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Saturn VUE Steering Column Locks and Cannot Turn Key

My father who is elderly, has difficulty disengaging the steering column lock on his 2006 Saturn Vue. I also have experienced this problem even after trying to rock the wheel back and forth while trying to turn the key over. This appears to be a known problem and we have had to tow the Vue in for have the cylinders "de-burred," but the problem persists. He has had many vehicles with this feature in the past, but we have never had any problems before. Does anyone know if this feature can be disabled. I am afraid he will be stranded some place away from home because he is unable to get the car started. I realize this is an anti-theft device, but it that is a risk we are willing to take.

Comments

  • This happened to me, too. After almost $500 and untold amounts of grief, we had to have the ignition module replaced. What we were told was that there was a flaw in the ignition module that caused the lubrication to dry out after a while. Ours was locked up tight, so we had to have it towqed to the dealer (ignition lock specialists wouldn't touch it once they reallized it was a Saturn, something "special" about Saturns), and we got the rest of the story.

    Now we have a significant oil leak, to boot, which is another $500. Of course all of this happens within 12 months AFTER the warranty expires. And there are other issues we're having as well, although, knock wood, we thankfully haven't had the transmission problems many others are having--yet.
  • I am having this problem too. I eventually get it to turn, but sometimes it takes several minutes. Very annoying!
  • bholcombbholcomb Posts: 4
    All you need to do is turn steering wheel back and forth a time or two and all will work. Seems to be a DEAD zone that happens on mine sometimes and my wife also, we own 2, just wiggle wheel and it will work.
  • catzhnl80catzhnl80 Posts: 1
    edited September 2010
    This is in reply to these other posts. We had the same problem trying to turn the key in 2003 Saturn Vue. Under warranty and had it replaced in the column. Dealership mech said it was it design flaw. Still had the problem after replacement. Turning the wheel back and forth helped at first, then it didn't work. Found out the trick by accident: step on the brake and the wheel will unlock AND the key will turn. Works everytime. Good luck. Still learning about other design flaws.
  • namusokenamusoke Posts: 1
    Dear Mr. Daniel Akerson,

    My steering locked and I could not turn the key (this issue happened without any warning signs) until I read several blogs about how to solve the problem. After almost being stranded, (I could NOT turn the key whatsoever), and speaking with the GM customer service (my representative was very nice and followed up diligently to make sure I was okay) I decided to take it to a GM dealership to better understand why this issue was happening, especially, because I had never experienced such a problem. The car was diagnosed with "ignition cylinder/tumblers falling apart." I was so shocked and surprised that this issue was causing my car to lock. Therefore, I investigated further, via the internet about Saturn Vue issues and I am scared (utterly scared) to drive my car, after what I have learned about the Saturn Vue and the transmission problems. As well, Saturn lost a class action suit; however, due to bankruptcy, GM is not responsible for the payouts. I paid for the cost to repair the ignition cylinder so that I can have a drivable car. I am young, and have young friends with children. I WILL NEVER RECOMMEND A GM car, ever.

    The Saturn Vue has a design flaw and instead of a being a responsible corporation to your consumers (AMERICANS) who trusted GM, you bail out and the executive management gets paid at the tax paye'rs expense. Business as usual, I don't think so, because the government owns 60% of this company; therefore, we have a say on how to manage your business. I will be writing my politicians, and specifically let them know that I almost got stranded due to a defective product that's currently on the market.

    The only good thing that I experienced was the great customer service that I received from the GM representative and the Service Consultant (he was cute, too) from the dealership.

    Thank you and no more GM...I WILL BE TRADING IN MY CAR!
  • I am amazed and upset at the stories I see here, of some : :( mechanics have apparently given to some of you!!! some really do not make any sense.
    The Vue come with a warranty on the engine for needing a tune-up at the 100K miles. A spark plug misfiring???? and so much money to correct???
    About the ignition key issue. Yes, it is annoying but it is a safety/anti-theft feature. My daughter hates my car because it 'locks' for her every time while removing the key. Best practical advise: Turn the key torwards you all the way and do not attempt to remove it from the ignition until you are sure you have heard the 'click'. It means that is telling you the ignition is on 'off' and it will lock once you remove the key. Then: remove the key pulling fast-straight out.
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