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key stuck



  • Hello mortonk,

    We're sorry to hear about this situation with your Saturn Ion. If you had planned on getting this checked into by one of our GM dealerships and wanted for us to check into this further with you, please contact us via email at and we would be happy to set up a Service Request to document this further and follow up with your dealer (include your name and Edmunds username, phone and address, the last 8 of your VIN and mileage, and the name of your involved dealership).

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • Sarah,

    I hope to be able to get this resolved without going to a dealer. I have heard the cost of having a dealer work on this far outweighs what it takes to fix it. I don't have a lot of money. I'm a teen, and this is my first car.

    If I end up using a dealership, I will let you know.
  • We certainly can appreciate that! We hope you're able to get this resolved so you can continue enjoying your Saturn!
    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • paulanyflpaulanyfl Posts: 4
    edited December 2012
    Get this, I just purchased a 2007 Saturn Ion redline on Saturday 12/1/12 and that night the key got stuck in the ignition. It is a manual, so we stalled it out to stop the car running but the lights remained on. Had it towed to dealer Monday morning because the battery was dead and was told later that day that it need a new ignition lock at a cost of $459. Wow! And then they said that if the tech breaks the housing it will be another $150. I just OK'd the work but reading this forum really makes me mad. Understand that I lost my house in Hurricane Sandy, relocated to another state, then was rearended on my way out of town, so I had no car and no home. I bought this little car as a 'fun' purchase and expected to have at least 30 days without any problems. Please GM, contact me so I don't have this huge expense after just paying for the car. The car is at DeVoe GMC in Naples, Florida and it's the only redline there at this time. They have my info. Thanks.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251
    Good morning paulanyfl,

    We're sorry to hear that between Hurricane Sandy, a car accident, and now this, things have been rough. If you wanted for us to check into this further with you and your involved dealership, please contact us via email at (include your name and contact information, the last 8 digits of your VIN and mileage, the name of your dealership, and a brief recap of the situation).

    GM Customer Service
  • Love, love, love my usually super reliable 2003 Saturn Ion 1, but I have had minor issues removing the key for about two years. No big problem, as it normally resolved itself within a few minutes. This past weekend, however, after sitting uncranked during the holiday break, I went to start my beloved car only to find my year old battery had (I assumed) died from my neglect. When I went to remove the key, I could only pull it out in the ACC position. Not being bright enough to know the implications of this, I am probably responsible for the battery's final demise. We Googled the online fix for removing the under-steering secret panel to manually release the key, which allowed me to turn the car to off but simultaneously caused every light on my dash to shine brighter than our Christmas tree. After my boyfriend tried unsuccessfully to charge the battery and/or get my car to crank, we had it towed to the closest GM dealership hoping to get it back before the end of the break. After taking two full days just to check my car, the tech decided this morning that rekeying it would solve the problem. Needless to say, it did not.

    Now he says my battery and my power steering are shot (neither of which caused trouble before). He says the car is running "REALLY rough" (another new symptom). He replaced two fuses and the spark plugs, but this also didn't help.

    The key/ ignition issue seems to be fairly common, and the power steering is an oddity GM and the NHTSA board investigated in later models, but is there any chance any of this could be related to the BTSI solenoid? I had printed your e-mail and casually left it on the seat in case the mechanic needed some advice, but he still seems stumped.... I really miss my Saturn! :sick:
  • I have been successful with my Florida dealership working in unison with GM to cover the $451 repair of the ignition lock replacement. It took almost three weeks for this to be resolved to my satisfaction. Apparently during a vin number check through GM the ignition lock on my 5-hour old Saturn was replaced less than 2 years ago. I argued with GM and the district rep was trying to bully me. Well, the dealership worked super hard (service manager) to go over the DM's head and got me some great news just in time for Xmas. I hate that the consumer has to fight for everything but I stuck to my guns and got a positive result. I notice now that the steering wheel doesn't lock when turned in the off position. Reading other posts I think that may have been the culprit. Whatever the case I am pleased with my outcome. Thank you for steering me in the right direction.
  • Forget everything else you read here. This is a simple, free thing to fix in 5 minutes. It takes a few years for dirt and dust to accumulate under the shift cover. Pull the shift cover off and spray WD-40 into the area under the cover. Voila! Problem solved.
  • Stop the presses!!!! I had the same problem and someone suggested removing cowling and spraying shift lever with WD-40 or silicone..But wait! That didn't work and while reinstalling (yoga lessons encouraged) the cowling I found a little door on the bottom of the steering column just inside the key slot. Removed that and low and behold! There is a little button you can push and voila! the key will remove!...Seems Saturn knew there'd be a problem but was loathe to actually correct it and installed a "fix" instead... I wonder how many have paid $$$ to some mechanic for his 12 seconds of work..American ingenuity
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