How to Take Off an Ignition Kill Switch

by Shannon Johnson

An ignition kill switch is a theft prevention device installed into the ignition circuit of vehicles. When triggered, it prevents the electrical circuit from being completed, and therefore keeps the engine from starting. Some people find it annoying to have to reset the switch in order to start the car, especially since the switch is normally located in hidden and hard-to-reach places. In addition, the switch can also malfunction and create problems, necessitating its removal. The tools and materials needed for this vary depending on the type of switch, its complexity and its location.

Step 1

Determine whether the ignition kill switch was an aftermarket add-on or was factory installed. This information can often be found in the owner's manual. If the switch was installed by the vehicle manufacturer, you should follow the removal instructions provided by the manufacturer. Be careful not to void warranties.

Step 2

Locate the ignition kill switch. This can be difficult, especially if it was retrofitted after the car was purchased. These switches are often hidden to make it difficult for potential car thieves to find them. Many times they are buried among many other circuits and wires.

Remove the ignition kill switch. The process will vary because there are many different switches, locations and vehicle models. Make sure the ignition circuit is complete once the switch is removed, otherwise the vehicle will not start. You may need professional help for this.


  • You may need professional help, especially to locate a well-hidden kill switch.
  • Always check your owner's manual before attempting to remove an ignition control switch.
  • If possible, find out how the ignition control switch was installed and if there are manufacturer instructions for its removal.


  • Be careful not to void any warranties for your vehicle.
  • The ignition kill switch may not be the cause of your problem.
  • Issues may develop if you remove the ignition kill switch, especially if done incorrectly.

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