Car Not Starting?
10 Point Guide To Jump Starting Your Car
We have all encountered that situation where we come back to our car, put the key in the engine but nothing happens when you turn it. We recently looked at what you should pack in your car emergency kits and one of these key elements is a set of jump leads.
Having jump leads, or jumper cables, is half the battle because you also need to know how to use them if you ever need to.
If your car has a flat battery and you do not feel comfortable attempting a jump start we advise motorists to seek assistance from a professional breakdown service or bring your car to a reliable garage.
Jump starting your car is a safe procedure when done correctly and involves some of the below.
- Jump leads
- A good Samaritan with another car
- Some safety gear such as safety glasses, breakdown triangle and hi-visibility jacket.
Once you have these items all you need is a little confidence and a bit of know how. We have put our collective experience to the test to create a quick guide for jump starting your car.
Before you decide to jump start your car you should do some quick research in advance.
- Check your car handbook to ensure that your vehicle doesn't require model specific procedures.
- If your car does require specific procedures then we advise that you must follow the car manufacturer's procedure rather than the below guidelines.
How to Jump Starting Your Car
- Get your jump leads from your emergency kit or find a friendly Samaritan with a set.
- Park the car with the working battery in such a way that you can easily access the batteries of both cars. Make sure the hand brake for both cars are engaged and that the engines are turned off.
- Connect the red cable to the positive (+) terminal of the donor vehicle's good battery to the positive (+) terminal of the flat battery.
- Attach the assigned end of the black clips to the negative (-) terminal of the donor vehicle's good battery.
- Attach the last black clip to an unpainted metal surface on your car that isn’t near the battery. Identify an area to use that is away from the battery and the vehicle’s fuel system.
- Give both cars about 3-5 minutes to allow for the voltages to equalize.
- Start the engine of the donor's car with the working battery. Wait about one minute and then start the engine of the car with the dead battery. Leave both cars running for about 10 minutes.
- After this time has passed you should turn off the engines of both cars. Let the engines cool down sufficiently and then remove the cables in reverse order.
- Once all leads have been removed, start the engine of the car which had the dead battery previously. If the car now starts, using its own power supply, then you may not require any further professional help at this moment. We do advise however that you should bring your vehicle to a professional to ensure that there is no further underlying issues causing the fault.
- If the car will not start on its own supply once all the cables have been removed then you will require further assistance from a car professional. Check the details of your insurance cover as you may have breakdown assistance or a designated garage where repairs must take place.
Many car insurance providers offer breakdown assist either as standard, with a motor policy, or as an additional benefit which you can add to your cover. Make sure to check with your current insurer or broker to make sure that you are covered in case you encounter either a flat battery or some other roadside issue where you may need professional assistance.