It happens to everyone, but you never want to be stuck with a dead battery on the road. Be prepared so that you know what to do when the time comes. Whether you’re dealing with a 2010 Nissan Altima battery or a Jeep, there are some general steps you can follow.
Attempt to Jump Start
One of the number one rules of the road is to always keep jumper cables in your car. However, if you don’t have cables, someone else might. When you find yourself in a public place with a dead battery, you’ll need to ask someone nearby for a jump.
You won’t always be in a populated place when your battery decides to give you problems. The best way to prepare is to also keep a jump starter in your vehicle. It acts like a portable battery. That way, you’ll never be left stranded.
If you’re not sure how to jump-start your car, always check your manual first. Sometimes certain cars have specific instructions, like the battery for 2013 Hyundai Sonata. Generally, when jumping your car you should follow these steps:
- Line up the live and dead cars hood to hood. Locate the batteries and remove the covers from the connections.
- Attach the positive red cables to both vehicles, starting with the dead car. Then do the same with the black negative cables.
- Start the live car. Wait at least five minutes to let your battery charge.
- Attempt to start your car. If you can hear it trying to turn over, it needs more time to charge.
- Once started, carefully remove the cables while the car is running. Do not turn it off. Keep your car running for as long as possible to get the battery up to a full charge.
Check the Connections
If a jump start was unsuccessful, you may have a problem in the circuit between the battery and the starter. This is usually due to a loose connection between the clamps and the battery posts. These are secured with a bolt that you can tighten.
You will also need to keep the connections clean and free of corrosion. Proper cleaning involves taking the clamp apart, but if you are in a pinch, you can quickly remove corrosion with an acidic liquid. Using Coca-Cola is a popular trick.
Get a New Battery
When all else fails, you may have an old or faulty battery. This means you will need to replace it. The same applies if you end up jumping it fairly often. Make sure you find a new battery compatible with your car’s make and model.
General guidelines recommend getting a new battery every 3-5 years. Log all of your car maintenance to keep track of things like this more easily and schedule future tune-ups in your calendar. That way you can avoid a dead battery to begin with.
Shopping for car batteries can be quick, convenient, and easy if you go to the right auto parts company. Expert technicians can determine which battery works best for your vehicle and install it on the spot. Find a reliable auto retailer that can cover all of your needs.