ignition lock won't turn even after replaced on 2002 SL2

Discussion in 'Saturn S-series' started by baphensley, Aug 7, 2007.

  1. baphensley

    baphensley Guest

    Our Saturn 2002 SL2 starting having problems turning the ignition key
    in the lock.

    Finally, no amount of jiggling, wheel turning, and attempting to shift
    could get it to turn.

    Locksmith made a new "factory" key that works fine on all doors, but
    still no luck. Then he replaced the lock with a new one from Saturn
    (2 days to get it shipped in).

    It worked to drive home, but the next morning, it was stuck again.
    The same locksmith could not get it to turn until he took it apart and
    put it back together. He never found a problem. Curious, he tried
    the old lock again, and it worked!?!

    I've seen complaints of the column lock locking while driving. In any
    case, there's too much risk of getting stuck somewhere to drive it out
    of town.

    Anyone know what is going on?

    baphensley, Aug 7, 2007
  2. baphensley

    Oppie Guest

    Could be the column lock or the actual ignition switch that is jamming. Just
    a pain to get to everything to check it.
    I am assuming that you already tried jiggling the wheel as you try to turn
    the key?
    Oppie, Aug 8, 2007
  3. baphensley

    baphensley Guest


    Thanks. Yeah, I've already tried lots of ...

    - jiggling the wheel while turning the key

    - shifting the automatic transmission

    And, the 2 locksmiths tried ...

    - all their jiggling tricks

    - dismantling and inspecting the lock and housing

    - lubricants

    - creating new "factory" keys

    - installing a new cylinder from Saturn
    baphensley, Aug 10, 2007
  4. baphensley

    Oppie Guest

    Unfortunately the next step appears to be to dismantle the steering column.
    Start with the shifter park lock cable to make sure that it is not jamming.
    It varies greatly on different cars on how the column lock works or where
    the electrical part of the ignition switch is located. Not knowing much
    about the SL2, I can't be more specific. Generally the car is driveable with
    the ignition cylinder removed from the column and using a screwdriver to
    turn the mechanism. Until the root problem emerges, you might consider
    removing the lock cylinder from the steering column. I've seen lot of cars
    where the lock cylinder ran a rack and pinion which connected to a pushrod
    that actuated the ignition switch at the base of the steering column (on the
    top of the column so you have to drop the column to get access to it).

    Good luck troubleshooting.
    Oppie, Aug 10, 2007
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