You might be called upon to help jumpstart another car sometime. It is quite easy to do this. However, there are times that you can inadvertently kill your own battery while helping to jumpstart another car. This is easily avoidable if you pay attention to the following tips:
DO NOT LET THE CARS TOUCH
One common mistake people make when trying to jumpstart another car is parking their car too close. So close, in fact, that they touch. This can happen if the jumper cables are too short, or because one or both vehicles are located in awkward parts of the engine compartment. Nevertheless, if you cannot reach the other car’s batteries without both cars touching, you run the risk of killing your own battery.
TURN OFF ALL ELECTRICAL ACCESSORIES
When your radio, heater, air conditioner or any other accessory is left on, your battery has to carry the load. This creates additional strain on your battery and alternator. Your car’s battery and alternator might be able to handle their own load, but they surely cannot do that with another car connected to the battery. When you turn off these things, you reduce the load on your battery.
MAKE SURE THE CONNECTIONS ARE CLEAN
This is really important if you want to protect your battery as you jumpstart another car. you need to make sure that all the participating battery terminals are clean and free of erosion. Also, you should make sure that the clamps on your jumper cables are clean.
MAKE SURE YOUR OWN VEHICLE IS RUNNING
This is to make sure that you are not putting the entire electrical load of the other vehicle on yours.
THE TWO BATTERIES HAVE TO BE GOOD
If any of both batteries is old, it is more likely that you would just fry it, or even fry both batteries. Make sure that both batteries are good before you proceed. If there is a bad battery involved, you have to change it. That might be the reason your car couldn’t come on in the first place.
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