Q: Ignition won't turn, steering wheel lock not engaged.

asked by on

My key will not turn in my ignition, I have checked dozens of times to be sure it is fully in park, battery is charged, key is not obstructed, etc. The strange part is that the steering wheel lock that usually stops you from turning your wheels when the key is off, is not engaged. It normally is, but I can turn my wheel freely with the key out now. Is it possible that the steering wheel lock has broken and is permanently stopping the key from turning?

My car has 200000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, thanks for writing in. I’d be happy to provide my insight. It is possible the ignition mechanism is broken inside the steering column. I suggest trying to turn over your car with a spare key, to see if the ignition turns with the different key. If you do not have an extra key, then look at the key you have to see if it shows signs of wear. If it is, then have a copy made to see if that works.

If you would like help looking at your ignition system, consider having an expert automotive technician from YourMechanic come to your home or office to inspect and diagnose this issue for you, and make or suggest any repairs as needed.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1,000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Ignition won't turn, steering wheel lock not engaged.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Loud tick knock around 1500 to 2500 rpm and a little on startup

Hello, thanks for writing in about your 2006 Dodge Stratus. It can be tough to tell the differences between engine noises sometimes. In general, small parts make smaller noises. Bigger parts make deeper noises. Think drums or cymbals. Lifters...

Q: is it mandatory to replace shift motor when replacing the transfer case

Hi there: In general, it's a best practices, good service or liability issue as to why most mechanics or automotive shops will replace the "shift motor" while replacing a transfer case. The transfer case has multiple components inside or attached...

Q: My steering locked up and the key won't turn

Check the Steering Lock Module for faults. This component is tied into the vehicle security system (including your ignition key), and appears to have either failed or is not sync'ing correctly with the key and security system. A professional mechanic,...

Related articles

P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.