A steering lock and key is an important safety and anti-theft device that is fitted to most modern motor vehicles. The device was first used in motor cars in the late 1960s and early 1970s and played an important role in drastically reducing the incidence of car theft. The steering lock and key is normally fitted to the vehicle’s steering column beneath the steering wheel. The lock is generally associated with the vehicle ignition switch and is activated and deactivated either by way of a key or via the vehicle’s electronic control unit.
If the key barrel of the steering lock and key becomes worn or is jammed by a foreign object it may not be possible to disengage the lock. If this cannot be rectified by a locksmith it will be necessary to access a replacement part. This involves the removal of the steering column cover and locating the locking mechanism, which is normally wrapped around the steering column. On some models it is possible to buy a replacement part with the same key number as the damaged lock. This saves on the cost of buying a new key and also avoids the possibility of having to carry a separate key for the ignition/steering lock and the vehicle’s doors.