can't start car - key won't turn


Old 10-01-05, 06:50 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: united states of america
Posts: 81
can't start car - key won't turn

My son owns a '99 Sunfire. Everytime he puts the key in the ignition it doesn't turn. He has to mess around trying to turn the key several times before it finally turns. Does anyone have any ideas? Do we have to change the ignition switch? Thanks for any help.
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Old 10-01-05, 09:18 AM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 49
The key cylinder is coming apart or gummed up inside. You can try using rust penetrant in the cylinder. Insert the key and tap it LIGHTLY with a small hammer. See if that helps to free it up. If not, the cylinder will need replacement.
Old 10-01-05, 10:22 AM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 1,396
If he's got a spare key with a little less "wear" on it, try that one. Sometimes, the wear from continual insertion into the ignition will erode just enough surface off the key so that it won't work any more. The same thing just happened to me, and the spare works like a charm.

Old 10-01-05, 06:29 PM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 579
It may be just the key, but I'm thinking its the lock cylinder also. These and the Cavaliers have problems with the tumblers inside the cylinder. They become worn, as does the cylinder itself. The tumblers begin to corrode inside the cylinder. The cylinder is aluminum and the tumblers are brass. Any bi-metal mating surface will eventually begin to corrode. So, if the other key don't do the trick, replace the cylinder and have it recoded to match the old keys.

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