What are the different positions on the ignition switch for?
Your car’s ignition does more than just let you crank the car and then turn it off. There are actually several different positions on the ignition switch and they each do something different. Here’s what you should know about each:
Lock: This is the off position. The key will only come out of the ignition when it’s locked.
Accessory: This position is one click from lock, and lets you do things like play the radio or work the windows without actually having the engine cranked. All electricity comes from the battery in this position, so be careful not to drain it.
On: After cranking the engine, the key returns to the on position.
Start: This is the forward most position on the ignition, and is used when starting the engine. The key will only stay in the start position for a few seconds, and then return to the on position when the engine is running.
Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.
Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing