Jumping a dead battery is very simple, but you’d be surprised by the number of drivers who have no clue how to jumpstart a car. You never know when you’ll need help a damsel in distress or help yourself back on the road.
You may have learned the method to jumpstart a car before but you may not remember the correct way to do it.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you jumpstart a car like a pro and avoid shocking yourself in the process.
What You Need
1. A set of jumpstart cables. 2. Another car with a working battery parked nose to nose with your car.
How to Jumpstart Your Car Safely
1. Turn off the engine, headlights, AC and radio on both cars.
2. Attach one of the red clamps to the positive terminal of the dead battery. The positive terminal is usually covered with a red cap. Remove the cap from the terminal before attaching the cable.
3. Attach the other red clamp to the positive terminal of the good battery in the other car.
4. Attach one of the black clamps to the negative terminal of the good battery.
5. Lastly, attach the other black clamp to the negative terminal of the dead battery. CAUTION: For your safety, refer to the car manual for where you should attach the negative cable. (Some cars are designed to have it’s battery hidden. You will need to attach the clamp to the designated terminals)
6. Now, start the car with the good battery and let it run for a few minutes.
7. Try to start your car. If your car still won’t start, leave it to charge for another few minutes. TIP: Charging time is affected by the quality of the jumpstart cable that you are using. Read here for how to choose a set of good jumpstart cables.
8. Once your car is started, remove the cables in reverse order you attached them.
9. Drive your car or let the engine run for at least 30 minutes to recharge your battery.
If you think jumping your car battery is something you should not do by yourself, leave it to the experts. One wrong step could fry your car’s control unit and you would end up paying for more than just a car battery.