maintenance.
To ensure uninterrupted shipping, some parts may differ from those listed. Rest assured, our engineers rigorously test each component to guarantee quality and compatibility.
To ensure uninterrupted shipping, some parts may differ from those listed. Rest assured, our engineers rigorously test each component to guarantee quality and compatibility.
What to Measure
Your “real inseam”.- or inside leg length.- is the distance between your body where it sits on your bike saddle and the ground. This will typically be an inch or two longer than the length of your trousers, but you’ll want to measure to be sure. You’ll use this number on the chart to get a feel for how the different models will fit you.
How to Measure
- Medium-width hardcover book
- Tape measure
- A wall you can stand against
- A trusted friend or relative
Wearing your regular riding shoes and with your back to the wall, stand with your feet spread so there is about 7 inches between them. this is about the distance apart your feet would be when straddling a bike with your feet on the ground (standover height).
Place a hardcover book against the wall with the spine of the book facing upward. Slide the book upwards towards your groin until it is solidly against your body. This may be a bit awkward, but is way more comfortable.- and safer!- than trying to ride a bike that is too big.
If you have a buddy helping you, get them to measure from the floor to the top of the book spine while you hold the book in place. If you’re going it alone, carefully hold the book in place and measure from the ground to the top of the book spine.
The 9 Best Dustbusters of 2023, Tested and Reviewed
Dena Ogden has been writing professionally since 2015, and has published over 200 pieces with numerous digital outlets.Her specialities include lifestyle, commerce, and culture topics, and she always has a novel in process, too. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in English Communication from the University of Washington, and is a proud first-generation college graduate.
Katie Berry is a cleaning expert with 30 years of household management experience and 12 years of writing about cleaning methods and routines for Housewife How-Tos. She is the author of several books about homemaking.
Rich Scherr is a seasoned technology and financial journalist who spent nearly two decades as the editor of Potomac and Bay Area Tech Wire. The Baltimore native also covered the technology scene for LocalBusiness.com and has been a regular contributor to the sports pages of The Baltimore Sun and The Washington Post.
If you need a quick way to clean up small messes around your home, keeping a dustbuster on hand is a Smart move. These compact, handheld vacuums can be a game-changer for busy households, allowing you to quickly tackle dust and debris without hauling out a full-sized vacuum or broom and dustpan. Not any dustbuster will do the trick, though. With that in mind, we’ve tested over 30 dustbusters and handheld vacuums to find the best options for different kinds of everyday messes.
We’ve put dozens of handheld vacuums to the test in The Lab by using them to suction up cereal, crumbs, raisins, and hair on carpeted surfaces and hard floors. In our tests, we maneuvered them around high chair covers, couch cushions, and car seat cupholders to see how they handled hard-to-reach areas. We paid particular attention to their battery life and how well they picked up different debris. We also noted how easy they were to operate, hold, and store.
The end of our efforts is the thoroughly vetted list of tried-and-true recommendations you’ll find below. While the best model for you will depend on factors such as your cleaning needs and preferred vacuum features, you can choose confidently knowing that all of these dustbusters impressed us in one (or more!) ways.
Shark UltraCyclone Pro Cordless Handheld Vacuum
- Impressive suction power
- Generously sized dust bin
- Effective tool attachments
- Battery remained stable for testing
- Some debris spilled when vacuum was inverted
- High suction too strong for some soft surfaces
This handheld Shark vacuum will take a bite of any messes in its path. It performed well across all of our key testing categories—including maneuverability, portability, and effectiveness—and it wowed us with its strong suction and effective attachments. (It comes with a crevice tool and scrubbing brush.) We were pleased to see that we could complete all of the testing with one battery charge. Plus, the dust bin was more than suitable for the amount of debris we cleaned up. We only emptied it three times when completing our testing, which was on the lower side of all the vacuums we tested, and even then, the dust bin wasn’t always full. Other small details proved to be convenient, too, such as the comfort of the handle. At just over 2 pounds, the vacuum feels lightweight and compact in size. It was a bit larger than some other models we tested, which we attributed to the larger dust bin, but we didn’t see this as any kind of deal-breaker.
This handheld vacuum did well with cleaning all the surfaces we tasked it with (rug, high chair, car seat, and upholstered chair). It proved almost too strong for parts of the high chair in our lab testing, since it got stuck on the fabric. However, we didn’t encounter any issues with suction on an upholstered chair. We also appreciated how helpful the attachments are, and the crevice tool in particular conveniently reached into the nooks and crannies to clean a car seat in our testing. Another minor quirk of this machine is that it might spit out some debris if you shake it or turn it upside down, so watch its positioning when you’re using it. But for a reliable, efficient, and powerful handheld vacuum, we think it’s a great all-around choice.
Price at time of publish: 80
Weight: 2.06 pounds | Battery Life: 12 minutes | Bin Volume: 0.45 quarts/14.4 ounces | Included Accessories: Crevice tool, scrubbing brush
Best Overall, Runner-Up
Iris USA Cordless Handheld Vacuum
- Excelled at cleaning car seat surfaces and crevices
- Handled all debris, including raisins, with ease
- Performed efficiently and quickly
- Compact size
- Needed to empty dust bin twice to avoid spitting of debris
- High setting too strong for high chair fabric
Another versatile dustbuster that you’ll be able to use throughout your home is the IRIS handheld vacuum. It’s an excellent choice, and it rivaled our top pick in its effectiveness, portability, and maneuverability—only with a more compact design, smaller dust bin volume, and slightly higher price point. It sailed through our cleaning tests, proving especially efficient with the car seat’s nooks, and crannies. However, it showed so much power on the high setting that it tugged at the car seat fabric (the lower setting worked great, though). It also proved efficient with the sticky raisins, which could not be said for all the models we tested.
We appreciated the thoughtful design that allows for storage of the attachments right on the charging station, so you won’t have to make space for them elsewhere. The 1.1-pound weight of this machine was also lighter than the average of our tested vacuums (which came in at 1.7 pounds for our most recent round of testing). Due to the tiny dust bin size, we had to empty it ten times in our testing, which was more than the average. So we wouldn’t recommend this model for extensive cleaning. But if you value portability and strong suction, we think this model is another great choice.
Price at time of publish: 90
Weight: 1.1 pounds | Battery Life: 13 minutes | Bin Volume: 3.4 ounces | Included Accessories: Brush and crevice tool, multi-surface head
BLACKDECKER Dusbuster Handheld Vacuum
- Great performance at half the price of other models
- Lightweight design
- Comes with a wall mount
Though it’s no longer our top choice, our previous best overall pick, the BLACKDECKER Cordless Lithium Hand Vacuum, is still a reliable, handheld vacuum that comes at a fair price point. In fact, it’s one of our top-rated cheap vacuum cleaners. When we tested this vacuum in a home environment, we used it to suck up household debris such as cereal, pet food, and dirt. We found it to be particularly effective on hard surfaces, such as under kitchen cabinets and on hardwood stairs. We also tested out this vacuum in a car after a beach trip—while its performance wasn’t perfect, it did clean up a lot of the sand and did a better job than other handheld vacuums in similar testing situations. Plus, when you’re not bringing it in the car, we love that the included wall mount makes it easy to store between uses.
However, it’s not the most intuitive machine, and it takes significant effort to maneuver the crevice tool between cushions and around table legs. It’s also quite noisy. Of course, no handheld vacuum is perfect, and we can accept these small flaws alongside its proven cleaning abilities. Overall, it’s an affordable option that gets the job done.
Price at time of publish: 50
Weight: 2.11 pounds | Battery Life: 12 to 15 minutes | Bin Volume: 31.8 ounces | Included Accessories: Brush tool, crevice tool
BlackDecker 20V Max Dustbuster AdvancedClean Cordless Hand Vacuum
- Pleasantly quiet on low setting
- Easy-to-empty dust bin
- Wand extension is part of design
- Vacuum head fits into cupholders
There’s lots to like about the BLACKDECKER dustbuster, which we quickly discovered during testing. For starters, the extension nozzle was especially convenient, and we love how it gives you the ability to get into small corners and crevices like cupholders, all without the extra hassle of separate attachments. This model also handled other surfaces too, and it made easy work of messes on carpet, a high chair, a carseat, and an upholstered chair. We did notice that some hair blew around a bit during one of our tests, but we could work to correct that with how we positioned the vacuum between passes. It wasn’t a big deal, but it did require some adjusting on our part.
Another perk is that the dust bin is super easy to open; there’s just one button. We only had to empty it twice during the test, and most of the dirt and debris fell right out when we did, with the exception of a small bit of hair that we could remove with our fingers. The filter is also easy to remove and clean, too. Overall, we had no major issues with this model, and if you have the budget, it’s an especially good choice for a household that doesn’t want to fuss with or store extra attachments.
Price at time of publish: 108
Weight: 2.5 pounds | Battery Life: 15 minutes | Bin Volume: Not listed | Included Accessories: None (crevice tool is built-in)
Best for Pet Hair
Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Handheld Vacuum
We loved using the BLACKDECKER Furbuster AdvancedClean Handheld Vacuum to suck up pet hair from hardwood flooring, carpet, and upholstery in our tests. This vacuum weighs under 2 pounds, so even older kids could use it to pick up messes and help with a cleaning routine. Despite its lightweight design, this vac has a large-capacity dust bin, which means fewer trips to the trash can while cleaning. Although this vacuum tackled pet hair without issues, we found that the motorized brush head isn’t great for picking up kibble and larger material. We recommend extending the crevice tool (pre-attached to the vacuum) to pick up any heftier debris.
We also noted that hair tangled on the brush head as we used it, but it was easy to remove. We recommend regularly checking the brush head and cleaning it after each use so the vacuum performs at its best and lasts longer. Unlike other handheld vacuums, this pick also features a power boost mode, which increases suction. A battery indicator on the handle lets you know how much power is left before the vacuum needs to be recharged. It also has an impressive battery life of up to 17 minutes. All in all, we consider this model to be an excellent vacuum for pet hair, especially because of its effectiveness and easy-to-use features.
Price at time of publish: 80
Weight: 2.6 pounds | Battery Life: 17 minutes | Bin Volume: 23.67 ounces | Included Accessories: Motorized brush head, crevice tool
Best With Hose
BlackDecker BDH2020FL Cordless Gen 2 Flex Vac
While you might not think of a hose when you first imagine a dustbuster, we think the BLACKDECKER 20V Max Flex Handheld Vacuum is worth considering. We confirmed in our testing that unlike other options on this list, you’ll need to use two hands to operate it (one to hold the motor and one to vacuum with the hose). Still, we rated it highly as a compact, multi-surface handheld vacuum with a lightweight and flexible design. We were impressed by its power, too—it even earned the top spot in our guide to the best car vacuums. The 4-foot hose can get into all of those hard-to-reach spots in your car and in your home, like behind your couch or in between cushions. With such intense suction, you don’t have to worry about it missing any crumbs.
We appreciated how well this dustbuster sucked up all of the debris without losing any power in our tests, and that we didn’t have to empty the large dust bin. In short, it performs similarly to a standard-sized vacuum but with greater portability and efficiency. One potential drawback is that the battery only lasted eight minutes
The intuitive pet hair attachment tool is a game-changer. It sucked up hair from all four surfaces we tested it on, and the hair didn’t get tangled in its hose or dust bin. When you’re done using it, the hose wraps around the machine for easy, compact storage, which is a clever feature that any household can benefit from.
Since it’s on the pricey side and it requires the use of two hands, it won’t be an ideal fit for everyone—but if you have the budget for it and think you could benefit from a handheld vacuum with a hose, it’s an excellent choice.
Price at time of publish: 119
Weight: 3.2 pounds | Battery Life: Not listed | Bin Volume: 17 ounces | Included Accessories: 2-in-1 nozzle brush, pet hair attachment
Best for Home Office
Tzumi 7.4-Volt Ion Vac Wireless Handheld Rechargeable Vacuum Cleaner
This tiny, lightweight vacuum checked almost all of the boxes for an ideal handheld unit, and its small size and clever attachments make it an excellent choice for cleaning home office surfaces. It weighs only 1 pound, and the handle is easy to grip when zapping up multiple messes. Even though it’s small, the dust bin is surprisingly large in proportion. It completed all of our tests before needing to be emptied. When it came time to empty the dust bin, the process was incredibly simple and mess-free. The filter came out with no issues, which is a big perk when it comes to frequent use. Upon additional testing, we noted that this vacuum wouldn’t be good for sucking up larger debris like Cheerios.
This dustbuster comes with a long crevice tool that makes it easy to get into tight spaces, like behind computer cords or between sofa cushions. It also comes with a brush attachment that’s great for suctioning dust from computer keyboards. It’s also very quiet, so you can squeeze in a quick clean without disrupting your partner or sleeping children. While it’s great that it comes with a USB charging cord, there is no wall plug-in, so you’ll have to use one that you already own or charge it from your computer or car USB port. Overall, we can’t guarantee this vacuum will overwhelm you with its performance, but if you’re looking for a vacuum for small messes around your desk space, it can get the job done.
Price at time of publish: 24
Weight: 1 pound | Battery Life: 15 minutes | Bin Volume: 3.38 ounces | Included Accessories: Brush tool, crevice tool
Nicebay Handheld Cordless Vacuum
- Detailed display
- Accessories storage on charging dock
- Sleek design and color choices
- Strong suction and angled opening
- Didn’t perform as well with raisins
- Small dust bin must be disassembled to empty
This Nicebay dustbuster was a worthy competitor in The Lab, scoring high marks on most of our tests and showing strong, effective suction power. What makes it unique in our eyes is the detailed display, which gives you a read of its battery status, power level, dust bin capacity, and more. If you want to take the guesswork out of your vacuum’s performance, the display is a huge asset. Other features we appreciate in this model’s design include an angled opening, which we found useful for crevices, and the included attachments. This dustbuster struggled to suck up sticky raisins in our testing—but it wasn’t the only model we experienced this with, so we’re taking the issue with a grain of salt. The manufacturer also touts a HEPA filter, too, which may come in handy for removing allergens from the air.
Now, while the full price of this vacuum is higher than the others on this list (including our recommendation for best splurge), we frequently see it discounted in the 60 to 80 range, so keep an eye out for a good deal. The other potential downside we encountered in testing was the small dustbin, which we had to empty seven times in our testing. Overall though, there are more pros than cons to this machine, and if you fancy the extra information in the display, we think you’ll enjoy using it.
Price at time of publish: 200
Weight: 1.24 pounds | Battery Life: 13 minutes | Bin Volume: Not listed | Included Accessories: Brush tool, crevice tool
We Still Recommend
Hoover ONEPWR Cordless Handheld Vacuum Cleaner
- Powerful suction
- Large dust bin is easy to empty
- Tapered nozzle fits into most spaces
At one time, the Hoover ONEPWR Cordless Handheld Vacuum Cleaner held the top spot of best overall vacuum on this list. While that’s no longer the case, we still recommend it because it proved powerful, easy to use, and reliable in our testing. Setup took us less than two minutes, and the detachable battery pack is super-convenient if you’re short on space. When it was time to run this dustbuster through the mess test, its powerful suction surprised us, and it seemed to inhale everything in its path. Thanks to the large dust bin, we didn’t have to run to the trash can mid-test—it sucked up all the debris from every surface and still had room for more. This dustbuster also excelled in the maneuverability test, and we were able to run it along baseboards, over and around a coffee table, and in between couch cushions with ease. On top of its reliable performance, the extra-large dust bin is easy to empty and mess-free.
While we were blown away by its performance, we also recognize that this dustbuster is one of the more expensive options out there. However, we think it’s worth the investment. The detachable battery pack adds convenience but also a little bit of weight, so this is not the most lightweight dustbuster on our list. However, its performance was so top-notch that we even used it to vacuum up the debris that other vacuums left behind during testing.
Price at time of publish: 100
Weight: 3 pounds | Battery Life: 15 minutes | Bin Volume: Not listed | Included Accessories: Battery pack, crevice tool
For power, performance, and reliability, the Shark UltraCyclone Pro Cordless Handheld Vacuum is an excellent choice. Its powerful suction and large dust bin are hard to find in other handheld models, and when testing, we enjoyed that the tapered nozzle allows for efficient cleaning. If you’re looking to spend a little less on a dustbuster, consider the BLACKDECKER Cordless Lithium Hand Vacuum. In our experience, this vac is extremely lightweight, easy to use, and a great value.
Other Options We Tested
eufy by Anker HomeVac H30 Mate Cordless Handheld Vacuum: This vacuum has an eye-catching design, and while it started strong in our tests on hardwood and high-pile carpet, by the end, it was struggling to pick up debris, and the nozzle kept getting clogged. It’s undoubtedly chic-looking and lightweight, and while we marveled at the design, the high price tag was disappointing. We expected a more consistent, powerful performance for such an expensive vacuum. Tineco Pure One Mini S4 Smart Handheld Vacuum: This vacuum would look great sitting in your kitchen corner for easy access. However, its low performance might leave you reaching for a different dustbuster. It worked well on hardwood and high-pile carpet but could not successfully pick up the debris from medium or low-pile carpet. Getting the opening at just the right angle for it to work correctly was a challenge. Dirt Devil Scorpion Boost Bundle Corded Handheld Vacuum: There was only one thing that kept this vacuum from making our top picks list. It performed very well on various surfaces during our testing, but the plastic crevice tool broke mid-test, so we couldn’t include it in our favorites. Otherwise, this corded vacuum works very well, and the cord is long enough to clean a good-sized room without switching outlets.
How We Tested the Dustbusters
We’ve tested over 30 dustbusters side-by-side in The Lab and at home. During our Lab tests, we started by evaluating the time it took to unbox, assemble, and charge the vacuums. Dustbusters that were ready to use immediately got extra marks over those that were wrapped in excessive plastic with confusing instructions. After setup, we put the dustbusters through a series of tests on hardwood and carpet. We evaluated how quickly they sucked up various scattered debris, including Cheerios and hair, from the different surfaces. In some cases, we tested their performance on upholstered seating and car seats. Throughout, we noted whether the vacuums’ effectiveness changed as the tests went on. We also noted how long it took for the dust bin to fill up during this process and whether any materials got tangled inside or clogged the appliance. As we put all of the dustbusters through the mess tests, we evaluated their maneuverability—and rated their weight and portability. We also tested their design and attachments to see whether they were helpful in gathering debris. We also evaluated each appliance’s noise level to see whether we could comfortably hold a conversation over it, and the ease of emptying the various dust bins and removing the filters. At the end of our testing, we compared each price point to each respective dustbuster’s overall performance to rate the overall value of the product and determine whether the price tag was fair. When all was said and done, our editors boiled down all of our insights from The Lab and additional tests that were conducted at home, where the vacs were tasked with real-world situations, to create this list of dustbusters that we believe are the very best.
What to Look for in a Dustbuster
Most dustbusters are relatively lightweight (around 1 to 3 pounds), but some may be a little heftier and uncomfortable to hold, so you’ll want to consider that when searching for your perfect vacuum. A heavier model will be less maneuverable and difficult to operate for extended periods. It might not be the best option if you’re planning to complete a deep clean of your house and suction up messes in overhead areas or often-neglected corners. Attachments and battery packs are often sources of added weight, so keep that in mind if you’re interested in a dustbuster with these features. Our picks for best overall, runner-up and best for home offices, the IRIS USA Handheld Vacuum and the Tzumi 7.4-Volt Ion Vac Wireless Handheld Vacuum, both scored highly for their maneuverability and lightweight designs, which allowed our testers to clean between cushions and around tight corners.
All of the dustbusters on this list are battery-powered, rechargeable models, but dustbusters can technically be corded or cordless. While portability is one of the most appealing features of batteries, you shouldn’t count out corded options just because they have a limited range of mobility, especially if you hope to use your vac very regularly. Consider where and for how long you’re planning to use your vac, to find the right power source option for you. Corded models might be slightly less convenient to operate than cordless ones, since you’ll need to be close to an outlet, but you won’t have to stop and charge it. In contrast, cordless models can clean virtually anywhere but usually need to be recharged after about roughly 15 to 20 minutes of use.
If you want a lightweight tool that can clean up sudden, albeit small, messes, you might not be concerned about what else comes with your dustbuster. However, if you’re hoping to clean tight crevices, furniture, or overhead areas with your vacuum, make sure you choose one with the proper attachments. Upholstery brushes and crevice tools are common attachments that will make your machine much more versatile. Some of the best handheld vacuums feature hoses for more maneuvrability. We’re also fans of extendable nozzles that allow you to get into tight crevices, without the extra effort of using an attachment, like what you’ll find on the BLACKDECKER HHVK515J00FF, our best splurge pick.
In our experience, HEPA filters are less common in dustbusters than in the best full-size vacuums, so you may want to consider this as you shop. It is very important, especially for individuals with environmental allergies, such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, and conjunctivitis, to choose a vacuum with a HEPA filter, says Dr. Denise Ferastraoaru, M.D. and allergist at Montefiore Health System. HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air, and a HEPA filter can remove over 99 percent of dust, pollen, mold, bacteria, and other small airborne particles.
Pet Hair Attachments
Clever attachments, such as small brush tools for cleaning keyboards, or crevice tools for accessing tight corners, are helpful. However, what really stood out among our tested dustbusters, were the pet hair attachments. These attachments can scrape up pet hair from even high-pile carpet and can often suck up the hair without tangling or knotting it up in the vacuum itself. If your household has one or more furry friends, you’ll want to consider a dustbuster with a pet hair attachment, to efficiently and effectively clean surfaces in your home or car, or wherever your pet hangs out.
Including attachments is often standard practice, but top-notch (though maybe more expensive) dustbusters also build attachment storage into their designs. The charging base may have a spot for attachments, or the actual dustbuster might house the attachment in the form of a flip-down brush tool or a pull-out crevice tool. If you’re limited on storage space or just concerned about potentially losing the attachments that come with your vacuum, consider a pick with this type of storage, like the IRIS USA Handheld Vacuum.
Every vacuum cleaner should be cleaned regularly, and a dustbuster is no exception. To clean your dustbuster, start by emptying the dust bin or throwing away the dust bag. If your model uses a permanent filter, remove it during that step, and plan to clean it on its own. While some filters can be rinsed under water, others should not get wet, so refer to your owner’s manual for any specific filter-cleaning instructions. You can wipe out the interior of the vacuum with a dust rag or, if the manufacturer allows, wash it with soap and water. Let all parts dry before reassembling the dustbuster and using it again.
How often you need to change your dustbuster’s filter will depend on how much you use it, but one good rule of thumb is to change it out every six months if you use it often. However, if you notice any loss of suction before then, you might need a new filter. If there is damage to the filter, a musty smell, or too much dust or hair, then it must be changed immediately to keep it working at maximum capacity, adds Ferastraoaru.
A loss of suction may also indicate a dying battery that needs replacing. Check your manual to learn what type of battery you should order for replacement. Some models might require professional battery replacement, while others might not offer replacement batteries at all. Once you have a new battery ready to install, run your vac until the current battery completely loses its charge. Then, depending on the model, either slide the battery away from the body of the appliance or open the housing area for the battery, and gently pull it loose. Put the new battery in its place, close up the housing area, and recycle the old battery.
You will need a screwdriver to take the dustbuster apart and access the battery pack in order to change it. If your BLACKDECKER dustbuster uses a lithium battery, it may be difficult to replace without the help of a soldering iron, as these battery packs are sometimes fixed in place. Try opening up the machine to assess the situation before ordering a new battery.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was originally written by Erin Johnson, a commerce editor who previously focused on appliances, organization, and cleaning products at The Spruce. She tested and reviewed multiple vacuums, mops, and other appliances for Real Simple, Better Homes Gardens, and Southern Living. For this article, she helped test 30 dustbusters side-by-side in The Lab and then took insights from Lab and at-home testers into account when curating the list of our top picks. She also interviewed Dr. Denise Ferastraoaru, M.D., an allergist at Montefiore Health System, on what to look for in a dustbuster and when to change your filter from a health perspective.
Dena Ogden, commerce writer at The Spruce, updated this piece and contributed additional research. She reviewed new testing insights from The Lab to carefully select products to include on this list. She’s been writing professionally since 2016 and with The Spruce since August 2022. She’s yet to give up on the handheld setting of her traditional vacuum, but seeing the results of the dustbuster testing has her rethinking that life choice.
What Is Spruce Approved?
Here at The Spruce, we want to ensure we fully stand behind every product we recommend and that when we say something is the best, we mean it. You might have noticed The Spruce Approved badge next to the products on this list. Every product with this badge has been rigorously tested in person and carefully selected by our expert team of lab testers and editors. In most cases, we buy all these products ourselves, though occasionally, we get samples provided to us directly by companies. No matter how we procure products, they all go through the same tests and must meet the same strict criteria to make the best-of cut.
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