Got a dead car battery? That’s a problem nearly every car owner has had to face.
But here’s the thing: You don’t always need jumper cables.
There are some very simple dead car battery tricks that can revive your car!
This Article Contains:
9 Simple Dead Car Battery Tricks
There are several smart tips and tricks that can help quickly restart your dead or weak battery. These could save you the money you’d spend on a new battery, and should work whether yours is an old or new vehicle.
These dead battery tricks should be carefully applied when you’re in an emergency or when a conventional jump starting method is unavailable.
Here are 9 battery tips for you to check out:
- Trick The Car Computer By Accelerating
- Tap The Battery Terminals
- Start The Car In Neutral
- Use Soda To Get Rid Of Corrosion
- Apply Baking Soda To Remove Corrosion
- Smear On Petroleum Jelly
- Drop Two Aspirin Tablets Into Each Battery Cell
- Use The Epsom Salt Trick
- Use Distilled Water
1. Trick The Car Computer By Accelerating
In most cases, the electronic control module (ECM) won’t let a car start because of a bad coolant temperature sensor. This can be bypassed by sending fuel through the fuel pump.
Press down on the accelerator pedal before turning the key to start the engine. This will engage the fuel pump, sending fuel to the engine, thereby fixing the coolant temperature sensor issue.
Note: A fuel pump will drain a battery if the fuel pump relay is running full-time. A fuel pump relay swap could also help keep your dying battery in good condition.
2. Tap The Battery Terminals
This trick is highly effective if your car has had the parking brake up for too long. Try wiggling a battery terminal into a new position to give the weak battery a better connection.
This trick is best paired with one of the battery terminal corrosion-clean-up tricks mentioned below.
3. Start The Car In Neutral
This trick applies to cars with an automatic transmission since manual transmission cars always need to be started in neutral.
Moving the gear stick could establish an electrical connection inside the car’s neutral safety switch. This trick has proven useful for starting a car with a low electric battery charge.
4. Use Soda To Get Rid Of Corrosion
If you see a white, blue, or green substance on a battery cable or terminals, corrosion is the likely issue causing your dead battery. Corrosion prevents a dying battery from properly conducting the electricity needed to start a vehicle.
Get rid of battery cable corrosion by applying a fizzy drink like Coke or another soda.
Disconnect your battery cables and pour your soda onto the terminals or corroded areas of the dying battery. Let it soak for a while, then simply scrub the corrosion away.
5. Apply Baking Soda To Remove Corrosion
If you don’t have soda, it may be a good idea to try baking soda to remove corrosion and revive your dead car battery.
For this method, you’ll need a tablespoon of baking soda, a toothbrush, and warm water. Brush the corrosion on the terminals and cables like you would brush your teeth—except instead of toothpaste, you’re using baking soda.
6. Smear On Petroleum Jelly
While fizzy drinks and baking soda can combat corrosion that’s built up on a working battery unit, petroleum jelly should be applied consistently to prevent corrosion build-up.
It’s also extremely useful when your battery is already dead.
Petroleum jelly has electrical conduction properties, which makes it an excellent remedy for an overly corroded dead battery.
So apply petroleum jelly on the terminals and across the battery. This’ll help carry electricity from the dying battery to the starter.
7. Drop Two Aspirin Tablets Into Each Battery Cells
Warning: This trick carries an element of danger, so you’ll need to perform it with care. It’s a good idea to grab yourself a pair of protective goggles and gloves before getting started. This trick will only work on a lead acid battery.
First, remove the weak battery from your vehicle and the battery cell covers with a screwdriver. Then drop the two aspirin tablets into each of the six battery cells and wait for one hour to see if there is any battery power.
This method works because the acetylsalicylic acid in Aspirin merges with the car’s sulfuric battery acid to create a charge.
Note: Adding Aspirin to your lead acid battery will significantly shorten the life of a working battery. You should only add Aspirin to old car batteries that need a short boost. If you have a new battery or a new vehicle, try another trick.
8. Use The Epsom Salt Trick
Unused batteries start to produce excess sulfate, which reduces the battery’s charge-storing capacity. This means that your battery won’t be able to carry the electricity needed for the starter.
A desulfation process with the help of Epsom salt should take care of this problem.
You’ll need to mix Epsom salts with warm water and fill the battery cells with this solution to break down the sulfate build-up.
9. Use Distilled Water
This is perhaps the most simple and effective dead car battery trick on the list.
Add distilled warm water to the battery cells to help submerge the plates and give the starter motor a few more turns.
This method is particularly useful when the electrolyte levels in your battery are low. Distilled warm water can be used as an alternative electrolyte booster when you have no aspirin or Epsom salt available.
Now that you know a few tricks to boost your dead battery, here’s a look at a few other ways to get your car running.
3 Conventional Methods to Jump-Start Your Car
Here are the 3 conventional battery tips that have proven highly effective in the past:
1. Car Pushing For Manual Transmission Vehicles
If you drive a car with a manual transmission, pushing it to get the wheels turning is a good idea to get the battery running again.
Once the car starts moving, after giving it a push, ensure that you’re in second gear (it is best to be in second gear so that the engine doesn’t run too fast) and that you’re holding down the clutch.
Finally, start the car, let down the parking brake, and slowly bring up the clutch to revive your dead battery.
2. Jump Start Using Another Car
Jump starting your car using jumper cables or a jump starter, and an electrical charge is the most common way to restart a dead battery:
- Connect the positive terminal of the good battery to the positive terminal of the dead battery using the red cable or red clip.
- Connect the negative terminal of the good battery to an unpainted metal surface on the car with the bad battery using the black cable.
- Start the car with the working battery to charge the dead battery.
Note: When using jumper cables, the red cable or red clip should connect the two positive terminals while the negative cable is the black one.
You can also use a jump starter and a lithium-ion battery charger to revive your dead car battery. A jump starter conducts a high current from the ion battery charger to provide enough power to start the engine.
3. Contact A Professional
The easiest solution to fixing a dead battery is to call a professional mechanic. Fortunately, AutoNation Mobile Service has a host of mobile mechanics that can come to your rescue!
What’s AutoNation Mobile Service?
Every car owner needs a convenient and efficient mobile vehicle repair and maintenance solution. That is exactly what AutoNation Mobile Service provides.
Here are a few reasons why you should contact us when you have car troubles:
- We will come to your driveway to repair your car battery or replace it with a new battery
- Our technicians are experts in car servicing and inspection
- Technicians will arrive with all the necessary tools, including a portable jump starter, jumper cables, and a battery charger
- Online booking is quick and easy
- We offer fair and competitive prices
- AutoNation Mobile Service offers a 12-month warranty on any repairs made
Fill in this online form to get an accurate quote for battery charging and starting.
A dead car battery is one of the peskiest problems to deal with. Keeping a close eye on your battery and maintaining it might prevent future problems. A battery replacement might also be in the pipeline.
If you do, however, end up with a dead battery, the battery tips above should help get you back on the road. And if that doesn’t work, contact professional mechanics for help like AutoNation Mobile Service.
Contact us, and our expert technicians will fix your dead car and provide you with a battery replacement if needed!