Automotive Service — Ignition Repair Challenges

“Your day is not about what you have done, your day is about what you have achieved” — Eli Abbasov

My name is Eli, in these series of posts I will write about challenges. Hoping you won’t just look at me as a Locksmith with an agenda, but a personality with dreams and hopes and experiences. Just like you. So… like and share :)

One of my challenges was fixing a Honda ignition I remember not even being able to take it out of the steering column. The thought of being able to fix it was unreal.
This took place around February 2015 — I was called to make new car keys for a Honda Civic and the customer was sure that he needs a new key and back then I was pretty good at making the keys for Honda yet ignition repair was a bit above my level. But just like anything in life you have to jump through hoops to bypass an obstacle and so I did. I came out looked at the problem and there it was! The ignition which was waiting to be repaired, it’s there just for me to take command on and I went for it. I told the guy on site that I will do my best trying to repair it and he agreed because he wanted it done. I had no father to teach me that, I had no school to learn the trade and I didn't have a mentor either. I was a technician trying to do my work and be good at it, why be good you ask? Because if it’s not good — it’s not. But you have to start somewhere.
So I had 2 most important advantages:
1 — Potential — it is something you know you have when you learn to believe in yourself.
2 — Timing — it is something that surprises you in the middle of your comfort zone usually, this is something you learn to use in your favor it’s also called “when the time is right”
The timing was right, although the weather wasn’t with -15 degree mark and wind chills of about -20 it was one of the coldest days of winter in Canada 2015. I was simply freezing and I had to work with bare hands since my gloves weren't so great for such detailed work so I used Vaseline lol yes it blocks the cold. I managed to take most of the covers of the steering column and next were the immobilizer antennas usually sit around the ignition cylinder itself. I got stuck with the most annoying screw ever! Right behind the steering with no space to sneak a screwdriver in between. I couldn’t take off the immobilizer antenna for 2 hours I was just being careful. In the end I found an angle fillips screwdriver and I managed to take all the electronic parts off the ignition cylinder and expose it. I had one last step — taking the ignition cylinder out of the column. There is a tiny pin holding the ignition cylinder in a locked position you can’t just pull it out unless you have better tools you will have to dig it out because it holds the ignition cylinder in a locked position, unfortunately I wasn’t so ready yet I didn’t give up because there is always a way. Sometimes the smartest thing to do is to leave it alone for a day, so I did after 4 hours I gave up and decided to comeback the next day. Fortunately the customer was very patient and polite with me and so I was reassured that I can continue tomorrow. I came back the next day, with new ideas and methods I spent more hours checking my methods and what do you think? After additional 5 hours the ignition was repaired and smooth as new. I managed to extract the pin and slide the ignition out by tapping on the ignition from one side and using broken key extraction tools to withdraw the pin out of the ignition on the other side at the same time. The cylinder just pops when you take the pin out. The customer was excited and happy for me managing to repair a Honda ignition for the first time. He witnessed how hard it was, i had to run inside the building every 20 or so minutes because it was freezing and I started getting frost bite marks.

This experience thought me that time is everything and a lot can be done with time, we simply need to ask ourselves. What did we do today to make a change inside ourselves? So we can influence a better tomorrow. Because tomorrow I will be telling other people how I felt in hopes to help them.

Eli Abbasov