Car key

I have a 2003 saab 95. I put my key in and tried to start my car. The key did not seem to go all the way in and I could not start my car. My wife suspect ice was in key hole. I tried to warm up the key with hot water and put it in again. It still didn’t work. Does any have any suggestion? Thanks.

Do you have another key? Your wife’s perhaps? Does that one work?

Go to the hardware store, and get some graphite lock lubricate. It should come in a small squeeze tube. The lubricant is a powder that you puff-squeeze into the lock mechanism. Make sure the lock mechanism is dry first. Squeeze a couple of puffs in. Work the key in and out a few times to get the powder into the tumblers. Make sure the key seats in all the way.

If it still will not work, the key cylinder may have to be removed. On many cars, the lock cylinder is separate from the electrical switch, and you shouldn’t need to disconnect any wires to remove the lock cylinder. However, many European models do require that the key be inserted to release the lock cylinder from the holder.

I only have one key

Saab still has the key in the console between the seats, right? There may well be some gunk or debris that has worked its way down in there. IF it isn’t to late, before you put anything else down there, get out your most powerful vacuum cleaner, use the crevice tool and try sucking right on the key hole. Then try the lock lube or even some lock de-icer (the de-icer I used is an aerosol that seem to blow out the lock a little) to see if that helps.

All else fails, this is probably a job for a locksmith.

Good luck

That is very good advice!

The Saab practice of placing the ignition switch in the console inevitably leads to dust, dirt, cookie crumbs, etc getting into the lock cylinder, making that design very prone to problems. If somebody manages to spill even a few drops of Pepsi or the like in the area, that creates the perfect storm for major problems when the aforementioned particles are cemented into place by the sugar residue.

In other words, Saab decided on a really dumb design with the placement of that ignition switch, and you should try exactly what 1981.911.SC suggested. Personally, I would try lock de-icer before lubing the lock, simply because the alcohol in the lock de-icer will hopefully dissolve the gummy residue in the lock cylinder. You may have to call a locksmith, but try these DIY suggestions first, and then prohibit everyone from eating and from drinking soda in your car in the future.

I tried to warm up the key with hot water

NO NO No water hot or cold in a lock!

For information only. Saab places the ignition in the console since the aircraft they designed prior to the manufacture of automobiles had the starter in about the same area. It is for tradition purposes.