Audi Coupe Quattro Ignition Switch Replacement Cost - Lock Cylinder
How Much Does an Ignition Lock Cylinder Replacement Cost?
Ignition Lock Cylinder Replacement Service and Cost
The lock cylinder and ignition switch are two separate components. The lock cylinder is the portion that the key slides into, and allows the ignition to turn when the correct key is inserted. This is one of your vehicle's lines of defense against theft.
The lock sensor receives the ignition key, and, if the proper key is inserted, small actuators on the lock cylinder will allow the lock cylinder, and ignition switch, to rotate. Also, the ignition switch on most vehicle should remain locked if the transmission is in park or neutral, and some models will only unlock once the brake is applied in park or neutral. This is a safety feature called the shift ignition lock interface, that connects or communicates information from all three sensors to prevent the vehicle from starting in a harmful manner. The ignition lock cylinder must also be released by this system to turn as well.
When the ignition switch lock cylinder fails, the ignition switch may very well work, but it may be difficult to find out, as the lock cylinder can fail to release when the key is inserted. This creates a situation where the ignition cannot be turned, or takes much wiggling and shaking before it finally turns. If that is not the problem, perhaps the ignition will turn no matter what, runs with the key removed, and allows the key to be removed in any position. In this situation, the vehicle is much easier to repair, since the lock cylinder can be removed without removing the steering column. Lastly, the lock can fail to release your key, or not allow the key to travel all the way into the ignition lock cylinder. In these frustrating scenarios, the repair may be a little easier as well, since lubrication usually releases the lock cylinder.
When the ignition lock cylinder is malfunctioning, the vehicle may be driven if the lock cylinder is made to turn, and stays in position according to the key setting. If the key will not come out of the ignition, vehicle theft, and personal item burglary are concerns.
Lock cylinders fail fairly commonly, but mostly for higher mileage vehicles. Lock cylinders wear out in everything, houses, cars, diaries, padlocks, etc. There are many small parts in a lock cylinder, and when any one of those parts fails, the rest of the cylinder fails with it. Some vehicles are known for lock cylinder issues, but other makes and models suffer lock cylinder failure on an infrequent basis. Most vehicles will never need the lock cylinder replaced.
Ignition Lock Cylinder Replacement Repair Information
Lock cylinder diagnosis is apparent when attempting to perform any function with the key, but the function does not work. In explanation, the function may be turning the key off or on, removing the key, installing the key, or keeping the key in. When any of these occur, the key is evaluated as well, but the lock cylinder will likely be the culprit. Upon disassembly, the technician can verify the lock cylinder is functioning improperly.
Replacement of the ignition switch can be very easy, or extremely difficult, and this depends mostly on how the switch fails. If the ignition switch and ignition lock cylinder are one component, replacing the ignition switch will be very difficult in the case of a lock cylinder failure. If the lock cylinder works properly, the ignition switch is generally not too troublesome to remove. In most cases, the steering column plastic covers will be removed, and lock cylinder will be turned, and released. The ignition switch can then be removed, after removing any obstructing or retaining hardware. Once the ignition switch is removed, a final bench test may be conducted for further confirmation, and then the ignition switch is replaced. The lock cylinder will be installed, and the original key will be retained. Plastic covers will go back in place, and the new switch will be tested to ensure the customer complaint has been resolved.
There are many methods of freeing a stuck lock cylinder at home, but many will result in damage to the ignition switch, plastic covers, or the steering column. Remember that the ignition switch wiring is bundled with wiring for the air bags, and tampering with the airbag electrical wiring can result in serious injury.
When the lock cylinder fails, removal can become difficult or impossible, and may require disassembly of the steering column or removal of the steering column from the vehicle.
Replacing either portion of the ignition switch is typically not a DIY job. Older vehicles, with simple ignition switches are easily replaced by anyone, but newer ignition switches have more advanced security systems and are more difficult to access or remove. On most modern vehicles, trusting a technician with an ignition switch lock cylinder repair or replacement may be the best idea.