How Do I Jump-Start the Battery in My Ford Vehicle?

Before you start

  • Read the safety, jump-starting, and roadside emergency information in your Owner's Manual under Roadside Emergencies.
  • Have your Roadside Assistance number (800-241-3673) handy.
  • Locate a pair of color-coded jumper cables and a wire brush for removing battery terminal corrosion.
  • Find each vehicle’s battery: They can be under the hood or in the trunk.
  • Remove any metal jewelry like rings or bracelets to avoid accidental shocks while working near the battery.
  • Don’t disconnect the disabled battery as this could damage the vehicle’s electrical system.

Jump-starting your vehicle

  1. Move the boosting vehicle close to, but not touching, the vehicle with the dead battery so the jumper cables can connect without being taut. Put both vehicles in Park or Neutral, turn off their ignitions, and set their parking brakes. Turn off or unplug all power-draining items: lights, electronic accessories, and portable devices plugged into auxiliary outlets.
  2. Open the hood or trunk and remove any battery terminal covers. If you see chalky corrosion on the terminals, remove it with a wire brush terminal cleaner.
  3. Clamp the red positive (+) cable onto the disabled vehicle’s red positive (+) battery terminal.
  4. Connect the other end of the red positive (+) cable to the booster vehicle's red positive (+) battery terminal.
  5. Connect the black negative (-) clamp to the booster vehicle's black negative (-) battery terminal.
  6. Connect the other end of the black negative (-) cable to a large, unpainted metal surface in the disabled vehicle’s engine bay, away from the battery and the engine itself. Make sure the cables are clear of any moving parts.
  7. After a final check, start the booster vehicle. Then try to start the disabled vehicle: Usually, it will start right up, but it may need to charge for a few minutes before starting. Once it starts, allow both vehicles to run connected for about three minutes.
  8. Without turning off the jump-started vehicle’s engine, disconnect the cables in the reverse order that they were attached, and close the hoods/trunks.
  9. Allow the jump-started vehicle’s engine to run for several minutes. Depending on how discharged it is, the battery may not be able to start again under its own power, so keep it running until you reach your destination.

Visit your Ford Dealer as soon as possible to get the jump-started battery tested or replaced.

Additional Topics

How do I choose a new battery for my vehicle?
How do I check the battery?
What is the warranty on the battery?