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#1
Old 12-20-2013, 06:40 PM
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Using Electricity from home to charge car battery

It there an appliance that can be plugged into a 15 amp outlet in the house and connect to an auto via the cigarette lighter to jump start the battery? I have searched in Google and just come up with gizmos to charge a cell phone in the car.

Thanks
#2
Old 12-20-2013, 06:46 PM
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It's much easier to go down to ye ol local auto parts store and buy a battery charger. You plug it into your handy dandy 15 amp outlet, and connect the clips on the charger leads to the battery posts, and let it charge for a while.

Why do you want it to plug into the cigarette lighter? Are you certain that your car doesn't switch off that circuit when it isn't running?
#3
Old 12-20-2013, 06:47 PM
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There's this and this, for example.

But why not just use a regular battery charger?
#4
Old 12-20-2013, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
There's this and this, for example.

But why not just use a regular battery charger?
CT, notice that these only charge the battery, They cannot jump start the car. The wires for a lighter aren't heavy enough for that amount of current.
#5
Old 12-20-2013, 07:21 PM
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I want to be able to jump start the car by myself without using another vehicle or calling roadside assistance.
I do not know anything about cars but I observed a few things today that need an explanation.

Today the battery was dead. Just a tiny click when I turned the key. No dash lights. However while waiting the three hours for wrecker the overhead light came on. I quickly turned it off. Then the dash lights came on. I tried to start it again. This time is made a squealing groaning sound and the dash lights went out again.

Does a car battery come back to life on its own after dying???

I know the reason the battery drained was due to accidentally leaving the overhead light on for a couple of days.

It almost seemed as if the very act of trying to start the car woke the battery enough for the light to come back on and turning it off made the battery start to recharge itself.

The road side assistance guy used a portable thing that he clamped to the battery but did not connect to his car.
#6
Old 12-20-2013, 07:29 PM
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You can get a portable booster that you can keep in your trunk.
#7
Old 12-20-2013, 07:40 PM
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You can't jump start your car through the cigarette lighter. You can jump start yourself, but you still need two vehicles. What you describe in this last post would be consistent with a low voltage condition. You know what you did, and that's the price you paid. If your car is a manual, have someone show you how to bump-start it, that'll save you sometimes.
#8
Old 12-20-2013, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
Does a car battery come back to life on its own after dying???
A little. When you discharge a battery quickly enough, you deplete the charge mostly from the surface of the plates. If the battery sits for a while, some of the charge from the interior of the plates will migrate to the surface, allowing the battery to recharge a bit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
The road side assistance guy used a portable thing that he clamped to the battery but did not connect to his car.
Yep. As randompattern said, you can buy these too. You need to recharge them periodically (you can't just shove it in your trunk and have it jump start your car ten years later). A decent one will run you about $100 at your local auto parts store. Some have an air pump for your tires in them as well.

This is probably what you really want. They don't make them so that they plug into the cigarette lighter. As runner pat said you can't get enough current through the cigarette lighter wires to jump the car without melting the wires.
#9
Old 12-20-2013, 08:09 PM
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There are jumper cables that plug into cigarette lighters but I've only seen them from car to car. However they won't start the car. Rather you have to leave them plugged into both cars for 15 to 30 minutes to charge the dead battery enough.

As other's mentioned, many cigarette lighters are controlled by the ignition switch. You need to have the ignition in accessory mode to get electricity to flow through it.

You can buy a jump starting pack which you keep in your trunk. However you need to remember to recharge it frequently.
#10
Old 12-20-2013, 08:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
The road side assistance guy used a portable thing that he clamped to the battery but did not connect to his car.
That was a portable jump starter. Charge it in the house, and you can carry it to the car to jump-start it. The link is one I found by going to amazon and searching battery booster.
#11
Old 12-20-2013, 10:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randompattern View Post
You can get a portable booster that you can keep in your trunk.
And I thought you were genuinely pleased to see me!
#12
Old 12-22-2013, 08:13 PM
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The 'portable booster' or 'portable jump starter' are really just another car battery in a portable container, with jumper cables built in. They need the same kind of care as a regular battery to keep them working -- keeping them charged, out of the cold, keeping cells primed, etc.

For a much cheaper price you can get a regular battery charger and a long extension cord. That will recharge your battery to get your car starter. Possibly not as fast, but more fully charges and better for the battery life.
#13
Old 12-22-2013, 09:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
The 'portable booster' or 'portable jump starter' are really just another car battery in a portable container, with jumper cables built in. They need the same kind of care as a regular battery to keep them working -- keeping them charged, out of the cold, keeping cells primed, etc.

For a much cheaper price you can get a regular battery charger and a long extension cord. That will recharge your battery to get your car starter. Possibly not as fast, but more fully charges and better for the battery life.
Where? That is what I want! I've tried googling for it and all I get is pages and pages of cell charges.

I don't anticipate leaving the car light on again; but if I do I would rather charge it from my house power if that is possible.
#14
Old 12-22-2013, 09:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerrySTL View Post
There are jumper cables that plug into cigarette lighters but I've only seen them from car to car. However they won't start the car. Rather you have to leave them plugged into both cars for 15 to 30 minutes to charge the dead battery enough.

As other's mentioned, many cigarette lighters are controlled by the ignition switch. You need to have the ignition in accessory mode to get electricity to flow through it.
It is actually worse than that. On some cars the cig lighter circuit is only on when the computer network is up and running (accessory or run position of the key) which draws 11-15 amps just by itself. This makes car to car cig lighter "chargers" totally useless.

To the OP, search automotive battery chargers @ Amazon, and you won't get cell chargers.
If you want a battery booster pack, this one is Awesome ( I just bought one to keep in the car) jumps your car, and charges your cell phone
#15
Old 12-22-2013, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by watchwolf49 View Post
You can't jump start your car through the cigarette lighter. You can jump start yourself, but you still need two vehicles. What you describe in this last post would be consistent with a low voltage condition. You know what you did, and that's the price you paid. If your car is a manual, have someone show you how to bump-start it, that'll save you sometimes.
(emphasis added)
That would be real handy for me! I often wish I could jump start myself when I get out of bed in the morning!
#16
Old 12-22-2013, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by njtt View Post
And I thought you were genuinely pleased to see me!
Of course!
#17
Old 12-22-2013, 10:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadjun View Post
(emphasis added)
That would be real handy for me! I often wish I could jump start myself when I get out of bed in the morning!
keep your espresso machine loaded and next to your bed ready for a button push.
#18
Old 12-22-2013, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
Where? That is what I want! I've tried googling for it and all I get is pages and pages of cell charges.
I'd expect any auto parts store should carry them. Failing that, try places that sell fishing equipment. Lots of people use them to charge the battery for a trolling motor.
#19
Old 12-22-2013, 11:04 PM
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In Canada, any Canadian Tire or similar auto supply store would have them - called "trickle chargers " to distinguish from a jump charger.
#20
Old 12-22-2013, 11:38 PM
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Just as a cautionary note once a car battery has been run down all the way a few times it will often be damaged enough that it cannot hold a proper a charge. Getting a new battery from Walmart or similar is sometimes the best course of action if the battery has been run down multiple times. It's a lot cheaper than a tow and in winter being stranded is no picnic.
#21
Old 12-23-2013, 03:17 AM
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Many year ago I bough a cart-style charger-starter.
Figured I'd use the "start" function 2 or 3 times.

Turns out, the "Start" function is all it ever gets used for.

To properly charge a battery, set the charge rate to 2 amps and run it overnight. A slow, deep charge will produce a more durable charge than a 2-hour @ 15 amp.

I would STRONGLY recommend the portable pack type unit. Keep it in the trunk; if you use it, put it on the floor of the passenger side - seeing it there will remind you to charge it (2 amps overnight!).

The additional functionality of air compressor make this a no-brainer.

I used to carry a spare battery, jumper cables, and an air tank when traveling long distances.
Took up a lot of space.
The same functionality is now available in the format of a large purse of small attache case.
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