Vector Informative - Don't Buy - Start-It Elite Jump-Start System

Review by Slimjim on 2006-11-03
I always keep a good portable 12 volt jumping system at my house. Not only are they great when we lose battery power in our main cars, but I have a boat and a few collectible autos that certainly are susceptible of not starting after sitting for awhile. I also make sure the unit I have has a built in compressor for low tire emergencies and other inflatable conveniences. My previous one was too old and the unit could no longer hold enough charge to start a dead vehicle. I couldn't find a replacement battery for it, so I requested a new one as a birthday gift a few months back, and this is the one I was given.
If you're in the market to pick up a portable jump starter, don't get this one. First off, the compressor, which never worked well (15 minutes to inflate a tire by 5 psi), just went completely. Second, while it will start a car, it has a unique feature that instead of having a switch that charges the jumper cables once they are hooked to the dead battery to be jumped, it activates itself once it feels the voltage from the dead battery and assures the jumpers aren't crossed. So when we left something on in the car and drained the battery stone dead, this thing wasn't any help because there wasn't enough juice in the battery to be jumped to activate the units flow switch. I had to actually take a trickle charger and somewhat charge the dead battery first before I could get this to start it. "In my opinion", this is an absolutely ridiculous design, making the thing useless in an emergency where someone left their lights on or the like. My tips for getting one of these instant power packs-first don't buy this one or any that require the battery to be jumped to have at least 2 volts available still in it. Get one with the switch and just be careful hooking up the cables. Second, see if you can find one that offers replacement batteries. They do get old and it helps save money than throwing the whole thing away. 3. Get one with a compressor.
Comments:10 Replies - Latest reply on 2010-10-25
Posted by glc on 2006-11-03:
SlimJim: Good review, sounds like it is a waste of time. Sometimes, adding a "safety" feature, instead of an on/off switch, precludes the usefullness of the item.
Posted by Slimjim on 2006-11-03:
Thanks glc. I can't stress that enough with this thing. I actually had to charge the battery to get it to work. Good thing the car was in the drive by a plug. Wouldn't have been any good after a late night movie in a sparse parking lot.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-03:
Yes Slim I agree good review and good advice. I live out in the country and I need a compressor and a good jump starter. I can use this post as a starting point. Thanks
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-03:
As a follow-up slim, consider contacting the manufacturer regarding this problem. It's unlikely you were the only purchaser of this faulty product. Additionally, do as I do and remove the batteries from your collectible cars and keep them in a common safe zone, where you can alternatively trickle charge them. That way when you get the whim to fire up the Duesenberg, just seat the batttery and go.
Posted by Slimjim on 2006-11-03:
It's the design pirate. I don't think the manufacturer is going to retool the unit because of my email so the best they could do is send me another one- with the same inherited problem. Why would I take the batteries out of my cars anyway? Couldn't I just trickle charge them in the cars?
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-03:
Safety first slim. I suppose it depends on what your definition of "collectible" is. I know I wouldn't want to leave a trickle charger dangling over the fender of my vintage rides. Why take the risk of a short or battery leakage, etc., in cars that only come out of the bay on summer sundays or holidays. But hey, do what you want. In regards to the charging unit, perhaps they've developed a fix-it or a work-around, worth a shot don't you think? then you can edit and update your informative and really help those you've alerted.
Posted by Slimjim on 2006-11-03:
LOL no pirate, the same model is the current one they sell today, my trickle charger's cables are long enough not to have to sit on the fender, and I exercise my cars all year. I am simply telling those who may be looking for a portable starting unit the disadvantages of this one. Anything else not relevant to the post you would like to argue about?
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-04:
Just because you Valet cars, doesn't make you a vintage car owner, lol!
Posted by bigbangerik on 2006-11-04:
i have a rayovac, compressor, lights, radio, the works. got it at auoto zone. works like a dream. check it out :)
good luck
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-10-25:
Outstanding review!

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