How to charge a car battery safely

Written by pamela gardapee
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How to charge a car battery safely
(sxc.com BerverlyLR)

If you have a dead battery in your automobile, you will need to charge it by using one of two methods. Each method will charge the battery, but one is quicker than the other. If you have some time to wait, charge the battery on a car battery charger. If you are in a rush, use jump leads and a car with a charged battery and charge the dead battery enough to turn over the engine.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Jump leads
  • Additional running car
  • Battery charger
  • Extension cord

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Instructions

    Jump Leads

  1. 1

    Park a car with a good battery in front or on the side of the disabled car with the dead battery. Both vehicles must be turned off before connecting jump leads.

  2. 2

    Attach one end of the jump leads to the car with the dead battery. Place the red cable on the positive terminal of the dead battery. Attach the black cable (ground) to a place on the engine that is metal and not painted.

  3. 3

    Place the other end of the jump leads on the car that will charge the battery. Place the red cable on the positive terminal. Place the black cable (ground) on the negative terminal on the battery.

  4. 4

    Start the booster car and allow it to run for a few minutes to charge the battery. After a few minutes, try to start the car with the dead battery. If the battery can take a charge, it should start. If it does not start, wait a few more minutes and try again. Never keep trying to turn over the engine with a dead battery. Allow more time for charging and try again.

  5. 5

    Allow both cars to keep running for a few minutes after the car with the dead battery has started. Remove the jump lead from the charging battery in the opposite way that you placed the cables. Remove the black cable then the red positive cable. Keep the clamps from touching each other.

  6. 6

    Remove the black cable from the booster car and then the red positive cable. Keep the clamps from touching until all cables are removed from the batteries. Keep the car that had a dead battery running by driving it to charge the battery using the alternator (if your alternator is not faulty and the cause of the dead battery).

    Battery Charger

  1. 1

    Place a battery charger in front of the car on a piece of wood or something that is flat and will keep it off the ground.

  2. 2

    Attach the red cable to the positive terminal of the car battery. Attach the black cable to the negative terminal of the car battery.

  3. 3

    Plug in the battery charger to the extension cord that you have plugged into an electrical socket.

  4. 4

    Turn on the battery charger to charge the battery. Keep the battery on the charger for six to 12 hours. Check the charger hourly to see if the meter indicator shows that the battery is charged.

  5. 5

    Turn off the battery charger after the meter shows that the battery is charged. Unplug the extension cord. Remove the charging cables from the car battery and start the car. The battery should have a full charge if it is good battery.

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