Flat battery? This scenario is not funny but unfortunately, that happens, more or less often, in winter as in summer. There are a few solutions to help out. If you prefer the use jump leads then you are on the right page. If you hesitate, I invite you to consult this page on the advantages of a jump starter.
Starting with a boost cables presents constraints because, even if you have these famous “jump leads”, you will need to find a car that can “lend you its battery”. You also need to choose the right cables because not all of them will be suitable for your vehicle and not all are equal. Not long enough, not flexible enough, poor current conduction, too fragile clamps? Our buying guide with key points to look at is there to help you.
What are jump leads?
The car jump leads connect two cars or any vehicle through their batteries to be able to transfer electrical power from one to the other. This power makes it possible to start and therefore to troubleshoot the broken down vehicle.
These cables are also commonly known as alligator clips (this reminds us of college technology courses) because clips are located at the ends of the jump leads for your car battery.
Jumper cables, available on the market, are made of copper (a material with excellent electrical conductivity) and are fitted with clamps at each end. These clips, equipped with a spring and jaws, are made of insulating material to ensure the safety of the user. Jumper leads differ from each other in their lengths and diameters. It is necessary to choose the cable best suited to the type of your car.
For petrol and diesel engines, we recommend choosing a 16 mm² jump leads. For trucks and utility vehicles fitted with a petrol or diesel engine and 12 or 24V battery, it is better to choose 35mm2 booster cables.
Regarding the cross-section and intensity correspondence, leads can be used for:
- 10mm² up to 200 A
- 16 mm² for 300 A
- 25 mm² for 600 A
- 35 mm² for 700 A
- 50 mm² for 1000 A
How to jump start a car?
The jump leads are essential in the event of a battery failure. It is, therefore, necessary to always be equipped with these cables to avoid unpleasant surprises and to be able to troubleshoot your car quickly.
Your first instinct will most likely be to think of it as the car battery. Here are a few things to check before declaring the battery as the main culprit.
- Check if the headlights work. If they project a weak light, it is probably the battery. If everything seems normal, then ignore the battery and find what causes the trouble.
- Switch on the ignition and test the radio. If you don’t get anything, it can come from the contactor.
- Now try to start the car. If you feel jerks or even if the vehicle has not started, your battery is probably discharged.
- the power of the battery which one will use to repair the discharged battery must be at least as powerful.
- concerning the connection of cables on a battery, the red clips are for the positive terminal (sign ” + “) and the black clips are for the negative terminal (sign ” – “). For information, the terminals are also called lugs.
- remember to turn off the radio, lights and all electronics for both vehicles before troubleshooting.
Here are the steps to properly start your vehicle with jump cables:
- always switch off the engine before placing the jumpers for connecting the starter cables.
- start by connecting the two positive terminals (“+” sign) of the two batteries with the red clips.
- then connect the black clamp to the negative terminal of the battery which will give its power and the other end of the black clamp to the earth of the broken down vehicle (it is possible to connect the black clamp to the negative terminal of the battery but watch out for sparks).
- start the car with the battery in good condition (this is the one that will give its power). A slight acceleration to just over 2000 rpm allows the power to be transferred efficiently.
- do not attempt to start for more than 15 sec. If this fails, you must wait a minute to try again.
- as soon as the repaired car starts, disconnect the black cables (negative terminal) then the red cables (positive terminal)
Innovative tip: the jump starter
It is an autonomous portable device which allows the immediate starting of a broken down car. It is a very practical and effective gadget. Especially if we find ourselves in the middle of nowhere, without resources and without anyone who can help us. The jump starter is on sale in specialized stores and online as we discussed with the site in a previous article. Some models allow the connection and charging of other devices, such as the telephone. Its mode of use is very simple. It is necessary:
- check that the booster is fully charged,
- open the hood of the vehicle,
- connect the red clamp of the booster cable to the positive terminal of the battery. The black clamp will be connected to its negative terminal,
- turn on the booster and let it act for a few minutes,
- start the car and let it run,
- turn off the booster and disconnect the clamps.
With these instructions, the car will start more easily.
Where I can buy jump leads?
You have to know that this type of accessory will last us for many years if we treat it well and store it in a place in our vehicle protected from dust and humidity, which is why it is important and advisable to buy quality jump leads.
We can buy them in stores specialized in auto parts and from specialized online stores.
In our comparison, we offer jump leads of our own manufacture, with 1st quality copper cable and with copper clamps up to 600A.
We have available 16mm, 25mm, 35mm and 50mm booster cables in lengths of 2.5 and 4 meters, but we can custom manufacture if necessary.
Last update on 2021-05-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API