Using Transit van to jump start another vehicle

I was wonder if someone could explain how one might jump another dead car using a Ford Transit van as the live vehicle? The battery is under the driver’s seat and while they have put a positive terminal under the hood they only have a ground post under the hood and not and actual negative terminal. Since one would normally connect one of the cables to the negative terminal of the good battery and ground it on the dead vehicle i’m not sure where to connect the negative/ground cable on each vehicle. The dealer told me to connect it to the negative ground post on the live Transit and also a ground on the dead vehicle. Is this correct? Ground to ground? Of course the two positives are connected with the other cable but this is the easy part.

Thanks for any advice.

Take the jumper cables and connect them to the POS & NEG in the Transit van.

At the dead battery, connect the red clamp to POS battery post and the black clamp to a bracket somewhere on the engine.

The reason for this is, when a battery goes dead it creates hydrogen gas. If you make the last connection at the NEG post on the dead battery, this may cause a spark. And that can cause the battery to explode.

If you make the last connection somewhere on the engine, you greatly reduce the chance of that happening.


If I understand this, there is a ground post under the hood of the Transit. This would be the same as a negative post. The frame of the vehicle is connected to the negative terminal of the battery. Since there is a positive post under the hood, you use the positive post and the ground to jump the battery.

There shouldn’t be an electrical difference between a “ground post” and a “ground terminal”. They both should be connected to the battery negative post by a substantial size wire and/or the chassis. Tester is correct that the final connection shouldn’t be near either of the batteries.

Tester and George are both correct. Back in the days of all metal cars (chrome bumpers) I one jumped a car using only one jumper cable by pushing the cars together so their bumpers touched.

I used to jump cars with metal bumpers if I had to park behind the other car by pressing bumpers together and connecting my cables together end to end to span the distance betwee tne positive posts. Had to be careful in those days, there were positive ground cars and trucks as well as 6 volt vehicles in the mix.

Ah, memories of metal bumpers… :smiley:

I bet the Transit’s owners manual explains how to jump a car.

I would think to Transit manual explains how to get the Transit jumpstarted , not how to use the Transit to jumpstart another car

Think about it . . . I can’t recall any owner’s manual that explains how to use YOUR car to jumpstart another car with a dead battery

It’s all about the car mentioned in the owner’s manual, not some theoretical other car

That’s how I see it :trollface:

Yup. The battery in my Olds is under the seat so when I put the charger on it I just use the positive post under the hood and a metal part for the ground. OTOH, I don’t like jumping a car with my car so I now carry a portable jump start unit. Then you don’t have to worry about your vehicle at all. Of course now I’ve never had to use it.

Yes. With cars so loaded with computers today, I’d never jump start another car. Too much chance of damaging the electronics in one of the cars, and thousands in repairs.

My son bought me an HF jump pack, I have used it twice. No hassle of trying to line up a car that is stuck in a parking spot and trying to stretch cables. When the battery is hard to get to, I have seen a clearly marked positive post, usually with a big red cap on it. Any solid metal piece should give a good ground.

I have a gray booster pack . . . DSR. It’s actually got one helluva kick

Believe it or not, but I’ve used it to start HUGE construction equipment, when the yahoos left the ignition on, or forgot to turn off the lights

I’ve had it for several years, and the only thing I had to do was replace the internal battery. Cost me about $50, but still a lot cheaper than buying another booster pack

What’s wrong with car #2? If u need to jump it, it needs a new battery. Or buy a $50 jump pack at WM.

My booster pack is much better and way more powerful than anything you could buy at Walmart . . . never mind I’ve never set foot in the store and never will

That’s why it made sense to replace the battery in my booster pack, versus just buying a lousy booster pack, which won’t have any kick, anyways

@Cavell has a valid point, the actual problem is the dead battery. Even better than a jump pack though, when such a thing is possible, you’ll usually be better off by recharging the dead battery overnight at the 2 amp rate with a plain 'ol battery charger. That won’t damage the battery as much as a quick charge would.

easy to find free jump packs with dead batteries. I have good luck with Internet replacement batteries. About $30 shipped. Are they good? They seem to work. The last pack I got had a 120v inverter. Sorta useful.

Thanks for all the information. It was not explained to me, either in the manual or by the service manager, that the negative post under the hood is connected directly to the negative terminal of the battery, they only called it a “ground.” An it is true that the manual explains how to jump start the Transit if it were dead but not how to use the Transit as the live vehicle to jump another car.

Thanks again,