Question about 1996 Saab 900

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I cant start my van because the key wont turn.

In addition the steering wheel wont lock. I got to work like any other day. There was nothing different about the way i got out of the van yet when i returned at lunch time I just could not start it up. I thought maybe i had damage the key somehow. So i had my wife bring all the keys we own to the van... and nope none of them turn.

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This is a common problem once the ignition cylinder and the steering column get worn. Usually, you can get around the problem by turning the wheel back and forth while turning the key to get it to unlock itself. Try this. Many older cars have this problem and people end up having to wiggle the wheel and key to find out how to get it to turn. Some vans will work when you jiggle the shift lever while turning the key. The problem is usually fixed by removing the lock cylinder and replacing it, but before you do make sure that its really the lock cylinder by testing it with the keys after you have removed it for any 'catchy' or binding when twisting key. If the ignition cylinder turns out fine, then it could be the way that the ignition cylinder assembly is attached to the column. Sometimes the whole assembly gets loose because the screws holding it on come loose slightly and it twists out of line and the wheel lock cam starts binding. Think of how a door lock cam in your door jam works. If it binds up it stays in the same position. Anyways, try to loosen the assembly and try turning the key and see if that fixes the problem or just wiggle it and see if its loose or if you can move it a little and try the key in several positions to locate the problem. If you find that it fixes the problem, then just tighten it in the correct position where the ignition key engages.

Posted on Sep 24, 2009

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Try putting a little oil from the dip stick on a key, then try it. Or spray some WD-40 into the lock.

Posted on Sep 24, 2009

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Just a question that might help.
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