Unlock Your Car’s Secrets: Discover 8 Genius Hacks to Retrieve Locked Car Keys Without Breaking a Sweat!

2 min


Modern vehicles are equipped with advanced key fobs, touchpads, and remote-unlock sensors that minimize the risk of getting locked out. However, for those who still rely on manual locks, the fear of being locked out remains. Will they have to resort to prybars and broken car windows? Fortunately, with some patience and practice, it is possible to retrieve your keys from a locked vehicle without causing any damage. Here are some tips to safely regain access to your locked car. (If you have malicious intentions, please stop reading.)

1. Locate Your Spare Key

When you purchased your vehicle, the car dealer likely provided you with a spare key. If you are at home, it is worth searching for that spare key before attempting any other methods.

2. Utilize Your Mobile App

Newer cars often have the option to be remotely unlocked using the manufacturer’s mobile app. To take advantage of this feature, you need to sign up and pair your vehicle with your account before experiencing a lockout. Registering your vehicle immediately after purchase will help prevent future lockouts. Here are some popular lockout apps for various vehicle brands:

  • myChevrolet – This app acts as a remote key fob for GM vehicles, allowing you to lock or unlock your car, start or stop the engine, sound the horn, and even locate the vehicle.
  • Hyundai Blue Link® – With this app, you can unlock, lock, start, stop, and control the headlights and horn of your Hyundai.
  • NissanConnect® – This app offers lock/unlock services, Vehicle Health Reports, Maintenance Alerts, and integration with Alexa and Google Assistant.
  • Toyota App – This app enables you to lock and unlock the doors, locate your Toyota, receive recall alerts, and access maintenance information.
  • MySubaru – Through the MySubaru app and STARLINK, you can lock and unlock your vehicle, remotely start and stop it, and even immobilize it in case of theft.

3. Unlock Manual Locks with String or Fishing Line

If you have an older vehicle with manual locks, you can use a simple technique to unlock them. Take a few feet of shoestring, fishing line, or twine, create a loop in the middle, and insert it into the door’s opening. Hook the loop onto the locking mechanism and pull up to unlock the door.

4. Unlock with a Wire Clothes Hanger

Unlocking a car door with a wire clothes hanger may seem easy in movies, but it can be challenging in reality. However, it is still worth a try. Straighten out the hanger, insert it into the door frame’s seal just above the unlock button, and carefully maneuver it until it reaches the unlock button.

5. Unlock with an Inflatable Pump Wedge

If you frequently find yourself locked out of your car, investing in an inflatable wedge kit might be a wise decision. These “auto entry tools” help prevent damage to the vehicle’s paint, which can occur when using metal tools. The wedge creates space between the door and jamb, allowing you to insert access tools or rods to disengage the lock.

6. Unlock with a Strip of Sturdy Plastic

Many automotive enthusiasts use spare plastic strips as makeshift door wedges. These strips can be bent and slid through the car door’s cracks to trigger most manual locks.

7. Call AAA or a Locksmith

If your attempts with shoestrings, wire hangers, or wedges fail, it’s time to seek professional help. Locksmiths or service providers like AAA have specialized lockout tool kits for such situations. Keep in mind that you will have to pay for their services.

8. Contact the Police

In the past, police officers often assisted with vehicle lockouts using slim jims. However, some officers may not be able to help with newer car models. If you find yourself in a dire situation, it is advisable to contact the authorities. For non-emergency situations, consider calling a non-emergency line instead of dialing 9-1-1.

If breaking your window becomes the only option, don’t worry! Auto glass replacement is affordable, and most repairs can be completed in a single afternoon.

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