Clarke 4000 Jump Start Review. What do you need, more portability or more power. Generally speaking, the more powerful a jump starter is, the bigger it is. So in that regard, the Clarke 4000 Heavy-Duty Jump Start is packing much more power than the hundreds of hand-held jump starters that are out there. The Clarke 4000 is still portable, but weighing in at around 17KG, it’s certainly not something that can compete with’ the mini handhelds when it comes to easy concealment.
But that’s the compromise you have to make to ensure maximum starting power. Sure, on paper some of the little guys claim to have a seriously high specification, and some are impressive. But the truth is, in reality most are lacking the sheer power needed to start the really big petrol and diesel engines.
The Clarke 4000 Jump Start boasts a maximum turn-over capability of being able to safely start up to a 6 litre petrol and 4 litre diesel. Because its known for high power, there is a little bit of confusion with potential buyers as to whether its compatible and safe to use on smaller engines. The answer is yes, it can safely be used to start engines of all sizes lower than the stated maximums.
Anything over the maximum engine sizes and it will more than likely fail to start the car. And usually with jump starters, its wise to shave a litre off each end of what the manufacturer claims it will start. But, in saying that, there are quite a few people who have reported using the Clarke 4000 on petrol engines well within the 4.5 litre to 5.5 litre range with close to a 100% success rate. That also goes for diesel engines within the 2.8L – 3.5L range, too.
Whilst not without some unhappy customers (show me a product that doesn’t have some), take a thorough look at the customer reviews for the 4000 and you will see that the cordless Clarke 4000 has managed to consistently start some seriously big engines. From the big diesel Range Rovers and vans, to the powerful petrol engine Audi’s, BMW’s, TVR’s and Jaguars (XF, XK8 etc).
These reviews are frequent online wherever you look. One buyer even uses this model for jump starting a variety of industrial farming vehicles. Which Caravan Magazine rated this model as an excellent buy, or “best buy” in their own words. So it’s definitely one of the top products in its category and price range.
Build quality is good for the price. It’s a tough, robust item that will last many years if treated with respect. Although the front stickers (main branding illustration and warning sign at the top) are known to peel off. Not really a big deal though, as long as the item itself doesn’t fall apart, right? This unit is all about power. If you’ve had your fair share of smaller portable jump starters in the past and they have struggled to start your car because of its big engine size, this is the item you need to invest in.
Clarke 4000 Heavy Duty Jump Start Specification
- 1500Amp peak power output
- Max starting power – 6 Litre Petrol / 4 Litre Diesel
- Instant battery energy level test button (with gauge / needle indicator)
- Charging indicator lights (Red: Charging – Green: Fully charged)
- Audible incorrect polarity (terminals connected the wrong way round)
- Low battery alarm
- Battery Isolator switch
- 1 meter long lead length
- Front facing torch-light
- Chargeable via mains or car auxiliary socket (both adaptors included)
- 1 year warranty
The one potential weak point on all car battery jump starters / boosters, whether big heavy-duty models like this one or cheaper priced models for starting smaller engines, is the shelf life of their internal battery. This is the backbone of all portable jump starters, so its essential that a good quality battery is used in order to get a device that can potentially help you out for a good few years.
If a low quality battery is used, the ability to retain a charge over a long period of time is significantly diminished. This also applies to how many times the battery can be recharged before reaching the end of its life. With most portable jump starters once the internal battery pack doesn’t charge anymore, or can’t hold a charge for very long, it’s the end of the line, and a new device will need to purchased. This is because for most of these products they come with what they come with, and that’s one internal battery that’s not easily replaceable.
In that regard, these products are much like Tablets and Smartphones, where if you want to replace the internal battery, you will need to either source the battery and do the job yourself, or take it to a professional, which, with the price of the new battery added to the labour for fitting, will most probably cost you more money than if you were to just buy a newer model.
Clarke Replacement Power Pack
Thankfully, the Clarke 4000 does not fall into this category. Once you get to the point where the internal battery is starting to get weaker you can just buy a replacement. Fitting is fairly straight forward. But be warned, they are not cheap. However, for what they cost, and considering the amount of power you get from the Clarke 4000, the price comparison to other models would be a good quality, but much smaller in size and power 600A – 800A (15000mAh – 18000mAh) unit.
So really, it makes sense to buy the replacement battery, that is, if you have been happy with the Clarke 4000 and have had considerable usage from it before needing to replace the battery.
I mention this because out of the huge amount of extremely happy users of this item, unfortunately there has been a few reported cases of this unit failing to charge after a short period of ownership. In many cases this is most probably due to a faulty charger, battery cell damage from a knock / fall, or the internal battery being low or empty of any power and not being charged for a long time.
This can lead to a strange case of permanent cell damage from the long period of dormancy that can see the unit totally refuse to accept a charge. To prevent the issue of irreversible dormancy make sure you give the unit a charge every few months.
Please note: These issues are rare, and you most probably won’t encounter any of these problems. But if you do this item is covered by a 12 month warranty, so you can either send it back to be repaired, or potentially be given a refund. All things considered, this is an excellent product if sheer power is one of your main requirements.