Before you panic, because you realized that your steering wheel was locked, I would like you to take a deep breath and relax because this is perfectly normal. When you see your steering wheel locked, you must know that your car does it for safety reasons.
In fact, it is important that it is locked when not being used or you might find your car wandering down the road without a driver. A locked steering wheel means prevention for your car not to roll or move while the key is not in the ignition. It is also good that your steering wheel is at this condition should you happen to insert the wrong key for it to run.
But sometimes, it does happen that your steering wheel could get stuck and you won't be able to unlock it. Here are some tricks on how to unlock steering wheel when it happens.
You could easily get an electrical cleaner, liquid graphite and a canned air in your local hardware store. You could also buy them online.
Now, allow me to teach you the process on how you could unlock your steering wheel, especially when you badly need your car to drive to work.
Take your car key with you and insert it into your car's ignition. Turn your key once you placed it in there as if starting your car to drive. Should your key turn and the motor starts making a sound, you will notice that the ignition cylinder would be unlocked along with the stubborn wheel.
If the above procedure didn't work. you will need to turn your car key again but you must turn it gently this time. If after that the wheel and the key are still stuck and not moving put a little pressure when you turn the key.
Make sure that it is just the right amount of pressure though and not too much because that action could damage the key.
There are lots of incidents where car owners even find their car key broken inside the keyhole only because they didn't estimate carefully the right pressure that needed to be applied.
Repeat this process until you notice the ignition let loose and finally unlocks.
Always keep the pressure light while turning the key before moving on because forcing it won't help at all. If anything, it would just damage the key and probably even the interior aspect of it.
Now, it is time to divert that pressure to the wheel and check which part of it is not moving. After doing that, put the pressure on the opposite of its direction, as you turn the key using your free hand.
What would make the wheel eventually unlock here is the amount of pressure you have applied. You need to be aware that it will only move a little bit close to where you want it to, which is not where the pin goes, but it won't full on go to the wrong path.
Never attempt to shake the wheel. Some people would rock it back and forth, thinking that it would help in successfully unlocking it, but you have to remember that it won't work that way.
Doing it could even jeopardize unlocking the whole thing. It could even destroy the pin and you would end up paying for its repair, which is far more expensive than you would for unlocking the wheel.
Before you turn the car key in the ignition, this portion will ask you to remove it as slowly as possible. You can also touch the pins that would enable to start the car by having your key all the way in. After that, you will need to remove it just a little bit like almost an inch outside the keyhole.
Once you have positioned your key at that point, you can try turning it again. Should this have done the trick, it means that your key is already old and probably needs a new one. You might want to change it because there is a chance that it might not work anymore at all.
After you have done the above procedure and for some reason, the steering wheel is still stuck to where it was, turn both the key and the wheel at the same time. Unlocking the wheel this time could be successful if you put the right pressure while doing it.
Take your electrical cleaner and put some of it in your car's keyhole. The purpose of it is to lubricate that area so the car key could easily make a turn once you start it. Try inserting your key in it to make sure that the inner area is a little wet.
Get the canned air and start spraying the keyhole as well because there might be some debris stuck in there as well. Once you are done with that, insert the car key and try turning it again, as if you're going to start running the car.
All these steps are your gateway to finally unlock your car's steering wheel. But I have to remind you that if these things still don't work, it means that you will need a professional car mechanic to handle it.
Don't worry because it is unlikely that it would happen if you will follow the instructions I have here for you. But there is no doubt that you will save a lot of money if you figure this out on your own with the help of this tutorial.