Anyone who drives would be wise to gain even a small understanding of how their vehicle works and how to combat some of the more common automobile ailments. Like any machine, a car is made up of moving parts all working in unison to achieve an end. As you can imagine, the majority of car issues arise as a result of a fault somewhere along the line; in which case you are best off heading to a mechanic’s, as it can be challenging to discover where the problem has originated.
Fortunately not all car issues are such a conundrum. There are some issues that can be diagnosed easily and addressed, with the right know-how, immediately upon discovery. One example of such is a depleted (or ‘dead’) battery, the tell-tale sign of which is nothing; you insert the key, give it a twist and nothing happens. Just to clarify, if you turn the key and there is a sound or some sort of movement then your battery is not dead and the problem lies elsewhere.
There are several causes that can lead to a dead battery, the most common of which is some of the electrics, such as the headlights, A/C or radio, being left on over night or whilst the car is not running. Your battery could also die as a result of long periods of inactivity, poor battery upkeeps (low water levels, unclean terminals, etc.) old age, parasitic draw and extremely cold temperatures.
It the moment however the why is not essential, you need to get your car up and running. There are several ways of doing this, but the most simple is to get a jump start (or ‘Boost’) from a fellow driver. Knowing how to jump start a car is irrelevant however if, between you and your rescuer, you have no jump cables; which is why, and we cannot stress this enough, every car should have a set of jumper cables in it. Just to be safe.
To start with you need to find some kind soul who is willing to give you a boost, which is by far the most difficult part of the process; however once you have caught the attention of a Good Samaritan and they have pulled over to help you, you can begin.
There are alternative methods of starting your car without jump cables, but they are a little more difficult and only work with manual cars. The first method is quite simple and all you need is to be at the top of a hill, or some other sort of incline.