How to Replace an Ignition Starter Switch

Written by zyon silket
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The ignition starter switch is responsible for making the electrical connection between your battery and the starter solenoid when you turn the ignition key on your vehicle. You can tell the ignition switch has failed by turning on the headlight and then turning the key. If the headlights fail to dim, the ignition switch is defective. Replacing the switch is tricky because the lock cylinder secures to the middle of the switch. Unless you want to use a separate key for your ignition and for your door lock, you must remove the cylinder lock from the old ignition switch and place it onto the new one.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Screwdriver
  • Tamper proof Torx screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Remove the screws that secure the bottom steering column to the top cover of the steering column, using a screwdriver. In some cases, Torx screws are used to secure the covers.

  2. 2

    Pull the covers off the steering column to expose the ignition switch on the right side of the column.

  3. 3

    Disconnect the large wiring harness connected to the side of the ignition switch.

  4. 4

    Remove the tamper-proof Torx screws that secure the ignition switch to the steering column. You can purchase the Torx screwdriver needed to remove the tamper-proof screws at an auto parts store.

  5. 5

    Place the ignition key into the lock cylinder and turn it one click clockwise. Pull the lock cylinder halfway out of the ignition switch.

  6. 6

    Locate the metal lock pin on the bottom of the ignition switch and press it into the switch using a small screwdriver. Pull the lock cylinder out of the ignition switch.

  7. 7

    Slide the cylinder lock into the new ignition switch all of the way. Turn the key one click counterclockwise and remove the key from the lock cylinder.

  8. 8

    Place the ignition switch against the steering column and secure it using the Torx tamper-proof screws.

  9. 9

    Plug the wiring harness back into the side of the ignition switch.

  10. 10

    Place the covers onto the steering column and secure them into place using the screws and screwdriver.

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