No matter how careful you are, at some point in time, you will find yourself locked out of your car. The lock safety features on newer automobiles prevent you from locking the doors with the key still inside thanks to special RF technology. That being said, what do you do if you lose your car key while you are out and about in the greater Dallas area?
Hopefully, you can call roadside assistance or a local unlocking service, though if your phone is in the car that’s not an option. You may try depending on the kindness of strangers, but it’s not recommended if you’re in an unfamiliar area. Fortune favors the prepared, however, and there are multiple ways you can access your car even if you don’t have the keys. Check out these 7 tips
Never jump to the conclusion that all of the doors on your car are locked. Five-door sedans, hatchbacks, and SUVs don’t always lock the trunk, especially on older vehicles. Try all the doors before you conclude that you are locked out of your car. It may save you a lot of time and worry.
If you have family or friends living nearby, call them as soon as you can if you have your phone. You may not consider it a “real” roadside emergency, but being locked out makes you vulnerable if you are in an unfamiliar place. The last thing you want to do is ask a stranger for help and end up being victimized. Moreover, if you can contact someone you know, they could potentially bring you your spare key and save you the wait for an unlocking service.
Typically this method only works on older model vehicles with pull-up locks above the window sill. The best part about this is almost everyone has a shoelace handy all the time, so you don’t need to worry about needing a special tool. Tie a small loop in one end of the shoelace and feed it between the door and door frame.
You may need a credit card or something similar to push the weather stripping aside, but anything firm enough to move it out of the way is fine. Lower the loop down until it’s settled around the lock, pull the loop tight, and lift the lock. It may take a few tries, but it’s still one of the easiest ways to unlock your vehicle if it uses this style of a door lock.
Automotive supply stores carry inflatable door wedges you can use to partially open your car door without damaging the finish or internal door components. They fold up small enough to keep in a backpack or purse, so they are a great emergency car lockout kit.
Slide the un-inflated airbag between the door and frame, then use the manual pump to inflate it. The wedge will create a gap large enough to insert a rod or similar thin, rigid object so you can hit the unlock button. If there are any sufficiently long sticks nearby, they should work just fine.
If you don’t have an inflatable door wedge, you can use a flathead screwdriver to wedge the door open, but you need to be careful if you don’t want to scratch or chip your vehicle’s paint. You can also use a regular rubber or plastic door stop to wedge your car door with a lower risk of damaging anything.
The difference here is you need something to hammer the doorstop into place with something to create a wide enough opening. The wedge and reach method is definitely the preferred DIY method for getting back into a locked car, so learning how to use this method or buying an inflatable wedge is well worth your time.
The classic method of opening a locked car door as portrayed in Hollywood movies and television shows for decades, a modified coat hanger or “Slim Jim” tool are both tried and true methods for getting into a locked car. The coat hanger method is crudely compared to using a Slim Jim, but they both function in the same way.
The first method involves slipping an unbent wire hanger inside the door between the outside of the window and the weather stripping next to the door lock. One end of the wire hanger should be hooked to try and grab the locking mechanism. You’ll need to feel around a bit to fund the latch, but once you pull it upward, the lock should go up, too. Using a Slim Jim, a thin metal bar with a curve at one end is faster and less likely to damage any internal components in your car door.
Most people are going to go for the coat hanger method since they are easy to find when you are out shopping or running errands, and a Slim Jim is something you would need to carry with you in case of a lockout. Since neither of these fit well into purses or bags, this is less than an ideal method for regaining access to your car. It works, but it’s really a last-ditch effort approach.
A sufficiently flexible yet rigid strip of plastic can be fed between the door frame and the door to hit your unlock button. It might take a bit to find one large enough and thin enough, but it works extremely well. If you can find a plastic or metal yardstick that has enough flexibility, those are ideal for the job. Not only is this method extremely effective, but it also poses less risk to your vehicle than a coat hanger, screwdriver, or Slim Jim.
When all else fails, call a local locksmith for a car unlocking service. Dallas Area Locksmith offers emergency vehicle unlocking 24/7. Let us save you the time and headaches of trying to get back into your vehicle on your own. We can safely unlock your car without damaging your door or locks and have you back on the road faster. Contact us for more information about our emergency vehicle unlocking services. You don’t have to do it on your own: call the experts at Dallas Area Locksmith today.
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