Anyone else have problems w/ ignition key on cold days? - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 12-28-2004, 10:39 AM   #1
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Default Anyone else have problems w/ ignition key on cold days?

Title pretty much says it all. I've got a 1994 SSEi, the ignition key has the special resistance metal in it for theft prevention. I've just noticed that the colder it gets here the harder it is to put the key in the ignition. It'* also harder to actually turn the key once its in. I guess i'm just a bit worried about breaking something. Anyone else have a thought/comment? Thanks!
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Old 12-28-2004, 11:19 AM   #2
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Sounds like your ignition cylinder is on it'* way out. Mine did that too, for about a week it was hard to turn, and eventually it just stopped moving. You can go the safe route, and just purchase a new lock cylinder, however this may cost a little extra with the VATS [I suggest you keep it.. it is a valuable Theft Deterrant System, even though it malfunctions a lot]. Or you can remove your old one, and lubricate it. Usually after 10 years, these things lose their lubrication, and making it hard to move [what you are experiencing]. If I were you, I would just replace it, because the effort it takes to pull the steering wheel, and remove the lock cylinder, it is just a PITA, and your lock cylinder doesn't have much life left [most likely].


-justin
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Old 12-28-2004, 11:47 AM   #3
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Before you decide the part is completely shot, try lubing it. A very light squirt of graphite (because it don'ty freeze) powder or spray may help things, without causing problems or costing much.

When it gets down towards zero, mine does the same thing as you describe. But as the cab warms up, thins are back to normal. The most likely culprit is the original lube is wearing thing or gotten "gunky" and the cold just makes things thicken up
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Old 12-28-2004, 02:49 PM   #4
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I agree with MOS on that one.. it'* been -20C the last few days.. and when I turn the key it feels like its swimming in fat lards that are still frozen.. by the time I get to work and or a gas station.. the cabin is warm by then.. and it'* a lot easier.. lube it first.

do you mean its hard as in you need major force to the point that you almost need a pliers to turn it? If thats the case.. then yes.. Justin would be right.. there'* definitley something wrong with the tumbler and or safety lock out features associated with it.
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Old 12-28-2004, 02:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifter420
I agree with MOS on that one
Mommy.. I'm scared.....
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Old 12-28-2004, 03:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOS95B
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifter420
I agree with MOS on that one
Mommy.. I'm scared.....
LMAO !!! It must be the egg nog talkin
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Old 12-29-2004, 08:49 AM   #7
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The lock isn't so hard to turn that it feels like you need a pliers, but definitely quite noticable compared to days earlier this year when it was warmer. The key also doesn't slide INTO the lock as easily either. If i do decide to get graphite spray, can i just spray it directly into the lock, or do i need to spray it where the two pieces of metal join up on the outside (the part you turn and the steering column)?
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Old 12-29-2004, 12:31 PM   #8
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I would do both.. but make sure you have the lil straw for the nozzle as you don't want to get too much lubricant on the Pellet reader as I don't know if it will affect the ohms' reading.. I doubt it.. but rather safe then sorry.

Take a look at your key.. does it look worn? As in wearing out more then normal wear and tear?
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Old 12-29-2004, 02:48 PM   #9
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key doesn't look too worn....actually i have a spare key i made about a year ago and never used, so i should check and see how that one works (duh!). If i spray the graphite perhaps i could just coat the key and slide it in that way.
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Old 12-29-2004, 02:55 PM   #10
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It'* most likely the lube on the pins and tumbler getting thick due to the cold, so spraying the key probably wouldn't help much, if at all. I would just do a VERY small squirt into the "keyhole" and maybe a little bit on the outside, if you can reach it without making a mess.
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