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How to jump-start a car

How to jump-start a car


If your car won’t start there is a good chance that your battery has died. The good news is, if it is simply a dead battery, that this is a relatively simple issue to fix. All you need are jumper cables and another vehicle. It doesn’t matter who’s vehicle it is, it can be a friend, family member, kindly stranger, or even the neighbor you don’t like.

If you are only vaguely aware of how to use jumper cables, or if you are among the growing number of people that don’t know how to use them at all, you are in the right place! This edition of our how-to series looks at how to jump-start your vehicle.

What you will need:

  • Jumper cables;
  • Another vehicle.



  1. To start, make sure that both vehicles are switched off and in ‘Park’ or ‘Neutral’;
  2. Open the hood of your vehicle, there is usually a lever near the driver's seat;
  3. Locate your battery;
  4. Attach one end of the RED cable to the positive terminal on your battery, look for a plus symbol or the letters POS near one of the battery terminals;
  5. Attach the opposite end of the RED cable to the positive battery terminal in the other vehicle;
  6. Attach one end of the BLACK cable to the negative terminal in the other car;
  7. Attach the opposite end of the BLACK cable to a clean, unpainted piece of metal on your vehicle (you can use one of the struts which hold your hood open);
  8. Start the other vehicles engine and let it run for at least 5 minutes;
  9. Try starting your vehicle, if it starts let it run for at least 15 minutes to build up a charge. If the interior lights come one and the engine hums but won’t turn over the battery isn’t the issue. Similarly, if you hear a clicking sound when trying to start the car you may have a bad alternator. Regardless of the reason, if your vehicle won’t start after getting a jump you will need to take your vehicle to an auto repair shop for inspection.


So there we have it, your guide on how to jump-start a car. Did we miss anything? Do you have any tips or advice about jump-starting a vehicle? Let us and our readers know, we are always happy to hear from you!

For more information, or if you have any questions about jump starting your vehicle or to schedule a battery test give us a call on (831) 375-9571, visit us at Pacific Motor Service, 1123 Forest Ave.CA, 93950, or book an appointment with us online. The friendly and knowledgeable staff here at Pacific Motor Service will be more than happy to help!

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