First check the charging system before looking at ways to avoid fixing the problem. Measure the battery voltage with the engine running. It must be between 13.75 and 14.75 volts. If it is, have the system professionally load-tested. If all the generator will deliver is exactly one third of its rated output current, it has a bad diode. The battery will have to supply the extra needed current, and that will slowly run it down while you're driving. If the load-test shows normal output, suspect something is draining the battery while the engine is off.
It sounds like the things you're referring to are for charging a dead battery to get the engine started. None of those are strong enough to start a car engine directly. They are intended to be connected to a partially-drained battery to charge it enough over a minute or two to allow it to start the engine.
GM and Ford V-8 engines require about 200 - 250 amps to crank the engine. Chrysler V-8s require around 150 amps. Double that number to get the minimum cold cranking amps for the battery size. A 500 cca battery is sufficient. Bigger is better but it comes at an added cost. If your engine starts easily, you may never realize any benefit of a bigger cca battery.
Thursday, March 7th, 2013 AT 8:49 PM