What happens if you hook up jumper cables backwards - Read before posting!

For those absolutely stupid things that you see people bring, roll, or toss into your place of business and the...

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Only original content is acceptable. An alternator is typically going to have three pairs of rather beefy diodes, each of which will allow current to flow from the negative terminal to the positive terminal. It would depend on how long everything was connected incorrectly, how much damage the fire did along with what circuits were involved.

If one connects a strong battery to a vehicle's electrical system with reversed polarity, nearly-unlimited current will flow through the alternator until it blows a fuse or fusible link, melts a wire or diode, or does something else catastrophic. We trust the garage to get to the bottom of this, but it seems that everyone thinks it is a starter issue first-hopefully, they find something that we can hang on the first "professional".

By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy , Privacy Policy , and our Terms of Service. Our Jeep was having problems turning over, so we called a tow truck driver. He connected the jumper cables incorrectly, starting a small fire on the battery box. After the fire was out, the Jeep no longer turned over. Besides damaging the electronics IN the engine, is it possible that he killer the starter?

The battery isn't quite 2 years old, and works great. More than likely the resultant issue is a fried fusible link which attaches the ignition to the starter or the starter relay which would do the same. This probably would not have killed the starter. Since you didn't put down the model or year of the Jeep, it is a little hard to help you with further diagnostic as far as where to find a fusible link or as to which relay to check.

Im not an expert, so take my advice with a grain of salt, but I think I can tackle this question:. Possibly, but not likely.

When you attach the wrong cables to the wrong nodes on a battery, it results in a very high current flow to the battery with a lower charge.

A co-worker needed a jump-start, and I thought I would be a welcome Samaritan and plagiarize her. I had to pull up next to her in the rival traffic lane to be able to reach her battery. In my hurry, I put the positive and cancelling clamps on the wrong terminals on my car hers were attached correctly.

When I got in my motor to start it, I could go through that the wires were smoking. I immediately got effectively and disconnected the cables.

We bought new cables, and then we were able to start her car. In her car works fine except on account of the radio, which seems to be dead. When she took it to the dealer, they said there is some kind of electrical system overthrow.

Please help, as I may be responsible for filthy lucre for repairs. In fact, if the radio is the only victim here, you would be a good Samaritan and a providential one.

One of the cars even can burst into flames.

Nearly all drivers know that a car with a dead battery can be started by jumping it from a car with a charged battery. Automotive batteries are designed to produce the high electrical current required to start the engine. This unchanging procedure can become dangerous if the jumper cables are connected improperly -- if the encouraging terminal on each battery is mistakenly connected to the argumentative terminal on the other battery.

Damage will result from quite high current flow, and under any circumstances from incorrect polarity on the "dead battery" vehicle. Connecting the positive terminal of each battery to the negative terminal of the other battery will consequence in a huge surge of electrical current between the two batteries.

This will cause the batteries to heat very right away, and in lead-acid type batteries -- the most common ilk -- it will result in the generation of a gargantuan amount of hydrogen gas within the charged battery. The warmth can melt internal and outside battery parts, while the vexation from the hydrogen gas can crack the battery casing.

A single time finally the casing is cracked, escaping hydrogen can potentially ignite and explode. Jumper cables are not designed to carry the mammoth surge of electrical current, and will quickly heat up to very high temperatures. This can melt the insulation on the cables and potentially expose folk to direct contact with the electrical cables.

The heat can also melt solder and other components that hold the cables and clamps together. The gush of electrical current can hit the fusible link or coalesce element that protects the vehicle's main electrical system. If the engine of the vehicle with the charged battery is nautical port running, the electrical surge can damage this vehicle's alternator.

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10 thoughts on “What happens if you hook up jumper cables backwards

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