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How to Remove an Ignition Cylinder Without A Key

How to Remove an Ignition Cylinder Without A Key

The ignition cylinder is a crucial component in your vehicle that enables you to start the engine. It acts as the gatekeeper preventing your car from starting without the correct key. If you drive a vehicle with a cylinder locking system, you might have faced a situation where your key breaks inside the ignition locking cylinder.

In certain scenarios, you may find yourself needing to remove an ignition cylinder without having access to the key. Given the uniqueness of each car key and its corresponding lock cylinder, losing your key implies that you'll have to extract and replace the cylinder itself. If you're feeling unsure or skeptical about this process, it is better to contact a skilled locksmith.

So, how can you easily remove an ignition lock cylinder without a key, even if you're an inexperienced car owner?

Wire Cutters

When faced with a stubborn ignition cylinder stuck in your vehicle's steering wheel, you might wonder if there's a secret technique to dislodging it.

However, there's no need for tricks or specialized tools that require superhuman strength. The solution is straightforward: wire cutters. A pair of wire cutters provide the necessary leverage to easily remove the cylinder, often in a single attempt.

Using a Screwdriver

Difficulty starting your car often stems from issues with the ignition cylinder, essentially the car's "brain." It relies on a network of small wires connecting to each spark plug to distribute electricity throughout the engine. Besides, it houses essential components like gears and springs, crucial for initiating engine turnover.

Removing the ignition cylinder using a screwdriver isn't particularly challenging. Yet, it can be somewhat tricky if you're unprepared. If you still encounter any difficulties, it's advisable to contact a dependable locksmith promptly.

Disconnect the Car Battery

Another method to remove the ignition cylinder involves disconnecting the car battery. Since the battery powers the ignition lock cylinder, you simply need to disconnect it. If your car door remains locked with an unlocked car, turn off the engine and wait for a few minutes before attempting to open the door.

Hammer and Chisel Method

Creating a groove in the ignition cylinder for manual turning is another technique. You'll require a hammer, a chisel, and a touch of finesse:

1. To create a groove or channel, gently tap the chisel with the hammer.

2. With the groove already deepened, slide a flathead screwdriver inside and turn it in an anticlockwise direction.

3. Keep pressing until the ignition cylinder yields and releases.

Signs of a Failing Ignition Lock

When the key becomes increasingly difficult to turn, and you encounter challenges starting the vehicle, it is a sign that the ignition lock might be malfunctioning. Here are the most prevalent symptoms:

  • Increased resistance when turning the key.
  • The key becomes stuck and proves exceedingly hard to extract.
  • The vehicle fails to start even after turning the key.
  • Visible bending or wear on the key.


Without needing the original key, there are ways to access an ignition cylinder. However, for expert locksmith solutions, feel free to get in touch with GreenPro Locksmith right away. We provide a comprehensive range of locksmith services, from lock and key installation to ignition replacement. Our team of locksmith experts will be at your service in no time.

Nov 30, 2023
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