7 Common Duramax Ignition Switch Problems You Often Face!

By: James Diaz | August 26, 2022

Duramax Ignition Switch Problems

Most diesel truck drivers know that the Duramax engine is a powerhouse. With its turbocharged performance and Intercooled system, it’s no wonder these trucks are often considered the best in the business.

However, like any other machine, Duramax is not immune to problems. In this blog post, I will discuss some of the more common ignition switch problems that Duramax drivers often experience. 

Knowing what to look for can save time and money by addressing these issues before they become bigger problems. So without further ado, let’s get started!

What Causes Ignition Switch Problems?

Many things may go wrong with an ignition switch, but some of the most prevalent are:

1) A broken or worn ignition switch:

After some use, the ignition switch may become broken or worn, making it difficult to turn on or off. Because of this, the switch may get permanently lodged in the “on” or “off” position, making it impossible to start the vehicle.

A broken or worn ignition switch

2. An unsecured ignition switch:

If it is jiggled about, there may not be enough contact between the ignition switch and the starting solenoid.

3. A corroded ignition switch:

Corroded ignition switches may prevent a reliable connection to the starting solenoid.

4. Damaged ignition switch:

A faulty connection between the ignition switch and the starter solenoid might make starting the automobile difficult.

5. Defective ignition switch:

Cars may be difficult to start if the ignition switch malfunctions and cannot reliably connect with the starting solenoid.

If you’re having trouble starting your automobile because of an issue with the ignition switch, have it fixed as soon as possible to avoid any potential hazard.

7 Common Ignition Switch Problems Of Duramax

Ignition switch problems are common in General Motors vehicles, including Chevrolet trucks equipped with the Duramax diesel engine. Here are seven of the most common issues:

  1. Ignition switch failure
  2. Electrical problems
  3. Starter issues
  4. Battery problems
  5. Security system problems
  6. Transmission problems
  7. Engine problems

1 Faulty Ignition Switch

Among the most critical parts of your car is the ignition switch. It manages the fuel system, the starter, and the ignition, providing power to the engine and accessories. The engine will not turn over if the ignition switch is defective.

2. Electrical Issues

When there are issues with the ignition switch, it may affect the whole electrical system. The most typical sign is a stalling engine after suddenly stopping. This might happen if the fuel or ignition systems suddenly stop receiving electricity.

Electrical Issues

3. Starter Issues

The engine will not turn over if the ignition switch is not on and delivering electricity to the starter. Either the starter is broken, or the ignition switch is malfunctioning.

5. Difficulties with the Battery

The engine may cut out if the Battery isn’t being charged. The alternator or the ignition switch might be at fault.

6. Transmission Issues

Transmission issues are another typical symptom of a faulty ignition switch. A faulty connection, a broken switch, or an electrical issue are all possible culprits.

7. Mechanical Issues:

Problems with the engine are another typical symptom of a faulty ignition switch. This may be due to a faulty connection, a broken switch, or an electrical issue.

Ways To Fix A Bad Duramax Ignition Switch:

  1. Check the ignition switch for corrosion or debris.
  2. Clean the contacts on the ignition switch with a wire brush or sandpaper.
  3. Lubricate the contacts on the ignition switch with Dielectric Grease.
  4. Replace the ignition switch if necessary.

If your Duramax ignition switch is giving you trouble, there are a few things you can do to try and fix it.

  • Corrosion or debris on the ignition switch can cause problems with the electrical connection and prevent the engine from starting.
  • Cleaning the contacts on the ignition switch will remove any build-up causing problems.
  • Lubricating the contacts with dielectric grease will help to prevent corrosion and keep the connection clean. If the switch is damaged, it will need to be replaced.
  • Replacing the ignition switch is a fairly simple process that can be done at home with a few tools. You will need to disconnect the Battery, remove the old switch, and install the new switch.
  • Make sure to follow the instructions that come with the new switch, as they may vary slightly from model to model.

Types & Working Process Of A Ignition Switch

The ignition switch is one of the most important parts of a car. It controls the flow of electricity to the engine and allows the driver to start the car. The switch is located on the dashboard, near the steering wheel.

There are three main types of ignition switches: Push Button, Toggle, And Rotary. Each type has its own set of pros and cons.

Push Button

Push button switches are the most common type of ignition switch. They are easy to use and require little effort to operate. However, they can be accidentally turned off, leading to a car accident.

Push Button


Toggle switches are more difficult to use, but they are less likely to be accidentally turned off. They are often used in race cars, where the driver needs to be able to turn the car off quickly in case of an accident.



Rotary switches are the most difficult to use but are the least likely to be accidentally turned off. They are often used in military vehicles, where the driver needs to be able to turn the car off quickly in case of an attack.


No matter what type of ignition switch you have, keeping it in good working condition is important. If the switch is not working properly, it could lead to a car accident.

How Do You Test A Bad Ignition Switch?

Assuming you mean how to test if an ignition switch is going bad, there are a few ways:

With A Multimeter

The first potential method is to check the resistance of the switch. This can be done with a multimeter. Set the multimeter to ohms and put the probes on the two wires that go to the switch. 

With the key in the off position, there should be no continuity. With the key in the on position, there should be continuity. If there is no continuity in either position, the switch is bad.

Use A Circuit Tester

Another way to test the switch is to use a circuit tester. With the key in the off position, put one tester probe on the terminal that goes to the starter solenoid and the other on good ground. If the tester lights up, the switch is bad.

Check The Coil

If the engine cranks but does not start, the switch may not be sending power to the coil. To test this, disconnect the coil wire from the distributor cap and put one probe of the multimeter on the terminal that goes to the coil. With the key in the on position, there should be continuity. If there is no continuity, the switch is not sending power to the coil and is bad.

How Do You Change The Ignition Switch On A Chevy Truck?

The ignition switch on a Chevy truck can be changed by replacing the old switch with a new one.

  • To remove the old switch, first, disconnect the Battery.
  • Then, remove the steering wheel and column covers to access the ignition switch.
  • Use a screwdriver to remove the screws that hold the switch, and pull the switch out.
  • To install the new switch, reverse the removal process
  • Reconnect the Battery and test the new switch to ensure it is working properly.

Duramax Ignition Switch Replacement Cost

The average cost for a GMC Sierra 1500 HD ignition switch replacement is between $163 and $211. Labor costs are estimated between $79 and $100, while parts are priced at $84. 

This range does not include taxes and fees and does not factor in your unique location. Related repairs may also be needed.

An ignition switch replacement is a relatively simple job that can be completed by most do-it-yourself. However, if you are not comfortable working on your vehicle, it is best to leave this task to a professional mechanic.

Where Is The Ignition Starter Switch Located?

The ignition starter switch is on the steering column, just behind the steering wheel. You turn the key in the ignition starter switch to start the car. 

The starter switch is also responsible for turning off the engine when you turn the key to the “off” position. If your car has an electronic key, the ignition starter switch may be near the push button start.

How Do You Remove A Gm Ignition Switch Without The Key?

  • To remove a GM ignition switch without the key, you must use a screwdriver to pry out the retaining clip that holds the switch in place.
  • After removing the clip, you can pull the switch out of the housing.
  • When the tab is depressed, you can pull the switch out of the housing.
  • To install the new ignition switch, you will need to insert the switch into the housing and then use the retaining clip to secure it.
  • Once the clip is in place, you can insert the key into the switch and turn it to the “on” position.


Related Post: 

Video Ref: 

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5bayy-BLS8
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FlLg17Dkcwo