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Old 07-24-2012, 06:00 AM   #1
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Ignition switch acting up and the story of the singing boxter, party

I went out to start the car yesterday (2001 S) and I slipped the key into the ignition as usual but the key would not turn the ignition to the start/run position.

It was like the car did not recognize the key,

It unlocked the doors just fine so I don't think it is the key battery.

After several re insertions it eventually worked but I wonder what could be causing this?

Anyone else have this happen? What causes this?

Should I spray some WD40 into the ignition to lube things?

Funny coincidence was that I was in a hurry to get out of there since there was a brush fire less than a quarter mile away and I was directly downwind.

Perhaps due to my stress level being a little elevated with the urgent need to escape from the fire, I was not doing something right?
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Last edited by jb92563; 07-25-2012 at 12:10 PM.
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Old 07-24-2012, 06:13 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jb92563 View Post
I went out to start the car yesterday (2001 S) and I slipped the key into the ignition as usual but the key would not turn the ignition to the start/run position.

It was like the car did not recognize the key,

It unlocked the doors just fine so I don't think it is the key battery.

After several re insertions it eventually worked but I wonder what could be causing this?

Anyone else have this happen? What causes this?

Should I spray some WD40 into the ignition to lube things?

Funny coincidence was that I was in a hurry to get out of there since there was a brush fire less than a quarter mile away and I was directly downwind.

Perhaps due to my stress level being a little elevated with the urgent need to escape from the fire, I was not doing something right?
This has happened to me when I did not have the steering wheel perfectly straight. I parked, left the wheel turned, left, came back and the key would not turn. Googled it think I posted it here too, took awhile but after research realized I had to pull HARD on wheel while turning key to get it to unlock


Now I am VERY careful to keep wheel straight when parking
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Old 07-24-2012, 06:30 AM   #3
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i always find it amusing (not in a condescending way) when i read threads from people who insert their key and it won't turn. only to find out later that the steering lock was engaged. am i just that old? i thought this was very common. turn the wheel a little and then turn the key...

so yes, if you insert your car key into the ignition, and it won't turn - like you've got the wrong key - then generally if you turn the wheel a little back towards the center it'll unlock the ignition and your key will work.

isn't that what the "popping" noise is when you remove a key? the steering lock is engaging...
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Old 07-24-2012, 06:56 AM   #4
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Agree with ya Tony but with a Boxster for some reason a little bit of "gumming" in the ignition switch will slow the key turn like glue is in it. I had to service mine every year as shown in the Bentley book, the issue is hardly ever the switch but rather a need for a lube and clean. The spray & pray method won't work either you have to disassemble the switch.


Now why Porsche just doesn't buy them from the rest of the manufacturers which seem to have zero switch issues is a mystery.
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Old 07-24-2012, 08:58 AM   #5
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Happens to me quite often...and I panic for a brief second every darn time.
Just turn the wheel a bit and off you go...
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Old 07-25-2012, 11:27 AM   #6
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Ignition switch and the story of the singing boxter, party pooper

I think I was perhaps not paying attention to the steering lock as I was more concerned about the 100' flames and billowing black smoke heading in my direction.

In retrospect I had backed into my parking spot and had not straightened the wheels completely so perhaps that was it.

After doing some reading I also ordered the Electrical portion of the switch for $8 at Amazon figuring that with an 11 year old car I may as well do the inexpensive preemptive replacements.

Unrelated Funny story....
On my way home I had a shopping list from the hardware store partially for a bathroom renovation.

I shopped for pipes, elbows etc and as I was on my way out I saw that the 2 pieces of 6' PVC I had in the cart at $7 each could be replaced for cheaper with 1 9' piece for $6.

All was fine until I exited the store and started looking for my car......ahhhhh.....Boxster!!!!!.

Crap, so I took the top down and drove with a 9 foot 2" pipe seat belted in place, and at 45 mph I had a pipe organ playing next to me in the car due to the wind blowing over the top of the pipe and its end waving around......haaaaa what a scene

I should have recorded that for the Blue Man group!

Now ask what the pipe is going to be used for.....Late Night Party pooper
"Fight fire with fire....nope!....water!....duh!"
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"It broke because it wants to be Upgraded "
2012 Porsche Performance Driving School - SanDiego region
2001 Boxster S, Top Speed muffler, (Fred's) Mini Morimotto Projectors, Tarret UDP,
Short Shifter, Touch Screen Dual Din Radio, 03 4 Bow glass Top (DD & Auto-X since May 17,2012)

Last edited by jb92563; 07-25-2012 at 12:09 PM.
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