To start your car you need a car battery that is sufficiently charged. This must have enough energy to turn the starter and thus ignite the engine. However, if the battery fails, the engine can still be started – by bypassing the battery.
Our car jump start guide shows you how to successfully start your car despite an empty battery. In addition to the guide, we provide you with a practical how-to jump-start video.
You will also find all the important steps summarised in an information graphic. You can download it here as a PDF file, print it out and store it in the glove compartment – so you are always prepared in case your car battery runs out.
If starting a vehicle does not work, this can have various causes:
Jumper cables or a power bank are a essential tools to jump start an empty car battery.
The following guide will show you how to jump start your car properly – with or without a donor car.
If you want to jump start your car battery with the jump lead, it is important, among other things, to follow the correct sequence to avoid risking a short circuit. If you want to jump your car yourself, there are a few important things to consider.
Another thing you need to be careful about is that you have the correct jumper cables. A jumper cable must be able to withstand a voltage of several volts and thousands of amperes, which is why you need jumper cable of high quality. Usually cheap cables can not withstand the amperage. Simply stated, the jumper cables need to be thick enough, otherwise the cables could burn.
If the location for the jump start is safe, the on-board voltage matches, you have the right jumper cables and you have identified positive and negative poles, you can give (or receive) the jump start. It is essential that you pay attention to the correct sequence when implementing this.
If you don’t have a second car for jump starting your car at hand, you can also bypass your car battery with the help of a powerbank. This is the recommended way and it is always advisable to store such a jumpstart powerbank either in the garage or in your car trunk compartment. To store the powerbank in the car you need to have a portable car powerbank. You can also have a regular powerbank, but for this one you will need a power source, such as is available in your house. You need to connect it to the source in order for it to work. In the case of a portable powerbank you already have it pre-charged.
It is important how you store the jumpstart powerbank. The reason for this are the sometimes extremely fluctuating temperatures – from freezing degrees in wintertime to heat in the summer, when the car is in full sunshine. The lithium-polymer battery is particularly hard to handle at sub-zero temperatures: The battery’s performance can drop. This, in turn, prevents successful starting with the Powerbank. Therefore, it is imporatnt that you periodically check your power bank and how much battery life it still has and refill it when needed. Make sure that the packaging is insulated. The optimal temperature for storing the powerbank is room temperature.
Just as with jumpstarting with the jumper cable, the first step in jumpstarting with the Powerbank is to secure your location – especially if your car has broken down in traffic. Once you and your surroundings are safe, follow these six steps to jumpstart your car with the jumper powerbank:
Note that the two cables must not touch each other during the jump start!
Basically, it is no witchcraft to get a car running again with an empty car battery. If you pay attention to the most important points – high quality jump cables or powerbank and, of course, the correct order of implementation – you should be mobile again very quickly.
Before a vehicle with an intact battery can provide jump starting assistance, you should compare the on-board voltage of both cars. It must be the same. As a rule, a car will almost alway have an on-board voltage of 12 volts, so it is very rare that a car will not be suited for assistance.
Please note that you should never use a vehicle with a higher voltage than that of the stopped vehicle. Otherwise you could risk damage to the electrical system or a breakdown of the entire vehicle and that could be expensive. For information on the voltage of the car, simply look at the text on the battery.
Do not connect the black clip of the donor vehicle to the negative terminal battery of the defective car!
While it is advisable to have both the jumper cables as well as the powerbank, if you were to choose only one of them then you would probably want to choose only the jumper cables. Unless you are in a very remote area, chances that you will have a donor vehicle around are actually pretty good at all times. However, if you completely forget to check on your powerbank for many months, then the batteries may empty themselves. Thus the importance of checking on your powerbank every now and then is of utmost importance. Even though the powerbank is a much better product in itself, in times of need the cheaper and simpler jumper cables product may be better if you are forgetful.
Be prepared for a possible battery problem. Download this guide, print it and put it in your glove compartment in case you need it.
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