What to Do During a Car Lockout

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car keys sitting on a countertop
Getting locked out of your car is common, don't panic

In the Event of a Car Lockout, Stay Calm, Cool, and Collected

It’s easy to slip into a state of panic when we lock ourselves out of our car. However, it’s important to attempt to remain as calm as possible. By panicking, you run the risk of making an irrational decision that makes the situation worse. 

Take a couple of deep breaths and attempt to analyze your situation with a calm state of mind. Try to remember that there are ways to get out of this situation. While it may be a minor speed bump in your day, locking your keys in your car isn’t the end of the world. 

Are There Children or Pets in the Car?

Are there children or pets in the car? If so, time is of the essence. If a child is old enough, they may be able to unlock the doors themselves. If not, it might be time to call 911 for emergency help. Also, take note of the weather. If the day is hot and your child is too small to unlock the doors themselves or there is a pet in the car, you should not hesitate to call emergency services.

In the situation that there are no people or pets in the car, we recommend against calling 9/11 or emergency services. Being locked out of a car in and of itself is not an emergency unless a life is in danger.

Call A Friend or Family Member

If there are no children or animals in immediate danger, try to avoid calling 911. Instead, call a friend or family member to see if they can provide any assistance. They may have a spare key or the tools required to open a locked door. 

Locking yourself out of your car often means you’re standing around hopeless in a parking lot or on the side of the road. This can be dangerous depending on the time of day and location. A friend or family member can stay with you until help arrives to ensure you’re not alone. Even if they can’t directly help you open the door, they can help by providing you company and shelter. 

Solve the Car Lockout Yourself

You can always try breaking into your car. You may get some suspicious looks from passersby, but you’re technically not doing anything illegal. There are several ways you can try to break into your own car if the situation is dire enough. 

For example, if your car has post locks – the type of lock that sticks straight up on the window sill – you can unlock your door using a shoelace. Eyeball around five inches from the middle of the lace, tie a slip knot and work the shoelace between the doorframe and the door. With some finesse, you should be able to loop the slip knot around the post lock. Pull both ends of the shoelace to grip the post and pull upward while tightening the knot.

Call A Tow Company

Depending on your insurer, you may have free access to a tow company. While locking yourself out of your car doesn’t mean your car needs to be towed, a tow truck company can still provide assistance. Many towing professionals carry tools with them in their tow trucks. These tools can help unlock your door. 

A Locksmith Can Help During a Car Lockout

If you cannot open your door yourself or don’t have access to a tow company, it’s time to call a professional locksmith. Depending on your area, most locksmith companies offer emergency services. These services are available around the clock, as locksmithing emergencies can happen at any time. 

After making the call, a locksmith will be at your location as soon as possible. They come well-equipped and well-prepared, so they can help you regain access to your car no matter the make, model, or year. We highly recommend calling a professional locksmith, as they can help you regain access to your car without damaging the doors or locks. 

Locking yourself out of your car doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Calling a professional locksmith can help you regain access to your car in no time at all. Our team at eLocal recommends finding a professional locksmith in your area so you’re prepared for when disaster strikes.