Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Key locked in ignition

asked by on

My key gets locked in the ignition, which prevents me from turning on the motor.

Hi, over time the tumblers in the lock cylinder can wear out or get debris lodged preventing rotation. The notches on the key also wear out over time which doesn’t fully unlock all of the tumblers preventing the key from turning. If the car is an automatic, there is a sensor that makes sure the car is in park. If the sensor fails, the car won’t know that the transmission is in park and will prevent you from starting the engine. A certified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, would be able to help you determine the why your ignition key is stuck and does not turn.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 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

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

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: Spark Plugs spark once

Either a failing crankshaft sensor or impulse wheel could be the cause of the fluctuating RPM reading. The crankshaft sensor signal is often used to start both fuel pump operation and start the ignition coils with the camshaft sensor setting...

Q: Rear window leak

More than likely the rear window trim is allowing water to enter. The trim and/or windshield may need to be replaced. I suggest having a professional, such as one from YourMechanic, inspect your windows firsthand for a definitive answer of...

Q: What does the Nissan Intelligent Key™ insertion indicator mean?

Your car’s Intelligent Key™ allows you to start the car without the need for a physical key. However, the system isn’t foolproof. It requires that your Intelligent Key™ be programmed and have a good battery. The Intelligent Key™ insertion indicator...

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...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...