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Several problems can keep your car from starting; a bad solenoid or even a defective starter. Sometimes, cleaning the battery clamps fixes it. But the most common cause is a dead battery.
Determining the cause
If you hear a clicking sound or nothing at all when you turn the key, it could be a dead battery, which can be taken care of with jumper cables. Here’s how to do use them …
Think safety first
1. Turn off the lights, and remove the ignition key.
2. Check for battery leaks and damage, and if you find any, replace the battery instead of jumping it.
3. Remove loose clothing before working under the hood.
4. Keep metal away from the terminals. If you accidentally ground the positive terminal, things can get sparky.
5. Make sure your car’s electrical system has a negative-ground. If the negative battery cable is connected directly to the vehicle’s frame, you’re good. (Most cars are negative ground.)
Proceed to jump starting
· Park a vehicle with a good battery close to yours.
· Clamp one of the red jumpers to the positive post on the other vehicle’s battery.
· Clamp the other end of the red lead to the positive post of your battery.
· Do the same with the black leads.
· Route the leads clear of any moving engine parts.
· Start the engine of the charged vehicle.
· Wait a few minutes and try to start your car. If it doesn't start, let it go for another few minutes and repeat this step until the engine starts.
· Don’t turn your car off, once it starts.
· Unclamp the jumper cables in the opposite order of how you attached them. Don’t let them touch metal.
· Drive the car or at let it idle for a half hour to further charge the battery.
· If the car dies soon after charging, you may have a bad alternator; see a mechanic!