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Ignition Switch Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Ignition Switch Replacement

Jared Fenton

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$200

Talent:

**

Tools:

Standard screwdriver, plastic prybar, T20 Torx driver

Applicable Models:

Porsche 955 Cayenne (2004-10)
Porsche 955 Cayenne GTS (2008-10)
Porsche 955 Cayenne S (2003-10)
Porsche 955 Cayenne Turbo (2003-10)
Porsche 955 Cayenne Turbo S (2006-10)

Parts Required:

Ignition switch

Hot Tip:

Remove key and disconnect battery and before removing switch!

Performance Gain:

Proper functioning ignition

Complementary Modification:

Check brake light switch

The ignition switch on the Porsche Cayenne can be a bit troublesome. Over the years, continual use can wear out the internal components, leading to the key being stuck in the ignition when you try to remove it. The good news is that replacement is relatively easy and should not take more than an hour.

Due to the complexity of the electrical system in the Cayenne, it's important to check that your battery is in good shape prior to replacing the switch. The key release mechanism in the switch needs a good 12v in order to work properly. Before assuming the switch is suspect, make sure that the battery is in good shape and charged. Often times, a flat battery can cause this problem. See our article on Jump Starting and Charging your Battery for more information.

If you have determined that your switch is bad, press the small release mechanism next to the key slot to mechanically release the key from the switch. Once the key is removed, I like to also disconnect the battery prior to removing the switch. This provides a degree of safety when working around the vehicle's security system. The battery ground disconnect is under the carpet directly in front of the driver's seat.

You'll also need to remove the lower dashboard panel by the pedals in order to remove the switch from inside the dashboard. This is held in by a single T20 Torx screw. See our article on Lower Dashboard Panel Removal for more information.

If the key is stuck in the ignition, check that the battery voltage is good.
Figure 1

If the key is stuck in the ignition, check that the battery voltage is good. If not, use a battery charger to charge the battery. Once the battery is charged, use a paper clip to press in the tab to the left of the key as shown here (green arrow) until you hear a click. This will mechanically disengage the lock mechanism and allow you to remove the key.

Also remove the fuse panel cover on the side of the dashboard (green arrow).
Figure 2

Also remove the fuse panel cover on the side of the dashboard (green arrow). This will allow you to reach in and help maneuver the ignition switch down from inside the dashboard as well as holding it in place when installing the retaining ring.

Disconnecting the battery is a good idea.
Figure 3

Disconnecting the battery is a good idea. The disconnect point is located under the driver's side carpet, near the seat. You'll see a slit in the carpet, pull it up and you'll see the 13mm acorn nut holding the ground lead to the frame (green arrow). Remove the nut and pull the lead up off the post.

I like to pull the ground lead up through the slit in the carpet to prevent the cable from touching any bare metal.
Figure 4

I like to pull the ground lead up through the slit in the carpet to prevent the cable from touching any bare metal.

Remove the rubber trim piece around the lock cylinder (green arrow).
Figure 5

Remove the rubber trim piece around the lock cylinder (green arrow). You can easily pull this out with your fingers.

Now carefully pry the plastic trim piece (green arrow) off from the dashboard.
Figure 6

Now carefully pry the plastic trim piece (green arrow) off from the dashboard. If you're careful, you can pull from the left edge to get it started and then use a plastic pry bar to carefully work the reminder of the trim piece off.

Underneath the trim piece is the retaining ring that holds the ignition switch in place (green arrow).
Figure 7

Underneath the trim piece is the retaining ring that holds the ignition switch in place (green arrow).

Porsche calls for a special tool in order to loosen and remove the retaining ring.
Figure 8

Porsche calls for a special tool in order to loosen and remove the retaining ring. I found that you can use a screwdriver to carefully push counter-clockwise on the recessed areas of the ring (green arrow).

Once the retaining ring is removed, push the ignition switch assembly (green arrow) back through the hole in the dashboard.
Figure 9

Once the retaining ring is removed, push the ignition switch assembly (green arrow) back through the hole in the dashboard.

Now carefully maneuver the ignition switch down and out from underneath the dashboard.
Figure 10

Now carefully maneuver the ignition switch down and out from underneath the dashboard. Once out, press the tab on the electrical connector and pull it off the switch. Installation of the new switch is the reverse of removal.

When installing the new switch, keep the orientation of the switch in mind.
Figure 11

When installing the new switch, keep the orientation of the switch in mind. The correct orientation of the switch will have the yellow arrow at 12 o'clock and the green arrow at 9 o'clock.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Charrua Comments: "Steve" on July 23rd, says he ordered the new switch and the old key worked with no mention on re-programming anything. Can you clarify since "rj" on July 17th says you have to use a scan tool to re-program?
November 3, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: When you order from Porsche (the key) they will able to tell you in regards to what model you have. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
chuck Comments: I have a 2005 cayenne turbo with a message on my dash that says "ignition lock faulty" and shift level cannot shift out of park. Pelican you state the problem might be the ignition switch. If I replace the ignition switch, how would my key fit into the new switch?
July 7, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It would be coded for your vehicle. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ads Comments: Hi have a 07 cayenne turbo every few weeks steering locks and won't start I ha d to disconnect battery to dart then fine !! Porsche Perth don't know many looked at it reset fault codes but can't fix and ideas
June 22, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a faulty electronic steering lock to me. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ryanjz Comments: Will a durametric tool handle the programming? And will my existing key work in the new switch?
May 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The key will work if the switch is cut for it. I am not sure if Durametric programs. You will have to contact them of read the specs info on the tool. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Rich Comments: Planning to replace the ignition switch on my 2004 Cayenne S. In your procedure a PIWIS is not required and the existing keys/fob will work.
Please confirm.
Thanks,
Rich
April 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The ignition switch is just the messenger, and all keys and fob will still work. However if there are faults in the Kessy module, you will need a scan tool to clear them. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Rich Comments: I have a 2004 Cayenne S. I'm getting a key symbol and system fault workshop in my display. Is this an indication of a failing ignition switch?
January 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Likely a fault stored in the DME. Could be for many things.

I would start by checking the vehicle for fault codes. If the system is not working properly, a fault code will be set. This will be your best bet when diagnosing.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Kenny Comments: Hello

Thank you for all your good work.

I have a 2008 cayenne S with a message on my dash that says "ignition lock faulty" shift level cannot shift out of park.

Also, after removing disc rotors, message " Warning: Brake Proportioning" on dash. Please help.

thank you in advance for your help.
January 7, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The fault indicates a possible bad ignition switch or key. The brake warning may be due to servicing the brakes with the key on. I would start by using a Porsche scan tool to scan the vehicle and check for fault codes. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Solis Comments: Hello..recently tried to turn the car on...dash read "key not found"..so car doesnt start...dashlights and radio turn on..tried disconnecting battery but no luck...this is for my 04 cayenne turbo...does key need replacing?
December 4, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Likely. To confirm, see if your spare key works. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Nina Comments: I have a 2003 Porsche Cayenne one day I got in the car I put the key in and it would not start come to find out it was the battery two weeks later same problem but it wasn't the battery this time everything Comes on but the car just will not start
October 28, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You may have a parasitic draw. You'll want to monitor the draw on the battery when the vehicle is asleep. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
bhaggen Comments: Please give more details on this "transponder ring" as it's not mentioned or shown in article. Sounds like an important detail.
October 10, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I will have the article updated with that info. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Steve Comments: It worked, I ordered the new switch and replaced it and the old key worked.

Also, because the article isn't super clear, you do not have to follow all the steps in the "Lower Dashboard Panel Removal" technical article, you only need to go to step 11.

My key was much "tighter" in the ignition switch with the new switch; it definitely fixed the issue where the car didn't know if the key was in or out; symptoms included the alarm going off after removing the key and opening the door, battery going dead because the ignition stayed on, and the car intermittently failing to start when turning the key on.

Again, thanks to Pelican Parts for the article yes I did buy the new switch from you all!
July 23, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for sharing your installation process and experience. These type of comments add so much to the Pelican tech community.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Steve Comments: Helpful article, one question.... you can do this project and still end up using the original key for the ignition? How is that possible when the lock cylinder is being replaced? Thanks!
July 16, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The old key should work. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
joe Comments: I have the same thing happening to me and it turns out to be the steering column switch can't remember the exact name of the part. It is a solid state device embedded deep in the steering column.
April 3, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Let us know if you recall the part name. Sounds like helpful info. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
cain Comments: Thanks. The reason I ask is that everything is froze and only the warning is operating. The button on the shifter flashes a light and the key or ignition clicks when the key is in the ignition. I have searched high and low and have spoke with several Porsche Service Depts and all have different solutions. None that have worked so far. I simply backed out of my driveway so my wife could pull into the garage once I pulled back up and put it in park, the truck went dead and the warning indicator flashed "steering faulty" and has not started again. The steering wheel is free and it was suggested that I turn 3 degrees left then 3 degrees right. Still nothing. I also unhooked the battery hoping to reset. Nothing. I even recycled the fuses. What is your opinion? 2004 Cayenne S
February 17, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The fault could be with the steering system or a communication issue.

I would start by checking the vehicle for fault codes. If multiple systems are not working properly, fault codes will be set. This will be your best bet when diagnosing.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Cain Comments: Will a bad switch create a warning of "Steering Faulty"?
February 17, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't believe so. I imagine a voltage issue could, but then you would have multiple lights on. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mack Comments: What part is the transponder ring?
October 29, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: This vehicle does not have one. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
rj Comments: When replacing switch, will it need programming?
July 17, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, you will need to use a Porsche scan tool. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Chico Comments: Im having trouble when inserting the key and rotate for ignition and engine doesnt start. I should go and do it as many times until engine starts. Could you give me some orientation on what to do or what could be happening
May 7, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't understand the questions. Are you replacing the ignition tunlber or having trouble starting your engine? - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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