Doral Locksmith | Locksmith Doral FL
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Ignition cylinder problems can happen to any of us and at any time, too! If you’ve ever experienced being unable to start or drive your car due to a worn out ignition switch or a stuck key, you know what we mean! Here at Doral Locksmiths we handle issues with automotive ignitions on a regular basis. Often, we find that the customer really didn’t need our assistance and that simply making a couple of easy adjustments could have solved everything quickly and inexpensively. Are automotive ignitions really that complicated? Yes and no! Let us explain.
There was a time when car ignitions powered up engines and that was the extent of it. You know the saying “less parts; less to break” and this held very true. In the modern world, car ignitions also power up your radio, GPS system, power windows, power seats, air conditioner, heater and more. There are more options and functions than ever and all of them get their power to operate from the car battery which is triggered by your ignition system.
This is true – your poor ignition often gets automatically blamed when the car doesn’t start. At first, all signs seem to indicate that it is indeed your ignition cylinder that has failed or is about to. You get in the car, insert the key in the ignition, turn it, and…nothing! What else could it be?
One simple and easy check that you can make yourself is to inspect your gear. You must be in the PARK gear in order for your ignition system to engage. This is a safety feature built-in to the transmission/ignition system and 99% of the time, you will engage this correctly but it can seem like doomsday when you don’t!
You cannot be in DRIVE or NEUTRAL – only PARK if you want your ignition system to work correctly. Check yours and be double sure that you are not in DRIVE, NEUTRAL or in between gears as your car can roll forward or backward if it is. Always remember to put your parking brake on when making any kind of adjustments, no matter how small they might be! People are injured or killed every year by rolling car accidents at home when their vehicles are simply not in the right gear.
Your gear check will take all of less than a minute. If your ignition is still not working right, be sure and do the steering-wheel check. Can you move it back and forth a bit or is it immobile and seemingly stuck? If it is, try applying some force to move it. An unmoving steering wheel has resulted in hundreds of service calls for locksmiths as well as car repair techs, both here in Doral, FL and all over the country. When too much pressure is applied to the steering wheel, it will lock in place and hold fast to the ignition key. All you have to do to release the key and to restore the use of your steering wheel is to apply enough force to it to unlock it.
Another reason that your ignition system may appear to lock up is a low battery. If there’s not enough power in your battery to power up your car, the ignition system will be inoperable. Fortunately, checking this is easy. Just see if your windshield wipers work. Or, you can test your dashboard lights or car radio. Obviously if they work, it’s not your battery that is the problem.
It really is possible to put the wrong ignition key in the switch. Just because it goes in doesn’t mean that it will come back out easily, much less start the ignition! Many households have more than one car and multiple drivers. Transponder keys tend to all look similar so in a moment of distraction, it is easy to use the wrong key and get it stuck in your ignition (especially if the door was already unlocked!). There are two things you can do if this happens. First, try tapping the head of the key with a flat surface.
The goal is to loosen it up enough to be able to remove it. You do run the risk of wedging it in even tighter so be careful and don’t hammer it! The other option is more sensible. Spray some electrical contact cleaner on the lock. Follow this with some silicon lock lubricant. The combination of the two sprays will act as a cleaner and a lubricant that is usually enough to release the key back to you.
Let us be more specific; don’t call just any friend that offers to help. We all know people that are “experts” at car mechanics. If they really are; great! However, if they are not and are just well-meaning then call them at your own risk. Keep in mind that your car and its repairs and maintenance are ultimately your responsibility and if further damage is done or more expense incurred it will fall on your shoulders. This applies to friends, family members, neighbors and co-workers – if they are not truly skilled or genuine professionals, be wary.
At this point you may feel like throwing your hands up and just calling a local mechanic. While this isn’t a bad idea, there may be a better option. Even though your ignition is a car part, it is also still a lock and a local automotive locksmith may be your best bet.
Unlike a mechanic or your car dealer, a locksmith won’t have to tow your car anywhere; their mobile service vehicles are fully stocked and come right to your location. Most full service shops also offer 24-hour emergency service if needed. Be proactive and have the telephone number to a trustworthy locksmith shop already in your smart phone. If after trying the above tips, you still need help; your locksmith will only be a phone call away at any time!