When disconnecting the battery cables from the battery it is important to remove the cables in a particular order to minimize the chance of personal injury and component damage. The negative - battery cable should be removed first to stop the body of the car from being an active ground. After the negative cable is removed and set aside, the positive cable can be removed from the battery. The cables, once removed, can be cleaned with a solution of water and baking soda to remove any corrosion.
If the positive (+) battery cable is disconnected first, the chance of grounding the positive terminal against the negatively charged car body with a wrench or other metal tool is much greater. If the battery is so grounded, the battery, alternator, PCM or other fragile electronic components may be damaged by electrical surges, or any flammable gases may be ignited by the sparks produced by the electrical arcing, leading to possible fatal personal injury.
The battery cables should also not be disconnected with the ignition in the ON position. The sudden removal of the electric current can cause numerous electrical surges throughout the electrical system. These surges can damage any of the various voltage sensitive components such as the PCM. Always make certain that the ignition switch is turned OFF .
- Make sure the ignition switch is OFF .
- Use the appropriate size wrench(es) to loosen the hardware on the cable clamps. ALWAYS begin with the negative battery cable.
- If necessary, use a puller tool designed for battery cable clamps and remove the clamp, then isolate it from the battery terminal.
- Remove the positive battery cable, if required, once the negative battery cable has been removed.
- Clean the terminal ends with a solution of water and baking soda to remove any corrosion.
- Place the positive battery cable onto the battery post. Make sure the clamp is flush with the top of the post.
- Tighten the clamp nuts to 75 inch lbs. (8 Nm).
- Repeat the procedure for the negative battery cable.
- Double check the battery clamps are secure.
- Start the engine and take the vehicle for a short ride about 15 minutes to be sure the battery is charging correctly.