Why Won't My Automatic Doors Lock And Unlock?

Why Won't My Automatic Doors Lock And Unlock?

1. Key Fob Issues

Key fobs have installed transmitters that work within a short-range. When you press the button on the fob, radio wave signals are sent to your car. These signals enable the opening and closing of your car doors. Key fobs contain batteries, which are prone to wearing out after a certain period of time. If the battery dies, the fob chip loses power and will not open or close your car doors. To avoid such frustrations, ensure you are stocked with spare batteries or a backup key.

Another major issue in the key fob is misaligned buttons and broken contacts. You can open the key fob to check if it has any issues.

Preventing Rust

If rust is the main issue, it is important to prevent it from reoccurring. You should insect your locks and car regularly for signs of rust. Do not allow water to pool in the key assembly. Washing your vehicle regularly can help prevent rust build up so any dirt does not rub away at protective coatings, causing rust.

Once you have cleaned off the rust, applying a rust arrestor can help prevent the rust from spreading. Most rust arrestors on the market come with their application brush. All you have to do is dip it in the arrestor and apply a thin coat to the area that was rusted.

If your rust arrestor does not come with a brush, you can always use a Q-Tip or small rag for application to the metal. Just be sure to allow it to fully dry. The bottle will indicate how long this should take.

When it has dried, apply a thin layer of primer over the rust arrestor. Be sure to use a rag or paper towel to dab any excess primer so that it does not drip.

If it is in a painted area, you can apply to touch up paint over the primer. Similar to the rust arrestor, it is important to let the primer fully dry first.


Broken Connections

One common reason the car door lock is stuck in the locked position is due to broken connections within the door panel or lock assembly. These include a broken link from either the handle, lock cylinder, or interior locking post/switch to the car door latch. If any of these components are broken or disconnected, it disrupts the entire locking process within your car door.

Whether one or all of these connections are broken, it can result in the car door being stuck in the locked position.

How can you tell if this is the issue? If you can enter the car through a different door, you can attempt to open the jammed door from the inside.

4. Consider the solenoid

If the other doors work, the problem could possibly be the door lock solenoid.

  • If this is the case, your regular mechanic can diagnose the problem. Then, if necessary he or she can remove the car door panel and replace the solenoid.

What is the Cost to Fix Power Door Locks?

It goes without saying that the money you would need to have your door lock or locks replaced would depend on the cause. It will also depend on the parts that you need to purchase. Keep in mind that parts also come with different brands and quality, affecting their cost.

Whether you would hire a professional or not to diagnose and fix the issue will also affect the total cost of fixing an auto door lock not working issue. Lastly, your car’s brand and make will have an effect on the money you need to spend to get the lock fixed.

With that said, you should expect to spend an amount ranging from $50 to $200. If done professionally, you might spend between $200 and $700.

You Need to Replace the Solenoid

If only one of your car doors isn’t locking properly, then it’s a sign that you might have a bad solenoid. These can go bad over time, due to being used so often. This is actually a very common reason for why your locks stop working. It’s also another problem that’s going to be decidedly simple to fix.

Installing a new solenoid in your door is going to be simple enough. You can just remove the door panel, find your old solenoid, and then replace it with the new one. It’s not all that complicated and it shouldn’t cost you much money to fix. If this is what’s wrong with your door lock, then you can go ahead and feel pretty lucky.

In Conclusion

After looking at all of the potential reasons why your car locks aren’t working, you should be able to feel more informed. One of the above reasons is the likely cause of your issues. Many of these problems can be fixed easily by installing a new part or replacing a battery. Some of the problems are more complex and might require professional assistance.

Whatever your problems wind up being, you’ll want to get things fixed up fast. Just being able to determine what’s wrong is an important step. Try to use the information I’ve given you to get things figured out. Once you know what needs to be done, getting your car locks working again shouldn’t be overly difficult.

Once you get everything working properly, you’ll be able to start using your car like normal again. If this ever occurs again, you’ll know what to expect and you won’t be caught off guard. Being prepared for how to deal with car trouble is always for the best. You have the right knowledge now, so go out and fix your problem or get the professional help that you need.


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By CarRoar

What is a deadlocked car door?

Many modern cars come with deadlock systems. These locks provide an extra layer of security for your car by allowing unlocking only through the rotation of a lock cylinder.

These exist to make entering your car harder for criminals. Instead of smashing the window and unlocking your car by pulling the tab or knob, they’ll trigger an alarm instead!

One specific type of deadlock is the child safety lock. This type of deadlock prevents doors being opened from the inside. These types of locks are commonly installed on rear doors only.

In some car models, doors with deadlocks require you to turn the key a bit further than you normally would. Many car owners don’t know this – perhaps their dealership forgot to mention it, or they missed it in their owner’s manual.

And with how rarely many of us use physical keys nowadays, it’s not completely unreasonable that you’d never realise this.

If your car lock isn’t letting you in, give this a shot – who knows, it might work!


Welcome to Off-Roading Pro. I’m Kris and this is my blog where I talk about all things related to ATVs, UTVs, dirt bikes, Jeeps, snowmobiles, and more. I love to explore earth’s natural terrain and share my experience. Let’s ride!

Final Words

Car keys not working could become a big problem if you don’t deal with it properly. Read through the above points thoroughly to ensure that you can properly diagnose the exact problem you might be facing with your car keys. Hopefully, this article will help you solve your problem of key turns but won’t unlock the car door. If not, then you must contact an automotive locksmith to keep from damaging your car lock or key any further.

3. Faulty Wiring

Faulty wiring in the car door system can lead the door controls to malfunction. Insulation wears are the primary cause of faulty wiring. By taking your car to a shop, automotive technicians can install a new wiring system to ensure your car doors are working properly.

2. Replace the key fob

If that doesn't solve the problem, you may have a faulty key fob.

  • Go to a dealer and they will be able to hook up to the computer that controls your keyless entry and make sure the key fob is still programmed.
  • If the key fob isn’t sending a signal, it will need to be replaced.

Solutions for when your Car Door won’t Open From Inside Or Outside:

Repair the broken connections:

Open the door and troubleshoot the lock assembly. Use replacement parts if needed and mend the broken connections.


Lubricating the door latch is one of the ways in which doors that won’t open from the inside or the outside can be fixed. Begin by checking the keyway for blockage. Next, open the door and try to adjust the lock assembly to see what is stuck. Lubricate the assembly and move again. Repeat this process until all blockage is removed.

Remove the door panel:

Use your tools to detach the door panel. Once the screws from the door panel are removed, it will be easier to identify the issue. Next, disconnect the electrical connections that are attached to the door panel. Once the panel is removed, you will notice a plastic cover inside the panel.

Remove this cover and look for issues that are preventing the door from opening. Now, check whether the issue is with the mechanisms or the inside shafts. Attach a nut at the end of the shaft to tighten the grip, thus allowing the door to open from the outside.

To resolve the issue of not being open from the inside, check for issues in the power locking system. It may require repair or replacement.

And finally, check the lock assembly for broken parts and double-check the door lock motor. This entire process is easily done with the door panel removed.

Get a locksmith:

Car doors that won’t open from inside or outside may have a failed lock assembly. These issues are easier to diagnose and resolve once we are able to get the car door to open.

Thus, a simple solution for this is to turn to a professional auto locksmith. They can help open the car while ensuring a minimum level of damage done to the door. Once the door is open, based on assessment, lock parts can be repaired or replaced.


How do you unlock a stubborn lock?

Most people recommend using a silicone lubricant on the lock, but I prefer multi-purpose lubricating oil because it’s cheaper and just as good. Hold the key flat and pour some oil on it, then insert it into the lock. Work the lock and be patient, and you’ll likely be able to turn it.

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Why won’t my key unlock my car door?

We’ve explained the reasons why the physical key might not work, but you’ve still got other options to open the door. You can unlock the passenger’s side door with the key, use the fob remote, or even unlock the vehicle through a phone app.

2 thoughts to Are Your Car Door Locks Stuck?

  1. John Peters says:

    March 30, 2022 at 4:42 am

    Small particles can quickly accumulate inside your automobile door lock’s internal system, causing it to jam. Dirt and rust are the most common culprits, as are defective door parts that detach and jam the internal lock assembly. It’s also possible that the keyway contains foreign objects that have been positioned wrongly.


  2. Istvan Janger says:

    April 14, 2022 at 6:36 pm

    My car door lock open and close by self. Make me crazy! Thanks for help!



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