Buick ignition key will not turn to lock position

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  #1  
Old 06-21-10, 07:37 PM
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Buick ignition key will not turn to lock position

2001 Buick Regal has one of those keys with the visible chip built into it. We can start the car without any problem, but when it comes time to shut it off, the key will not turn to the locked position. It turns far enough to turn off the engine, but not to the lock position.
Sometimes you will hear a "click" almost immediately and then the key turns to lock and you can get out and hit the door locks and all is normal. But sometimes the thing take forever to activate and it will not let you lock the doors and leave the key in that "off" position. I have to manually lock each door and just leave the key in it in the off position. Yes, someone could break a window and just start it up and drive away. Luckily I don't live in an area where such a thing is likely.
Can anyone tell me what has to be done to this unit? The local Buick dealer gives me quotes for three or four hundred dollars for everything I take it there for and I'm just not into dumping that into this ten year old car. All help is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
 
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Old 06-21-10, 07:43 PM
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key problem

shifter may not be all the way up into park. try pushing it past park and try to take the key outBeer 4U2
 
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Old 06-21-10, 08:03 PM
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It is more than likley a problem with the shifter ,it is not going fully into park to release the soleniod to let the key turn fully back to the lock position. play with the shifter I am presuming it,s a floor shift, generally the button sticks on those or the swtch in the shifter is bad
 
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Old 06-22-10, 10:10 AM
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A friend had the problem of not being able to take the keys out of ignition of his 89 Cherokee. It needed a new ignition switch, due to a spring inside it happening. Granted that was at 180k, so I doubt it would be your problem but you never know.
 
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Old 07-05-10, 07:44 AM
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This vehicle has 140K miles and the dealer says it needs a new key cylinder because the contacts where you put the key in are worn from having a ring of keys hanging from it for all those miles. And, of course, it is a $300 job.... LOL!
I'm going to try messing with the shifter and see if putting it "firmly" in PARK will show any difference in the way it acts.
Thanks for all the input....
 
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Old 07-05-10, 01:14 PM
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I tried to DIY it, but it was one floor above my level of incompetence so it got towed halfway through the job or so and was charged $100 although that was a few years ago, at a non delear shop and used a generic switch.
 
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Old 07-06-10, 05:31 AM
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My first thought was ignition switch - I always take this kind of repair to a locksmith, not the dealer but I've never had to do it with a chipped key like yours
 
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Old 07-14-10, 05:56 PM
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OK... This problem has been narrowed down to the shifter mechanism!!!! Much thanks to those of you that suggested a problem with the shifter, you nailed it. As soon as I pushed the release button on top of the shifter, I heard the mechanism "click" and the key turned to the lock position!!! This problem happens fairly often and each time it has occurred, I have repositioned the shifter, or just hit the button on the top of the shifter and it has corrected the problem and I can turn the key to the lock position and remove the key. I would have been totally pissed if I had paid for a new cylinder mechanism at the dealer and still had this problem.... This forum is the best!
 
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