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Person holding car battery jumper cables

Aug 28, 2019

How To Jump Start A Dead Battery

It happens when you least expect it! You head out to your vehicle only to find that when you try to turn it on, the vehicle won't start due to a dead battery. The wintertime is notorious for causing an already weak battery to fail sooner but a dead battery can happen at any time of the year. Be prepared with the steps listed below to get your battery working again. If the battery won't hold a charge, it may need to be replaced entirely. 

To ensure you're never stranded with a dead battery, set up an appointment with your local Sullivan Tire and Auto Service to get your battery levels tested. 

How to Jump Start Your Vehicle

Items you will need:

  • Jumper Cables

  • A good Samaritan with a vehicle to exchange a charge with


  1. Be sure your vehicle is parked in a safe place and easily accessible to the additional vehicle that's assisting you. 

    - Use the parking brake in each vehicle to ensure safety. 

  2. Turn off the ignition for both vehicles. 

  3. Retrieve the jumper cables from your vehicle or from the person assisting you with the jump. 

  4. Attach one of the red clips to the positive terminal of the dead battery.

    - This should be identified by "POS" or a "+" on it and should be bigger than the negative terminal.

  5. Attach the other red clip to the positive terminal in the other car.

  6. Attach one of the black clips to the negative terminal in the other car, not on the dead battery.

  7. The remaining black clip should be attached to an unpainted metal surface on your car that isn't near the battery.

    - One example would be one of the metal struts that holds the hood open. 

    - DO NOT
     attach it to the negative terminal of the dead battery.

  8. Start the engine of the vehicle that's working and let the engine run for about 5 minutes. 

  9. Try to start your vehicle. 

    - If your vehicle starts, DON'T TURN IT OFF! Drive your vehicle around for about 15 minutes to recharge the battery. 

    - If the vehicle won't start the next time you go to use it, the battery may need to be replaced since it is not holding a charge.

    - If the vehicle still doesn't start after the jump, your battery may need to be replaced. 

  10. Safely remove the cables from the vehicle in any order.
    - DO NOT touch the metal part of the cables together when the cables are hooked up to the battery. 

*These instructions are suggestions and standard practices for an emergency scenario. Sullivan Tire and Auto Service is not to be held liable or responsible in case of an accident or road emergency.