For ages now we’ve had intermittent issues with the ignition key in our Defender. Namely the fact that It has been very difficult to turn or just not turning at all. The first time this happened was a couple of years ago … when still under warranty but hey … back then we were always able to get it going after a few attempts. At the time we put it down to the quirky nature of our defender! It occurred several more times over the years until recently it became a lot more frequent … to the stage where by I had to walk home from the shops … heaven forbid I get some exercise! I was reluctant to venture far in case I got stuck out in the bush somewhere!
We went to the locksmith on the advice of the mechanics but no they sent us back to land rover & yep we discover it is yet another known issue … the barrel becomes warn & needs to be replaced … seems it’s quite common with other models as well … namely the older discos … not so frequent in later models.
With this barrel issue we had another quirky behaviour … the car would turn over but then cut out hummmm? When this had happened before we put it down to the something to do with what was happening with the barrel. But no it happened again the day after we had that replaced … what now is it the battery? Well I had the RACQ guy come out & I learnt something new. He tested the battery that was OK … not 100% but not the issue here. I tried to start the car & it died. He then had a go with the same result. He then got me to get the remote & lock & unlock the car … well what do you know it turned over first go hummm … it seems the immobiliser remote device is playing up. The RACQ guy explained to me that when the car is unlocked if the immobiliser is not deactivated the little red light on the dash will stay solid.Now … TIC … I don’t have the colour hair often associated with a certain adjective I’m also not car savvy but when things are explained to me I can generally get a grasp. I had no real understanding of the little flashing red light … I did know it flashes when the car is locked so the car is immobilised but payed no particular attention to it beyond that. It seems that each time we have been unable to get the car started the light must have been solid – something to take note of next time … as I said I learnt something new. This makes us wonder if that was the issue all the time & not the barrel? The car was simply immobilised & we wore the barrel down by our constant attempts at turning the key! The guys at Land Rover did say that the barrel was quite warn & it was difficult to remove the key sometimes so it probably was up for a replacement. Maybe our remote device needs a new battery … I then went searching for our spare one just in case! Will pay more attention to the little flashing light in the future.
The RACQ guy also pointed out a whole lot of other facts regarding the immobiliser that, when I think about it are very obvious, but I won’t go into those that’ll show that sometimes I am that hair colour : )
Live & learn all the time! Things seen so simply when you know how they work!