How Do You Remove a Broken Key From the Ignition?

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Removing a broken key from the ignition is a simple but delicate procedure that involves fishing out the fragments with a pair tweezers. Needle-nose pliers are also used to extract the larger pieces stuck inside the lock cylinder.

If a key breaks while attempting the turn on the vehicle there may be an issue with the lock cylinder and it should be inspected by an automotive professional. Before doing so the key can be extracted by utilizing the following steps.

  1. Inspect the lock cylinder
  2. Use a flashlight to inspect the lock cylinder and try to find the pieces of the key. If the ends of the broken key can not be seen the next step is harder to complete.

  3. Grab the key with pliers
  4. While shining light into the key-lock cylinder attempt to use the needle-nose pliers to extract the broken key. If the key can not be seen, feel around with the pliers until it is felt and grab it. Once the pliers take hold, pull out the broken bits.

  5. Remove smaller bits
  6. Once the bigger pieces are out of the way shine a light to see if there are any smaller chunks stuck inside. Use the tweezers to remove the remaining pieces.

  7. Use a spare key
  8. Once the broken shards are all gone use a spare key on the ignition and try to turn the vehicle on.