How to Replace a Horn Switch

Car horn switches, or buttons, are typically mounted in the steering wheel. Some steering wheel buttons are mounted off to the side of the steering wheel, but most are located directly in the middle of the wheel.

Most horn switches are normally open, which means they only close when the button is pressed. Generally, when the horn switch is depressed, the horn relay is grounded, allowing power to flow through the relay to the horn assembly.

When the horn switch is not working properly, the horn may not sound and this could be hazardous. This is why faulty horn switches should be replaced as soon as possible.

  • Warning: Most modern vehicles have the horn switch attached to the top of the airbag shroud. If handled improperly, the airbag can deploy with lethal force. For this reason, only trained professionals should attempt horn switch repair on airbag-equipped vehicles. Do not attempt to do it yourself if this applies to your vehicle.

Part 1 of 2: Removing the old horn switch

In order to safely and efficiently replace your horn switch, you will need a couple of basic tools.

Materials Needed

  • New horn switch
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Protective gloves
  • Repair manuals (optional); you can buy these through Chilton, or Autozone provides them online for free for certain makes and models
  • Safety glasses
  • Small flathead screwdriver

hand disconnecting the negative battery cable

Step 1: Disconnect the battery. Disconnect the negative battery cable and set it aside.

diagram showing screws on the back of the steering wheel that need to be removed

Step 2: Remove the screws on the sides of the steering wheel. Usually, these will be found behind plastic covers that will need to be popped off using a small flathead screwdriver.

hands disconnecting the wire leads

Step 3: Disconnect the wire leads. Partially lift the horn button off the steering wheel and disconnect the wire leads.

horn button being removed

Step 4: Remove the horn button. Once the wire leads have been disconnected, lift the horn button off the steering wheel completely.

Part 2 of 2: Installing the new horn switch

hand putting the new horn switch in place

Step 1: Mount the new horn switch. Loosely place the new horn switch in position on the steering wheel.

electrical connections being reconnected

Step 2: Reconnect the wire leads. Reinstall any electrical connections into the horn switch and put the switch fully into place on the steering wheel.

hands reinstalling the screws

Step 3: Replace the screws. Using the appropriate screwdriver, reinstall the screws on each side of the steering wheel.

hand reconnecting the negative battery cable

Step 4: Reconnect the battery. Reconnect the negative battery cable and tighten it down.

You should now have a nice, new horn switch installed. If this seems like something you’d prefer to leave to a professional, the certified mechanics at YourMechanic offer expert horn switch replacement service.


Next Step

Schedule Horn Switch Replacement

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Recent Horn Switch Replacement reviews

Excellent Rating

(5)

Rating Summary
5
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5
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Kyle

11 years of experience
68 reviews
Kyle
11 years of experience
Toyota RAV4 L4-2.5L - Horn Switch - Lanham, Maryland
Kyle was on time, performed the required checks and accurately diagnosed why my horn was not working and fixed the problem in a short time. This saved me from wasting precious time at a local shop and I will definitely use his services again.

Tomas

17 years of experience
226 reviews
Tomas
17 years of experience
Honda Odyssey V6-3.5L - Horn Switch - Belle Mead, New Jersey
I'll call him anytime I need someone! He's friendly, knowledgeable and thorough. I would recommend him to anyone I know.

Maxwell

18 years of experience
390 reviews
Maxwell
18 years of experience
Toyota Land Cruiser L6-4.5L - Horn Switch - Houston, Texas
Great guy, very hard working and honest. Highly recommended.

Jason

12 years of experience
13 reviews
Jason
12 years of experience
Toyota Solara V6-3.0L - Horn Switch - Gwynn Oak, Maryland
I would recommend this man to anyone he showed up on time, and got the job done even went above and beyond with giving me more of an insight on my vehicle thank you Jason you Rock.

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