Can you jump start a car without another car?
Attempting to start your vehicle and getting silence or a clicking sound is often an indicator that your car’s battery is dead, especially if you noticed the power locks or interior lights weren’t working on your way to the ignition. If there are other cars around and someone has jumper cables on hand, you can often quickly charge your battery and get on the road that way. However, if you’re stranded away from other vehicles, you’ll have to rely on other methods of jumpstarting your car.
How to properly jumpstart a car
While you may have seen hacks on the internet that encourage using 12V batteries from a tool or other questionable methods to jumpstart your car, the only reliable way to charge your car’s battery without another vehicle around is with a jump starter. This is a portable device that has cables and clamps that connect to your vehicle, just as normal jumper cables would, but are instead attached to a portable battery.
When purchasing one of these handy tools, you want to make sure that the power unit is powerful enough to charge your specific type of vehicle. While an 800 amp model may be sufficient for motorcycles or smaller four- or six-cylinder cars, there are models that deliver 4000 amps or more, which can charge any car or truck in a matter of seconds.
Since jump starters use a battery to get your car up and running again, you need to make sure the battery is charged before use. If you use your portable battery for other reasons, such as charging your phone, you need to charge it after every use. However, if you just have one on hand in case of an emergency, charge at least once every six months to make sure it’s ready when the time comes.
Best way to store your jack stands
As you build your tool collection, having the right place to store everything can be a challenge. Of course, your new jump starter should have a safe home somewhere in your car, such as a built-in compartment or storage box in your trunk. Other items like your jack stands, another necessary tool to have for regular car maintenance and unexpected emergencies, should be placed in your garage or other storage area.
Many people have two or even four jack stands, and this piece of equipment isn’t easily stacked, so finding a convenient spot can be tricky. To get them off the ground, you can build a sturdy shelving unit that is large enough to hold the collection of stands, or you can purchase an organizer with hooks designed specifically for the purpose.
Get help from your knowledgeable auto parts store
Whether you just want tips on how to jump start a car or need help finding the right equipment for the job and vehicle, the staff at your local auto store has a wealth of knowledge. Head down to a location near you to purchase a jump starter, cables, jack stands, or whatever else you need to keep yourself out of a potentially sticky situation.