Jump starting a car is always the next option when the battery is dead. When dealing with modern cars, check the manual and stick to the safest methods and instructions recommended by the manufacturer. There are many methods you can use, but this article focuses on the safest process you can take. Otherwise, if not done properly, lives can easily be endangered and damage to components can result. Below are the steps.
Step 1: Carefully prepare for the activity
Identify a car with a functioning battery. Bring it close to the dead car without allowing them to touch. The distance between the two cars can even be 12 to 20 centimeters. Then prepare two well-insulated jumper cables and see to it that the length of the cable pair is adequate for the task.
Step 2: Connect the red jumper cable
The standard red jumper cable is the positive one. Open the crocodile clamps and securely connect one end of the cable to the positive terminal of the dead battery. Then, take the free end and connect it to the positive terminal of the live battery. The dead battery is safer to start with because it has a relatively low voltage.
Step 3: Connect the black jumper cable
This time around, start by connecting the black jumper cable to the negative terminal of the live battery. The free end can then be connected to chassis of the dead car or any exposed metal part. Some vehicles come with a provision for specific safe jumping points. This is where you can safely connect. Never connect the other end of the black cable to the negative terminal of the dead battery. This can prove fatal and dangerous for your circuit.
Step 4: Counter check the connections and setup
Before proceeding, check all your connections step by step. Ensure that the red cable is running between the positive terminals. Physically check how secure the crocodile clamps are on each terminal. Look at the negative jumper cable and make sure that it is running from the negative terminal on the live battery to an exposed metal part on the dead one. Finally, visually inspect and see to it that the two cars are not touching.
Step 5: Start the live car
Get into the live car and start the engine. Some may need that you insert the ignition key and turn it, while others have a button provision for the same purpose. Let the car run normally for a minimum of 60 seconds. If you wish, you can even rev gently to speed up the process.
Step 6: Disconnect the jumper cables
Disconnect the black jumper cable from the live battery. Go ahead and also disconnect from the charged car. Proceed to disconnect the red jumper as well in the same pattern.
Step 7: Start the charged car
Finally, go into the car which was initially dead. Start the engine. It should definitely run. If it fails, then you did not charge sufficiently. In this case, repeat steps two up to six before trying to start the engine again.
What if it fails after more than two attempts of charging?
If you charged the battery sufficiently enough and the engine still fails to crank, then there is a different problem. First, your assumption is incorrect. Your battery was not charged. Charging failure could be a result of using a battery that has outlived its lifespan. Check the date when you bought that battery. If it is more than four or five years, then there is a high possibility that it needs replacing.
If, however, the battery is fine, then the charging system could be at fault. This could be as a result of a failing alternator, some faulty part or connection in the charging circuit. To confirm charging system failure, carry out tests while the engine is running and check the readings on your volt-meter. The voltage has to increase even up to 14 volts when the engine is running. When revving, the value of the output voltage should respond positively too.