How to Jump-Start a Car

Jumper Cables
If your car won’t start no matter how many times you turn your key in the ignition, the fault likely lies with your car battery. You’ll need to jump-start the car battery either by following the instructions below or calling a jump-start car service. If this isn’t the first time in awhile you’ve needed to know how to properly jump-start a car, your battery may be nearing the end of its life and needs replacing. Contact us to schedule a service appointment to have your battery replaced and routine service completed in one trip.

The Proper Way to Jump-Start a Car

The first step to learning how to jump-start a car, you’ll need jumper cables and another car. If you can’t find anyone willing to stop and help, call AAA and they’ll bring a vehicle to help you jump-start a car. Once you have another car and jumper cables, follow the steps below:

  1. Have the car with the good battery face yours with the dead battery. Make sure both have their parking brakes engaged, Turn off the engine of the car with a good battery.
  2. Pop the hood of both vehicles. Locate the batteries, removing the plastic hood if one covers it.
  3. Identify the negative and positive terminals, and make sure they are corrosion-free.
  4. Attach the red clamp to the positive terminal of the dead battery.
  5. Uncoil the battery cable and connect the red clamp to the positive terminal of the car with the charge.
  6. Join the black clamp to the negative post on the good battery.
  7. Connect the final clamp to the unpainted surface on your car’s frame.
  8. Once everything is hooked and secured, start the engine of the car with the charge, then start the engine of the dead battery car.
  9. After you jump-start the car battery, remove the cables carefully in reverse order from how you put them on. Wait ten minutes to make sure the charge holds. If your car won’t jump-start, you’ll need to call a tow service.

Schedule Service at Jackson Family of Dealerships

If your car won’t start, that’s a sign your battery needs to be replaced. Don’t wait until you’re stuck on the side of the road. We can help you learn how to jump start a car or even build a winter emergency car kit so you’re prepared! Schedule an appointment at our service center to have your vehicle checked out by our trained technicians. In the meantime, explore our other how-guides, such as how to rotate tires yourself and how to program a Dodge key fob.

More from Jackson Family of Dealerships

  • When is Ford Truck Month?

    If you are a loyal Ford owner who is thinking of upgrading to a new Ford truck, you will know that you should wait until Ford Truck Month for some of the biggest sales. So what month is truck month? It’s usually during February and March, so if you can wait, you should wait until…

  • What are the 2021 Ford F-150 Bed Sizes?

      When it comes to pickup truck bed sizes available to drivers, there’s often a few options to pick from – all serving the needs of different prospective truck owner’s driving and storage needs. Shorter truck beds accommodate more cabin space, where a longer truck bed usually sacrifices cab space for bed storage. This…

  • 2021 Ford Bronco Towing Capacity

      The impressively engineered throwback that is the 2021 Ford Bronco has plenty of goodies to help leave a lasting impression on drivers. No matter your purpose, the new Bronco seems to do it just right. That being said, we’ll be taking the time in this quick guide to discuss the new Ford Bronco…

Saved Vehicles


You don't have any saved vehicles!

Look for this link on your favorites:


Once you've saved some vehicles, you can view them here at any time.

Contact Us

455 E. Pershing Road • Decatur, IL 62526

Get Directions
Jackson Family of Dealerships 39.876491, -88.951453.