How To Hotwire a Motorcycle

How To Hotwire a Motorcycle

Ever lost your bike keys? Every biker probably has at one time or another. But should this happen to you, it doesn’t have to mean that you’d remain stranded. There’s a special skill you can learn that helps you start your engine and get back on the road.

Yes, we’re talking about the questionable but oh-so-useful ability of hotwiring a motorcycle. This guide will help you navigate the shadowed realms and give you a step-by-step guide on how to hotwire a motorcycle.

Hotwiring a motorcycle isn’t exactly legal, so keep it on the down low, will you? It has to be our naughty little secret. Because ultimately, knowing how to hotwire one may get you out of sticky situations. And if you also know your machine well, it would make it even easier.

So get with the program, and if you lose your bike keys in the future, this knowledge can help you stay calm because the process of hotwiring a motorcycle is easier than it looks. It is not as complicated as hotwiring cars.

What Tools Do You Need To Hotwire A Motorcycle?

You need a few tools to start the hotwiring process. Start by gathering the tools first. In some cases, there may be no need for tools except a wire. Most times, you will require electrical tape, a flathead screwdriver, and a diagram of the bike’s wiring system.

The only problem you may have is finding the diagram of your bike’s wiring system. A simple Google search can solve this problem. Go online and search for the wiring system of your bike’s model. You may not even need to use it in some cases because the process is simple enough.

How To Hotwire A Motorcycle

This step-by-step process can help you hotwire your motorcycle.

Step 1: Look For The Switch Connector

To hotwire your bike, will need to find the wires to start the ignition. This part of a bike often has a protective case on it. when you remove that part, you will find a lot of wires in one bunch. This may not always be the case in all bikes because older models lack a protective covering.

To locate the connector, follow the path from the ignition on the handlebars. You can find them by looking at the bunch of wires that run from the bike’s ignition switch to its engine as well as other main components.

Step 2: Separate The Socket

When you successfully locate the wire, the next step would be to find three visible wires. They often have a separate wiring cover to protect them from damage from the elements. Now separate the wires for the ignition switch from all the others in the bundle.

This may be easier in some cases where there are two separate casing for the wires and the ignition switch will have its own wiring aside. If this is the case for you, remove the ignition wiring and set it aside from others before the next step. Ensure that you select the cover that contains the ignition system wires.

unplug the socket

Step 3: Connect The Circuit

This final bit is where all the hard work pays off. It involves taking a piece of speaker wire, connecting the circuits, and starting the engine. If you follow the steps closely, this is when you will get it running.

From the handlebar, take the hard cover that holds the ignition wiring. Isolate this part from others. This would give you some room to work freely. This is necessary when the wire is longer than usual. There are two sockets in the cover. Take the end part of the wire and place it in one socket. Put the other end in the socket opposite this one.

connecting the circuit

When this is done, there should be some changes with the motorcycle. The lights could come on or not. If they do not turn on, another step should be taken. Try pressing the ignition since the wires run through different sockets.

If your lights come on, then you are on the right path. When it happens, press the ignition to watch what comes next. At this point, the motorcycle should start and you have succeeded in hotwiring the bike.

However, if you touch the ignition and nothing changes, then there may be something you did wrong. It is advisable to go back in to see if you properly separated the wires. Also, check to ensure that you inserted the speaker wire properly in the socket. Another thing that could cause interference is electrical tapes. If you used electrical tape to hold the wires in one place, check it to make sure nothing fell off during the ignition.

Second Hotwiring Method

For the second method, you need scissors and wire strippers. You may also need some other tools like wires if the need arises.

Step 1: Gather The Wires Together

First, you need to be able to identify the crucial wires. Different bikes have different colors of wires so there is no way to pinpoint a particular color. However, some are usually black and yellow. The battery wires are green and red generally. Find the battery wires and ignition wires and gather them together.

Step 2: Remove The Outer Cover From The Wires 

Ensure that you strip the red and green wires alone if that is the color in your bike. Also, only strip the yellow and black ones. In some cases, it may be difficult to do this part because motorcycle manufacturers tweak the colors to prevent thieves from hotwiring bikes. If you do find the right wires, clip the proper ignition and battery wires. This should start the bike immediately and get you back on the road.

Third Hotwiring Method 

The first two hot wiring methods above are helpful, but there are other tricks to try. This one is more complicated than both, but it will work. It also requires more tools to fix. Get a hammer, flathead screwdriver, and a wire. These tools can help you get it done and the process is similar to hotwiring a car.

Step 1: Remove Ignition Cap

This is where you will use the tools you gathered earlier. The first step involves removing the ignition cap and you will need to use a hammer with the screwdriver to pop it off. Hit the screwdriver into the ignition with the hammer because it may take some effort to remove it. You can stick in the screwdriver and wiggle it several times to see if it pops off.

Step 2: Move Battery Power To The Motorcycle’s Ignition

This part is more complicated so you need to exercise caution. Be patient as you work on it to prevent damage. Having removed the ignition cap, the wires should be exposed. Now you need to move the power from the battery with cables and transfer them to the ignition.

Be extra careful during this process because you could damage your ignition if you don’t remove the cap properly. This method is not recommended for use. Only consider it when you are in a dire emergency.

How To Protect Your Motorcycle From Hotwiring

Now that you know how to hotwire a motorcycle for emergencies, you also need to learn to protect your bike from criminals who may want to steal it. If you are worried about a criminal taking your bike, there are a few things to do to keep the motorcycle safe from criminals.

Proximity Alarms

These alarms may be illegal in some regions because of how annoying they can be. Before choosing to use them, read up on the local laws to ensure that you will not be breaking any laws. If you feel that your bike is unsafe, you can install a proximity alarm. It works by blaring when anyone gets too close to the bike.

The alarm could trip off several times and this could lead to noise complaints and fines. It isn’t ideal in every area. Perhaps a driveway with fewer people or a parking pad may be a good place to park it. On the streets, it could constitute a nuisance.

Avoid Dangerous Areas

This is a quieter way to protect your bike from thieves. If you leave your motorcycle in a neighborhood known for theft, you may be putting yourself in trouble. It is ideal to find a safer place to park the bike. If your residential area is unsafe for bikes, then you can speak to the property manager to help you find a better location for the bike. If this does not work, you can park it close to your home so you can always see it from your window when you aren’t using it.

Use Bike Locks

Bicycles are not the only bikes that can use locks. You can also get locks for a motorcycle. Some are similar to pedal bike locks and lock the tires so even if someone succeeds in hotwiring the bike, they would not be able to steal it.

Final Thoughts

There are several ways to hotwire a motorcycle. You need a few tools like wires, a screwdriver, and hammers. You may also need to get a diagram of your bike’s electrical wiring. Choose the easiest with the tools you have and you should be able to get back on the road after losing your keys.

Avatar for Joshua D. Mattie

    Joshua D. Mattie

    My motorbike addiction began with 50cc at 5 years old. I rode motocross as a teenager & into my 20's when I worked as a mechanic. This helped me to see the light—sportbikes & cruisers became a passion. Now I'm building BikersRights to be the #1 resource for everything on 2 wheels!

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