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Get your hand on the most expensive car battery with the most positive reviews, but it will still need some boosting after the honeymoon phase is over. Normally, car batteries stay for three to four years on average, with good ones lasting up to five years. Boosting your car or jump-starting is a way to instill some life into your dead battery before buying a new one. It is crucial to boost your car to escape any potential dangers to you or your vehicle. Now the question arises, how exactly can one jump-start their car?

To jump-start a dead battery, you can either push start it or get help from a fellow vehicle. Additionally, you can use booster cables or portable car batteries, etc. Go for any of it to restart your dead battery while following the respective guidelines. And consider it as a temporary fix as cars needing frequent boosts means that you may need to check or replace your battery.

Read on to know further detail and some popular ways of boosting a car. You can decide to choose any depending on the scenario. 

Steps to Properly Boost a Dead Car Battery

Let’s get into some depth and see what different steps you can take to enliven your dead battery. 

Using a Portable Jump Starter

As the name suggests, a portable jump starter or booster pack can supply the energy to start your vehicle during the occurrence of a dead battery. They are situated in the engine bay.

Here’s how you can use a portable jump starter. But before anything else, read the owner’s manual. Here we’re listing some basic steps to use a portable jump starter:

  1. Use the cables to clamp them to the battery terminals.
  2. Now attach the jump-starter to the battery using the power adapter.
  3. Attach the red clamp to the positive port of the dead battery.
  4. Connect the black clamp to the grounded metal surface on the vehicle’s frame.
  5. Now switch on the pack and turn on the engine. The alternator will charge the battery.
  6. Once done, remove the clamps starting with the black ones first.

You’ll see different colors on the booster pack, such as orange or green. They do serve a purpose as the orange color indicates that the battery is being charged. And if the green color pops up, it signifies that the electrical system is powered completely.

How Do You Jumpstart a Car Battery Without a Second Car?

For emergencies like when your battery dies on a steer-clear road, it might be hard to find assistance or any other car, especially if the timings are odd. So, you should know how to jump-start a car without the help of another vehicle. It is very much possible, safe, and handy.

Since you don’t have any other car, aka battery, you’re left with two options; either push start the vehicle or contact roadside assistance.


It is a method of a manual transmission, and you’ll probably need someone to push the car. The driver is supposed to turn the ignition key to the on position. 

Now set the car to the second gear and get your vehicle pushed to gain some speed – at least 5 mph. After this, the driver should release the clutch pedal. Ideally, your engine now has the necessary transmission so it should start running.

However, if it doesn’t help, repeat the process. Ask the helper to push again and, this time, run it at a higher speed. 


Just in case you aren’t able to jumpstart, contact a roadside assistance company in New Jersey. You can call the 24 hours helpline number that is provided on your insurance card. The professionals will take over, leaving you nothing to worry about.

How to Boost a Car Battery With Booster Cables

Using booster cables is yet another method of boosting your car. For this, you’ll need a car nearby with a good working battery. A hybrid or electric car isn’t the option, though.

Now get to work according to the following steps:

  1. Position both cars a few inches away from one another and turn their handbrakes off.
  2. Turn the ignition of both the vehicles to the on position and keep the hood open.
  3. Clamp the red jumper cable to the positive terminal of the dead battery.
  4. Connect the other end of the red jumper cable to the positive terminal of the good battery.
  5. The black clamp is to be connected to the negative terminal of the good battery.
  6. Connect the other black clamp to the metallic surface. Make sure all the cables are properly connected.
  7. After waiting for about 3-5 minutes, start the engine of the vehicle that will provide the boost.
  8. Start the dead car. To disconnect, unplug the clamps in reverse order.

If your car hasn’t jump-started yet, check the connections once again and try later. Once it does, give your car a good thirty minutes drive.

Check Out How to Correctly Jump Start a Dead Car Battery with Booster Cables:

What Happens When You Put on Battery Cables Wrong?

Using booster cables is handy, but you need to be careful with them and preferably should ask for professional assistance. The process has some particular instructions to be followed accurately, and being quacky may lead to potential hazards. Not being conscious of the negative and the positive terminals or connecting them in the wrong order can lead to some unwanted impairment.

If you fail to plug the cables the right way, the first thing you damage is the jumper cables. Due to the switch of polarities, the system tries to convert the negative voltage into a positive one. This leads to excessive heat buildup that may melt the insulators. As a result, the insulators may bend, causing irreparable damage to the whole system.

The sudden bolt of power can even lead to blown-up fuses and other wires in the system. The destruction of the alternator bracket is another repercussion. And since the jumper cables are clamped to the battery, damage to the car’s battery is inevitable. Engine, air filter, or the distributor may experience negative consequences as well.

Not just the car or battery, you can hurt yourself too. Charge accumulation may ignite hydrogen gas and lead to an explosion. Therefore, it should be done professionally and with the safety protocol.

Do You Hook Up Red or Black Jumper Cables First?

In order to properly connect the jumper cables, it is important to identify the positive and negative terminals. Always attach the red jumper cable clamp first. This is to be connected to the positive terminal on the dead battery while the other end is to be connected to the positive terminal of the live battery (which is also red in color).

Once you’re done with the red cable, hook up the black one to the live battery’s negative terminal. Connect the other end to the piece of stationary metal on the engine block of the dead car. Never attach the other end of the black cable to the negative terminal as it will cause a powerful strike which can be dangerous.

How Do You Position the Cars to Jump Your Battery?

So, you’re dealing with a dead battery and using a donor vehicle to boost it up. The first important thing here is to position the cars rightly. Ensure both the vehicles are in neutral or parked. Engage both parking brakes. 

Now shut down the ignition and handbrakes in both of them. Note that they should be positioned close without physically touching one another. Once the cars are parked as per instructions, it’s time to connect the cables.

Jumper Cables Vs Portable Car Battery Booster Pack

You use jumper cables in order to jump-start your car with the other vehicle, while the battery booster pack is utilized when there’s no assistance available.

The booster pack is considered safer than jumper cables comparatively as there’s less risk of explosion during jump-starting. Moreover, the booster pack also removes the need to use another car. In terms of affordability, jumper cables are more cost-efficient. Charging the booster pack remains a hassle as it may lose its charging in extreme weather conditions.

Check Out How to Properly Jump Start a Car:

When Should You Try to Start the Dead Vehicle?

Once you’ve securely attached all the battery terminals to the cables of both vehicles, it’s time to start your car. Let your vehicle run for a few minutes, preferably two to three minutes. During this time, the battery of the vehicle is being charged. Remove the cables in reverse order once you are done.

When Do You Disconnect the Jumper Cables?

After ensuring both the cars are running smoothly, you can disconnect the jumper cables. Remove the black clamp from the earthing metal surface. Then remove the other end that is on the negative end of the working battery. Now unplug the red cables from the positive terminal of the other vehicle.

Finally, remove the positive cable from your dead battery. Your car is good to go. Remember not to remove the cables while the engine is still running.

What Do You Jump Start After Starting a Dead Battery?

After you’re done, and your car starts, it indicates that it’s sufficiently charged. However, if you still can’t turn it on, let it be charged for a few more minutes.

After starting the dead car, drive the car for good thirty minutes to confirm that the charging system is adequately working.


How to Charge Car Battery With Another Car?

Park the car that has a good battery near the one with the dead one. They should be a few inches away without making any direct contact. Using booster cables, attach the red cable clamp to the positive post of the battery terminals of the working vehicle. 

The other side should be clamped to the positive terminal of the old battery. Use the black clamp to connect to the negative terminal of the good battery. Then to the unpainted metal flat battery.

Is It Safe to jump-start a Car?

If the instructions are properly followed, yes, it is safe. One must read the owner’s manual to make sure if the car allows a jumpstart. Some cars have a positive ground so the jump-starting technique can be slightly different for them. Turn off the engine.

It is advisable to take off metallic jewelry, scarves, or other accessories as they can tie around or come in contact with the engine. Keep your face away from the battery at all times. Ensure that there’s no flammable liquid or gas nearby since that can be lethal. Adequate eye protection is crucial.

Do Short Journeys Drain Car Battery?

Vehicles that aren’t in frequent use or travel short distances consistently, do not get recharged enough. This can result in a drained engine. It takes 20-25 minutes for the battery to recharge after turning the engine block on. Therefore, short trips can deteriorate the car’s battery eventually.

Which Battery Terminal Do You Connect First When Jumping?

The positive terminal should be attached first, and it goes with the red cable. Then the black cable has to be hooked up to the negative terminal of the dead battery. Batteries come in two terminals, positive and negative, and it is important to take a good look at them before you jump-start your vehicle.

Do You Remove Jumper Cables While Car Is Running?

No, you need to turn off the engine first. Once your car is nice and working, remove the jumper cables after turning off the engine, and remember the drill – you need to remove them in reverse order, starting with the black one and then proceed on to the red. Don’t let the clamps come in contact with each other during this.

Final Considerations

Keeping your battery healthy is essential to keeping your car running. Make sure you are driving your car often, cleaning the batteries occasionally, and parking it in cooler areas. If your battery dies, you can carry out all the methods to get your car back on track. However, if your battery is about five years old, consider replacing it for hiccup-free journeys.

Agustin is part of the team at Road Speed Solutions, a reliable and efficient roadside assistance business with over a decade of experience in New Jersey.

What sets Road Speed Solution apart is the team's commitment to giving back to the community, regularly donating to local charities and supporting small businesses. Choose Roadside Speed Solutions for prompt, trustworthy roadside assistance services.