How to Unlock a Steering Wheel

June 21st, 2021 by
2019 Mazda CX-5


If you get in to start your car and find the key will not turn in the ignition or your car will not start, do not panic. It could be that your steering wheel is locked, not that there is a mechanical problem with your vehicle. Most Merrimack drivers do not realize that they have locked their steering wheel until they enter the car to drive, and unlocking a steering wheel is an easy process. Knowing how to unlock a steering wheel is part of the skills you need when you own a car – just like checking your oil level and tire pressure.

Steps to Unlocking a Steering Wheel

Follow these steps to successfully unlock your steering wheel. If you feel stuck, or you are having to force the wheel to unlock, call the Tulley Mazda service center for assistance.

  • No Excessive Force: When unlocking your steering wheel, it is important to not use excessive force to get the wheel to unlock. Doing so can damage internal mechanisms in the steering wheel shaft, and it will not unlock the steering wheel. Instead of using brute force, you want to have the key turned in the ignition to the “on’ position and wiggle the wheel until it unlocks.
  • Try Different Methods: If you are unable to turn the key to the “on” position in the ignition, slowly turn it back and forth in the ignition while turning the steering wheel back and forth. Doing so may realign the mechanisms inside the steering wheel and enable you to start your vehicle.
  • Use a Different Key: It might be time to use a new key because a key has normal wear and tear that might make it difficult to engage the car’s tumblers. Head to your local Mazda dealership like Tulley Mazda to have a fresh key made from the serial number, ensuring the key is not a copy of the worn key.

Reasons Your Steering Wheel Locked

Having your steering wheel lock up if you jostle it might seem like a strange feature, but it is there for your protection from theft on your commute from Hudson to Lowell. This is because if someone is behind the wheel and moving it around without a key, it could be someone attempting to steal your car. Because of this, if you are cleaning out your car or knock into your steering wheel when climbing through the driver’s seat to exit your car, you may have a surprise the next time you get into your car to start it. Now that you know how to unlock your steering wheel, this will not be a big deal.

Contact Tulley Mazda for Assistance

Contact us if you have any questions or need assistance unlocking your steering wheel. If you are having difficulties, a staff member will be happy to help you by walking you through the process. You can also look on our website for more information, such as how often to get your oil changed.


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