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Old 09-06-2009, 12:21 AM   #1
jzambon
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 57
Default Ignition Lock Cylinder or Ignition Switch?

Hey all,

I just came in town for a wedding and my sister had some questions about her SL2 (the third SL2 in the family). '01 SL2 is having trouble turning the key in the ignition. I needed to wiggle the key for about 5 minutes at one point today in order to get it to turn (note: the steering wheel lock was not impeding my efforts to turn the key). Once the key turned the car started right up.

She had the car in to the dealer for a SES light (loose gas cap, lol) about a week ago and the dealer told her that she would need to have the ignition switch replaced. He said something (paraphrasing from a paraphrased statement) that the two security bolts have become loose against the steering column and will need to be replaced along with the switch to the tune of >$200. Eventually, he said, the key will be completely unable to turn in the ignition.

So my question is, given that the problem appears to be with turning the key with an unlocked steering wheel, is the cylinder the only thing that needs to be replaced? The key works fine in the doors, and I used a spare key that has gone unused for most of its life. The spare key was rough to turn as well, isolating the issue to the ignition.

So, before I start drawing conclusions regarding this particular mechanic, what would the forum advise? Is this simply a problem with a stuck ignition cylinder or does the claim of the ignition switch needing replacement seem justified? Is there something else I should be looking for in order to isolate the issue to one or the other?

Thanks!

Richpin (with a million thanks!) videos:

Lock cylinder: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cown4CO2FJ0
Ignition switch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ni4nw_exMOY

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