The ignition switch in your vehicle is the master switch and this is what creates power to your vehicle. The master switch supplies power to all of the vehicle’s electric accessories as well as the computer, fuel and the ignition systems. The switch also connects to a current that runs from the battery to the starter and then to the crank engine.
One of the great security features that the ignition switch provides is that in order for the vehicle to be started the key must be programmed, working as an anti-theft device. It can also be used to prevent theft by locking the steering wheel and then removing the key.
There are four main positions to a vehicle’s ignition switch:
- OFF– Which is also known as LOCK, this is the position that will turn off the power to the engine and all of the other vehicles electrical accessories.
- RUN– This is the position that provides the power to the electrical accessories as well as the engine itself.
- ACC– This is when the car is in the position that delivers power to the electrical accessories but not the engine.
- Start– This is just the position used to start the engine.
Ignition switches can have problems just like any other part of a vehicle, below are listed some of the most common issues and a few helpful ideas about what can be done.
The Key Has Been Inserted But The Ignition Won’t Turn
When one of the front wheels is turned at a slight angle against a curb, this can cause the steering column to bind. What that means is that it is causing it to weigh down on the steering linkage, which then is also causing the column to lock and the ignition switch to bind.
One small little fix can be to just jiggle the key a little bit, or if you have a spare try using that to see if it will work. Another quick fix could be to lubricated the switch, which could help with the binding.
The Ignition Switch Turns On But Engine Fails To Crank
If you have inserted the key, and the engine is not cranking when you turn it, then it could be possible that you have a faulty switch. It could be also due to a fault in the starting circuit, those are the two main reasons that this problem can be occurring. One of the first things you can do is to perform an experimental test to figure out if other components may be causing the problem. If no warning lights or electrical activity occurs when you have the key in the ON position this could mean two different problems. One that the battery is dead and the other that the cables could be possibly corroded or loose. If everything seems to be working correctly, then the problem must be with the ignition switch.
The Engine Cranks and the Ignition Switch Turns But the Vehicle Does Not Start
There could be several factors that are causing the failure:
- A fault in the fuel pump
- Ignition circuit or engine computer
One reason could be that the engine is not getting enough fuel or spark and this could also cause low voltage to the starter. Your computer could be failing to recognize the key causing the anti-theft light to go off, which could cause prevent the vehicle from starting.
If you have a worn out ignition switch this could cause the engine to fail when driving even though it starts and runs like it should.
After a certain amount of time and use the ignition switch can become worn out. This can then cause poor electrical contact to the switch bringing about problems in the engine.
The Key Will Not Extract from the Switch After Turning The Engine Off
If your key breaks off in your ignition and you cannot seem to get the broken key out yourself, we can send out a technician to assist you right away.
Ignition switch problems can be very tricky and it may be hard to pinpoint what the exact problem is. The best idea is to give us a call and let a professional figure out the problem for you. The reason you may want to give a locksmith a call right away is that problems with ignitions switches can be hazardous. Once our technician figures out the issue we will fix it quickly ensuring that you are safe.
Be sure to give Diamondback Lock & Key a call for all your problems with ignitions switch issues. We are located in Chandler, Az and we are known for our reliable, quick and affordable services.
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