10-15-2012, 08:16 AM
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I had the same issue
I had the same issue; inserting the key felt rough and the key wouldn’t turn. Sometimes jiggling the key would allow you to turn it and once turned it would work. If you pulled the key out, you started all over…
I removed the ignition switch and disassembled it to find two broken wafers. When the key was inserted two of the wafers didn't fully retract thus keeping the key from rotating. I removed the broken wafers and reassembled the lock. Now it works with the original key and is no longer refusing to turn....
If you have looked at the ignition switch and wondered how to dissemble it, here's how I did it;
There are two "rivets" and a blind pin that hold the cover on the lock mechanism (the printed cover "Lock, Acc, On & Start"). Carefully grind off the "rivets", I used a 4" grinder. VERY carefully pry behind the blind pin and between the cover and the lock port. The cover is soft metal and easily distorted. Removing the blind pin requires a certain amount of distortion, use just enough to release the pin from the switch body. Once the cover is removed drive out the blind pin. The lock cylinder is held in by a "C" clip, remove the "C" clip and the lock cylinder will slide out. Watch for the steering column lock pin which will be the first item to fall on the floor when carelessly removing the cylinder. Loose it and steering column won't unlock when you put it all back together.
Broken wafers can be identified by looking for wafers that appear to be two parts, wafers are single piece in each slot. Remove the broken wafers and the springs in the wafer slot. You can test it by putting the key in and look for wafers that still extend out from the body of the cylinder. Any wafers that still extend from the body of the cylinder will prevent the cylinder from turning in the switch body.
When all the broken wafers have been removed slide the cylinder into the switch body (make sure the steering column lock pin is in place), attach the "C" clip and test key insertion and freely rotating cylinder. If all is good, place the cover on the switch body and realign the blind pin holder by squeezing with a pair of channel lock pliers.
I’m not a technical writer so hopefully you were able to follow this…