Driving around with a good set of jumper cables assures that at some point you’ll be the hero.
Whether it’s saving a family trip or the day of a stranger, good working cables can be a port in the storm.
But what exactly constitutes “good” jumper cables? Here’s a hint: probably not the ones you bought way back when for $10. When it comes to jumper cables, it’s all about the gauge, which is essentially the thickness of the cable inside the insulation. And in this case, the lower the gauge number the thicker (and more effective) the cable. It means less amp and voltage loss when it comes to using them.
In general #10 is not so great, #8 is sufficient in most cases, #6 is even better, and #4 is probably more than you’ll need – unless you’re jumping semi.
Once you nail the gauge, you’ll want to pay close attention to the quality of the clamps. The more sturdy the clamps, the better they’ll hold – natch. And if they’ve got teeth and a tight grip, it’s more likely they’ll stay put. Also, solid rubber-coated handles will lessen the chance of shock, which is always nice.
Finally, forget what you’ve been told about cable length… It matters. While you want enough length to comfortably reach two vehicles, especially those which might not always be nose-to-nose, you don’t want cables that are so long that they lead to amp and voltage loss. Cables of at least 12’ in length are acceptable, with 15’ to 18’ providing even greater flexibility.
Even with a great set of jumper cables, however, there’s always the chance there’s not enough juice to get a vehicle going. This is when professional roadside assistance is required. An why not make it on-demand assistance so you can cut out the waiting around?
That’s where Urgent.ly comes in, with on-demand assistance following a few taps on your phone. Just tap and watch as our pro jumpers come to the rescue, and you can leave the worrying about gauges and length to us.
Get Urgent.y for iPhone here.
For all other phone types, request help here.