Key Stuck in ignition

What do you do when the key gets stuck in the ignition. It keeps happening. My mechanic checked it out and told me that i needed a new key. I started using my spare which was like brand new. After about 2 months it is starting to stick as well. This morning I thought it would be in there forever. It finally came out when I rapped on it with the blunt end of a screwdriver. I’m afraid this will happen when I am in a parking lot then I will need a tow.

Have you tried jerking the steering wheel from side to side while trying to remove the key? Sometimes if your steering wheel locks, tension in the steering column can cause this.

Didn’t try it simultaneously because the steering wheel is not locked. does it make a difference?

I noted that I need to turn the key to the left and push the key in first when I shut off the engine to ensure that it disengages. But I don’t always remember. When that happens I can’t move the key in any way. Rapping on the housing has worked. It took several tries this last time. I figure that sooner or later it won’t work. I don’t know if I can get a new key for this car.

Have you tried lubricating the ignition? Lock-Ease is a graphite based oil specifically for locks.

Do you have 16 keys, 8 store loyalty cards, a Pink rabbit’s foot and several trinkets on your key chain? Extra weight on your key chain can damage the ignition lock.

I only have one key beside the ignition key on the chain. I learned to do that a long time ago. I purchased some graphite lubricant, and it does help. I asked a friend to check it out for me. He told me that the key wasn’t sitting correctly. A combination of lubricant and playing with the steering wheel has helped. My friend showed me that I have to turn the wheel and the key at the same time to disengage it. But it is still a problem. I have to be very careful when I engage the key. Since the key isn’t sitting correctly, I may need to replace the ignition. I contacted the dealer about getting a new key. No reply yet. Any other suggestions are welcome.

Sometimes lock cylinders just wear out and get sticky. I would go ahead and replace the lock cylinder. I had the same thing happen on my Chevy truck. It stuck in run and wouldn’t turn back. My friend tried to stop the engine by pulling the coil wire off the distributor, which was kind of hilarious when he got hit with 40,000 volts of secondary ignition current. I changed mine by flashlight in a parking lot in a little under an hour. Your Saturn should be easier than that, but don’t wait too long. You have to be able to turn the key to run to get the cylinder out of the steering column, if I remember correctly.

Installing a new lock cylinder is a simple job for a locksmith NOW…If you wait until the lock fails completely, it can turn into an expensive nightmare…In order for a locksmith to remove the old cylinder easily, THE LOCK MUST STILL FUNCTION NORMALLY! Right now, it’s not a big deal to fix this…

Thanks, Caddyman, that’s what I was trying to say. In most cases, you can also have the new cylinder ‘coded’ to work with the keys you have, so you don’t need a separate key for your door and trunk. Waiting until the lock fails completely, as Caddyman mentioned, could result in at least some parts of the steering column needing to be replaced, as damage could occur when the lock has to be drilled or beaten out of it. Fix it NOW, while it is still probably under $100 to do so. BTW, a new key won’t help.

THANKS TO ALL. I didn’t realize it was so important to do immediately. I will search for a locksmith. I will probably need new keys as well because they are pretty well worn. Even I can see the damage on the main key. Now the spare is beginning to look the same.

Too late I guess. The locksmith can’t get te lock cylinder out. He’s been on it for more than an hour.

It took 2 hours but the locksmith was able to remove the cylinder and replace the lock. He also cut a new key. Did not charge me more than his original quote. If anyone wants a locksmith recommendation in the Romeoville Illinois area let me know.