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How to Replace the Ignition Switch on a Ford F-150

by Thomas West

The F-150 is Ford Motor Company’s designation for their half-ton pickup truck. The ignition switch on your Ford truck is mounted on the right side of the steering column. The ignition switch has an “accessory” position that can be activated when the key is turned counterclockwise from the “off” position. The radio, wipers, and other accessories can be operated in this position without having the engine running. If the key is turned in a clockwise direction from “off”, the first click is the “run” position, which turns on all of the truck’s electrical circuits. Turning the switch clockwise from “run” will activate the starter motor.

1

Open the hood. Loosen the nut on the negative battery cable with an adjustable wrench turned in a counterclockwise direction. Do not remove the nut. Lift cable off of the battery post and push it aside. Wiggle the cable in a back and forth motion to release it from the battery post if necessary.

2

Insert the key into the ignition switch and turn it to the “run” position.

3

Straighten out a small paper clip and insert one end of it approximately 2 inches into the small hole located in the steering column directly below the ignition switch.

4

Pull the ignition switch from the steering column and remove the key.

5

Insert the key into the new ignition switch. Insert the ignition switch into position in the steering column. Turn the key to the “off" position to lock the switch into place.

6

Push the negative battery cable back onto the negative battery post until it is fully seated. Tighten the nut in a clockwise direction. Close the hood.

Tips

  • Have your Ford dealer configure a new ignition switch so that you will be able to use your old key. Aftermarket switches are less expensive and come with two keys, but you will still need to use the old keys to be able to unlock the doors.
  • If your ignition switch spins all the way around, even with no key in it, replacing the switch is your answer to curing this problem.

Items you will need

About the Author

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