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Steering Column Repair/Ignition switch


I have a 1996 s-10 the key  will no longer turn the ignition switch. Any ideas on how to fix it?

Hi David:
Sorry about your truck.
Here are a couple of ideas...some obvious, some last resorts
Start by trying a new key.  Sometines the key cuts get worn and the lock will not read them
Next, spray some WD40 in the lock and see if that frees up the wafers inside.
If not, at this point you may need a new lock cylinder anyway so damaging the old one is not doing any more harm. With the ball end of a ball peen hammer, tap the head of the lock cylinder (the face where the key goes in.) What you are trying to do is loosen the tumblers inside so they drop down and read the key.  Sometimes they get stuck.  Only hit it as hard as you would if your thumb was in the way. We're not trying to dent it or break anything, just jar it. Then try the key once again.  If the head does break off, don;t worry.  If that doesn't work, then you will need to replace the lock by forcefully removing the old one.
You will need to make it rotate. You can break off the plastic cover of the lock cylinder and force the lock cylinder with a pair of channel lock pliers, or you can drill out the center of the lock and remove the side bar that prevents it from rotating. Either way, you will need to make it rotate if you want to remove it from the case. Whichever option you choose, be careful of the passlock system your vehicle may have. Do not damage those components.

I hope all this helps
Good luck

Steering Column Repair

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Douglas Gan


My specialties are stolen vehicles, steering column and ignition locks repair, airbag service and installation and diagnosis. My work includes both domestic (USA) vehicles and foreign designs.


30 years owning a company that specializes in steering columns, ignition & airbag related problems

GM certified, ASE certified, 4 yrs college, Mech Tech degree
I own multiple auto repair companies and can help you professionally through any of our websites at: ---- we stock many older steering column parts and can rebuild your column if you ship it to us --- we sell airbag replacement information (no parts) -- we perform investigations for many types of vehicle claims
Please feel free to contact us through any of our websites for more information or help

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