Q: Why is my key getting stuck in the ignition when turning off my car and being difficult to shift out of park?

asked by on

For the past two weeks, whenever I start my car it is taking longer and longer to get from shift to any gear. It seems that on colder days it is more difficult to shift. Additionally, when I go to turn my key to shut off the car, it takes a bit of time and getting longer.

My car has 168000 miles.

Hi and thanks for contacting YourMechanic. The vehicle unable to shift out of park is the shifter lock solenoid. The solenoid has a short within in it or it has failed. Remove the shifter housing from the vehicle and turn it over and you will see the shifter solenoid. Remove the solenoid and replace it. Then put the shifter housing back on. This will help with the issue for the hard shifting issue and the key not coming out. The ignition switch is tied into the shifter solenoid circuit and if the solenoid is not working properly, then the ignition switch will not unlock the tumbler making the key stay engaged. If you need further assistance troubleshooting your vehicle, then seek out a technician, such as one from YourMechanic, that can assist you with the hard shifting and key not releasing from the steering column.

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. Why is my key getting stuck in the ignition when turning off my car and being difficult to shift out of park?

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: What can I do with the electronic key?

Your electronic key functions as both a way to crank your car, as well as to open the doors and the rear hatch. You don’t even have to push a button to get it to do most of these things....

Q: Q: Crank but not start

Thanks for writing in about your 1990 Mercedes Benz E300. It sounds like the idle valve may be stuck closed and this could be why the engine only starts when the gas pedal is pressed. Due to the pressures generated...

Q: I have a 2001 Volvo T5 S60 I was wondering will driver side glass window fit from a 2011 Volvo S40

The two windows are different. You should have the computer tested to see if the computer stored codes for the poor gas mileage problem so it can be diagnosed. You may have bad O2 sensors.

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
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...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...