Audi A3: How to Jump Start Battery

A dead battery is something you’re very likely to come across, either with your car or someone else’s. Read this how-to on jump starting a dead battery and be prepared for when you need it the most.

This article applies to the Audi A3 (1996-2008).

Dead batteries happen. It can be because of something as silly as accidentally leaving on the dome lights, or attaching a few too many extra accessories, or maybe the battery is going bad and not keeping a charge. The only way to fix a dead battery is to jump start it. These instructions will explain everything you need to do.

Materials Needed

  • Jumper cables
  • A second car or a jump starter

Step 1 – Connect the jumper cables

Before you do anything, make sure that both vehicles are parked facing each other and the engines are off. Open the hoods of each car by pulling the hood release lever near the driver’s side kick panel. Locate the batteries and identify the positive and negative terminals. These will be clearly marked by the + and — labels next to the terminals. There is a specific order you want to connect the jumper cables:

  1. Connect the red jumper cable to the positive terminal on the dead battery. A good way to remember this is the phrase «red on dead.»
  2. Connect the other end of the red jumper cable to the positive terminal on the good battery.
  3. Connect the black jumper cable to the negative terminal on the good battery.
  4. Finally, connect the other end of the black jumper cable to a bolt or unpainted piece of metal on the car with the dead battery. The reason to do this is because if you connect it to the negative terminal on the dead battery, it will create a spark, which is dangerous because it could set off the hydrogen gas inside the dead battery.

Pro Tip

Stay safe when you’re jump starting a battery. Don’t let the metal on the jumper cables touch each other, and don’t let them get wet.

Step 2 – Start the car with the good battery

The alternator on the second car will start charging the dead battery. You may wish to wait a few minutes for the dead battery to charge. Then try starting the car with the dead battery. If you’re still having trouble getting it to start, check the clamps on the jumper cables to make sure they’re getting a good connection on the terminal posts. Once the car with the dead battery starts, leave it running as you remove the jumper cables in the reverse order:

  1. Disconnect the negative cable from the car with the dead battery.
  2. Disconnect the negative cable from the car with the good battery.
  3. Disconnect the positive cable from the car with the good battery.
  4. Disconnect the positive cable from the car with the dead battery.

Drive around for a little while to give the alternator more time to charge the battery. If you find yourself having to repeatedly jump start your battery, you may have a bad battery that needs to be replaced. If this still continues to happen, you may want to get the alternator checked.

Pro Tip

If you’re using a jump starter, all of this is much easier. Leave the jump starter turned off, and connect the positive and negative cables to the battery. There is no risk of a spark so long as the jump starter is off. Just remember to turn the jump starter off before disconnecting it.

Featured Video: Jump Start New Audi S3

Related Discussion

  • 3.2Q Jump Start Problems — AudiWorld.com

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