This LRO reader emailed LRO.firstname.lastname@example.org to ask our experts why his Defender TDCi's key won't turn.
My 2007 Defender TDCi's key doesn't turn the driver's door lock one way or another. Luckily, the remote fob locks and unlocks the vehicle as it should.
I've removed the door card to inspect the lock assembly and nothing seems out of place. But when I try to move the linkage attached to the door lock barrel inside the door cavity, it doesn't turn one way or another.
The key fits well in the lock, and it starts and turns off the engine fine.
I was interested to find that the door lock lever assembly has no single screw as the workshop manual implies but has a tiny clip (I think!).
Also, how can I adjust the door latch mentioned below if I need to ? Is it complicated?
Joseph Serra, Brympton, Gibraltar
Have you ever been able to turn the key in the lock at any time during your ownership? If not, it may even be that the previous owner changed the handle and/or barrel lock and therefore the original key for the car is incorrect for that lock.
If you're 100 per cent sure you're using the correct key, try disconnecting the link rod from the door lock barrel - does the key in the barrel then turn freely? If so, the latch is either faulty or needs adjustment. But if you're still unable to turn the key, that means the barrel/handle is a t fault and needs replacing.
As for adjustment, there are quite a few very small and fiddly link rods attached to the door latch, some of which are threaded for subtle adjustment. The only way to fine-tune the adjustment in the latch is to adjust each link rod individually and re-try the latch operation until you're satisfied with it.
Often, this fails to cure a problem and a new latch is required.
This workshop advice appeared in the April 2016 issue of LRO. Back issues are available to download on digital devices here.