Tag Archive for Car

How to Jump-Start Your Car

Businessman holding pipe in mouth, smiling, (B&W), portrait

If there’s one car-related skill everyone should know, it’s how to jump-start a car. It’s straight forward and all you need is jumper cables (and a working car of course). You will inevitably need to do this yourself someday, whether it’s on your own vehicle, or someone else’s (your chance to be a Good Samaritan). So, read on…


  1. Park both cars bonnet to bonnet, roughly half a foot apart. Make sure both cars have the parking brake on and their engines switched off.

    How to Jump Start a Car

    How to Jump Start a Car


  1. Next, pop the hood. Before attaching anything it’s worth inspecting the battery in question. If the battery shows clear signs of corrosion then it may require replacing.

    How to Jump Start a Car

    How to Jump Start a Car


  1. If it appears fine superficially, the next step is to find the negative and positive terminals on both batteries. Positive = Red, while Black = Negative. Also, and this is important: DON’T let the metal ends touch each other throughout the process.

    How to Jump Start a Car

    How to Jump Start a Car


  1. Now, attach the positive jumper cable to the dead battery’s positive terminal, and the other end to the positive terminal of the live battery.

    How to Jump Start a Car

    How to Jump Start a Car


  1. The Negative end of the cable is then attached to the negative terminal of the live battery. Its opposite end should be attached to a metal (non-painted) part under the hood of the car with the dead battery (i.e. engine block bolts).

    How to Jump Start a Car

    How to Jump Start a Car


  1. Start the car with the live battery. Give it a few minutes running time, and then lightly rev the engine.

    How to Jump Start a Car

    How to Jump Start a Car


  1. Start up the car with the dead battery. If it turns, let it run for a few minutes. Failing that, let it rest while the other car continues to run for a minute. If it still doesn’t turn after that, turn off everything and check the connections again.


  1. If successful, disconnect the cables in the reverse order that you put them on (negative – dead car > negative – working car > positive – working car > positive – dead car).


  1. Pat yourself on the back.

    Businessman holding pipe in mouth, smiling, (B&W), portrait




Car Maintenance Check: Timeline

Here’s a handy info-graphic we put together to help you remember when certain maintenance checks should be carried out…


Car Maintenance Check

Car Maintenance Check

Winter Driving Safety Tips


Baton down the hatches because it’s about to get chilly! Forecasters have warned that Ireland is facing its coldest winter in years, with sub-zero temperatures, polar gales and heavy snowfall expected to sweep across the country over December, January and February.

That’s obviously going to impact on driving conditions and your car. With that in mind it’s worth asking yourself whether you’re prepared for any winter emergencies. We’ve prepared a checklist for both practical and essential items to have in your car should the winter conditions get the best of your vehicle.


Winter Driving Safety  – Practicals


Blanket / Gloves: Should your car break down in the back of beyond, you might want to conserve fuel and battery power (if you still have any that is). Keep a blanket and gloves tucked away in the boot and stay warm while you wait for help to arrive.

Shovel: Even a small folding shovel will do the trick if you get wedged in by snow.

Wind-up phone charger: If the battery in your car and phone is dead, and you’re stranded in the middle of nowhere, a wind-up charger might just turn out to be one of the soundest purchases you ever made.


Winter Driving Safety  – Essentials


Warning Lights: Poor visibility during the winter months make road-side break downs that bit more hazardous. A Warning Triangle at least increases your visibility when pulled over.

Snow Socks: Give your car extra grip in snow and ice. Light and easy to fit. Can be kept in the car when not in use. Available in 5 sizes, these snow socks fit hundreds of different tyres. Fits on the cars drive wheels.

De-Icer: Essential and self-explanatory. Can also be used in emergencies to de-frost frozen car parts.

Ice Scraper: Stating the obvious…

Jump Leads: Battery failure is the most common cause of breakdowns and the likelihood of that happening increases during the winter months. Be prepared.

Hi-Vis Vest: In a scenario where you might be required to carry out some road-side repairs having a Hi-Vis vest is essential, especially when doing so in difficult-to-see winter conditions.

Torch: Essential if you need to get under the hood in the dark.

Screen Wash: As well as removing dirt, grime and insect deposits, Screen Wash also helps prevent freezing.


Improving Your Cars Winter Performance



Winter Tyres: A complete new set of winter tyres (where the rubber is optimized to stay flexible during cold snaps as opposed to regular tyres which turn hard and slippery) might sound expensive. However, in reality, if you spend a lot of time on the road during the winter months it’s a worthwhile investment. And besides, while you’re driving around on the winter tyres, the regular set isn’t being used and worn down.


Check your battery: While it’s always advisable to have a professional check your battery, there are a few ways even a novice can carry out a routine check and maintenance. Look out for corrosion on posts and cable connections and scrape away where necessary. Give the surfaces a clean and retighten all connections. If you can remove the battery caps check the fluid level monthly.


Wiper Blades / Fluid Levels: Rubber cladded wiper blades are best suited for scraping ice from the windscreen. In addition to this, ensure you have refilled your windshield washer reservoir with wiper solvent and keep plenty on hand. You can really go through it in large quantities during the winter months.


Bulbs / Lighting:  Replace any fading or burnt out bulbs while also regularly removing grime from the lenses.


Brakes: Finally, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, check your brakes.