20+ years

Of Experience

Schedule a Local Locksmith Services in Atlanta

Why Is My Car Key Stuck In The Ignition?

Why Is My Car Key Stuck In The Ignition?

Your car key getting stuck in the ignition is one of those stressful situations that could lead to snap decisions. That is why a good understanding of the ignition operation system will save the day during such emergencies. However, in this article, you get in-depth info about the causes of keys getting stuck in the ignition.

Ignition Cylinder Failure

Wear and wear can cause an ignition cylinder in a car to fail, just like any other mechanical component. An ignition cylinder's tumblers may collapse, trapping a key in the mechanism.

Dead Battery

The battery is necessary for the ignition to operate properly. The ignition will automatically lock up if the battery dies, making it impossible to remove the key. In this case, either replace the battery or wait for it to recharge. As an alternative, give the cylinder a quick hit with a tack hammer.

Steering Wheel Locked

When the ignition is off, the steering wheel of many cars locks. Regretfully, this locks the ignition cylinder as well.

A Worn-Out or Broken Key

Though sturdy, car keys deteriorate with every turn of the ignition. Mishandling the key—such as keeping it in your pocket or on a hard surface—can cause it to gradually deteriorate. If it is twisted or slightly cracked, it is difficult to take out of the ignition. Replace a broken key right away.

Mode of Accessory

Before the ON position, most ignitions have an accessory mode that enables certain functions even while the engine is not operating. It is not feasible to remove the key while it is in accessory mode. Even though it appears to be off, it is still in the accessory position.

Locking the Steering Wheel

Some older cars have a steering wheel lock that allows you to start the engine only in one direction. You can use it to test whether the engine is ready to start with this feature enabled.

Unset Parking Gear

When you remove the car key from the ignition, turn off the trans. If the gear is in drive, neutral, or any other position on an automatic transmission, turning off the key won't work. On a manual transmission, check that the gear changer is in "Neutral".

What to do If your Key Breaks In The Ignition Lock

In case you are facing this situation, consider buying an electrical key extraction tool or call a local locksmith. Take out the broken piece with a key extractor. If that doesn't work, then see a locksmith. Lastly, before starting the car, make sure to check your key one more time. If the key is dirty, it could fall off in the ignition or become difficult to get out when stuck.

How to get the car key out of the ignition

If one of your keys become stuck, try using an electrical key extraction tool. Some very useful tools will be tweezers or needle-nose pliers (especially if the key is partially visible) and a fat lick. But if you're not sure how to use these tools, ask for assistance and run off to a locksmith.


Knowing how to get a stuck car key out then gets you back on the road in no time, without worrying about costly repairs is extremely important. With the tips given, you can get back behind the wheel quickly.

Dec 29, 2023
Follow Us on:

Latest Blog Posts

Jul 15, 2024 Vacation Home Security Tips

A vacation home is an excellent option for leisure and quality time with friends and family to create memorable…

Jul 09, 2024 Toyota Keys

Toyota cars have long been recognized for their quality and sturdiness. Over the years, they have incorporated several major designs to…

Jul 01, 2024 5 Reasons to Replace a Lock

Door lock replacement is essential for safety, security, and peace of mind. Once you start having lock-related issues such as jammed…

Jun 24, 2024 Benefits of Residential Electronic Keypad Locks

Traditional keys have been exceptional in ensuring our security and safety over the years. However, technology has made electronic keypad locks…