Q: Key gets stuck in the ignition and is hard to get out

asked by on

On multiple occasions, my key has become stuck in the ignition of my 2011 Toyota Tundra. This is really inconvenient when it happens and it can take a minute or two of moving the key around to finally get it loose. A couple of times I was in a hurry and left it, good thing i’m out in the country! How big of a repair is this? I would hate to drop thousands of dollars on a new truck with only 48,000 miles on it.

Provided that you can turn your key to the off position where you would normally pull it out, it appears that the tumblers in your key cylinder are sticking or binding, preventing the key from being extracted. A quick simple thing that you should do first is spray an anti-seize penetrant directly into the keyhole, preferably a graphite based one. Then pull the key in and out of the lock to work the penetrant into the tumblers. If this doesn’t solve your issue, then you will have to have the ignition cylinder lock replaced by a professional.

A certified mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, can inspect and diagnose your key and ignition issue at your home or office and advise you on any repairs that will solve the problem. This is not a very big job, but it does take someone who knows what they are doing.

Was this answer helpful?
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. Key gets stuck in the ignition and is hard to get out

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: Loss of electrical power while driving but engine still works.

Check the battery on the vehicle and see if it is holding a charge. If the battery have a charge, then check the battery for a load. If the battery cannot hold a load, then the battery needs replaced. Check...

Q: Rear differential humming

Hi there. A humming noise usually indicates a worn pinion bearing or an incorrect backlash setting on the rear differential between the ring and pinion gear. Sometimes, if the pinion bearing develops play due to wear, the pinion gear will...

Q: How do I replace the remote keyless entry (RKE) transmitter battery of a 2012 Dodge Ram?

The remote keyless entry (RKE) transmitter battery should last for at least three years. After three years, there’s a chance that it will die and need to be replaced. Replacing the RKE transmitter battery takes four steps. Buy a...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
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...