HOT TIP: There may not always be someone available to provide a battery to jump start off, and roadside assistance can quite often take up to an hour or more to arrive.
A preferred way for many people is to carry your own compact jump starter power bank. These devices are small and easy to store, and can hold enough charge for 1 – 5 jump starts. Quickly helping you get out of any situation.
Faulty or flat batteries are one of the most common causes of a breakdown and can be caused by simply leaving on some interior lights. The good news is with the assistance of another car with a good battery and a set of jumper leads you can be on your way in no time.
Jump-starting a car is not difficult but can be dangerous if not done properly, it’s really important if you follow the right procedure to stay safe.
Park the cars in a safe place and make sure that they’re not touching, nose to nose works best as jumper cables are not very long.
Check that both cars are in park or neutral and that the hand brakes are on, then switch off the engine of the donor car. Open the bonnet of each car and locate the batteries, make sure that both batteries are 12 volts. If you’re not sure don’t attempt to jumpstart the car yourself.
The batteries have a positive terminal and a negative terminal, the positive terminal is red with a positive symbol and the negative terminal is black with a negative symbol.
If you can’t see these you may need to wipe away some of the road grime and battery acid with a cloth. Now, battery acid is pretty nasty stuff so avoid getting it on you and throw away the cloth straight away.
First, connect the red jumper lead to the positive red terminal of the flat battery and then attach the clip on the other end of the lead to the positive red terminal of the donor battery.
Then connect the black jumper lead to the negative black terminal of the donor vehicle before attaching the free end of the cable to a solid metal part of the car with a flat battery such as the top suspension mount.
Don’t connect the cable to any moving part and ensure that the cables are well clear of the exhaust or drive belts.
An easy way to remember what colour goes where is to think of red as a bright happy positive color and black as a negative color.
Start the engine of the donor vehicle and let it run for a few minutes at about 2,000 revs per minute, then start the engine of the vehicle with a flat battery. Allow the engine to fast idle for a minimum of 2 minutes before disconnecting the jumper leads.
Now carefully remove the jumper leads in the reverse order to the connection starting with the one connected to the car body.
For your safety when you’re connecting or removing the leads don’t let the red and black clips touch each other or the red flip to come into contact with any part of the vehicle body.
Once you’ve got the engine started you’ll need to drive continually to recharge the battery, it’s a good idea to get your battery checked at your local car dealer as soon as possible.
If you don’t have a set of jumper leads or another vehicle, you can call roadside assist, alternatively, some taxis carry jumper leads and may provide assistance.
Remember, jump-starting a car can be dangerous if it’s not done correctly. If you’re not sure or don’t feel comfortable, leave it to a qualified technician.
Thanks to today’s technology, we no longer need to rely on people to help us and playing around with potentially dangerous jump starter leads.
It is now affordable and convenient to carry your own jump starter power pack, allowing you to quickly resolve a flat battery situation and move on with your day.
Power packs are a safer option as you don’t need to manually handle live cables. Jump starter packs generally have better safety and over current systems, protecting you and your car from damage.
Each jump starter pack may vary between manufacturers but this guy is based on the common and best practice operation.
*This is general information only. Features and specifications may vary on some models and variants. Always refer to the owner’s manual of your vehicle for more detailed information about its specifications, features and their operation.