Q: Put the key in the ignition and the car will turn on, but the steering wheel will not turn...Locked in position.

asked by on

When I pull the key out, I do not hear the "click" that I normally hear that locks the steering wheel. When I open the door, the bell/alarm indicator sounds as if the keys are still in the ignition. I am able to turn the car on, but I cant move the steering. Please help.
My car has an automatic transmission.

It sounds as though the locking pawl is jammed in position. Sometimes that can happen if there is a side force on the steering when the lock is engaged. If the car is parked against a curb, or if the wheel was sharply turned when you shut down, the return force of the wheel could be jamming the lock in place.The answer could be as simple as twisting the wheel in the opposite direction when you turn the key. Try moving the wheel just the slightest bit in one direction or the other, there will be resistance, but you have to hold it so that the force is not on the lock when you turn the key. Then the lock can disengage. If that doesn’t work, then the lock will have to be removed and replaced.You can contact Your Mechanic to have a techniccian come to your home or office and repair your steering lock right on the spot

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

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!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Put the key in the ignition and the car will turn on, but the steering wheel will not turn...Locked in position.

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: A/C fuse removed, then EC button pushed before A/C cools

Hello. It is possible that you could have an issue with your climate control unit. Many of the higher end climate control systems have a trouble code system built into them. Usually, to access the trouble codes you will need...

Q: So this shop just put some oil in my rear differential and now it's making a grinding noise? What could be causing that?

Hi Elishea. Thanks for contacting us today. Generally speaking, the rear differential has no impact on the steering of the vehicle, so it's quite possible that adding the fluid to the rear differential is not the source of this noise....

Q: Clutch pedal sinking to floor

You might be right. The slave cylinder is a hydraulic component. When it leaks either internally or externally, it will cause a symptom such as the one you are describing. In your vehicle the transmission need to be removed to...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
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...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...