Is It Safe To Jump Start Someone’s Car?

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Is It Safe To Jump Start Someone’s Car?

Jump starting a vehicle with a dead battery has long been a courtesy drivers give to each other. But advances in electronics in modern cars mean a lot more can go wrong in this exchange. And if it does, car insurance may not cover the resulting damage.

What Can Go Wrong When Jump Starting Someone’s Car?

Jump starting is simple until it isn’t. A misplaced wire or bad battery in one car can cause an electrical system overload, battery damage, or overheating in one or both cars. Electrical systems in modern cars run everything — including steering, airbags, brakes and entertainment systems — so the cost of repairing any damage could go far beyond a battery replacement.

Does Auto Insurance Cover Damage From Jump Starts Gone Wrong?

If something goes wrong in a jump start, your car insurance policy may not apply. It comes down to policy exclusions.

It would be very difficult to find a way to argue that either your auto insurance policy or the other driver’s policy should cover any damage to your car while jump starting someone.

What Can You Do Instead Of Jump Starting?

There are three good alternatives to offering a jump start.