How To: Jump a Car Battery


[Mechanical SFX] Hey everyone, John here from O’Reilly Auto Parts. Today, I want to show you how to jump start your vehicle. First, it’s always a good idea to keep jumper cables with you. There are different gauges of cables so be sure to consult your service manual to determine which gauge will work for your vehicle. If you happen to wind up with a dead
battery, having the right cables could be the difference between being stranded or getting your vehicle started. If you can get to an O’Reilly Auto Parts Store we will test your battery and find a replacement if you need one. Or, if it’s looking like a bigger problem, we can refer you to a professional technician nearby. So here’s a dead battery that needs a charge. Unless you have a jump starter, you’ll need someone else who’s willing to let you hook your cables to their battery. Before you start that process, make sure
your lights, stereo, and other accessories are turned off to keep any extra strain off the dead battery. The other vehicle should also be shut off and the two should be parked close but not touching, so that your cables will reach. On both vehicles, set the emergency brakes and remove the keys from the ignition. Jumper cables come in several different colors, just make sure that you’re using the negative cable for the negative terminal and the positive cable for the positive terminals. In almost all cases, the negative cable will be black but it’s a good idea to check yours to be sure. And once you start connecting these don’t
let the clamps touch each other. We’ll start by attaching the positive
clamp to the positive terminal of the dead battery. That’s the terminal with the plus sign. Clamp it on there and give it a wiggle
to make sure that those teeth get a good connection. Let the clamp of the negative cable on this end rest somewhere that isn’t metal so there’s no ground. Then, we’re going to attach the other end of the positive cable to the positive terminal of the good battery. Make sure it’s really on there. Now, attach this negative clamp to the negative terminal of the good battery and on the other end you want to find some bare metal to attach to. Again your service manual will tell you if there’s a negative terminal specifically for jump-starting. Once you’ve found your ground and attach the cable you’re ready to start the vehicle with the good battery. Let this engine run for at least a couple minutes before trying the other. Once you’ve let the good vehicle idle for two or three minutes, try starting the other. And we’re good. When you go to detach the cables you want to take them off in reverse order. Starting with the negative cable on the vehicle that was dead then the negative cable on the good battery. And then your two positive cables. It’s a good idea to let the vehicle that you just charged run for a while. And, if you think that you need a new battery, head to your local O’Reilly Auto Parts store. They can test it and let you know if you need a new one. You can also pick up a set of jumper cables if you don’t have a pair. All the items that you need whether batteries, tools, or jumper cables are also available online at OReillyAuto.com. Our DIY videos are designed to help answer questions that we get in our stores each and every day. If you found this one helpful, subscribe to our channel to see the latest DIY jobs. We’ll see you again soon.

4 thoughts on “How To: Jump a Car Battery

  • October 20, 2018 at 8:27 pm
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    I like you guys O'Reilly but your video advises a serious mistake! You missed the fact that once the dead car is on and running, TURN OFF THE VEHICLE WITH THE GOOD BATTERY. Then unhook cables. This prevents power surge that can damage sensitive components. I'm not saying your method is guaranteed to cause a problem, but it can- and there is no up side to taking that risk.

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  • October 20, 2018 at 11:36 pm
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    With a strong enough and big enough battery on the Jumping vehicle that battery can be connected directly w/o even starting the jumping vehicle. I'd rather jump a smaller battery from my 600 CCA w/o starting my vehicle.

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  • October 21, 2018 at 10:04 pm
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    WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF U CONNECT BATTERY TO BATTERY AND NOT A GROUND?

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  • October 16, 2019 at 4:14 am
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    I STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU DONT JUMP A BATTERY PERIOD…..YOU CAN AND WILL RUIN YOUR COMPUTER. BRING IT TO YOUR DEALER AND IF ITS A POS THEN GO AHEAD AND USE 3 PAIRS OF JUMPERS TO SEND IT …REALLY THOUGH, LEAVE BATTERIES TO THE PROFESSIONALS. IN THE WINTER THEY CAN EXPLODE..! KEEP YOUR COMMENTS TO A MINIMUM, MY FATHER WAS BLINDED BY A BATTERY EXPLOSION!..

    Reply

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