An automatic car is designed to switch over to a battery once the user gets inside and presses the START button. This is because some automatic transmissions require some power from the engine in order to operate, and many newly manufactured cars (and nearly all new cars today) do not have a key that needs inserting into the ignition, making this system virtually mandatory for safety reasons. As such, you can’t turn your automatic car without having it on; even if you pop open the hood and let some air circulate around it while popping up all four tires (if yours is an older model), it won’t be enough to rotate the starter motor since no electricity will flow through it until you press start.
So, can you push start an automatic car with a dead battery?
The short answer is yes. But the long answer is no, not really. It’s complicated. If you have jumper cables and another vehicle it would be possible to jump-start your car that way but for this article, we are going to assume that both vehicles are parked in close enough proximity for you to reach one vehicle with the other cable clamps without any difficulty.
If your automatic car has died, you can use a set of jumper cables to give it just enough power from your working battery so that it can turn over enough times to properly engage the starter motor. The important thing here isn’t how many times the engine turns over under this process, however, it’s to make sure that you’ve given your automatic transmission enough juice to fully engage the starter motor. It only takes a few seconds for this process before three things are likely to happen, depending on how much battery power is left in your dead battery.
1. The car may simply turn over and start right away, but if it doesn’t you’ll want to make sure that you can engage the starter motor without any difficulty.
2. It might take a few tries, but your car should eventually start after trying this process more than once.
3. If the battery is too low on power for even this method to work, then you’re going to have some problems starting up your vehicle since this technique only allows just enough power into the system so that it does not shut off as soon as you’ve turned the key and disengaged the starter motor again. Sometimes all it takes is another press of the gas pedal so that your engine revs up temporarily in order to give those starter pinions and gears just enough juice to connect.
If you have a strong suspicion that the problem with your car is not so much as an electrical issue but instead one about the starter motor itself, then jump-starting the vehicle isn’t going to help at all since it’s not getting any power from your battery in the first place. If this is the case, then you will need to have your car towed into an automotive repair shop or somewhere else where they can test out what exactly is wrong with it.
Is jump-starting always possible?
The short answer is yes. But if either of your vehicles are manual transmission cars, then this process won’t work because there are no starter motors on manual transmission cars. Instead, you’ll be using a set of jumper cables to give one car enough power from the other in order to get it started, and if you try this on a manual transmission car with an automatic transmission vehicle, you’ll generate some weird results thanks to the lack of a starter motor.
What do I need for jump starting?
It’s possible that your battery is just so dead that you won’t be able to get either of your cars going without finding some other source of electricity around you that’s capable of giving your battery enough juice through a different outlet besides your own alternator or getting someone else to bring their car up and park close enough for these jumper cables to reach so that both vehicles can be charged. But if there is no such alternative source of energy available, then you will need jumper cables in order to start your car with the help of another vehicle. There are several different types of jumper cables that you can buy, but most common ones consist of heavy-duty metal clamps for one end and dual-pinned clamp on the other end designed specifically for connecting both vehicles together in order to charge up your weak battery.
What if I don’t have jumper cables?
If you want to be prepared for this type of situation before it happens, then it’s possible to purchase a set of jumper cables so that all you would need is someone else who has two working batteries in their car or an outlet somewhere. But for this article’s sake, we’re going to assume again that there aren’t any sources of electricity available that you can connect your car to in order charge up your battery, and that means that you’ll have to get a bit creative with how the jumper cables are connected so that they create enough of a circuit between both vehicles.
You can’t just connect one end from your engine block to theirs since most likely there’s going to be some difference between your battery’s voltage and their own, which is why it works best when you use another one of your car’s plugs for this process in addition to the one already connected directly into the dead battery. Knowing which ones these are will depend on whether or not your car has multiple 12-volt outlets or not, but if it does then chances are there is an extra plug besides the cigarette lighter that is normally used for powering up other devices like a GPS and/or an auxiliary cable in order to listen to music on your phone.
What do I need to do when jump starting?
When it comes time for you to try and start your car again, there are two procedures that you can follow: one is the “smart” way of doing things which involves leaving the good car running while trying over and over again with the dead one. This process will work if you’ve made sure beforehand that both cars have their parking brakes disengaged so that they’re not going to roll away from each other once they’re connected together through those jumper cables. Another way of doing this is by turning off the engine of both vehicles and allowing them to sit for a bit before starting up the good car’s engine again in order to give it time to recharge that dead battery.
What happens when you mess this up?
If you try and start your car again without allowing the good car enough time to fully charge up that dead one, then chances are what will happen is a loud pop from a shorted wire, which may lead to an even worse problem of sparking from the jumper cables themselves since they’ll be receiving much more voltage than necessary in order to power itself back on. The smart thing would be to leave the other car running for half an hour or so before trying anything else with your own vehicle… but if you do decide otherwise and get yourself into some serious trouble by trying to jump-start your car again, then chances are it’s going to ruin the battery and/or the alternator.
Jumper cables can save you when you’re in a bind, but they’re most effective when used with common sense and patience. Don’t let someone pressure you into doing something that seems too dangerous or intense like trying to power up your car repeatedly after giving it enough time for the good one to recharge itself; otherwise, things may backfire on you and create more problems than solutions.
Jumper cables can save you when your car doesn’t start, especially if it’s because of a dead battery. Just remember to allow the good car enough time to recharge that dead one and not try jump-starting your car again once the process is done!
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