Ignition Switch Repair: Tips for a Quick Fix

  • 1-4 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 20-40
What You'll Need
Clean rag
Small screwdriver
Ignition switch assembly
Steering wheel puller

Ignition switch repair is easy even with very basic knowledge of ignition switch troubleshooting. The ignition switch tumbler sometimes seizes up or jams, causing the pins in the ignition switch to stick. Before replacing the ignition switch, try to repair your jammed ignition switch. Repairing a jammed ignition switch takes only a few minutes.

Step 1: Disengage the Battery

Before doing any work on your car’s electrical system, you should first disengage the negative battery wire from the battery. When this is completed, you can disband the bottom and top steering column covers. These must detach or they will hold on with a number of screws, depending on the model and manufacturer of your car.

Step 2: Take Off the Steering Wheel

Next, take off your car’s steering wheel. First, you should take away the cover within the center of your steering wheel. After, you also need to disengage the horn wire. Lastly, remove the washer and retaining nut. Prior removing your car’s steering wheel, you must place a mark along the steering column as well as the steering wheel. These indicators should match up before you take away the wheel and they must line up again once you replaced the wheel. When it is appropriately marked, you can take away the wheel through tugging securely on it to remove it from your car’s steering column. If it is stubborn enlist the aid of a steering wheel puller.

Step 3: Turn the Signal Switches and Detach the Windshield Wiper

Take off the windshield wiper as well as the turn signal switches. Similar to the horn, ensure you disengage the wires from the turn signals then the car’s windshield wiper switches. Finally, slip off the spacer sleeve.

Step 4: Unscrew the Ignition Switch

The switch is normally mounted at the steering column along with a handful of screws, wherein it should come off. Once you unscrew the switch, pull it out and then disengage the wires. These wires are positioned along the switch’s back portion. After, loosen the tabs and then remove the switch. Now, you need to detach your car’s ignition switch key. Next, insert the car key in the ignition switch and then turn the key to lock your car’s switch. Depress the retaining pin using a small screwdriver and then turn the key towards the “Off” position. The ignition key is now free and you should be able to turn the key towards the lock position to take off the switch and the key.

Step 5: Install the Key Cylinder in the New Ignition

Lastly, you need to make sure that the contacts coming from the cylinder and then those within the assembly line up. After, reattach the wiring along the new ignition. With the ignition switch repair that you have done, you can now re-assemble your steering column in the exact reverse order as when you disassembled it. Next, ensure you line up the steering wheel with the markings you placed along the column as well as the wheel that you have removed. At this point, you are done with your car’s ignition switch repair.