How to Bypass Ignition Switch on ATV-The Ultimate Guide

An ATV ignition switch, just like other vehicles, helps to connect all the electrical components to the car’s battery. Once turned on, the switch facilitates the transfer of current to various electricals, including the headlights, ignition starter, and more.

However, it can get really disappointing when you are all set and ready to take on another adventure, but you can’t find your ATV keys. It can be even more frustrating when you attempt to start the vehicle, but it fails to ignite altogether. If you’re in either of these two predicaments, worry no more. In this article, we’ll discuss various ways on how you can bypass ignition switch on ATV and go about you’re your daily routine hassle-free.

Some of the things that come to your mind when this happens are a dead battery, faulty injector pulse, or even faulty spark plugs. While these are all possible reasons, the main culprit is often a faulty ignition system. That said, keep reading to learn how to diagnose and bypass a faulty ignition switch in order to start your ATV. Now off we go!

How to bypass ignition switch on ATV

Riding an ATV

The ignition system utilizes a key to open a circuit that prompts a spark to ignite. Ideally, whenever the key is turned, it will in turn activate internal combustion, thereby bringing the engine to life. However, in the event that you’ve lost your keys, you can still start the engine, but this will require a bit of electrical knowledge to get the job done. Here are a few methods you can use to bypass ignition switch on ATV;

i. Activate the pull/kick start feature

If your ATV is equipped with the pull or kick start function, then this is a good place to start. Activating either of these two functions is arguably one of the easiest and quickest methods of bypassing the ignition switch and getting your ATV going effortlessly.

When using this method, you’ll need to locate and identify the wire that connects your ignition switch to the battery. To achieve this, you’ll only need to remove the front hood to allow you to access the electrical elements, including the ignition wire.

Once, you’ve located the ignition wire, unplug it carefully to avoid causing damage or injuring yourself. Once the wire is unplugged, you can then use either to pull or kick start function to start your ATV engine, and you’re good to go.

ii. Pulling apart the ignition switch

If you don’t have prior knowledge of disabling the ignition system, then it is best to bypass this method. Basically, this process involves disassembling the ignition system in order to start the engine manually. The idea behind this is to expose the metal connectors that help trigger the ignition. However, you might need to be extra careful as you try to line up the connectors. Once done correctly, you should be able to use these connectors to start your ATV without the keys.

iii. Hot wiring method

Learning how to hotwire a four-wheeler will vary greatly depending on your specific four-wheeler or how your ATV is built. For instance, learning how to bypass ignition switch on Honda ATV may be slightly different from that of a Chinese one, but the underlying principles are generally similar.

The idea behind hot wiring is to fabricate and expose the circuit, which helps bypass the ignition switch. Now, once the circuit is open, the spark will automatically start the engine, even without a key. The procedure of hot wiring an ATV generally entails locating and identifying various ignition wires.

The first wire you’ll need to identify is the constant 12V wire that connects to the battery. This wire is often red in color, and should correspond to the one coming from the main fuse. You’ll also need to identify the kill switch and ground wires and match them to the corresponding connectors on the wiring harness. Unlike the battery wire we’ve mentioned above, these wires should not be spliced to avoid shorting the spark.

From here, this leaves you with only the ignition wire (i.e. the yellow wire). Strip this wire (about one inch) on one end and connect it with the battery wire using tape to allow the engine to start as always. Once connected, you’ll notice that electrical components of your ATV, including the lights starting to respond accordingly. However, once you’ve finished riding, you’ll need to ensure to disconnect the wires to avoid draining your battery.

Bypass Ignition Switch on ATV

iv. Using an appropriate tool such as a screwdriver/a pair of scissors

This is by far the easiest method you can use to bypass ignition switch on ATV. For this method, you’ll only need to slip and twist one blade of a scissor or screwdriver into the ignition. Although the failure rate is higher than any other method, it is still an effective and popular method. However, it is critical to mention that this method is associated with irreversible damage and is highly discouraged unless you’re planning to replace the ignition system soon.

v. Replacing the ignition system

If there is no emergency involved, then it is always a good idea to consult a professional mechanic for a possible replacement. The best part about ATV ignition systems is that they are relatively inexpensive, and always come with new keys.

If you’re not in a position to replace the entire ignition system, you can consider hiring the services of a locksmith to cut a new set of keys for you. You can also opt to contact an authorized ATV dealer to send you another set of keys, depending on your ATV model/VIN number.

The Bottom Line

There you go! The tips we’ve mentioned above will come in handy for anyone looking for ways to bypass the ATV ignition due to unavoidable reasons. Perhaps the major downside of bypassing the ignition switch is that it makes your ATV more susceptible to thieves. As such, is important to keep this in mind, especially when leaving your vehicle unattended or somewhere where motor vehicle theft is rampant.

Generally, the easiest way around this is getting a new set of keys made, especially if there’s a locksmith nearby. Alternatively, you can consider getting a new ignition system if your situation does not require you to use the ATV immediately. In addition, it is also important to note that the process of learning how to bypass ignition switch on Chinese ATV may be relatively different from that of regular ATVs, but the steps are basically the same.

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