If your car’s ignition switch fails, it’d cost you quite a pretty sum to fix it up at an auto repair shop. However, you can do this yourself if you have basic background knowledge of electrical wiring. By simply knowing what wires go to ignition switch, you can fix your car’s ignition switch without going to an auto workshop.
The ignition switch of modern cars typically has four terminals where you connect four different wires: accessory, start, battery, and ignition wires. Of course, the terminals’ positioning differs from vehicle to vehicle, but if you know what the colors represent, you can wire any car’s ignition system.
Apart from telling you the wires that go to the ignition switch, this article will also teach you how to wire ignition switch.
Let’s get started!
What Wires Go To Ignition Switch?
As hinted above, there are four wires that go into the ignition switch. It is important that you know these wires and what they represent as a DIYer.
On most vehicles, the terminals are labeled to make it much easier for you to wire the ignition switch perfectly, as supposed. Well, hereunder are the four terminals and wires you need to connect to them.
- BATT Terminal (Battery Terminal): This is where to connect the wire that supplies electrical current from the battery to the switch. It is usually a thick red wire.
- IGN Terminal (Ignition Input Terminal): This terminal is where to connect the ignition input wire. The ignition wire connects the “ignition coil” to the switch; this wire is what makes the ignition switch crank the system and enable fuel supply. The IGN wire is usually yellow or red.
- ST Terminal (Starter Terminal): Usually located in the middle, this terminal is what connects the starter solenoid wire to the ignition switch. It may be brown or yellow in color.
- ACC Terminal (Accessory Terminal): As the name implies, this terminal connects the wire that sends electrical power to all the accessories on your car. It’s usually a purple wire.
So, if you’re planning to disassemble your car’s dashboard and troubleshoot some problems relating to the ignition system, you should keep these wire colors/functions in mind and ensure you connect each to the respective terminal after the fix/troubleshooting.
Now we’ve clearly explained the ignition terminals; how do you wire it by yourself?
How To Wire Ignition Switch
Firstly, the car must be completely turned off and parked in a safe place (probably your garage), and you have to remove the battery terminals (both the negative and positive terminals). Once you’ve done these prerequisites, then you can proceed with the steps below.
Step 1: Disassemble the steering wheel
Disassemble the steering wheel to clearly see and get to the ignition switch terminals/wires. When you’ve seen the ignition switch, carefully inspect the terminals for the labels ACC, ST, IGN, and BATT. We have explained what each of these terminals means above.
Step 2: Insert your key
Insert your car’s key into the ignition switch and turn it to the ACC position. With the key in the ACC position, you can now press the ignition switch release button/key to pull it out from the housing.
If your car uses a keyless entry, use a flathead screwdriver and gently remove/disconnect the switch from the module.
Step 3: Start the wiring
This is where you perform the actual wiring; remove the faulty ignition switch you want to change, then install the new one you’ve got.
To do this, connect the battery wire to the BATT terminal, the starter wire to the ST terminal; the accessories wire to the ACC terminal; the ignition wire to the IGN terminal. Crosscheck to confirm that you connected the wires correctly to their respective terminals.
Note: The ignition switch wires may have different colors depending on your car’s model and make. You may need to consult your vehicle’s ignition switch wiring diagram or check the owner’s manual to see if you’d get some clues.
Step 4: Reconnect the switch
After you are done installing the ignition switch wires, reconnect the switch into the position, and slide it into place. Gently press down the switch until you hear the click sound, then you know it’s finally in place.
At this point, you have to test your DIY work, so you have to reconnect the battery terminals, but don’t reassemble the steering wheel yet – just in case you didn’t get the wiring right. So, insert your car’s key and try to turn on the vehicle. If the car started fine and everything seems to be working, you did a good job; congratulations.
In contrast, if your car didn’t start, you will need to troubleshoot and find where the problems are coming from, but first, ensure you inserted the ignition wires into their respective terminals.
Step 5: Check if it works
If everything worked well and the new ignition switch is functioning properly, turn off the car again and remove the battery terminals before returning to completely reassemble everything you disassembled.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are The Terminals Of Ignition Switch?
The majority of cars out there have four ignition switch terminals, which are the battery, accessory, ignition, and starter terminals. However, there are some newer vehicles with up to six terminals on the ignition switch console: 2x battery switch, accessory, ignition accessory, ignition, and starter.
Where Does The Ignition Switch Get Its Power From?
As an electrical component of a car, the ignition switch gets its power from the car’s battery, which is why you have to correctly install the battery ignition wire into the BATT terminal(s) for your car’s ignition switch to work.
What Is Connected To The Ignition Switch?
Inside the ignition switch lies a couple of dials and circuit contacts that connect to each other to supply electric current flow to other components of the car connected to the ignition switch. The switch itself is connected to the ignition cylinder by a shaft or lever.
So, what wires go to ignition switch? The number of wires to go into your car’s ignition switch depends on the number of terminals. There are four terminals on most cars’ ignition switches, while some may have six or five.
Notwithstanding, the wires that go into the ignition switch include the battery, starter solenoid, accessories, and ignition wires.