Question about 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier

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Steering wheel is locked up and cannot turn key in ignition.

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  • makennedy Aug 26, 2008

    I have a 91 lumina. The ignition key will not turn on. I have wiggled the steering wheel while I tried to turn the key for over an hour and nothing. I tried the extra key and the same result. Is there a way to unlock the steering wheel and bypass the locking mechanism?

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With the key in the ignition, tap on the key with something heavy like a pair of pliers, screwdriver etc. It will cause the pin inside the mechanism to drop, and the iginition will turn. Happened to me today, worked like a charm.

Posted on Apr 20, 2009

  • april_d74
    april_d74 Nov 09, 2012

    I did this and it actually worked. Thanks a bunch

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This is how i did it. Open the cover on top of the steering to reveal the mechanism. try turning the steering wheel to the right and manually unlock the it by pushing on the lock right side of the exposed mechanism.

Posted on Jan 01, 2009

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Try this, Take hold of the steering wheel and the key at the same time, wiggle the steering wheel back and forth as you try to turn the key, sometimes the steering puts pressure on the lock mechanism, and it is difficult for your key to turn.

Posted on Aug 14, 2008

You may have a dead battery...happened on my grand am...connect a charger or jumper cables...or install a good battery and this should solve you troubles

Posted on Sep 06, 2008

6 Suggested Answers

freetek
  • 5568 Answers

SOURCE: A4 steering lock does not engage and car won't turn over

The steering locks don't necessarily engage when the key is removed, I always turn the wheel before exiting to engage it. There are several positions that will allow the pin to lock in but if between these, it may seem that it isn't locked.

Posted on Aug 23, 2008

  • 840 Answers

SOURCE: 03 suburban steering wheel unlocked and can't turn key

Jiggle the steering wheel straight then proceed to turn key the steering column gets locked and immobile try that guys/ Please rate my response thank you very much

Posted on Jan 31, 2009

flacooo1
  • 172 Answers

SOURCE: 1998 nissan altima gxe -ignition problem

Hi what is happening is that your turn off your car and left the wheels turned to one side and specially if your car is parke in a hill what you have to do is to force the steering wheel to the same direction of your wheels this will free up the ignition switch it is going to be hard let me tell you but it will work and this is why your shift don't work once you have the ignition switch free then your shift will work again

Posted on Apr 01, 2009

  • 5 Answers

SOURCE: key wont turn in ignition

had the same problem with a 99 dodge van. tow truck driver put the key into the ignition and tapped it a couple of times while turning the key to freed it up and start the engine. works as long as you leave the key in the ignition so i use a second key to lock/unlock the van. hope this works for you. gary

Posted on May 20, 2009

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: Lock steering wheel...Key won't turn in the ignition

Make sure to push the brake firmly with you foot. I do this all the time.

Posted on May 28, 2009

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: can't turn key in ignition lock cylinder 2000 dodge stratus

heat it up with a hair dryer

Posted on Jun 12, 2009

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2 Answers

I have a 95 camaro, I put the key in ignition and it will not turn the ignition. It's like it's stuck. Replaced the ignition module and still cannot turn ignition. Help!


the ignition module (ignition switch on top of the steering column) normally doesn't get stuck.

things you can try:
steering wheel lock: (the pin gets a "burr" on it and locks everything up) wiggle steering wheel back and forth while trying to turn key.

transmission lock (parking on an incline will jam up the interlock)
push the shifter farther into park while trying to turn the key, or wiggle shifter

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Put one hand on the steering wheel and rotate slightly left and right alternatively whilst turning the ignition key at the same time with the other hand. This might release the steering wheel and start ignition.

Hope this helps.

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Turn the steering wheel anticlockwise or to the left and turn the key.

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The steering wheel is under pressure from turning the steering when stopped.
Turn the steering wheel slightly so the pressure is released from the ignition lock and you will able to then turn the ignition key to unlock the steering wheel.

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sometimes if the steering wheel turned too far when u turn it off turn turning the key and moving the steering at the same time also make sure it is in park

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your steering wheel lock is connected to ignition in column, pull hard on steering wheel in direction wheels are turned at the same time turn key, this should free them both up.

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1 Answer

Key is locked in the ignition


To fix your problem, you have to turn the steering wheel either to the left or right as much as you can, then try to turn the key in the ignition. When the steering wheel locks, the key won't turn. By manually holding the steering wheel out of the lock position, the key will turn again and you're steering column will be back to normal. Also try holding the brake pedal down and turning the key and steering wheel at the same time

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Key won't turn in the ignition and the steering wheel is locked


In hope that you have the right key, put him in, try to turn the steering wheel a little bit at the same time you try to unlock the ignition.Sometimes it's possible that you've used your steering wheel as help wile getting out of the car. At this case, maybe the wheel lock snaps in, but the wheels are under pressure from the ground. Now you want to unlock your car at it seams that the key wont turn. The wheels get pressure from the ground, so the whole steering is under pressure and your steering wheel pressed against the locker block. If you try to turn the locked steering wheel, you'll see that it turns appr. 1" to one side. This is the needed space to unlock with the key. I hope that works in your case.

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1 Answer

Steering wheel locked in place, key will not turn...


Very likely the steering thrust stored in the tires attempting to turn back is forcing excessive tension against the steering lock.

Try (very hard) to turn the steering wheel either direction while turning the key gently.

If that solves it you can avoid this by letting go of the steering after stopping to park, turn off the ignition slowly (engine off, pause, then key out). This will ensure that the steering wheel comes to rest prior to locking the column.

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either you have the wrong key,or try turning the steering wheel to the right all the way,then turn key,this usually happens when you park the vehicle and the wheels are turned,then the steering wheel locks hard

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