What the proper way to hook up jumper cables
It's disheartening when you settle into the driver's seat ready to go to work or visit friends, turn the key in your ignition, and nothing happens. It is usually a sign that your battery is dead and just needs a jump. Although this is a simple fix, it is important to hook the jumper cables up properly to get the desired result of a running vehicle without harming any of its electrical components. Open hood of both vehicles - First you need to find where the batteries in each car are located. Do not enlist the help of a donor car with a higher-voltage battery than yours because it could damage your vehicle's electrical systems. Check if jumper cables reach between vehicles - Be sure that the length of your jumper cable will reach from the donor vehicle's battery to the other vehicle's dead battery.
How to Use a Jump Box to Safely Jump Start a Car
It's disheartening when you settle into the driver's seat ready to go to work or visit friends, turn the key in your ignition, and nothing happens. It is usually a sign that your battery is dead and just needs a jump. Although this is a simple fix, it is important to hook the jumper cables up properly to get the desired result of a running vehicle without harming any of its electrical components.
Open hood of both vehicles - First you need to find where the batteries in each car are located. Do not enlist the help of a donor car with a higher-voltage battery than yours because it could damage your vehicle's electrical systems. Check if jumper cables reach between vehicles - Be sure that the length of your jumper cable will reach from the donor vehicle's battery to the other vehicle's dead battery. Re-park the donor vehicle for the cables to reach, if necessary.
Switch off electrical components - Turn all electrical components off, such as the radio or interior lights, in both vehicles. This ensures all of the available charge in the donor vehicle will be transferred to the dead battery without any additional demands. If, however, the donor vehicle is parked in a dangerous spot, it is advisable to leave emergency flashers on. Prepare the vehicles. Prepare jumper cables - Separate the jumper cables where none of the clamps are in contact with each other.
Locate terminals - Note which battery terminal is positive and which is negative on the batteries in each vehicle. These colors correspond with the appropriate clamps on the jumper cables. If, upon this inspection, you suspect your battery is frozen from cold temperatures, often indicated by a bulging appearance to the sides, do not attempt to jump it because it could potentially explode. Attach positive terminals - Attach one of the red clamps to the positive terminal of the dead battery and the other red clamp to the positive terminal of the donor battery.
Attach negative terminal and ground - Attach the nearest black clamp to the negative terminal of the donor battery, then the other black clamp to the negative terminal of the dead battery or to an unpainted bolt on the engine block to create a ground. If the car does not start after being jumped, try reconnecting the cables in the case that one of them was not securely attached and repeat the process.
Remove negative cable - Remove the negative cable on the jumped vehicle and then the donor vehicle. Remove positive cable - Unclamp the positive cable on the donor vehicle and then the jumped vehicle. Let the jumped vehicle run for at least 15 minutes before turning it off. This allows enough charge to be stored for future use in the battery.
While your vehicle simply doing nothing when you turn the key is a common indication you must use jumper cables to start the engine, there are other cases when you may need to hook up these cables or otherwise pay attention to your battery. Some of these situations will require further action once the jumping process is complete, as outlined below. The batteries used in vehicles are standard lead-acid varieties. They are composed of two lead plates that make contact with a mixture of sulfuric acid and water; the positive plate has a lead dioxide coating while the negative plate is made of sponge lead.
The battery as a whole is capable of storing a charge but not creating it. When your vehicle operates properly, the battery produces the energy necessary to start the vehicle, and the alternator returns a charge to the battery for use the next time you turn the key in your ignition. If that stored charge is used up before you try to start your car or truck the next time by something like forgetting to turn off your headlights or leaving the radio on, then the battery needs to get a charge from another source.
Jumper cables deliver a charge from another running vehicle to your dead battery to get you back on the road again. If you find yourself needing to hook up jumper cables for a jump on a regular basis, however, you may need your battery serviced. Our mechanics are experienced in this type of service and can ensure that not only your battery is in tip-top condition but your battery cables, too. Feel free to contact YourMechanic is you need assistance or a jumpstart for your car.
Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2, U. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair. Share Tweet Pin. To use jumper cables to recharge your car battery, follow the steps below. How to use your jumper cables Open hood of both vehicles - First you need to find where the batteries in each car are located. Start donor car - Start the donor car, and allow it to run for a minute or two. Start the jumped car.
How to determine if further action is needed While your vehicle simply doing nothing when you turn the key is a common indication you must use jumper cables to start the engine, there are other cases when you may need to hook up these cables or otherwise pay attention to your battery. Why do car batteries die? The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details. Related Articles.
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If your battery has died, you may be able to use jumper cables to jump start it from As long as you hook up the cables properly, it doesn't matter whether your. How to Use Jumper Cables and Jump Start a Car the Right Way Connect one red clamp to the positive (+) battery post of the "dead" battery. teen driver out on the road, it might be worth it to sign up for roadside assistance.
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A co-worker needed a jump-start, and I thought I would be a good Samaritan and help her. I had to pull up next to her in the opposing traffic lane to be able to reach her battery.
A battery may fail for a number of reasons, some of which could present a hazard to anyone who tries to jump-start the battery. Here are four quick checks professional technicians and car lovers alike should do before trying to jump-start a battery. Check your safety.
Jumper cable mistake may be costly
Jump-starting your car's dead battery is easy and safe. You can do this. Locate the batteries on both the dead vehicle and the running vehicle they're usually under the hood, but may be in the trunk or elsewhere -- check your owner's manual. Park the operable vehicle next to the dead vehicle, close enough that the jumper cables can stretch between both vehicles' batteries. Ensure the ignitions on both vehicles are off. Returning to the inoperable car, attach the black clamp on that end to a piece of unpainted metal under the hood at least 1 foot away from the dead battery.
How to jump-start your car
A jump start , also called a boost , is a method of starting a vehicle with a discharged or dead battery. A temporary connection is made to the battery of another vehicle, or to some other external power source. The external supply of electricity recharges the disabled vehicle's battery and provides some of the power needed to crank the engine. Once the vehicle has been started, its normal charging system will recharge, so the auxiliary source can be removed. If the vehicle charging system is functional, normal operation of the vehicle will restore the charge of the battery. Motorists may carry jumper cables in case of accidental discharge of the vehicle battery for example, by headlights or ignition switch left on while the engine is not running. Safe procedures for connecting and disconnecting cables are given in the vehicle manual. The alligator clips may be covered in insulation to prevent inadvertent shorting.
A friend needed a jump-start the other day.
Knowing how to jump start a vehicle is an essential skill for every driver. Even if you are lucky enough to never be surprised by a dead battery, it will be nice to know that you can assist another driver in need if the opportunity arises.
How to Use Jumper Cables
It is inevitable that a dead battery can happen to anyone. Nothing is worse than being stranded with a dead battery and having to wait on someone to come help you. Jumper cables can be a life-saver and you can do the saving by following a few simple steps. Open both cars hoods and locate the batteries within both of them. Some batteries may be covered with plastic hoods, you need to remove these in order to connect the cables for the jump. The positive post is typically red, but not always. Always default by looking for the plus and minus symbols. Be sure to remove any dust or debris before applying the cable. Get out the jumper cables and connect one red clamp to the positive post of the dead battery. The clamp needs to be connected firmly. You should then clamp the matching end of the cable to the positive post on the working battery.
THERE'S RIGHT, WRONG WAY TO HOOK UP JUMPER CABLES
Has this ever happened to you? You turn the key and get ready to zoom away—but as you turn your ignition, nothing happens. A few clicks or stray sputters of your engine, maybe. But other than that? But actually, if you have the right equipment and a little bit of knowledge, you can fix this problem all by yourself—jumping your engine and getting back on the road in no time flat. It has probably happened to you before.
The Official Way to Jump-Start a Battery
This article explains how to connect jumper cables safely. The process of boosting a battery is especially important in cold weather. Jumper cables or cables on a portable battery booster should be connected properly to avoid sparks, which can cause an explosion of the hydrogen gas emitting from a battery. Beyond this, an incorrect hook up can damage critical, and expensive, electronic components. The procedure is simple: Next, the negative - , or ground, terminal on the good battery and, finally, the negative clamp to the engine block, frame or other grounded metal as far as possible from the battery. You want to avoid sparks in the vicinity of the explosive hydrogen gas that emits from the battery.
How to Jumpstart a Car
There is a persistent rumor that circulates regularly about how it isn't safe to jump start a car, or that it isn't safe to use a jump box. While there is a grain of truth in this rumor, in that you can do a whole lot of damage to your car, or to yourself, if you hook things up wrong, using a jump box is perfectly safe in most circumstances. If you connect everything the right way, and you take all the necessary precautions, there is very little to worry about. There are three major sources of danger when you jump start a car, and they both apply whether you use another car or a jump box as the source of power. The first is that the dead battery may have explosive gas leaking out of it, the second is that you can severely damage the vehicle's electrical system if you hook the jump box up backwards, and the third is that the jumper cables or jump box must be routed or set in a safe location. While it's true that there is a certain level of risk involved in jump starting a car, you can minimize it to almost nothing if you follow the correct procedures. There are also a few instances where jump starting really is a bad idea.
When your car doesn't start, you most likely have a dead battery and the fastest way to get back on the road is a quick jumpstart. This simple trick takes less than five minutes and only requires a set of jumper cables and another vehicle that is running. If you've never got around to learning the particulars of jumpstarting a car, or the ins-and-outs of doing it safely, we've got you covered. Any pair of jumper cables is better than not having any at all. But if you are buying new cables, look for ones that are 4 to 6 gauge in size and at least 20 feet in length. Beefier cables and heavy duty clamps will be more durable and provide a better connection. It's not always possible to place vehicles right next to each other, so having longer cables will ensure the batteries can reach each other.
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