How to Wire a Car Switch Panel

  • 1-6 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 20-100
What You'll Need
Switch panel
Different switches and panels
Fuse box
Terminal ends
Wire cutters and strippers
Soldering iron
Shrink tube
Heat gun
Liquid tape
Zip ties
Vacuum tubing

When you are rebuilding a performance car, or just want to have access to different panels and switches, then wiring a car switch panel is an important process. With the car switch panel you will be able to turn on different power components like fans, turbo and auxiliary batteries. Some people will think that the job of wiring the new switch panel is only reserved for race car mechanics. However, with a little patience, some time, and the right tools you can easily install a switch panel in your own car.

Step 1 - Remove Battery Cable

Before working on your car's electrical chassis you will need to disconnect the battery cable's. This is done with a screwdriver or a socket wrench.

Step 2 - Determine Location for Panel

Sit in your seat and connect the seatbelt. As you sit there reach around the dash for a place that you can easily reach it from the belted in position.

Step 3 - Plan Out Panel

Sit down and take some time to draw out what your panel is going to look like. Think about the switches you will be using (on/off, fan blower, start button, etc.) and draw out the diagram of the circuits and wires. Not only will this be a diagram for installing, but also any repairs you need to make in the future.

Step 4 - Wire Your Panel

Choose your first switch and wire the positive side of it to the positive side of the starter cable. Use a high heat rated wire for the wiring process. For each wire, strip back the insulation 1/4 inch and crimp the ends into a terminal ring.

Step 5 - Protect Wire

Once you have the wire crimped into a terminal end you will need to protect the wire and make sure that the connection is solid. Use a soldering iron and solder the crimped end of the terminal ring. This will make the connection solid and stand up to any vibrations caused by the car. Place a heat tube over the soldered connection and shrink it with a heat gun.

Step 6 - Connect to Fuse Box

Take the terminal end of the wire and connect it to the fuse box. Once that is connected, take the other end and connect it to the starter cable. You can follow the same process with the ignition switch, but you will be connecting it to the positive side of the coil. Your starter switch is also going to be installed in the same manner. However, the wire should run to the solenoid instead of the starter or coil.

Step 7 - Combine Wires

As much as you can you want to clump all the wires together so that you do not have wires traveling all over the place. Simply create your wire harness by grouping them with zip ties and wrapping some vacuum tubing around them.

Step 8 - Mount Switch Panel

After all the wires are secure and connections are made, you can mount your car switch panel in your desired location. Drill some pilot holes for the mounting screws. Once the holes are complete you can bolt the panel into the surface.