Austin Locks

Locksmiths Tips!

How To Fix A Car Ignition Problem

Posted by on Feb 2, 2016

How To Fix A Car Ignition Problem

It’s common to have cars with ignition keys that fail to turn. The experience is usually very frustrating and time-consuming, and it can delay you in going where you want. Car ignition problems are often brought about by the model of your car or the situation that you are in. If your car’s ignition doesn’t turn on, here are tips on how to fix it:

The first thing that you should do is to check the brake light for parking and ensure that it’s on. This is to make sure that you don’t roll away while you are trying to turn on the ignition key. After making sure that the light is on, you should apply some pressure directly on the key and turn the steering wheel of the car back and forth in order to find a free spot to easily turn the key.

Check the selector: Many automatic cars will mostly prevent you from igniting with the car key if the gear selector is not in the park or neutral position; therefore, you should ensure that the gear selector is in the right position.

LubricantLubricate the lock cylinder: If the gear selector is in ideal position and you have tried to turn on the key and it can’t, you should now clean and also lubricate the lock cylinder. Here you need to spray small units of electrical contact cleaner in order to flush away all the dirt and grime that might actually be in the cylinder. This should be followed directly by a quick spray of silicone or a drop of graphite. Normally, when applying, you should be very careful and also avoid dripping the lubricant on upholstery or carpet.

You should prevent accumulation of fumes in the car by keeping your car open. To avoid fire, you should avoid sparks and open flames near the car lock cylinder.

Turn the key on: Once you have lubricated enough, you should try putting the key on again. If the key refuses to turn, the problem may as well be in the tumbler; the tumbler might generally have been stuck in a bad locked position. To solve the problem, you should firmly tap the face of the lock cylinder using a tool like tack hammer. You should tap for like one minute.

If you do this and the key refuses to turn, you should now check the key for any problems. Here you should place the key on a very flat and solid surface then check if it lays flat or is arched up. If it looks crooked, you should strike it using a block of wood or a similar hard object. You should avoid using a hammer, steel, or a hard metal object as you can damage the grooves of the key. If the key is now flat and it still can’t turn, you should tap it using a hammer while it’s still in the ignition.

Auto LocksmithSeek help from auto locksmiths: If you have tried all this and key fails to turn, you should seek the services of a reputable locksmith. These are the moments when locksmith companies come in handy. Their 24×7 customer service makes sure that the customers in distress are just a phone call away, and upon summoned the technicians of the said companies to get to the customers with specialized tools with the help of which they solve the ignition problem with little or no effort. The technicians of car locksmith companies in Austin are experienced and competent enough to take care of any situation and resolve them at the earliest.

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How Easy are Car Keys to Replace?

Posted by on Feb 2, 2016

How Easy are Car Keys to Replace?

Losing or having a malfunctioning car key can be an incredibly stressful experience. You literally feel immobilized even as you have an important trip to make. Like the best things in life, you realize its worth only when it’s gone. But what could you possibly do to get your car keys back once you have lost it?

Remember, a lost car key is not just an inconvenience but also a security threat. Someone else might be in possession of your car key and might leave you without your car if you do not take adequate steps to have your car key replaced. But how does some one get his or her car key replaced after having misplaced the same? Read on to find out that losing your car key should not necessarily leave you stressed. Armed with the right information, you will learn that replacing your car keys is a breeze.

Choosing a locksmith to replace your car keys

The first step should be find out whether you have any car insurance coverage for the lost key. Typically, a car insurance does not provide for lost keys and the individual will have to pay out of his or her pocket. If, like most Americans, you car insurance does not provide for lost keys, then you have to determine if you want to have your key replaced by a dealership or an auto locksmith.

Remember, having your car keys replaced from a dealership is an expensive proposition. It is not uncommon to be charged $200 for the whole exercise which includes cutting your car key as well as programming it. If your car is newer or a luxury model then expect this bill to shoot up to as high as $500. If this sounds too high a price to you, as it does to us, then there is a cheaper and equally effective option. Buy them from a reputed local auto locksmith.

Choosing a local locksmith to replace your car key is an economical and safe option when it comes to replacing your car keys. The local locksmith would do the exact same thing as the dealership when it comes to replacing the car keys except charging significantly less.

How to choose the right locksmith?

locksmith10As mentioned above, being locked out of your car is not only not fun, but also a huge safety risk. It makes sense, therefore, that you do your proper homework and diligence check before hiring a locksmith. For example, an auto locksmith would require your vehicle’s make, its vehicle identification number, and the model in order to program the chip in the replacement key. However, this is sensitive information and handing out such details to unscrupulous operators might risk the safety of your car itself.
In particular, you should check for the following when choosing your locksmith.

Credentials1) Licenses and industry accreditation: One of the first thing you should make sure is that your locksmith has all the right and current licenses to ply his or her trade. Making sure that your locksmith has all the necessary certification and licenses in place means that you insure yourself against fly by night and unscrupulous operators who are only in it to make a quick buck.

2) Look for experience: Besides all the licenses and certification, you would want your locksmith to have adequate industry experience. Ask them about their experience in the industry so that you get an exemplary standard of service and care.

3) Check their reviews: Websites such as Angies List and other review websites should provide you a good clue about the quality of service provided by a locksmith. Ask their previous customers about their experience with a particular locksmith so that you know what you would be getting for your money.

4) Availability: It is often the case that you lose your car keys at the worst possible time when there is no help available on hand. This is where a locksmith who can make himself available at a short notice is so immensely valuable. Choose a locksmith who is both reliable and ready to provide help at all hours.

5) Fair pricing: Let us face it. A lot of us who have lost our car keys find ourselves in a desperate situation with a diminished power of negotiation. A lot of locksmiths take benefit of such a situation by charging unreasonably high prices. On the other hand, a reliable and experienced locksmith would offer you an upfront and transparent pricing. Choose a locksmith who is consistent, honest and fair in his prices.

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How To Get Your Key Unstuck From Your Ignition

Posted by on Feb 1, 2016

How To Get Your Key Unstuck From Your Ignition

Have your car keys been stuck in the ignition when in a hurry? I bet it’s very stressful. You can’t leave the keys in the ignition as there is a high risk that someone can steal your car. If this happens to you next time, you shouldn’t worry. Here are some of the things that you can do to remove the stuck key, brought to us by the guys at AZ Ignition Repair:

Check the position of the key

can't turn ignitionMany people make the mistake of turning the key too far in the “off position” which gets it stuck. Before you do anything you should ensure that the key is in the correct “off position.” Always remember that if you can play the radio, the key is in the wrong position. If you have an automatic car, you should ensure that it’s in the “park” position.

Wiggle the steering wheel

If the key is in the correct position and the car is in the park position, you should wiggle the steering wheel back and forth while trying to pull the key out. When doing this, you should ensure that you are gentle to avoid breaking the ignition.

Jack up the front of the car

Jack up CarThe aim of this is to take the weight of the car off the front wheels. Jacking up also gives the steering column more room to move. While the car is still jacked up, you should wiggle the steering wheel and try to pull the key out.

Use a bobby pin

If you have tried the above options and none works, you should use a bobby pin to remove the small cap that covers the access port of the ignition lock.

Use ice

The idea of using ice is to get the key to contract. You should fill a zip-type sandwich bag half full with ice. If the cubes are too large, you should crush them. You should then wrap the bag around the head of the key then wait for about 15 minutes. After this, you should try to wiggle the key out.

Steps to get your car key out from an ignition

1.Before taking a stab at anything, watch that you’re stopping brake is on. You would prefer not to roll away while you’re excessively centered around getting the way to turning!

2. Apply weight to the key and turn the controlling wheel forward and backward to endeavor to locate a free spot where the key turns. An exceptionally basic explanation behind the key not turning in current autos is that the controlling section lock can be stuck a dilemma. At the point when this happens, you’ll have to apply weight on the ignition component and hold on until it opens. For those with a comical inclination, this is frequently called “the controlling wheel shake.”

3 . On the off chance that you have a programmed transmission, check and ensure the selector is in the Park. A few autos will avert you turning the key if the selector is in any position other than park or nonpartisan; it can be not entirely obvious this when tired or in a rush.

4 . Clean and grease up the lock barrel. Splash a liberal measure of electrical contact cleaner to flush away soil and grime, trailed by a brisk shower of silicone or a drop or two of fluid graphite to grease up. Be mindful so as not to permit it to trickle on upholstery or floor covering. Keep the auto open to anticipate aggregation of exhaust, and maintain a strategic distance from sparkles and open blazes. Once you’ve sufficiently included grease, attempt once more.

5 . On some lock barrels, a tumbler might tie in a bolted position, and the springs can’t push it pull out. Immovably tapping the substance of the lock chamber can discharge the stuck tumbler. A tack sledge is about the ideal size and weight for most key barrels.

7 . Tap the key. Tap the end of the key, while in the ignition, with a mallet or hard question while endeavoring to turn the key. Cautioning, keep an eye out for your fingers.

These are some of the ways of removing a key that has stuck in the ignition. If you have tried all of the options and the key is still stuck, you should consider getting the help of a professional. The good side is that there are locksmiths everywhere. For fast response, you should find a professional who is within your area.

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Does Your Car Key Have A Twin?

Posted by on Dec 17, 2015

Does Your Car Key Have A Twin?

Did you know your car key may have a twin? Have you ever though about this question? If you haven’t then you need to seriously consider about it. Can you imagine somebody else having a key similar to yours? A complete stranger who may live few miles or blocks away can easily access your car without struggling or fidgeting. But like others you might think that chances of this happening are quite slim. It’s true that odds are quite low, but some owners are shocked to discover that another key can easily open their car. Sadly, many come to know of this fact when its too late. The unscrupulous one will have gotten away with your valuables or car. That can be heartbreaking and a big loss. A big thank you to the guys at for all the useful information.

How Does It Happen?

Most people usually leave their car after ensuring its properly locked. They feel confident that once it’s locked nobody can access it since we’re the only ones to possess its keys. And it’s impossible for anybody in his or her right mind to attempt to break in a broad daylight. But did you know that key combination that are used by most car manufactures are quite limited. For instance, top brands such as Toyota, Honda or Ford usually have maximum of 3700 combinations. This means at some point, they’ll have to reuse earlier combinations. This is how most car key twins’ are born. There can be thousands of twins in the country and many car owners come to that the hard way when they lose their beloved car!

What Are The Risks of your Car Key Having a Twin?

Twin Car KeyThe thought of a twin key to your existing can be worrying enough. Can you imagine another person gaining access to your car and decamping you’re your valuables or you walking into a parking lot only to discover an empty space? In some cases you might be luckier to discover a twin in a friendlier manner. For instance, you might discover your Honda Accord shares the same key with the one that your father’s Honda Odyssey. This is after you mistakenly took the wrong key and were still able to unlock the door and also start your father’s car. Strangely enough, these two cars were sourced through different outlets and one of them was manufactured 3 years than the other. What if this discovery had been made by a crooked individual or a stranger?

Car Key Twin Not a New Incident!

According to locksmiths and car dealers, cars with identical keys aren’t a new phenomenon. But, many discover this a hard way after their items or car has been stolen. In fact, there’s even a possibility of twins in electronic keys that use special radio frequencies to close or open the doors. Car thieves know this and are braking into expensive cars by simply using a sophisticated radio relay system that sufficiently amplifies radio signal right the car owner’s house. It’s not just cars that are affected but homes as well.
Usually thieves break in and walk around with a bunch of keys hoping to find a perfect match. You like others are a likely victim.

What Can You Do About It?

car keysIt’s easy to minimize the odds of your keys having a twin by turning to rekeying. Unfortunately, this is not the perfect solution. Rekeying may offer you another key that made with the help of similar tumblers, cut depths or combinations. There’s a possibility of another person owning the twin key. So what’s the best solution? You can go for a higher grade lock; for example, installing good dead bolts. These types of locks and keys are made using entirely different combinations than one used by car manufactures. So chances of similar keys coming from same manufacturer are quite slim. However, it’s important to shop around and look for reputable and popular brands so as to be assured of top notch security.

Although the chances of someone else having a twin to your car key are slim, it’s best to be extra vigilant. Though its easier to smash a window than trying to unlock it using set of car keys, but reality is that car keys with twins do exist. By investing in a new better grade lock, searches on “does my car have a twin?” and related questions could become a thing of past. Get in touch with your local locksmith for lasting solution to your concerns!

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The Most Expensive Car Keys

Posted by on Dec 11, 2015

The Most Expensive Car Keys

Most car keys are small and quite boring in appearance. However, manufacturers all over the world have found ways to make them more appealing. The best car keys design also come with high cost. The most expensive cars like Bugatti, Ferrari and Mercedes are the ones that have the most expensive car keys because of their luxurious and unique designs. These car keys come in various designs with a choice of studded in diamonds, crystals and any other desired shapes. People driving around in Porsches, Mercedes, Maseratis, Bugattis can also have the best customized keys to suit their style. The most expensive car keys are among the car accessories that complement the car’s good looks and with the help from, here’s some.

Have a look at the world’s most expensive car keys.

  • Aston Martin AMVOX2 Watch – Costs $ 34,000.

Aston Martin watchThe Aston Martin and Jaeger-LeCoulter engineers were successful in creating an advanced and stylish car key which comes as a watch, and not just any watch, the infamous “Jaeger-LeCoulter watch”. The Aston Martin AMVOX2 car key is the world’s most expensive car key with its price being $ 34,000.

  • Bespoke Ferrari Car Key – Costs $ 22,500.

The Bespoke Ferrari Car Key is unique in many ways and made in a fancy design making it one of the most expensive car keys. The key is crafted with 1,160 flawless diamonds weighing seven carats each. For those who love class and luxury, then this car key is the best choice for you. The car keys can also be customized and if not enough for you, one can further customize their key fob in other desired jewel of their choice.

  • Bentley Diamond Car Key From Alexander Amosu – Costs $ 7,895.

Bentley Diamond Car KeyAlexander Amosu is a well known designer famous for his diamond studded Bentley car key which has more than 101 diamonds forming the infamous Bentley’s wings logo. Each diamond weighs 1.09 carats. With all its fancy features, the Bentley Diamond Car Key from Alexander Amosu qualifies as one of the world’s most expensive car keys.

  • Eng-i-Creations Car Key – Costs $ 7,000.

This car key is handcrafted using top quality leather and combined with silver and gold. The Eng-i-Creations car key is the world’s fourth most expensive car key which give you value for your money because of its spectacular design.

  • BMW i8 Futuristic Car Key – Costs $ 1,000.

BMW i8 Futuristic Car KeyThe car key has enhanced features such as; its very own LCD player which is high resolution. The car key allows you to reset air conditioning in your car remotely. It also has the ability to indicate the car’s charge level and show the distance a car can travel before it needs to be refueled. The BMW i8 Futuristic car key is the fifth most expensive car key but it is worth its price.

  • Pagani Huayra Car Key Made By Pagani Horacio – Costs $ 1000.

This car key is a miniature model of the Pagani Huayra super car. The maker of this car key is an Italian super car manufacturer who made his debut in the US in 2013. The car key is split into two and one part works as the ignition while the other one works as a USB stick. Pagani Huayra car key is another one of the most expensive car keys available in the market but does not disappoint.

  • Mercedes Benz Swarovski Car Keys – Costs $ 515.

Mercedes Benz Swarovski Car KeyThe manufacturers have designed these keys individually studded with Swarovski and have diamond crystals on both of its long sides. The crystals are either black or pink and the keys are available with additional two standard keys which of course come with an extra fee. Apart from that, the keys also have special luxury boxes where they can be kept.

  • Tesla Model S Car Key – Costs $ 400.

The Tesla Model S Car Key is one of the most expensive car keys but it is worth the spent because of its gorgeous design and features. The key is designed in a sleek manner with the Tesla S shape and has the ability to detect your car if it is turned on. The car key also has additional features which can be set according to the driver’s preferences for settings such as mirror position, starring wheel and the seat.

The most expensive car keys also come with luxurious accessories and better equipped models. These car keys are more common with men who love their expensive rides and want to explore the world of class.

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Common Problems With Car Ignitions

Posted by on Dec 8, 2015

Common Problems With Car Ignitions

The ignition of an automobile is something that is often overlooked in routine maintenance schedules. However, the ignition is obviously an integral aspect of running your car-without it, you aren’t going anywhere. If you are experiencing difficulties with your car ignition (the most common being that it will not turn), there could be several causes to the problem. Whatever you do, do not force-turn the key while it is in the ignition. Keys are made of soft metal, which means if you use tools to force the key to turning, the key can easily break off in the ignition-a much more complex and expensive problem than you originally started with. Thanks to our friends at Columbus Locksmith Pros, here is a list of common problems with car ignitions:

faulty ignition switchFaulty Ignition Switch: If you find the ignition system isn’t being triggered, and the engine is unable to start, the primary cause of this is likely to be related to the ignition switch. The best solution to this condition is having the ignition switch replaced entirely.

You should also ensure that your car is parked in the right way. Many vehicles will not let you start the engine if the car is not in “park” or “neutral.” Check to make sure your car is in park, then try to turn the ignition.

Dead Battery: A common reason for issues with the ignition system relates to the failure or malfunction of the main vehicle battery. It is found that the battery might experience problems as a result of the failure of the alternator that causes the ignition system to fail. By repairing the alternator and having the car battery recharged the problem is likely to be resolved with the ignition system.

Locked switch problem: Your steering column lock may be applying pressure to the ignition mechanism, prohibiting it from turning. To diagnose this issue, first, you will need to try to find a position where your key is able to turn in the ignition. Apply pressure to the key, as if you were going to start your vehicle, and gently turn the steering wheel from left to right until the key is able to turn.

dirty lock cylinderThe lock cylinder is dirty: Dirt and grime can prohibit your lock cylinder from functioning properly. Use electrical contact cleaner to remove the dirt from the mechanism. Then add a small drop of graphite lubricant. Do not use oil on the lock cylinder. Dust and dirt are attracted to oil. As the cylinders get dirtier, the tumblers will be prevented from moving, which means they will have trouble unlocking. Acceptable Lubricants include graphite and silicone. Be sure to leave your car door open when cleaning the cylinder, as the fumes from the cleaner can be hazardous.

Blockage in the tumbler: Tumblers (included on some lock cylinders) can get stuck in a locked position. Try tapping the lock cylinder with a tack hammer, which can cause the springs in the tumbler to release it from the locked position.

A bent key: While this is not the most common problem, your key can become bent, which will prevent it from fitting correctly in the ignition, and turning. Your key may not be visibly crooked, so lay it on a flat surface to see if the key is bent. If your key is bent, use a wooden block (or similar tool) to tap it gently back into the original shape (while it is laying on a flat surface). Again, do not use a metal hammer or similar object to bend your key, as keys are made of soft metal and can break easily.

worn spark plugWorn spark plugs: A further issue that is often found to cause problems with the smooth operation of the ignition is the spark plugs that might be starting to wear out. They can’t be repaired, so it is just a case of having them replaced with entirely new parts.

All in all, if you really want to ensure the smooth operation of your vehicle, you should ensure that it is given regular vehicle service. In situations where ignition problems are detected, it is highly beneficial if the necessary repairs are carried out as soon as possible. By keeping your car under constant maintenance is the only way you can avoid abrupt failure of the engine.

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