Increased demands of modern engines on the ignition systems and a desire for freedom from maintenance have led to the introduction of electronic ignition systems in standard production some time ago. Normally the ignition power of electronic systems (of almost all makes) is greater than that of conventional systems and further power increases can be expected in the future. This places electronic ignition systems in a power range where touching live parts or terminals may be hazardous (this applies both to primary and to secondary circuits).

In this context, we must point out that all relevant national safety regulations and legislation must always be observed when working on or testing ignition systems. The ignition (i.e. ignition or power supply) must always be switched off when working on the ignition system.

Such work includes:

• Connecting engine testers, e.g.

timing light, dwell angle/speed tester, oscilloscope etc.

• Replacing ignition system components, e.g.

spark plugs, ignition coil, distributor, ignition leads etc.

The above hazardous voltage will be present in the entire system should it be necessary to switch on the ignition for ignition tests or engine adjustments.

Consequently, sources of hazardous voltages are not limited to the individual components of the Ignition system (such as distributor, ignition coil, control unit, ignition tackle etc.) but are also present on wiring harnesses, plug connections and testers.

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