How to Jump-Start a Car

Jump Start a Car

If you find that your car battery has died unexpectedly, you can jump-start it so the alternator starts to recharge it. You’ve probably heard the term “jump-start” a lot, but how exactly does it work? The process of how to jump-start a car battery is relatively straightforward, but it’s important that you follow the instructions to the letter. Dealing with a car battery brings a lot of inherent risks since the voltage is very powerful and can injure you if you mishandle it. Fortunately, the service team at DeNooyer Ford has everything you need to know about how to properly jump-start a car in the guide below.

The Proper Way to Jump-Start a Car

In order to successfully jump-start a car battery, you’re going to need a set of jumper cables, another person, and another vehicle. If you don’t have access to one or more of these resources, it’s best to contact a jump-start car service so a professional can jump-start your car battery for you. However, if you have access to all three of the above resources, carefully follow these instructions and you’ll be all set:

  1. Start by aligning the two vehicles so they face each other–since most car batteries are stored in the engine, that means the vehicles will be facing hood-hood. Put both vehicles in Park and set the parking brakes.
  2. Expose the battery terminals to gain access to the batteries. Locate the positive and negative battery terminals and make sure they’re free of dirt, debris, and corrosion.
  3. Grab your jumper cables and separate the red ends from the black ends. The red and black ends should never touch, as they could spark and seriously injure or electrocute you.
  4. Connect the first red clamp to the positive post on the dead battery, and hook the other red clamp to the positive terminal of the battery with the charge.
  5. Connect the black clamp to the negative post on the good battery, and connect the other black clamp to a grounded, unpainted metal surface on your car frame.
  6. Make sure that everything is hooked up securely and correctly, then start the engine of the vehicle with the good battery.
  7. Let the battery run for a bit, then start the engine of the vehicle with the dead battery. This should successfully jump-start the battery.
  8. Carefully remove the jumper cables in the reverse order that they were placed on.
  9. Keep the engines running for at least 10 minutes to make sure that the restarted battery doesn’t die again right away. Your owner’s manual will tell you exactly how long you should keep the engine running.

Additional Car Battery Tips & Tricks

If your car won’t jump-start, the problem might not be the battery. Here’s some troubleshooting to keep in mind:

  1. If you’re trying to start your car but you’re only hearing a clicking sound, the starter might not be functioning.
  2. If your electrical systems are working but the engine still isn’t starting, the problem could lie with the ignition switch, starter, or fuse. Contact a service center to diagnose and fix the problem.
  3. Remember to keep your vehicle running for a little while after jump-starting it, so the battery can recharge completely after being drained. If you haven’t waited long enough, the battery might not have enough charge and will die again.

Keep Your Car in Top Condition with DeNooyer Ford!

If you’ve tried the above steps and you still find that your car won’t jump-start, go ahead and schedule a service appointment with DeNooyer Ford. We’re a fully-qualified jump-start car service and will have you back on the Three Rivers roads in no time! Feel free to contact our service center with any questions, or for more information about the services we offer. And be sure to check out our service FAQs for more tips and tricks on keeping your car running on top condition on the road!


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