Broke the key while it was in the ignition? Don’t worry, you can fix this problem yourself if you do not have any help around you. Breaking of the key in the ignition mainly happens because of applying too much force on the key while starting the car or just because the key has become old. So, let us discuss how to remove broken key from ignition lock.
Technology has boomed since the last decade. We are using technologies that we never even imagined. Even the car manufacturing industry is at its peak and making cars that are using such advanced technologies that make your car more comfortable, safe, and efficient as never before. Even the key in the car is being replaced by the smart key.
Just press the push button to start the ignition and you are good to go. But the old cars are still in use that uses the normal key start system and some people may face this problem of key breaking while in the ignition.
Methods To Remove Broken Key From Ignition Lock
We will discuss here the methods of how to remove broken key from ignition if you do not have any professional help or advanced tools around you. So, let us start.
Before you try to remove the broken key from the ignition, make sure you turn the engine off and park the vehicle at a safe spot turning the parking lights on. As the key is broken, you can turn the engine off by leaving the clutch keeping the car in gear.
Method 1: Use A Wire
If you do not have any tool, you can use a thin wire that is strong enough so that it does not bend or twist too easily while removing the key.
How To Remove A Broken Key Using A Wire
Step 1: The first step is to add a lubricant in the lock cylinder to help the wire move smoothly inside it.
Step 2: Bend the wire in the form of a small hook from one end. You can do this by using a plier that must be present in your toolbox in the car.
Step 3: Insert the wire into the cylinder. Keep the hook pointing towards the top of the cylinder.
Keep pushing the wire slowly into the cylinder until you reach the end.
Step 4: When you reach the end of the cylinder, slowly rotate the key in such a way that one of the grooves of the key gets fixed into the hook of the wire.
Step 5: Slowly pull the wire out and when you see some part of the broken key coming out of the cylinder, pull it using the plier to remove it completely.
Method 2: Use An Extractor Tool
If you tend to have an extractor tool inside the toolbox, you can use it to remove the broken key. If you do not have it, you can easily get it at the hardware store or online.
How To Remove Broken Key Using An Extractor Tool
Step 1: Insert the key extractor into the cylinder and push it slowly until you reach the end.
Step 2: When you reach the end, rotate or turn the tool in such direction that one of the grooves of the key catches into the hook of the extractor. You should also move the extractor back and forth slowly depending upon the position of the key.
Step 3: After you have locked the key in the hook of the tool, slowly pull it out of the cylinder. Do not pull it rapidly to avoid slipping of the key from the hook.
Step 4: When you see some part of the key coming out of the cylinder, remove it completely using a plier or simply use your fingers. Just make sure you do not push it again into the cylinder.
Refer to the video below for more help.
Method 3: Use A Jigsaw Blade
A jigsaw blade is a versatile tool that is mostly used to make precision cuts in different materials. It is like a small hacksaw and you can get it easily at your local hardware store or online.
How To Remove Broken Key From Ignition Using A Jigsaw Blade
Step 1: To avoid friction, you should always lubricate the cylinder.
Step 2: Slide the jigsaw blade gently into the cylinder. Keep sliding it until you reach the end.
Step 3: Rotate the blade and move it back and forth to lock the teeth of the key into the sharp grooves of the blade. The advantage of using this tool is that almost all the teeth of the key get locked into the blade and does not slip while pulling the blade out.
Step 4: Pull the blade out of the cylinder and when you see some part of the key coming out of the cylinder, remove it using a plier.
Method 4: Use Tweezers
Sounds weird, isn’t it? But yes, you can remove a broken key from the ignition switch using a tool as simple as a tweezer. It is also very simple to remove the broken key using tweezers.
How To Remove A Broken Key Using Tweezers
This method is efficient only when the broken part of the key is not trapped too much into the cylinder and is accessible for the tweezer to grab it.
Step 1: Lubricate the cylinder by putting some lubricating oil into it. But do not put the oil on the key and the tweezer.
Step 2: Lock the key into the two parts of the tweezer sticks.
Step 3: When you think that the key is firmly placed in the tweezer, gently pull the key out keeping the force maintained between the two sticks that have locked the key between them.
Method 5: Use A Knife
If you do not have any of the above tools, you can use a knife to remove the broken key from the ignition.
How To Remove Broken Key From Ignition Using A Knife
This method is quite simple. If the key is just near the end of the cylinder, just pull it out using the endpoint of the knife. You can also use two knives to have a firm grip on the broken key and pull it out.
Refer to the video below. It clearly shows how to remove the broken key from a lock using a tweezer and a knife. It also has some extra methods that you could try if the above methods do not work.
So, we have discussed some of the easiest methods you could use to remove broken key from the ignition. These methods should surely work for you, but if they fail, call a mechanic or a locksmith and let him handle the problem. Do not forcefully remove the key using any tool or your fingers, this could slide the key more inside the cylinder.
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