How To Jump A Dead Battery

Being prepared to jump a dead car battery can be important when you find yourself stranded in inclement weather or in an isolated area.

In the winter when the weather may be cold and icy, you want to take all precautions to make sure your car runs dependably. But many people will find themselves with a dead car battery. Here are some tips that can head off this potentially serious and expensive problem.

1. Get in the habit of carrying jumper cables with you, not just for your vehicle but to help others who might be in trouble. Make sure your battery terminals are clean, along with the battery cables. If they are dirty with grime or corrosion, you can get a tool for cleaning them. It doesn't cost very much and is easy to use. You can buy this at any car part store or a department store's automotive section, like the one at Walmart. If you prefer, you can manage this task with tools around the house, and you will need to use sandpaper or a file. Clean these areas gently but firmly.

2. After completing this job, check the fluid in your battery to see if is low. Fill it to the top with the right fluid that can be purchased at any car part store. Check to be sure you have the correct level so that the battery will operate efficiently.



3. Now prepare to jump your battery by connecting cables to another car battery. First, turn off everything in the car, such as the lights, the radio, or anything that runs off the battery. Remove any metal jewelry that you are wearing that might touch the battery. Make sure you park close enough so that the booster cable will reach the second vehicle. Set the parking brake of both cars and put the transaxle in park if the vehicle has an automatic drive function. A manual transmission vehicle should be placed in neutral. Make sure both vehicles are turned off. Connect one end of a jumper cable to the positive

terminal of the booster battery. Connect the other end of a jumper cable to the positive jump start terminal, located near the power distribution center of the vehicle with the discharged battery. These are usually red, and the negative is typically black. Connect the other cable, first to the negative terminal of the booster battery and then to the negative jump start terminal, located near the hood release latch of the vehicle with the discharge battery. Make sure you have good contact with both.

4. If the vehicle is equipped with a sentry key immobilizer, turn the ignition to the "on" position for three seconds before moving the ignition switch to the start position. Start

the engine in the vehicle that has the booster battery, let the engine idle a few minutes, then start the engine in the vehicle with the discharged battery. When removing the jumper cables, reverse the sequence exactly. Be careful of the moving belts and fan. Take extra precautions when working close to the battery because it has an acid solution, which can burn or blind you if it should leak or explode, so wear eye protection if you have it.

Do not cross the cables when you are hooking them up, as this can cause a fire or the battery to blow up. While jumping a battery may seem easy, it requires thoughtful attention to avoid accidents and injury to those attempting to start the dead battery. Learning a skill like this can save you time and money in case of emergency.

© High Speed Ventures 2011