How to Jumpstart a Car

November 21st, 2016 by

Nobody wants to find a situation where they have to jumpstart their car. Inevitably, however, it’s an inconvenience that most will have to deal with at one point or another. Jumping your car definitely is going to be cheaper than having it towed, and most of the time when your battery has run out of juice, all you need is a jump to get going again. That’s why it’s worth knowing how to get moving by jumpstarting your car.

Simple Steps to Jumpstarting Your Car

Here at Chevrolet of Homewood we know that jumping your car isn’t exactly a chore that you’ve been looking forward to. Luckily, it’s pretty simple and easy:


  1. Inspect the battery. Chances are your battery is just dead because you left the lights on, but it could be something more serious. If you find any cracks or leaks in the battery DO NOT jumpstart it. Damaged batteries need to be replaced, preferably by a professional.
  2. Check your owner’s manual. You want to make sure that there are no special precautions that must be taken before jumping your car. It might also indicate exactly how the manufacturer recommends you jump your car’s battery.
  3. Get help. Basically, if you have a dead battery, you need another car that’s working properly to jump your car. There are also portable jumpstarters you can buy, but the process is effectively the same. You’ll need to get both the extra vehicle (or the jumpstarter) and your vehicle close enough that cables can reach your battery.
  4. Make sure both engines are off, and both have brakes engaged.
  5. Connect the two positive terminals on each battery together with the red clamps on the jumper cables. The positive terminals should be marked, and are always slightly larger than the negative terminals. Make sure the jumper leads don’t touch each other.
  6. Connect the negative clamp to the negative terminal on the car with the working battery. DO NOT attach the negative clamp to the dead battery’s negative terminal. Find an unpainted metal surface under the hood of the car with the dead battery—just don’t clamp it onto the battery or fuel system.
  7. Turn on the working car and lightly rev the engine.
  8. After the battery has been charging for a few minutes, try the immobilized car. If it doesn’t start, let it charge more. At this point it should start up, unless there’s something more seriously wrong.
  9. Unhook the cables in reverse order.
  10. Drive your car for at least half an hour to make sure the battery gets a chance to recharge thoroughly.

Visit Chevrolet of Homewood Today

We’re happy to help you make sure your battery is in good working order here at Chevrolet of Homewood at 18033 S. Halsted St. in Homewood, IL. We’re just a quick trip from Calumet City, so stop by or schedule service online now.