Why Is My Key Stuck in the Ignition?

Why Is My Key Stuck in the Ignition?

1. Vehicle Not in Park

Most modern vehicles will not allow you to remove your key from the ignition if the transmission is not placed in park. This is used as a safety procedure to prevent vehicle roll-away.

2. Steering Wheel Is Locked

The steering wheel of many vehicles will lock in place if turned too far in one direction while the ignition is in the “off” position. Unfortunately, this also locks the ignition cylinder.

3. Build-up of Dirt and Grime

A vehicle’s ignition cylinder is prone to a build-up of dirt and grime over the course of time. This can stick an ignition cylinder’s tumblers, making it difficult to remove your key.

4. Key Damage

A damaged key can also jam an ignition cylinder’s tumblers, thereby turning key extraction into a chore. This is especially true if a particular tooth on a key becomes bent or broken.

5. Faulty Ignition Cylinder 

Like any mechanical component, a vehicle’s ignition cylinder is prone to failure with age and wear. The individual tumblers of an ignition cylinder can actually collapse, lodging a key in place.

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