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How To Get Keys Out Of Locked Car

How To Get Keys Out Of Locked Car

By PattyKay Lilley

Have you ever found yourself standing outside your car with the keys locked inside? It can be incredibly frustrating, especially if it’s late at night or in a precarious location. While this might seem like an impossible situation to get out of, there are several ways that you can retrieve your keys and regain access to your vehicle without breaking the window.

In this blog post, we will be exploring some proven strategies for How To Get Keys Out Of Locked Car – so read on and find out how!

How To Get Keys Out Of Locked Car

If you’ve locked your keys in your car, we’ve compiled five proven methods to successfully retrieve them. These techniques range from the simplest to the slightly more complex, with each requiring minimal tools. However, caution is always advised to avoid any potential damages to your vehicle. So, let’s dive in and figure out which strategy best suits your predicament.

Get Your Spare Key

When you purchase a new vehicle from your car dealer, they likely gave you two keys. That spare key is your first line of defense against a locked-out situation. If you’re locked out while at home, this is likely your quickest and most hassle-free solution. Simply locate your spare key, use it to unlock the car, and retrieve the original set of keys. Remember, it’s always a good idea to keep your spare key in a secure and memorable location to avoid having to turn your home upside down in a moment of panic.

While some newer vehicles come with fancy key fobs, touchpads, and remote-unlock sensors that all but guarantee you won’t get locked out, millions of others still lock and unlock their cars manually.

If you’re one of these individuals, you might be worried about having to resort to prybars and broken car windows. Fear not! With a bit of patience, practice, and even more patience, getting your keys out of a locked vehicle is entirely within your grasp. Here are a few tips to safely regain access to your locked car.

Call a Professional Locksmith

If you’re unable to locate your spare key, or if you never received one in the first place, consider contacting a professional locksmith. These trained individuals have a wealth of knowledge and a wide array of specialized tools at their disposal. They can help you regain access to your locked vehicle without causing any damage. However, this method can be somewhat costly and requires you to wait for the locksmith to arrive.

Use a Shoestring

Yes, that’s right. A simple shoestring can be an incredibly effective tool when it comes to unlocking a car door. This method only works on locking mechanisms that unlock by pulling up. To proceed, you’ll need to create a loop in the middle of the shoestring that can be tightened. Then, use a small wedge of some kind to create a slight gap between the door and the car’s body, slip the string into the interior, hook it around the lock, tighten the loop, and pull the lock up.

Use a Coat Hanger

If a shoestring isn’t available, a wire coat hanger can be a suitable substitute. Straighten the hanger and then bend it at one end to create a hook. Use the same sort of wedge as above to create a gap between the car door and the body, slip the hanger wire into the gap, and fish around until you’ve hooked the locking mechanism. Once hooked, a firm pull up should unlock the door.

Use a Rod and a Screwdriver

This method should be used as a last resort due to the potential for damage to your vehicle. The basic idea is to use a flat-head screwdriver to pry open a gap between the car door and the body (at the top), then insert a rod or long piece of metal to press the unlock button. This method requires a lot of patience and extreme caution to avoid damaging the vehicle.

Roadside Assistance

If all else fails, calling for roadside assistance can be a final resort. Several companies provide this service, and some insurance policies even include it. These professionals have tools specifically designed for this task and can usually get the job done without causing any damage.

In conclusion, locking your keys in your car doesn’t have to spell disaster. With a little bit of patience, and a few tools, you can regain access to your vehicle without having to resort to breaking a window. The best preventative measure is always to have a spare key, but if that’s not an option, any of these tips should help you get back on the road.

See more: How Often To Change A Car Air Filter?


Many car owners often find themselves in a situation where they have locked their keys inside their car. This predicament raises several questions, like how to unlock a car, what tools to use, and the risks involved. Here are some frequently asked questions about getting keys out of a locked car to help you navigate this frustrating scenario.

What is the safest method to unlock a car?

What is the safest method to unlock a car?

The safest way to unlock a car is to use a spare key. It is the most straightforward method and carries the least risk of damaging your vehicle. If you don’t have a spare key, the next best thing is to call a professional locksmith. They have the tools and expertise to unlock your car without causing damage.

Is it legal to unlock your car with a coat hanger or shoestring?

While it might seem strange, there are no laws against unlocking your own car with a coat hanger, shoestring, or any other tool. The legality issue arises when someone else’s car is involved. It’s illegal to enter someone else’s car without their permission, even if your intentions are good and you’re trying to help.

Can unlocking a car door damage the lock?

Depending on the method used, unlocking a car door yourself can potentially damage the lock. Methods that involve inserting an object into the lock mechanism, like a coat hanger, shoestring, or rod and screwdriver, can potentially damage the lock if not done correctly. Therefore, it’s always best to try less invasive methods first, like using a spare key or calling a professional locksmith.

What should I do if I frequently lock my keys in my car?

If you often find yourself locking your keys in your car, it might be worth investing in a keyless entry system if your car doesn’t already have one. These systems allow you to unlock your car with a code or with a key fob.

Another option is to keep a spare key in a secure place outside of your car, like in your wallet or at home. Regularly checking to ensure you have your keys before closing your car door can also prevent this situation.

Final Thought

Getting locked out of your car can be enormously frustrating, but it’s important to know that numerous solutions exist for this common predicament. The methods outlined above range from simple to complex, and they all require a degree of patience, skill, and sometimes professional assistance.

But prevention is always better than a cure. To avoid this frustrating scenario, consider adopting habits that reduce the risk of locking your keys in your car. Regularly checking your keys before closing the door can be an effective habit. Additionally, storing a spare key in a secure yet accessible location can be a lifesaver.

However, if you find yourself without a spare key and locked out of your car, don’t panic. Utilize the methods mentioned above, or call a professional if you’re uncomfortable doing it yourself. Remember, the goal is not only to regain access to your vehicle but to do so without causing unnecessary damage.

Ultimately, these experiences remind us of the importance of mindful practices in our daily routines. Taking a moment to ensure you have everything you need before leaving your car can save you a lot of trouble down the line. Stay safe, and happy driving!

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