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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It's a 2004 Trailblazer LS ext with a 4.2 engine.
The ignition key won't insert very far into the ignition port on the ignition lock. I've looked up the usual causes.
It's not the key itself.
There may be dirt in there
I may have activated a security feature

I'm not sure about the security feature one. Is there some security feature that prevents the key from going all the way in?
Does anybody have any advice?
 

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2004 chevy trailblazer_lt
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The key should go all the way in easily. If there is dirt in the lock cylinder, then it would have to be a great deal. I do not believe that a security feature would prevent the key from going in if activated.

Most likely, the ignition key cylinder has decided to come apart and that is what is preventing your key from going in. Here is an example of what a replacement ignition key cylinder looks like:


Also, while you are in there changing the ignition lock cylinder, go ahead and install a new ignition switch:


While I do not normally recommend replacing parts that are working OK, the ignition switch is a part that is known to fail, and the question is not if it will fail, the question is when will it fail. Since you will be in there replacing the ignition key cylinder, you might as well throw in a new ignition switch and save yourself some aggravation down the road.

Now, if you replace the ignition key cylinder, you will need to either take the key cylinder apart and redo the little springs and cylinders in order to match your existing keys (or have a locksmith do it which is what I would do), or get new key blanks and have them cut to match the key template that comes with the new ignition key cylinder.

Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
The key should go all the way in easily. If there is dirt in the lock cylinder, then it would have to be a great deal. I do not believe that a security feature would prevent the key from going in if activated.

Most likely, the ignition key cylinder has decided to come apart and that is what is preventing your key from going in. Here is an example of what a replacement ignition key cylinder looks like:


Also, while you are in there changing the ignition lock cylinder, go ahead and install a new ignition switch:


While I do not normally recommend replacing parts that are working OK, the ignition switch is a part that is known to fail, and the question is not if it will fail, the question is when will it fail. Since you will be in there replacing the ignition key cylinder, you might as well throw in a new ignition switch and save yourself some aggravation down the road.

Now, if you replace the ignition key cylinder, you will need to either take the key cylinder apart and redo the little springs and cylinders in order to match your existing keys (or have a locksmith do it which is what I would do), or get new key blanks and have them cut to match the key template that comes with the new ignition key cylinder.

Good Luck!
I really should research a bit before I reply, but I'm so excited to get a serious and helpful answer that I don't want to wait.
The plastic covering the steering column is already removed so I can see the ignition lock cylinder etc. But I don't clearly see a way to remove the cylinder.
This
suggest using a small nail-clipper file to wiggle up and down. I'm going out to look at the problem some more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The key should go all the way in easily. If there is dirt in the lock cylinder, then it would have to be a great deal. I do not believe that a security feature would prevent the key from going in if activated.

Most likely, the ignition key cylinder has decided to come apart and that is what is preventing your key from going in. Here is an example of what a replacement ignition key cylinder looks like:


Also, while you are in there changing the ignition lock cylinder, go ahead and install a new ignition switch:


While I do not normally recommend replacing parts that are working OK, the ignition switch is a part that is known to fail, and the question is not if it will fail, the question is when will it fail. Since you will be in there replacing the ignition key cylinder, you might as well throw in a new ignition switch and save yourself some aggravation down the road.

Now, if you replace the ignition key cylinder, you will need to either take the key cylinder apart and redo the little springs and cylinders in order to match your existing keys (or have a locksmith do it which is what I would do), or get new key blanks and have them cut to match the key template that comes with the new ignition key cylinder.

Good Luck!
I really should research a bit before I reply, but I'm so excited to get a serious and helpful answer that I don't want to wait.
The plastic covering the steering column is already removed so I can see the ignition lock cylinder etc. But I don't clearly see a way to remove the cylinder. The videos regarding removing the lock cylinder say the old cylinder needs to be in the start position in order to be removed. But I can't even insert the key. So, is removing it then involve destroying it with a drill or something?
 

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2004 chevy trailblazer_lt
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My apologies to all for forgetting this public service announcement:

DO NOT DISCONNECT THE BATTERY - REMOVE THE APPROPRIATE FUSE(S). Why? Because when you reconnect the battery, the HVAC actuators inside of the dash are commanded to run a recalibration procedure which stresses the old brittle plastic gears inside the actuators and the brittle plastic gears break and leaves you unable to control where the air comes out, or control the temperature of the air, etc. Replacing at least one of them literally requires the removal of the entire dash! So, if you ever need to actually disconnect the battery, such as in the case of needing to install a new battery, be sure and use some kind of Keep Memory Alive (KAM) device to avoid the HVAC actuator recalibration routine.

Also here is a link to how to replace the ignition switch:


Here is a link to a video which shows how to replace the ignition lock cylinder:


Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
The key should go all the way in easily. If there is dirt in the lock cylinder, then it would have to be a great deal. I do not believe that a security feature would prevent the key from going in if activated.

Most likely, the ignition key cylinder has decided to come apart and that is what is preventing your key from going in. Here is an example of what a replacement ignition key cylinder looks like:


Also, while you are in there changing the ignition lock cylinder, go ahead and install a new ignition switch:


While I do not normally recommend replacing parts that are working OK, the ignition switch is a part that is known to fail, and the question is not if it will fail, the question is when will it fail. Since you will be in there replacing the ignition key cylinder, you might as well throw in a new ignition switch and save yourself some aggravation down the road.

Now, if you replace the ignition key cylinder, you will need to either take the key cylinder apart and redo the little springs and cylinders in order to match your existing keys (or have a locksmith do it which is what I would do), or get new key blanks and have them cut to match the key template that comes with the new ignition key cylinder.

Good Luck!
I really should research a bit before I reply, but I'm so excited to get a serious and helpful answer that I don't want to wait.
The plastic covering the steering column is already removed so I can see the ignition lock cylinder etc. But I don't clearly see a way to remove the cylinder.
The problem is that the ignition key won't insert into the cylinder, and I can't remove the cylinder unless I can turn the key to the start position.
(I'm not concerned about disconnecting the battery. I do it all the time because I have a parasitic leak. Indeed, I have a knife switch directly on the + battery terminal. )
 

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2004 chevy trailblazer_lt
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Can you take a small flashlight and look into the keyway to see if anything is blocking the key? Perhaps a small dental tool type hook or small magnet will remove the obstruction

As far as the battery disconnecting goes, I sure would find the source of the parasitic drain or else you will need to remove the dash in order to replace broken HVAC actuators from disconnecting/reconnecting the battery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Can you take a small flashlight and look into the keyway to see if anything is blocking the key? Perhaps a small dental tool type hook or small magnet will remove the obstruction
Quick Fix: Getting your ignition key to go into your Buick Rendezvous or Pontiac Aztek.
"What happens is that there's a flat, brass wafer that drops in the key cylinder. " adventureoflinkmk2 says in his description. I'm not clear how the nail file moves this 'brass wafer". I can't see anything helpful inside the keyhole.
First, I'll get a nail file as I see on the video. It looks like a "toenail" clipper file. I'll try that method.
If the nail file does work, I'll use it to put the cylinder in the Start position so that I can change the cylinder.
But if the nailfile does not work, it seems I'll have to remove the old cylinder by force (drilling and working with screwdrivers and long-nose pliers). Then, I install the new one. I can get a new cylinder for $54 at the local Autozone (I'll get a ride somehow). I'm concerned about meshing the new cylinder with the mechanism inside the housing. I'm thinking the new cylinder has to be in the start position if the old cylinder was taken out normally. But if the old cylinder was taken out by force, the mechanism may be in any position. (Anyway, I'm going to have to get the new lock cylinder. I have to set out now. It's Sunday, so there is no bus.)
I bought the new lock cylinder from Autozone
Locksmart Ignition Lock Cylinder LC63520 . I have to drill out the old one.
 

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Put the key in run, remove the ignition switch. Turn the nylon gear on the switch all the way until you feel a 'spring back'. Let it go and install the switch.
Should be correct.
 

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Good Luck! Also, I am glad to see that AutoZone is selling better parts!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Put the key in run, remove the ignition switch. Turn the nylon gear on the switch all the way until you feel a 'spring back'. Let it go and install the switch.
Should be correct.
I can't get the cylinder in the Run position because I can't insert the key.
However, the problem is solved. (The key could not be inserted into the lock cylinder.) I was able to replace the lock cylinder. I thought I was going to have to drill out the old cylinder because removing it required truing the key to Start. I ended up forcibly turning the cylinder to Start with a pair of channel lock pliers. (First, I removed the plastic end piece attached to the lock cylinder.) Then I could insert a pin in the hole on top of the cylinder and pull it out.

Incidentally, it seems you could steal the vehicle with just a pair of channel lock pliers. There is no transponder with the key.
 

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'05 Chevy TB EXT
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I can't get the cylinder in the Run position because I can't insert the key.
However, the problem is solved. (The key could not be inserted into the lock cylinder.) I was able to replace the lock cylinder. I thought I was going to have to drill out the old cylinder because removing it required truing the key to Start. I ended up forcibly turning the cylinder to Start with a pair of channel lock pliers. (First, I removed the plastic end piece attached to the lock cylinder.) Then I could insert a pin in the hole on top of the cylinder and pull it out.

Incidentally, it seems you could steal the vehicle with just a pair of channel lock pliers. There is no transponder with the key.
You're right --- but there IS a Hall Effect sensor, but I'm at a loss as to what it does.

Good thing you didn't trip the VAT System though or you'd be here asking questions about it too.
 

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Congrats on the repair!
 

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I was going to ask if the vehicle is on an incline. Also, if the wheel is cranked a lot in either direction. I've had something like this happen because the wheel has pressure on it from being turned and the vehicle was put into park; when you try to put the key back in, you need to fight with the wheel to get the key in or if in, to turn the key to start. It feels like manual steering with the vehicle not started (obviously) and you have to turn the very stiff wheel to fix the problem.

By the way, I never knew/saw the KAM; my XUV is off the road over a year to build a replacement trans and the battery died and the G67 bled down too. Hopefully I'll have a trans ready soon, but what will I have to worry about when I charge the battery? I didn't want to keep starting the vehicle with a trans line leak to charge the battery and where it's parked a solar charger wouldn't work to keep it charged. What other things will I have to worry about recalibrating or auto-recalibrating? Radio/Nav? G67? midgate window? rear tailgate window? Sunroof? Rear electric XUV roof? Will I have to jack up the rear body too? Sorry for any hijacking.
 

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I was going to ask if the vehicle is on an incline. Also, if the wheel is cranked a lot in either direction. I've had something like this happen because the wheel has pressure on it from being turned and the vehicle was put into park; when you try to put the key back in, you need to fight with the wheel to get the key in or if in, to turn the key to start. It feels like manual steering with the vehicle not started (obviously) and you have to turn the very stiff wheel to fix the problem.

By the way, I never knew/saw the KAM; my XUV is off the road over a year to build a replacement trans and the battery died and the G67 bled down too. Hopefully I'll have a trans ready soon, but what will I have to worry about when I charge the battery? I didn't want to keep starting the vehicle with a trans line leak to charge the battery and where it's parked a solar charger wouldn't work to keep it charged. What other things will I have to worry about recalibrating or auto-recalibrating? Radio/Nav? G67? midgate window? rear tailgate window? Sunroof? Rear electric XUV roof? Will I have to jack up the rear body too? Sorry for any hijacking.

And HERE ---> boys n girls is WHY we always put our PARKING BRAKE ON ... to keep the pressure/load off the pawl in the transmission and the steering from "relaxing" in a torque-loaded position.

Phttttwwwwwt!
 

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Once you apply power to the vehicle, the ECM, BCM, and other modules will recalibrate whatever needs to be recalibrated to whatever was programmed in at the factory. Then after you get it running, the ECM will relearn your driving habits. Navigation, OnStar, etc. will all depend on if you have a current subscription AND if the OnStar/Navigation/etc. hardware is compatible with what is being used today (which for OnStar is unlikely).
 
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Once you apply power to the vehicle, the ECM, BCM, and other modules will recalibrate whatever needs to be recalibrated to whatever was programmed in at the factory. Then after you get it running, the ECM will relearn your driving habits. Navigation, OnStar, etc. will all depend on if you have a current subscription AND if the OnStar/Navigation/etc. hardware is compatible with what is being used today (which for OnStar is unlikely).
Which means as soon as the HVAC gets power, the vent doors are going to recalibrate all by themselves. All you can do it cross your fingers and hope vent doors don't crash into each other. If they do, hope that the nylon gears are still pliable enough they can take the hit without breaking.
 
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