In the dead of winter, a relatively rare occurrence of frozen door locks is increasingly possible. Volkswagen Passat owners who find their door locks frozen can seek help from their roadside assistance agency or take prudent steps to remedy the situation themselves. Conventional wisdom inspires many vehicle owners who discover their locks frozen to heat the locks in various ways to alleviate the circumstance. In fact, heating the lock can cause more damage to the lock and turn a temperature problem into a more significant and costly repair or replacement need. Follow this guide to overcome a frozen Volkswagen Passat door lock without damaging the lock itself.
Start by tapping the door lock with a heavy object. Use an ice-scraper or tire iron and medium strokes so as to not damage the lock. Oftentimes you will be able to break the ice that has formed around the lock. Test the results of your effort by inserting the key. If you are able to insert the key all the way in, try turning the key to either side gently. If the lock is still frozen, forceful turning of the key can result in the key being broken off inside the lock. If the key does not unlock the door, move on to the next step.
Spray de-icer into the Passat’s key hole. Use a generous spray of 4 to 5 seconds and then allow the solution to stand for at least 10 minutes. After waiting the prescribed interval, insert the key and against attempt to turn it and unlock the door. If you are still unsuccessful, you will need to take additional measures to get through the ice.
Coat the key with a graphite lubricant and reinsert it into the lock. Pull the key out and slide it into the lock 3 or 4 times before attempting to turn the door lock again.
Finally, if your previous measures have been proven ineffective, you will need to heat the lock in a measured way. The simplest means by which you can warm the lock is by using a household hair dryer. Connect a power cord from your home or garage and plug the dryer in. Set the hairdryer on a medium setting and turn it on. Make sweeping passes over the lock not to exceed 15 seconds at a time. After several passes over the lock, insert the key and attempt to open the door. Repeat the sweeping passes with the hairdryer until the lock is operable again.