View Full Version : Key won't turn

12-08-2013, 07:31 PM
Battery was low,charged it. Now key goes in but won't turn. Is this a common problem? Is a 2009 with low mileage.

12-08-2013, 07:46 PM
low battery voltage can cause this problem.........is the charged battery really charged??????? Best thing you can hope for is the battery is bad.

More info and others past experience:


12-08-2013, 07:47 PM
I've had various ECU's go offline due to low battery state, and NOT come back online after a charge until I did a 'reboot'...

Unplug the battery disconnect, located above the throttle/pedal, for abooot 30 seconds.


12-08-2013, 08:05 PM
it is common on other vehicles if the steering wheel is turned after the van is parked just before the key is turned off, creating a hard lock, with the wheels in a forced state, not the usual relaxed state, corrected by turning the steering wheel while putting the key in

Aqua Puttana
12-08-2013, 08:17 PM
There are some threads here which make it sound like the only solution is fairly major parts replacement. There are a few simpler things which people have learned to try. It is worth the effort to follow links to get to them.

I've tried to get some of the info together in this post.


Good luck. vic

12-08-2013, 10:15 PM
Thanks for all the replys! My battery voltage reads 12.5, headlights are bright. I have two keys neither work. Mileage comes on when I open the door. Steering wheel is locked, I have tried different ways to free it. Seems like no power to key lock.Help!

12-08-2013, 10:26 PM
Have you disconnected the negative terminal on your battery to allow all the systems to power down/reset/ and reboot when the power has been removed
for 5-10 minutes?
Have you replaced the batteries in your key fobs?
Have you gently turned/jiggled the steering wheel to see if you can get the steering lock to release? Do it gently, it takes no force to release.
If none of these DIY remedies work you may have to tow it to a Mercedes Benz Sprinter Commercial dealer for diagnosis and repair.
Hope this helps,

12-08-2013, 10:27 PM
It is possible to have 12.5 volts at the battery but due to poor cables and connections not to have full voltage at the fuse boxes and other critical locations. I would try measuring voltage at the engine fuse box and at the cabin fuse box to be sure the voltage is getting those locations.

This assumes every fuse in both fuse boxes has been checked and rechecked and during charging and or jumping an accidental "polarity problem" did not occur??????????

After these checks things look like a dealer visit may be next........as other posts state several problems from key cylinder to one or more control units.

12-11-2013, 04:39 AM
When you first insert the key you should hear
Steering lock release.Key will not turn until
Steering releases.
Steering will not release if PCM doesnot
Recognize the transponder in key.

04-21-2019, 05:43 AM
I’m having same problem, insert key and nothing. Steering won’t unlock, key won’t turn, rocked st wheel, New Batts in fob, disconnected Negative lead for 10 min, M/Meter reads 12.1volts could Battery be the Problem? How can I release Steering Lock?.

04-21-2019, 09:08 AM
12.1V is definitely low. Full charge would be around 12.6 -- there's not a lot of wiggle room there.

According to one chart I have, 12.1 lies between 50 & 60%, another chart suggests less than 50% charged. Charge it up, let it rest for 15 minutes, then check. (Should be @ 12.6 or more.)

04-21-2019, 04:18 PM
The "key won't turn" is controlled by a mechanical link to the shifter (i.e. a bicycle-brake-like push/pull cable).
If the shifter isn't in Park, the key won't turn.

Try poking a pen into the little "door" just below the "D" symbol on the shifter ... that releases the interlock.
Then run the shifter up and down and return it to Park. See if that frees up the key.

Also: the Sprinter requires that you step on the brake: if the brake pedal switch fails, it won't let the key turn.