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  • Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

    Hey All,

    I was at a gas station about a week ago, and after struggling to open my gas cap (eventually getting it open and filling up), I went to start my bike and the key snapped off in the ignition key hole. Thankfully I was able to get it out with some needle nose pliers, get a lift home to get my spare, and get my bike home. I applied some WD40 as well as some lock clearing oil as well, let it sit for a couple of days and am still having trouble getting both key holes to function properly. I understand this is now a 20 + y.o. bike now and these parts may need replacing, but I am wondering if anyone might have any ideas/advice of anything else to try?

  • #2
    Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

    I know too many fellow riders who have had problems like you're describing. Part of the solution can be as simple as installing a non locking gas cap. I have had one on both of my ZX14's and wouldn't go back. Use a good lock lubricant or lock graphite to try to sort things out. I know if the key gets bent even a little it can cause real problems in both the ignition and the tank. I think it's usually the tank lock that gets sticky. It seems filling the tank right to the top causes some kind of reaction in the lock and white residue builds up and causes the tank lock to seize up then the key gets bent and the problems exacerbate from there. I think you might want to get a couple of new keys to be on the safe side.


    "I tried being reasonable, I didn't like it!"

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    • #3
      Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

      Thanks! I will be looking into that today! I hadn't even thought of the keyless. The keys are already on order as the second one is starting to get twisted.

      Edit: Lickil I'm fairly handy with a set of Klein's and have been able to work the key straight again without damaging the integrity of the key to much. As previously stated, keys are on order.
      Last edited by nikm; 01-20-2015, 03:50 PM. Reason: Added info

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      • #4
        Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

        I had problems with my gas cap and fixed it with a good blast of CRC Contact Cleaner followed by 2-26. That was at least 2 years ago and it's been fine since.
        "You don't get slower with age, you just get more cautious." Michael Rutter

        06 Ocean Blue ZZR1200, the coolest colour.
        99 Yamaha R1

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        • #5
          Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

          I lube my key holes regularly but still have issues with my gas cap on the Connie. I'll get a keyless cap soon.
          KN, this ride's for You.

          http://i415.photobucket.com/albums/p...ps2ecwj35m.jpg

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          • #6
            Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

            I never lube mine but I always push down on the cap before turning the key; this take off a lot of friction and less force is needed on the key.

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            • #7
              Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

              Originally posted by Claude View Post
              I never lube mine but I always push down on the cap before turning the key; this take off a lot of friction and less force is needed on the key.
              That's a great idea.
              KN, this ride's for You.

              http://i415.photobucket.com/albums/p...ps2ecwj35m.jpg

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              • #8
                Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

                Also grease the metal tabs so they slide more easily as you turn the key.

                It's worth cleaning and lubing the cap regularly. A broken key can really spoil your day.
                "You don't get slower with age, you just get more cautious." Michael Rutter

                06 Ocean Blue ZZR1200, the coolest colour.
                99 Yamaha R1

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                • #9
                  Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

                  Originally posted by Moise View Post
                  Also grease the metal tabs so they slide more easily as you turn the key.

                  It's worth cleaning and lubing the cap regularly. A broken key can really spoil your day.
                  Yep. After putting a rag on top of the opening to the tank, I put a little 3-in-1 oil on the tabs and worked them in and out a few times, and then dabbed them off, to prevent any drips into the fuel. Then the cap was easier to close, and the key was easier to turn to open the cap.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

                    I will say there is no shortage of great advice! I took the bike to a locksmith today and he said it felt like something was broken inside. Ive found a couple of options for lockless, but I feel like, piece by piece as it arises, replacing with OEM to keep the bike as stock as I can. The lockless options were as much if not more expensive than OEM. My overall goal is to keep her as close to stock as possible as she only has 23000 miles on her and still in good shape.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

                      The gas cap on the R1 has been stiff to open lately, so I took my own advice and cleaned and greased the metal tab. Much easier to open and close now.
                      "You don't get slower with age, you just get more cautious." Michael Rutter

                      06 Ocean Blue ZZR1200, the coolest colour.
                      99 Yamaha R1

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                      • #12
                        Re: Gas Cap Key Hole & Ignition Key Hole

                        Went to Jay at Rotten 2 The Core Customs (local guy, local shop), keeps crazy hours, which works for my shift work, he pulled the filler cap out, disassembled it cleaned it/oiled it reassembled and installed it. Works like new and he gave me a few pointers for maintenance and said it was on the house! I love supporting local/less or non commercial as much as I can. 15 mins of his time and I made another contact. Thanks again for all the insight!
                        Last edited by nikm; 01-25-2015, 09:11 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Now I have an urge to go out and service the cap on the VMAX The zzr one is leaking and rusty anyway so that needs replacing in the course of the revitalisation it's going to get whether itwants it or not

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                          • #14
                            Ordered a complete new cap today, worked out cheaper than just a seal on its own
                            when it turns up i'll see if I can change the lock/key set up from the old one so I only need one key for the whole bike still

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