DIY Ignition Switch on an Harley

By Katrina Oakley

Some Harley owners like to fix their own bikes, thereby saving both money and riding time. An Harley Davidson can experience electrical problems at any time, but there can be a wait for a service appointment at some repair shops. The most common cause of electrical problems on a Harley Davidson is the battery or the voltage regulator. Troubleshooting can be performed in any garage, and it saves on expensive service bills.

When an ignition switch is bad, remove the old one and install the new ignition switch. Please note that this instruction is for an Harley with the ignition switch located on the tank instrument panel. Some ignition switches install on the forks of the bike. Refer to the owners manual and switch manual for the model specific instruction.

Make sure you gather all the tools that will be needed to do the job. These include, a torque wrench, the ignition switch, the owners manual for the bike, a Phillips screwdriver.

Take the new Harley ignition switch and place it on the console, where the old one was located. Line up the screw holes.

Insert the 4 screws and get them started in their holes. Tighten the screws, in a crosswise pattern, turning each screw a little at a time, until tightened.

Connect the light/key switch.

Place the top of the instrument console bolt in the space at the top of the underside of the console.

Slide the console to the install position. Attach the fuel pump connector. Bend the clamp and insert the fuel pump connection into the main harness.

Place the console in position on the fuel tank. Tighten the nut at the top of the console to 50-90lbs. Tighten the Phillips screw and washer that may also be present.

Install the bolt with a flat washer located on the rear of the fuel tank. This is on FLHRS models only. This bolt needs to be tightened to 15 to 20 lbs.

Install the new cable strap that came with the ignition. Place the cable strap into a hole on the left of the frame. Capture the main wiring harness, instrument console connector, and the fuel vent tube in the cable strap. Tighten the cable strap. Cut off any excess cable strap and discard.

Place the battery cable bolt through the battery negative cable terminal and tighten to 60-90lbs.

Install the seat and test the ignition.

Kat Oakley
F5MC Support
Article Writer


I have been an unemployed Grandma for 2 years. I have devoted my time to caring for 2 of my grandchildren full time and babysitter duties for the other 5 as needed. I am freelance article writing in my spare time and just love it! I was a stay at home mom for most of my children’s lives. It would have been great to have this venue to earn a living at while my children were growing up!

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