It is always a good idea to keep a set of jump start cables in your car, in case somebody in the car park with flat battery need your help, or in case you are the unfortunate one. Try to get a thicker jump start cables which supports 400 cold crank Amps or above.
Here are the procedure to jump start a car with flat battery that I've learned.
Before jump starting:
- Check the dead battery. Does it suffered from loose connection to alternator? Does it need to top up with distilled water? Fix the possible problem that has caused the battery to be flat. Sometimes you might find that replacing the dead battery directly is a better and/or safer solution than jump starting.
- If there is white/green residue developed around the battery terminal, clean them out first. Don't touch it with your bare hand, wearing glove is a good idea.
- Bring the car with charged battery to the front of the car that need jump starting, position so that both the batteries as close as possible.
- Ensure the engine of both the cars are off. All the lamps, radio, air-conds, etc. should also be off.
- Ensure that the hand brake of both cars are engaged.
Performing the jump start:
- Clamp one end of the red-handled/positive jumper cable to the positive terminal (the one marked with the [+] sign) of the charged battery.
- Clamp the other end of the red-handled cable to the positive terminal of the dead battery.
- Clamp one end of the black-handled/negative cable to the negative terminal (the one marked with the [-] sign) of the charged battery.
- Clamp the other end of the black-handled/negative cable to the metal part of the car with the dead battery. Clamp it somewhere where the current can ground out, such as unpainted bolt or bracket in the chassis. Caution: do not attach the black-handled/negative cable to the dead battery itself.
- Start the car with the charged battery. Wait for a while.
- Start the car with the dead battery. If it still doesn't start after several attempts, the jump start has failed, and it is time to call a tow truck or bring a new battery to the car for replacement.
- Keep the engine of both the cars on.
- Remove the clamp of the black-handled/negative cable from the grounding point.
- Remove the other end of the black-handled/negative cable from the negative terminal of the charged battery.
- Remove the clamp of the red-handled/positive cable from the jump started battery.
- Remove the other end of the red-handled/positive cable from the charged battery.
- Put back the jump start cables into the car.
- The car with dead battery should be immediately driven to workshop for checking. Do not turn off its engine before it reaches the destination. If the battery is still usable, it needs at least half an hour for recharging. Try driving the car at higher RPM for faster charging.