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Jump Start Your Day....or Your Car...

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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Jump Start Your Day....or Your Car...

My preferred morning jump start method involves the following....

That's how I started this morning 
(like every other morning)...

although apparently, 

my 2 cups of coffee today were completely insufficient...

for the kind of jump that I needed.

Yesterday we went to pick strawberries with a friend and her daughter.  I take my kids every year at least once.  Freshly picked strawberries are the best, and for $7/ gallon, I feel pretty pleased with the purchase.

I'm making strawberry shortcake tonight to take to another friend who just had a baby.  I'll post the recipe that I use for that tomorrow, along with a recipe for a killer flank steak and roasted potatoes.  But that is tomorrow.

Back to today....

SO... something to remember when you go somewhere in your car with a friend and don't normally have a small child sitting in the back seat of your car, is that things go differently.  And by differently I mean, the child might turn on the overhead light sometime during the 30 minute drive to or from the strawberry farm.

And perhaps your 5 year old will notice it and turn the light off.

But perhaps...just perhaps... the light will be turned on again.

And noone will know....

As cute as these 2 are here above, one of them turned that light back on.

I didn't find out until this morning...when I went out with both of my children to take Tid Bit to school and Little Bit to his 15 month doctor's appointment.

The light in the back seat wasn't on anymore then either.  And for that matter, nothing was on in the car.  As soon as I clicked the remote door entry and only heard a "click" instead of the sound of a door sliding open, I had this sneaking suspicion that we might be in for a little side-tracking this morning.

As it turns out....we were.

Thankfully my friend next door was home and came to my rescue (sans shower and all!)  You know someone loves you when they'll come jump your car first thing in the morning...even before they've had a chance to take a shower!  I promised I wouldn't post a picture of her, my morning salvation, though.

She had the cables, but didn't remember how to use them.  I do in fact know how to use them, probably because the last time we went somewhere with my friend and her adorable daughter in the backseat, we jumped the car the next morning again.  Hmmm....I'm beginning to see a pattern here.  And it probably wouldn't be a bad idea for me to begin a pattern to respond to this pattern.  Check the back seat lights every time perhaps?!

I thought this would be a handy time to offer some instruction on how to use jumper cables in the instance that any of you ever find yourself picking strawberries and end up with a dead car battery the next day.

It's a wonder that I'm not the dead one this morning though, because while I know how to use jumper cables, I missed one part, but apparently did it correctly as a total fluke.

I found the following helpful information on the DriversEdGuru:

How to Jump Start a Car

Every driver should know how to jumpstart a car. If you don’t know how to do it yet, keep reading and I’ll teach you. When strictly followed, the following steps listed below should have your dead battery charged in no time.

1. Place both cars nose to nose as closely together as possible without touching.

2. Turn off the ignition in both cars and put both parking brakes in place.

3. If you notice any type of “fuzz” or abnormal looking corrosion on the battery, scrub it off with a wire brush and rinse away with water. Try to wear safety gloves at all times so that you never have this corrosion come into contact with your bare hands.

4. Connect the red cable first to the positive posts on each battery marked “POS” or “+”. Never touch the red and black cables to each other as this could spark and cause injuries. Also, always connect red-to-red and black-to-black. If connected improperly, an explosion could occur.


5. Next, connect the black cable to the negative post labeled “NEG” or “-” on the “live” car. Now, connect the other end of the black cable to a bolt or unpainted metal part of the “dead” car’s frame. This will be the grounding point on the car. There is multiple information on whether or not this actually makes a difference in safety, however, according to AAA this is the best way to attach the negative cables.

6. Remember to keep the cables away from any belts so that when starting the car back up, they do not get tangled or caught up into the engine.

7. Start the live car and rev the engine slightly to charge the dead battery. After about 5 minutes, try starting the ignition on the dead car. If you have problems starting it, turn off the live car and readjust the red clamps on both batteries.

8. When the dead car finally starts up, don’t turn it off right away. Keep the car’s engine running for at least a half hour for the battery to fully charge before turning it off. As you keep the engine going, carefully remove the cables. Always remove the black grounding cables first before the red cables.

If you still have trouble starting your car, there may be a serious problem with the engine. Call a tow truck, have a mechanic look at it, and hope that the bill won’t break the bank.

Hopefully for you, you won't have to use this information.  If you drive at all, and particularly if you have children in the car with you EVER though, I'd recommend taking note of the above information...or at the very least bookmarking this page on your phone! 

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At May 4, 2011 at 4:06 PM , Blogger Terri said...

Wow, great timing. Just last night, I helped another football parent start her car after she waited for her son for too long with all the accessories running. :) Yes, Charlie has provided me with a nice set of cables that NEVER leave my car. Happy to hear your sidetrack this morning worked out OK, but you're gonna owe your pre-shower rescuer BIG TIME!

At May 4, 2011 at 8:33 PM , Blogger tlhp259 said...

Where did you go to pick strawberries? We would love to go but don't know where a good place would be. Thanks!


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