How to Jump-Start a Car

Jump Start a Car

Morrie's Buffalo Ford is your premier source for quality new Ford and pre-owned vehicles in the Buffalo area. We are also here to answer any auto-related questions you may have including simple maintenance and service tips. If your car won’t jump start and you want to ensure you jump start your car battery properly, read on and we will teach you the proper way to jump-start a car so you can avoid waiting for a jump-start car service. If you have any questions or issues you can contact our service department or schedule service with our service center.

How to Properly Jump-Start a Car

Instead of relying on a jump-start car service, you can jump-start a car battery yourself. While jump-starting a car isn’t difficult, you must know how to properly jump-start a car so you do not damage your car or the car assisting you in jump-starting your car battery. The proper way to jump-start a car requires another person, another vehicle, and of course a pair of jumper cables. Note — if you don’t feel comfortable asking a stranger to help or you’re alone in an unfamiliar area, you may want to call a jump-start car service. Otherwise, it’s easy to learn how to jump-start a car:

  1. Position the second vehicle with its battery as close to the dead car’s battery. While most vehicles have the battery under the hood, some vehicles have their batteries in the trunk. Sometimes vehicles with trunk-mounted batteries have battery terminals under the hood to make jump-starting a car battery easier. Check your owner’s manual to verify the location of your battery or remote terminals. 
  2. After you’ve parked the vehicles, turn them off and set the parking brakes.
  3. Gain access to the batteries. Note: you may need to remove a plastic hood to expose the battery terminals.
  4. Find the positive and negative battery terminals. Make sure they are clean, dry, and free of any corrosion or dirt.
  5. Take out your jumper cables and separate the red ends and the black ends. Be sure to keep them apart especially once the first cable is attached to a battery, as they could spark. Next, connect the red clamp to the positive post on the dead battery.
  6. Hook the other red clamp to the positive terminal of the battery with the charge.
  7. Connect the black clamp to the negative post on the good battery. 
  8. Connect the last black clamp to a grounded, unpainted metal surface on your car’s frame.
  9. Once everything is hooked up securely, start the engine of the vehicle with a good battery. You may try to start the engine right away, but it’s probably a good idea to let the car with a good battery run for a few minutes. Then try starting the engine of the other vehicle. 
  10. Once the dead vehicle has been successfully jump-started, carefully remove the jumper cables in the reverse order that they were placed on, and keep the other vehicle running.
  11. Be sure to keep the engine running on the restarted vehicle for at least 10 minutes to ensure that the weak battery doesn’t die again right away. Consult your owner’s manual for more info on recommended times. It’s also recommended that you get your battery tested and/or replaced ASAP.
  12. If for some reason your car won’t jump start, it may be time for a new battery. The service team at Morrie's Buffalo Ford can assist you with all your battery needs.

Additional Car Battery Tips & Tricks

There are other reasons besides a dead car battery that can prevent your vehicle from starting:

  1. If you try to start the car but only hear a clicking sound, the starter might not be functioning. 
  2. If the electrical systems of the car turn on, but the engine does not, then the issue could be several things including the ignition switch, starter, or even something as simple as a fuse. It’s worth bringing your vehicle to a qualified service center for further diagnostics and investigation.
  3. Don’t forget to keep your vehicle running for a while after it’s received a jump. That allows the battery to recharge some after it’s been completely drained. Note that some batteries still can hold a charge for some time after being jumped; usually, this is the case after a vehicle with a good/newer battery has been sitting idle. A remedy to prevent this is using a battery trickle charger. Sometimes, though, an old and worn-out battery that requires replacing is the reason for a car needing a jump.

Turn to Morrie's Buffalo Ford for More DIY Car Care Tips

Now that know how to properly jump-start a car, we advise you to have your battery tested to keep it in optimal condition. Be sure to contact us with any questions regarding your vehicle. We are happy to help!

 

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