Ignition switch will not turn?

Tiny
KEOKI
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 FORD FOCUS
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 103,000 MILES
My car ignition switch will not turn. This happened once or twice before several months back but a jiggle of the steering wheel and 2nd try it turned and car stared. 4 days ago it again I would insert key and would not turn no matter how much jiggle the steering wheel. That night when I got back home from work I inserted the key and the ignition switched easily turned no problem. Next morning again insert key and would not turn. It does not matter wether I insert my ignition key or my wife's ignition key. The key will not turn at all in the ignition. I have now tried several times over the weekend and still will not turn. I also can not push in the button on the floor mounted stick shift. The button on the stick shift is also locked and will not puch in to move the stick shift. The steering system is not under a load for the car was driven in a straight line in my drive way so there is no turn to the wheels nor are they under a pressure load to be putting a bind on the lock in the steering column.
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Saturday, March 27th, 2010 AT 9:23 PM

31 Replies

Tiny
CLOWN4234
  • MEMBER
Not an electrical problem. The tumblers inside are not working. The Focus is notorious for the tumbler breaking down. I had to change mine on my 03.
The first thing I would do is go buy a new ignition cylinder at the ford dealer. It should be about $80. Then, do EVERYTHING you can to wiggle, jiggle, oil or whatever to get the key to turn to the accessory position. Sometimes if you put the key in and tap the end of the key with a small hammer, notice I said tap, it will then turn. The reason you want it to turn is in order to change the cylinder, you have to have it in the accessory position. You turn the key to accessory (first detent clockwise) and then take the steering column cover off. You will see the pin you need to push in on the tumbler and then you pull the cylinder out. The instructions will come with pictures (below) in the new cylinder telling you how to change it as well as how to key it so your current keys work. If you can't get the key to turn in your old one, you have to drill the cylinder out which is painfully slow process, thats why you need to do everything you can to get it to turn. Check out the diagrams (Below). Please let us know what happens.
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Sunday, March 28th, 2010 AT 10:36 PM
Tiny
DODGEGIRL1
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 FORD FOCUS
  • AUTOMATIC
I lost my keys to my car what do I do about get a key if I dont have a spare key please help
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
PROTECH1980
  • EXPERT
Call your local lock smith or Ford dealer and see if they can cut you a new set of keys from the VIN number.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
DODGEGIRL1
  • MEMBER
I tryed a lock smith and they wanted $250.00 and the ford dealer wants over 400.00 and I think that is just a little to much
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
HARRYDESOUZA
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD FOCUS
  • 1.8L
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • MANUAL
  • 60,000 MILES
I've tried filling but without any luck. The lock cylinder turns round without coming off
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SCGRANTURISMO
  • EXPERT
Hello,

I have included the information that you requested in the diagrams down below. Please go through this guide and get back to us with how everything turns out. I hope that this helps you out.

Thanks,
Alex
2CarPros
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-1
Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
HARRYDESOUZA
  • MEMBER
I think the wording of the problem may have misconstrued the problem. So I have decided to attach an image of the lock cylinder that I would like to disengage from the assembly.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SCGRANTURISMO
  • EXPERT
Hello again,

I'm sorry. Is this the trunk lock cylinder that you are replacing?

Thanks,
Alex
2CarPros
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
HARRYDESOUZA
  • MEMBER
Yes. I would like to replace the lock cylinder with mine which has a key.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SCGRANTURISMO
  • EXPERT
Hello again,

Okay, sorry about that. In the diagrams down below I have included the instructions from the vehicle manufacturer on the removal and installation of the trunk's lock cylinder on your vehicle. Please go through this guide and get back to us with how everything turns out. I hope that this helps.

Thanks,
Alex
2carPros
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
FULTON
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD FOCUS
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 85,000 MILES
I went to move my daughter's focus when I mistakenly used the key to the explorer. The key went in but I had to pull to get it out. Then I proceeded to put the right key in only to dicover the key won't turn at all. I've tried to wiggle the steering wheel while moving the key, also tried to slide the key on each side hoping something might loosen up. But nothing works. Am I going to have to replace the ignition cylinder. If so, how do I go about removing the old one.

Thank you for any assistance you might give

Fulton
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
ARGUS
  • MEMBER
The ignition cylinder failing on your model year is absolutely no surprise. It could be from sticking your Explorer key in there, but it could also be the poorly designed cylinder that the model was made with.

Typically, you are looking at around $350 for that repair, which should also include reprogramming the key.

The receiver, I believe, is in the column, so you should be able to get away with rekeying a new cylinder, though, without the need to reprogram the key.

I have also heard that the cylinder Ford switched to for the '04 model year will also fit the '01 cars, but I can't vouch for that. The newer cylinders are better designed.

I am not a mechanic, so you may want to double check with the dealer on the ignition cylinder prices. I have heard it can be done yourself, but I have not tried it.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:14 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BOB W 633
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD FOCUS
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 102,000 MILES
Cannot turn key, (sterring whell is not locked), I tried both set of keys. Also both front headlights and rear brake lights are not working.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:23 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BRYANC1
  • MEMBER
Hi, These cars have a history of the ignition lock cylinder wearing out very quickly. I have replaced several and the insides literally turn to metal dust. I have also noticed that the replacement locks wear out just as fast as the originals. Other than to just keep changing them there's not much you can do. Ford has the attitude that it is not a big enough problem to issue a recall. You should keep in mind that these have the security feature built into the key, and replacement ones will need to be programmed. With that said, there is a trick. After replacing the cylinder, you can tape the old key underneath the plastic cover next to the pickup ring that surrounds where the key goes into the switch. The car will think you are using the old key and will let it start. As far as your lights go, other than checking your fuses, I couldn't take a guess without actually looking at the vehicle. These models do have a problem with the wiring harness where it passes from the body to the rear hatch getting damaged, and the emergency flasher switch going bad causing brake and lighting problems, so that might be a good place to start looking. Hope this helps!
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:23 AM (Merged)
Tiny
APPYTIGGER
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 FORD FOCUS
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • MANUAL
  • 135,000 MILES
I need to change the barrel in the ignition but the key will not turn to get it to the accessory position so I can release the barrel. How do I get the barrel out?
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:23 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Remove the upper/lower shroud cover. Tap on the outer cylinder section with a hammer that surrounds the IGN cyl while trying to turn the key
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:23 AM (Merged)
Tiny
APPYTIGGER
  • MEMBER
Thank you for your response. After I asked the question I looked through the forum and found several other people had/have the same problem and many were suggested to have a lock smith look at it. I will be call a lock smith tomorrow to come and look at it. Ford needs to take care of this when it is repeatedly happening in cars.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:23 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CARSANDAIRPLANES
  • MEMBER
Ford has refused to do a recall over this very common problem. The original ignition lock cylinder in the Focus have a side-bar that wears and easily gets stuck. Strattec and other lock cylinder companies make a cylinder that does not have a side-bar to replace the defective ones. This is typically at least a $200 job for a locksmith to come out and do. Try doing what you did with the hammer to get the key to turn to the accessory position. If it doesn't work, drill the sider-bar (message back if you try that). Once in the accessory position and the steering wheel column plastic is off, push the "active retainer" with a pick (it is very narrow and is perpendicular to the key in ACC pos) and the cylinder will come out. Taking your key to a locksmith and having them set a new ingintion to your key will save you a lot of money.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:24 AM (Merged)
Tiny
APPYTIGGER
  • MEMBER
Thanks for the input and I did end up having a lock smith come and fix it. Ended up costing about $140 for the ignition, another key and the lock smiths time.
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:24 AM (Merged)
Tiny
ROGERSBUICK
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 FORD FOCUS
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 88,000 MILES
I need to know how to remove/replace ignition lock cylinder
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 AT 8:24 AM (Merged)

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