We all know that jump-starting a vehicle is one of the best ways to get your car or motorcycle moving with a dead battery. And there are many ways by which you can jump-start a motorcycle if its battery is dead. But can you do so with a car? Doesn’t a car battery and motorcycle battery have different voltages?
To answer the specific question, ‘Can you start your motorcycle with a car?”, you will be happy to know that is absolutely possible to jump start your motorcycle with the help of a car. But this should be done with a high degree of care and attention because when the car is running, the high voltage of the car battery can actually damage the electronics of your beloved motorcycle if you’re not careful. All you need is a jump starter or jumper cable.
Let’s look at how we can properly jump start a motorcycle with the help of a car without damaging motorcycle batteries.
Step 1: Make Sure Both the Motorcycle and the Car are Turned Off
Car and motorcycle should be turned off before jump-starting.
Both the motorcycle and the car, that is being used to jump start the other vehicle should be turned off. This is essential because if both vehicles are not completely shut down, this could cause serious damage to the electronics of your bike or car. And in some cases, it can even lead to an explosion.
Turning one vehicle off while starting up another is a sure way of causing damage and potential injury to yourself or someone around you when trying to start up a dead battery on your motorcycle with a running car nearby.
The high voltage from car batteries can actually fry all electronic components of your bike such as headlights, turn signals, electric fuel injection system, etc., which will result in a huge financial loss.
So, when you are jump-starting your motorcycle with a car make sure the ignition of both the vehicles is turned off.
Step 2: Connect a Single Red Clamp to the Positive Terminal of Your Motorcycle Battery
Before we begin, let’s just debunk a myth, there is no such thing as motorcycle jumper cables, there are just jumper cables. It works the same both your motorcycle and car.
Locate the battery terminals on the car and bike battery.
Connect the red positive terminal of your motorcycle battery with the red positive clamp of jumper cables.
Do not attach or let the other end touch any metal part on the motorcycle body including its engine, wheels, etc., to avoid causing damage. Also, make sure you are connecting your positive cable to your bike’s positive side and negative cable to your bike’s negative side. A wrong connection can create sparks that could have serious consequences.
Next, connect one black clamp to the car battery post which is generally known as ‘ground’ in electrical terms. Pay special attention when attaching this ground cable because this will complete the circuit allowing electricity to flow from one vehicle to another through jumper cables.
Step 3: Connect the Second Red Clamp to the Positive Terminal of the Car Battery
Connect the second positive terminal of your motorcycle battery with the red positive clamp of jumper cables.
Similar to Step 2, make sure that the clamp stays far away from any metal surfaces and does not come in contact with anything. You need to double-check that you are connecting positive with positive and not messing up the connection.
After this, you need to connect the black clamp of the jumper cables to the negative side of the car battery but make sure that it does not come in contact with the positive side. Throughout the entire process, do not turn on your car and always leave it turned off.
Step 4: Start the Motorcycle
Now it’s time to start your motorcycle. Until and unless the battery of your motorcycle is completely dead, it should get started right then.
When you are jump-starting the battery of your bike, it would be a good idea to rev up the engine for 5 to 10 seconds at high speed before slowing down to normal idle speed. This will help in charging up your bike’s battery faster and enhance its performance.
Once the engine starts, switch off all electrical accessories like lights, etc., on your bike to prevent draining of current from the vehicle’s battery. Also, take it easy while riding around after turning on the ignition because this can cause draining out of power due to additional recharging by running the engine.
When you ride at a high speed, it can again create low voltage in your motorcycle battery which can result in shutting down the engine of your bike after you reach your desired destination.
Step 5: Disconnect Cables in the Proper Sequence
When you are using a jump starter or jumper cables to jump start your bike, it is very important that you disconnect them properly. First, remove the black cable connected to the negative terminal of the car battery and then remove the black cable connected to your bike’s negative terminal.
Next, slowly disconnect the red positive clamp from your bike’s positive terminal. Lastly, take off both clamps attached near your bike’s engine so they do not touch each other or any metal parts on either vehicle.
Now you know if your motorcycle battery is completely dead and can’t start up at all, you can use a car’s battery to give it the boost it needs. This method to jump start a motorcycle works well but should only be used as a last resort since there is a chance of frying your bike’s electronics.
However, when jump-starting a bike with a car, make sure that no part of the jump starter touches either vehicle during the activity.
If any metal surface is accidentally touched by the clamps of jumper cables, sparks will fly causing damage to both vehicles. And lastly but most importantly make sure you are not connecting the red positive clamp with the negative terminal on either vehicle as it can cause a spark very easily.
The method is somewhat safe, however, you must know what they are doing or have someone around that can help. If you are after a safer option then using a motorcycle push starting method might be a better option.
Once you get the bike home using a portable jump starter is a better way of actually charging your bike.