Unable To Remove Keys From Ignition


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
94,600 miles
Total Complaints:
5 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (2 reports)
  2. play with the button on the shifter, it gets stuck locked (1 reports)
  3. replace shift lock sensor (1 reports)
  4. spray brake cleaner in ignition (1 reports)
1999 Pontiac Grand Prix accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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1999 Pontiac Grand Prix Owner Comments

problem #5

Jun 092010

Grand Prix GT 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles


I couldn't get the key out unless I played with the gear shift for a bit. After reading here, I took it to a mechanic that I have been dealing with for a few years to see if they had a solution. The mechanic took the console cover off and played with it for a bit, looking at the front of the gear shift. Couldn't find a solution, But, he said that it looked a bit sticky in there. I remembered going to a local fast food place, and and getting a burrito and a large coke. The cup didn't fit in the cup holder, and stupid me tried to jump out into traffic, and forgot to hold the cup. Somehow, it fell forward and spilled on the console. I found out the hard way, that they are not water proof. The coke went down inside and coated the solenoid, keeping it from working properly. He took a can of brake cleaner and sprayed it several times. It now works just fine. It may not be a cure for everyone, but it might help some of you. I tried the tricks listed by the others, like taking the bottom of the the column cover off. That didn't work. Some have a small hole to put a small screwdriver in. Not mine. I am so glad I found the shop that I take my car to. They didn't charge me to look at it, and I was so happy to get it fixed, that I gave the mechanic a $20 bill and told him to have a beer on me. :)

- , Princeton, TX, USA

problem #4

Sep 232007

Grand Prix GT 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

The shift lock sensor is bad on this and to fix it you have to replace the whole shifter assembly. Or you can go to a junk yard and get the sensor itself. The assembly is about $200 and who knows how much labor is. I pulled off the bottom cover of my steering column, can't really notice, and there is a button like on the old cars that you push in and it will release you key. What is happening is that the car is not reading that it is in park so therefor will not release your key. This is a pain in the ass but I am now used to the button and don't hardly notice I use it, but if someone else drives my car, they don't know how to get my key out!

- , Billings, MT, USA

problem #3

Oct 082006

(reported on)

Grand Prix

  • 111,000 miles

key gets stuck in the ignititon, easy problem to solve though, just mess with the cover on the shifter button, it gets in the way and locks the key in the ignition

- , Pompton Lakes, NJ, USA

problem #2

Sep 012006

(reported on)

Grand Prix

  • 57,000 miles

Key stays stuck in ignition. Stated off as minor but now is a royal pain. It also causes the a battery drain, have to jumpstart car every few days. Pontiac has been no help. All they want is $500.00+ to replace shift assembly and say that MIGHT solve problem.

- , Wichita Falls, TX, USA

problem #1

Jul 302005

(reported on)

Grand Prix

  • 55,000 miles

Everyone I know who has a Grand Prix from 1999 thru at least 2001 have suddenly noticed this problem. It started as an occasional problem, but now every car trip is an adventure whether the keys will come out!

- , Merrillville, IN, US

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