OK before you all go screaming about how I am going to cause the next crime wave against car owners, if someone’s already considering breaking into your car, chances are they already know how to do this.

Secondly, if nothing else, maybe this video may inspire you to consider installing a $10 kill switch to make this process harder.

No keys and no help in sight? Here’s how to get your car moving again.


Hot-wiring a car is dangerous and is likely to damage your vehicle. It goes without saying that doing this to someone else’s car means a nice trip to the police station.

Step 1: Try a screwdriver

Pound a flat-head screwdriver into the ignition and turn it like a key. This will ruin the ignition cylinder, but it’s effective on many cars manufactured before the mid ’90s.

Step 2: Remove the ignition cover

If the car doesn’t start, pull the screwdriver out of the ignition and remove the screws in the panels on the top and bottom of the steering column. Next, use the flat-head screwdriver to pry off the plastic panels and expose the ignition cylinder and the wires running to it. Be gentle to minimize damage to the steering column.

Step 3: Identify the battery and starter wires

Identify the battery and starter wires. Generally the two red wires handle the car’s power, and the one or two brown wires connect to the starter. Consult your car’s manual to learn its specific wire color code.