How to Jumpstart Your Car

Posted: Friday, August 18th, 2017

Breakdowns are an unfortunate fact of life. However, if your battery is dead, you can usually get on the road again without much hassle. All it takes is a little preparation ahead of time and a helpful friend. Check out this guide from Green Light Auto Credit of St. Louis to find out how to jumpstart your car.

Necessary Supplies

Green Light Auto Happy Customer with new grey car

Before you begin, you’ll want to be sure you have the following supplies:

  • Jumper Cables
  • Insulated Mechanic Gloves
  • Proper Clothing
  • Owner’s Manual

Make sure you include these items as part of your car’s emergency kit. Your jumper cables should be in good condition and properly insulated. As far as clothing goes, make sure you’re not wearing anything that hangs down into the engine compartment. Paper coveralls are easily available at most hardware stores, and they ensure that you won’t get dirt and grease on your clothes. Of course, you’ll also need another vehicle to jump your car. Always keep your phone with you so you can call a friend for help.

Let’s Get Started

Follow these steps and you’ll be back on the road in no time.

  • Open your hood. If you’re having trouble finding the hood release, consult your owner’s manual.
  • Find the battery and identify the positive and negative terminals. The positive terminal should be red, and the negative terminal should be black. It’s likely that your positive terminal will be covered with a removable plastic cap.
  • Before you start connecting cables, make sure that the donor car is off. Then connect the positive terminal on your car to the other car’s positive terminal.
  • Attach the other cable to the donor car‘s negative terminal, then connect the remaining clamp to a non-painted metal section of your car’s engine block.
  • Ask the driver of the donor car to start their vehicle.
  • Wait a few minutes, then start your car.
  • If your car still doesn’t start, you’ll need to contact a reliable repair center.
  • If your car does start, wait a few minutes to let your battery continue to charge. After you disconnect the cables, be sure to drive your car 10-20 minutes to fully recharge the battery.

Finance a Reliable Vehicle at Green Light Auto Credit

If you’re experiencing frequent breakdowns, it might be time for a new car. That’s where Green Light Auto Credit comes in. We work with dealerships all over the St. Louis area and beyond to get you the car you want and the financing you deserve. We’re also happy to help customers with bad or no credit. Find out more about our low interest auto loans today, or contact us with any questions!