Box Swappers, always get a second opinion !

Submitted: Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 16:03
ThreadID: 132245 Views:2483 Replies:3 FollowUps:5
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After 5 years my Patrol looked like it was finally going back to visit Nissan for a fault.

Its been close several times, only 2 weeks ago it failed on a nasty ridge and wouldn't start but 2 hours of pain saw that the "Fault" was that a stick had speared up next to the transmission and ripped the linkages apart.

It was a critical time because NCIS was coming up on the TV, anyway we survived and I could hardly blame that one on Nissan !

But now another issue was becoming worse , you had to jiggle the ignition Key to get it to turn.

Many cars occasionally need the steering wheel to be given a shake to get the key to turn off lock but in my car the frequency was increasing such that almost every time I turned the key I would have to jiggle it for longer and longer.

So I took the car to Nissan who said its the locking mechanism in the steering wheel.
Its a high security box and the whole assembly has to be replaced as a unit.

On top of that we will have to replace every other lock in the car ( 6 of).
This is because the new unit has a different key.

That will be $1150 plus $120 for each key !
Wow, a sticky lock has become a $1500 dollar issue!

There seems to be little actual repair work done on some systems these days , service often comes down to replacing an entire subsystem !

Unhappy, I took the car round to a locksmith who does Nissan work and he said "Sad isn't it, but we know that item and we can re-machine the
actual sticky part, but it takes 5 hours labour to do it".

Well $500 is better than $1500, and I didn't like idea of someone playing with all the door trims, so next day I left the car at the locksmiths.

When I went to pick it up they said the fault had been diagnosed wrongly and the real issue was with the keys.

So $95 for the fix was much better than $1500.

All I can say is don't take the first response to a problem and in this day
of Box Swappers always try and get an opinion from someone who actually knows what they are talking about !
Robin Miller

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Reply By: Ron N - Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 16:56

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 16:56
Robin, I had the same problem with the Missus' 2001 Camry. I was pretty sure the problem was worn tumblers in the ignition lock assembly - and a discussion with a locksmith proved I was more than likely correct.

I even bought a new ignition lock assembly - $75 off a U.S. eBay seller - and was preparing to install it.
However, in the meantime, I examined the key for wear and concluded that wear on the key could more than likely be the source of the problem, rather than wear on the tumblers.

I purchased a new key, and hey presto, the problem vanished and hasn't recurred in over 3 years.
We still have the Camry, despite it being replaced by a new one - but it's going up for sale soon, and it doesn't look like I'll need to fit that ignition lock!

Cheers, Ron.
AnswerID: 599238

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 18:33

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 18:33
Thats good Ron , maybe you could put it back on Ebay.

At least yours was a reasonable cost.

I guess that as our cars become more complex it will be harder to get little bits and more and more we will have to replace them with whole modules instead.
Robin Miller

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FollowupID: 868429

Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 18:41

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 18:41
Yes Ron, wear occurs on both the key profile and the tumbler pins resulting in the pins not being raised to the correct position to permit barrel rotation.

As a replacement key is cut from the old key, any wear on the key is copied to the new key. A good locksmith can compensate for this to a degree but don't expect Bunnings to do it.

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FollowupID: 868430

Follow Up By: Member - Warren H - Thursday, Apr 28, 2016 at 09:12

Thursday, Apr 28, 2016 at 09:12
Keys can also have a number, mine was on a small metal tag that came with the keys when I purchased the vehicle. After about 10 years I was having a similar problem, went to a locksmith with the make and number and they cut a brand new key. Not sure whether this applies to more modern keys.
NT Pajero
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Reply By: Member - Odog - Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 18:29

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 18:29
I've always been told, never keep a bunch of keys, on the same key ring as your vehicle... A mass of keys jiggling around in the ignition, is a fast way to wear it all out eventually... Whether it's the key or the barrel... Odog
Some people want it to happen, some people wish it could happen, others make it happen!

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AnswerID: 599244

Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 20:13

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 at 20:13
Very true! Don't know why people hang so many keys from their ignition lock, maybe it makes them feel important.

FollowupID: 868435

Follow Up By: Malcom M - Thursday, Apr 28, 2016 at 08:37

Thursday, Apr 28, 2016 at 08:37
not to mention the clowns the meter of chain hanging from their belt...
FollowupID: 868461

Reply By: Blown4by - Saturday, Apr 30, 2016 at 21:13

Saturday, Apr 30, 2016 at 21:13
Robin it is lucky you don't own a Ford Territory. When the ignition switch fails, which they have a habit of doing on that vehicle, the whole steering column has to be replaced at a cost of $3K.
AnswerID: 599378

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