Simple Test to Diagnose a Faulty Ignition Lock

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Published: 06th July 2010
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Ignition lock problems are very common. Who has not faced such a problem before? The ignition lock is a very crucial part of your car. It controls the flow of power to all devices in your car including the electric windows, the windshield wipers, the radio, and the engine itself. It is very important that you do not turn a blind eye to any sign of problems in your ignition lock because those small problems quickly turn into the big ones that can keep you from going to work or making that weekend trip, or they can put you in the situation where you might have to borrow a friend's car to make it to an important meeting or appointment. When such signs start to appear, make sure to check them out as soon as possible, because if it is ignored, car ignition lock problems can be very hard to diagnose and you may spend the whole day figuring out what is wrong before you finally notice that this crucial part is what is causing this nightmare. Also make sure to check the ignition lock regularly before it fails suddenly right before an important event where you desperately need a decent working car. In this article, I will introduce you to some tests for that time when your car is not starting. By performing those tests successful you can safely assume that it is the ignition lock that is malfunctioning and that it needs replacement. I give you the easy tests here. There are some other tests that check the ignition lock, but they are highly technical and require a professional mechanic who knows exactly what he/she is doing. So if you are not a mechanic, I am sure you will greatly benefit from these tests.

Before you perform that test you need to rule out the other most common possible causes of a non-starting car. The battery is the first thing you would want to rule out. Make sure that your battery is delivering more than 12V across its terminals. The second thing is the starter motor. If you don't hear any cranking when you turn the key in the ignition switch you might want to check the starter motor or relay. Now, let's get to it. Put the key into the ignition cylinder and turn it half a turn to the on position. You should now see some warning lights in your dash board. If not, then it is a malfunctioning ignition lock for sure. If the dash board warning lights do light up indeed, then proceed to the next test. Light up the head lights then try to turn the key a full turn, to the start position. If the head light dim (a lot) then your ignition lock is OK, and the problem lies elsewhere. Otherwise, go strait a head and replace that ignition lock assembly.

This is a the most basic test that you can perform to diagnose your own ignition lock problems, for more information on ignition locks, go to

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