Jump start failed

I left the lights on in my car yesterday for a few hours and I tried to jump start it this morning but nothing happened when I tried to turn it on except a clicking noise that went away after awhile. I put the cables on in the order that a few friends had told me: red positive dead–>black negative dead–>red positive live–>black negative live. is this the correct order, or did I mess something up? what else could be wrong?

You probably didn’t wait long enough for your battery to recharge enough to start your car. Many jumper cable sets use too small of wire to be able to provide enough current to run the starter if you battery is completely run down. You need to connect the cables and wait about 15 minutes and then try to start your car. The donor car should be running during this time to avoid running it’s battery down.

It is common for a battery to not “come back to life” so to speak if it is allowed to go fully discharged (like yours did). Not even a jump of a shop charger will allow one of these cars to crank correctly. Most likely you killed your battery, It will never be as reliable as it was before this incident.

Do what tardis said & see where you stand then. Let us know how you make out.

It’s better to clamp the negative wire to a ground on the dead car rather than the negative terminal. There’s a small chance of causing an explosion otherwise, as you might ignite hydrogen out-gassing from the battery.

Some “cheapie” jumper cables really don’t work well. Larger, and more expensive cables allow more electricity to flow and start cars better and faster. If you had cheap cables you’d have to wait longer for the donor battery to put some juice in the “dead” battery before you’d get it to fire up. With high quality cables you have to wait only a little and perhaps no time at all and the dead car starts.

It sounds like you had everything connected OK, but didn’t wait long enough before trying to start the dead car. It also helps to have someone in the donor car keeping the engine rpm at about 1,500 to 2,000.

How Cold Is It There ? It’s 15F Here. A Totally Discharged Battery Can Freeze And Isn’t Worth A Darn Until It’s Thawed Out And Charged.

Here’s something to read. It’s in there.