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This may challenge the assertion that there are no stupid questions…

I bought this new locking gas cap (on a Honda Element). I cannot get the cap to lock. That vendor has no instruction on their web site.

My old Honda-brand gas cap worked easily:

  • Twist until clicking noise, done, locked.
  • To unlock, turn key and unscrew cap, done, tank opened.

With the new cap, I twist the cap shut with the key in one position, I hear no noise. I twist shut with key in other position, and I hear a click noise at the cap reaches the closed position. But in either key position, I can manually unwind the cap. The cap never locks.

➥ Is there a trick to some gas caps to get them to stay closed and locked?

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  • Possible defective cap.
    – Moab
    May 14 '20 at 19:16
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With the cap in your hand, insert the key but do not turn it. Twist the cap shut onto the gas filler with the key in the same position, again not turning the key. When the cap has been twisted into place, then rotate the key to its other position. Remove the key.

If the cap isn't locked in place, try the same procedure again but beginning with the key turned to its other orientation.

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My thinking is, you'd close the cap (screw the cap on) without the key in the cap. Before inserting the cap, put the key in and turn the key clockwise (CW), then remove the key. Put the cap into the filler neck and twist until the cap is sealed. Once all the way down, try to unscrew (without the key). I'll bet it won't come off. To pull the cap off, put the key in the slot and turn it counterclockwise (CCW) and unscrew the cap. You may be able to turn the key, then take the key out, then unscrew the cap.

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