Start my car without a key

I am sick and tired of my car’s ignition problems. Would there be an easy way to make my car such that it would start without a key? My car is old and I am not worried about theft. I just want it to start whenever I turn the ignition with or w/o a key.

Take your key and superglue it in the lock.

Technically, yes. Easily, no. The key isn’t a simple on/off switch. It has several different modes, including telling the starter when to spin up.
The easiest way would be to have a switch that turns the car from off to run and a momentary push button for the starter. However, your car likely has a security system that prevents it from running without a key in, or near, the ignition. You’d have to bypass that in one way or another.

You didn’t specify what you mean by ignition problems. Depending on that exact issue, this project would likely either not fix the problem or be more expensive and problematic than fixing it properly.

I’m going to say technically yes, easily sorta. Here’s what an ignition switch looks like for most cars of that vintage, it’s held to the back of the lock cylinder with 2 screws. Pull those screws out, stick a screwdriver in the slot, and turn. Voila.

If your switch itself is bad, they’re not expensive and they’re very easy to replace.

The real challenge is the anti-theft steering lock, which is tied into the lock cylinder itself in some way. You can solve that problem with a drill or angle grinder depending on your car’s exact design, but since you have a key you can just turn it to unlock the steering lock and then snap it off in the lock cylinder. Maybe glue it in for good measure. I wouldn’t advise this – if the lock manages to turn back and lock the steering on the highway, you’re going to have a bad time – but it’s simple. Better to find out how to disable the steering lock correctly.
(unless your car is pre-90s, in which case it might not have a steering lock. Lucky you!)

Many cars, even those from the 90’s, won’t start with out a, or the, key in the cylinder. I have a 98 GMC Sierra, that won’t start unless the cylinder is turned. It’s there specifically to make sure someone didn’t yank the cylinder out and is attempting to start the car with a screwdriver. The other is the chipped keys. Either with a resister or RFID chip built into the key.
Many of these work similarly and there’s an endless amount of web sites and threads on car/truck forums that will help you bypass them.

TLDR; the OP could certainly try pulling out the cylinder and starting it with a screwdriver, but I wouldn’t count on it working.

I broke the old shitty key off in a Jeep Wrangler once and despite an hour of trying I couldn’t remove the broken piece. From then on you could start it any time you wanted without bothering with a key.

But it had an ignition you could grip and turn with your hands, not like most cars today.

I heard of old cars (like 1980s vintage) where the ignition lock was so worn out you could just turn it and start the car with no key in it. You might be able to do something like pull out the lock cylinder, remove the pins, and put it back, and get the same result as having a really worn out lock. If you’ve got the sort of lock a lot of American cars used in the 1980s, with the “wings” that stick out around the outside of the key, like this, for example, you’re good to go. If it’s the more modern kind that’s just a keyhole then just shove a popsicle stick or screwdriver or something in there and turn it.

But since you didn’t say what sort of “ignition problems” it has I have no idea if it would solve your problem or not.

ETA: Partially ninjaed by Joey P and his much simpler solution of just pulling out the cylinder and starting it with a screwdriver.

Ahh, I forgot about GM’s security key in the 90s.

RFID keys didn’t catch on until the 2000s so I doubt the OP is dealing with that. But yes, if it’s a GM that’s an added hurdle. I’m sure it’s not terribly difficult to bypass since I think it’s just a voltage/resistance check, but that’s more than just snipping and twisting.

That was steronz, I was only commenting on why it might not work.
Also, we don’t know what the actual problem is. If you have to jiggle the key to get it working, that’s one thing. But something else like a broken wire somewhere between the ignition switch and the ECU, a faulty security system or an intermittent problem with the neutral safety switch are entirely different. They might all seem like the same problem, but replacing the switch with a button won’t fix them.

The kid had a '93 Mercury Tracer (Mercury’s Escort) that refused to start one day. Turns out the plastic bit that the lock cylinder turned in the switchery doohickey snapped off. After a quick trip to Radio Shack and AutoZone for some parts and a bit of redneck engineering, a couple hours later she ended up with a car that worked thusly:

  1. Insert key, turn key to unlock steering wheel and shifter.
  2. Flip big toggle switch to energize the car’s circuits.
  3. Push old-fashioned start button switch to start car.

The only problem turned out to be the kid’s aggressive style of flipping toggle switches which broke two of them. I replaced the second one with a science lab style 50 amp knife switch. She never broke it.
I guess she got another five years out of the car after I rigged it.

So, I suppose something like this can be done to your car. How involved it would be depends on what model and year your car is.

It’s been awhile since I dealt with non-starting cars. Back then I parked on a slope. To start I rolled downhill and slammed the manual tranny into gear to kick the engine over. Cars are better now and I have jumper cables.

OP doesn’t say exactly how old his old car is. Really old cars (1950’s (?) vintage) did have push-button starters just like Joey P says here.