Being locked out of your car is every driver’s worst nightmare come true! It doesn’t matter how careful you are about your keys, the odds that you will lock them in your car one day are quite high. According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), more than four million people lock themselves out of their vehicles annually and this number is steadily increasing with each year. Highly sophisticated anti-theft systems and keyless ignition are being blamed for this phenomenon.
Irrespective of how you got locked out of your car, here are some ways in which you can deal with the situation.
Locked Out, Really?
Panic hits the minute you realize that you have left your keys inside your car. So, first, take a few deep breaths and calm down a bit. Check all the doors to see if they are all really locked or there is one which is unlocked. Usually we tend to focus on the driver’s side door and completely miss out on the rest. It just might be your lucky day and you may be able to get to your keys through an unlocked door. In hatchbacks or similar models where the trunk is not separated from the car cabin, an unlocked trunk just might do the trick!
Remote Unlocking to the Rescue
Some car manufacturers include a telematics system with their vehicles which enables you to unlock your car by simply dialing the provided toll-free number. A lot of these now also come with free smart-phone apps that can help you unlock the car without having to reach out to the manufacturer.
You can try to get the door unlocked with some out-of-the-box thinking such as using a coat hanger or a piece of metal wire or something similar. The aim here is to slip this wire between the door and the door frame to reach it to the lock. However, this can result in damage to your car if not done properly and that is something you should think about before moving ahead.
Seek Professional Help
If you subscribe to one of the organizations that offer roadside assistance for a fee, such as AAA, now would be a good time to make use of it. They can send a locksmith your way though it might be a chargeable service. If you are not a member of any such organization, check to see if your car insurance, credit card, or cell phone plan includes roadside assistance. New cars come with warranties and some of these might cover roadside assistance.
Get it Towed
And when there are no other viable options left, the trusty tow truck can come to your rescue. Call a service that is in proximity to your location for a speedy solution. Get your car towed to the nearest dealership and they might be able to provide you with an emergency key to unlock the doors and trunk. Remember, this key cannot be used for driving. They are also likely to ask for proof of ownership before handing over the key.
However, if it’s an emergency situation – for instance, your baby or pet is inside the locked car, especially during summer, the best option might be to break open a window or call the police for help immediately. Once you have managed to extricate yourself out of this sticky situation, take steps to ensure that you are never locked out of your car ever again!