How to Jumpstart a Car – Or Not

Back in the day, people jump started each other’s cars all the time. One vehicle’s battery would go dead, and someone would call their next door neighbor to bring their car over. They’d pull out a set of jumper cables, attach the positive to the positive, the negative to the negative, and soon the dead battery would have enough charge for the car to start and be driven.

Here’s a tip: Jumper cables are no longer a good idea. Modern vehicles contain many complex electronic systems and computers which can be easily damaged if there is a current or voltage spike, or if the sequence of attachment is wrong. A jump gone wrong could turn into an expensive repair. There is also the potential to the battery itself. To make it worse, the damage could be to either vehicle involved in the jumpstart.

We recommend that you invest in a portable car power bank jump starter. These are relatively inexpensive, small units that easily fit in your trunk or hatch area. If you – or your neighbor – have a dead battery, these handy devices will start them without the danger that jumpstarting from a car poses. The power banks usually come with other handy features, like floodlights, USB chargers, cigarette lighter ports, and other emergency features.

And when you get your car started, bring it into us, to find out why the battery went dead to start with. We’ll check your cables, your fluids, the battery itself, and make recommendations to keep you from facing another dead battery any time soon.

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