Jumping Your Car Battery

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Ever leave your dome light on accidentally? How about leaving the glove box open all weekend? If so you have probably experienced a dead battery and have had to jump-start your car. Jumping your battery requires jumper cables and another car that can start its engine.  The key to jumping your car is to know that there is both a positive and negative cable which corresponds to the positive and negative posts on your battery. 

The posts are usually covered with a cap however once you remove the cap, the posts are marked with a + sign or a – sign. The cables will be marked as well. With both engines off, clamp the positive cable to the positive post and the negative cable to the negative post. 

Do this to both cars. Start the engine of the other car. Wait a minute or two to allow the charge from the running engine to flow through the cables into your battery and then try and start your car. If it doesn’t turn over at all, wait another minute or two and then try again. If it starts to turn over, wait a few seconds and then try again. 

Once your car starts you can disconnect the cables and close the hood. Allowing your engine to run for about thirty minutes, or driving to your destination, will recharge your battery and you shouldn’t have trouble starting it again. However if you find yourself stranded more than once and cannot find evidence of a light left on or other drain on your battery’s power, have your battery checked by a technician. It may need to be replaced.