We Value Your Privacy

We and our partners use technology such as cookies on our site to personalise content and ads, provide social media features, and analyse our traffic. Click below to consent to the use of this technology across the web. You can change your mind and change your consent choices at anytime by returning to this site.

Update Consent
Loading ...

How to Install a Dorman Battery Isolator

Updated February 21, 2017

A Dorman Battery Isolator is an on/off switch that disconnects the battery from the starter in a vehicle; the alternate name is a battery cut-off switch (although Dorman lists the switch under both names). This isolator can prevent battery drains and also acts as an antitheft device. It will allow the user to turn a key and disconnect the battery from the starter system, and without the key for the isolator, the battery cannot be reconnected and the car will not run.

Loading ...
  1. Open the bonnet of the car and disconnect the negative cable from the battery by using a wrench to loosen the locknut on the terminal and pulling the cable off.

  2. Decide where the battery cut-off isolator will be placed. Locate the isolator in position that is easy to reach and also allows for the switch to be mounted to the frame of the car.

  3. Mount the isolator switch to the frame of the car using a drill and 2 self tapping metal screws. Drive the screws into the frame of the car through the two brackets on the battery switch. Do not put the plastic key in the switch.

  4. Replace the positive cable of the battery with a longer cable if necessary, to allow the wire to pass from the starter to the switch position and then to the positive post of the battery. Use a wrench to remove the locknuts at both ends of the positive cable, pull the cable out and replace with one of an appropriate length.

  5. Cut the positive battery cable apart so that both ends will reach the terminals on the battery isolator switch. Use the wire cutting part of the electrician's pliers.

  6. Strip a 1/4 inch of insulation of each end of cable by clamping the cable in the appropriate sized wire hole in the electrician's pliers, holding the pliers closed while spinning them around the wire and then pulling the closed pliers off the end of the wire.

  7. Crimp a ring terminal connector onto the end of each cable.

  8. Use a small wrench to remove the locknuts from both terminal posts on the battery isolator switch. Put a wire over each post and lock it in place by tightening the nut back down.

  9. Reconnect the negative battery cable to the battery.

  10. Insert the plastic isolator key into the battery isolator switch and turn it into the "On" position. You can now start the vehicle. Remove the key to disable the starting system.

  11. Tip

    Each Dorman Battery Isolator comes with two keys, make sure to place one in a safe place so it may be found easily should the other become lost.


    Never install a battery isolator in a vehicle with the negative cable still connected to the battery, severe shock could occur. Do not install a Dorman Battery Isolator and try to connect another battery to the charging circuit through it, that is not what it is designed to do.

Loading ...

Things You'll Need

  • Small wrench
  • Battery cable (if needed)
  • Drill
  • 2 - self tapping metal screws
  • Electricians pliers
  • Ring terminals (crimp style)

About the Author

Cassandra Tribe

Cassandra Tribe has worked in the construction field for over 17 years and has experience in a variety of mechanical, scientific, automotive and mathematical forms. She has been writing and editing for over 10 years. Her areas of interest include culture and society, automotive, computers, business, the Internet, science and structural engineering and implementation.

Loading ...
Loading ...