Malfunctioning locks seem to be common with Hondas that have laser-cut keys. After lots of research and tutorials on repairing the ignition cylinder I was able to remove the cylinder, extract the worn out "wafers", and lo and behold, the key would turn the cylinder in the barrel while both were still separate from the car (in my hand). But upon reinserting the cylinder and barrel into the ignition assembly, the key no longer turns.

It strongly resembles what happens when the steering wheel is locked, but I'm familiar with that problem and even when relieving the pressure on the steering wheel, no luck turning the key.

I'm fairly certain the barrel only goes back into the ignition one way, so I haven't put it in upside down, and it's not a transponder or battery problem, because the key should still be able to turn past the zero position with those issues.

Does anyone have any ideas, please and thanks?


I repair these quite often, even for Honda dealerships in my area. Its possible you just lost the key buzzer lifter and the now the key buzzer is dropping past the cylinders sheer line. Other then that I can safely say that either you did not seat all the remaining wafers back in correctly or there is another one that has dropped out of position because of your key.

The main problem with the wafers popping out is not because of the cylinder or the wafers. Its your key . What happens is one or more positions on the key loose enough meat on the area where the wafers slide along it and sit, that the wafers can actually slip by completely and get pushed out of their chamber. Once this happens the spring supporting the wafer pushes it up and sideways so it can not drop back in to clear the shear-line.

I always repair these by replacing all wafer, springs and keys. You can try to dissemble it again and remove the new offending wafer but it may not last too long, just depends on where your key is overly worn at. If its near the plastic head of key then just remove the first 2 rows of wafers anyway. If the worn spot of key is near the tip, then you'd pretty much need to remove them all.

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