I have just bought a citroen C3 and much to my horror was unable to turn the key in the ignition this evening. Had to wait about 10 minutes until it finally gave way.

Anyone else experienced a similar problem?

Is this an electrical problem, or is there something wrong with the key?


When you turn the car off and remove the key, make sure the steering is not turned to one side. If you leave the car with the wheels turned you may load up the steering lock as the steering geometry tries to straighten up. You are able to get round this in the circumstances you describe by 'rocking' the steering wheel to relieve the loading on the lock as you turn the key to unlock it.

  • Thank you thank you thank you. We are in france with a rental and luckily have a travel wifi and this just happened and of course panic at some patisserie on sunday and everything closed. This was a miracle. Thanks again. Jul 23 '17 at 12:16
  • Basically we just wiggled the steering wheel back forth while turning the key. Jul 23 '17 at 12:18
  • Thank you! We are on our holiday with a rented C3 and this just saved our last night out!
    – Garcon
    Aug 31 '18 at 19:40

What worked really well for us, used preferably a rubber mallet, or a hammer and hit the key while in the engine and eventually it worked, perseverance works well with this, because it has worked for a lot of people on the Internet, saved our butts 😂Lol


What you need to do is hold the key so you feel the pressure of it about to turn and wiggle steering wheel at same time with other hand . It happens to me.

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