How to Open a Car Door With a Hanger

We all lock our keys in our cars sometimes. You take the keys out of the ignition, get distracted, set them on the seat beside you, get out of the car and automatically lock the door behind you--without your keys in hand. Unless you're fortunate enough to keep a spare key handy, you'll need to call a locksmith and pay a fee to open your door. That is, unless you know how to unlock your car door with a hanger.

Wire clothes hanger
credit: Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images

Step 1

Untwist the metal in the hanger to form a long piece of thick wire. Bend a few inches of the tip to form a 45-degree angle.

Step 2

Wedge the end of the coat hanger between the top or the side of the window and the weather stripping on the door frame. Work the hanger in a little at a time until it is far enough inside the car to reach the button that will unlock the door.

Step 3

Work carefully and patiently to move the hanger into a position where you can use its tip to lift up the button to unlock the door. If necessary, remove the hanger and readjust the angle of the hook you made in order to better reach the door lock.

Step 4

Lift the button with the end of the hanger to unlock the door.

Devra Gartenstein

Devra Gartenstein

Devra Gartenstein is an omnivore who has published several vegan cookbooks. She has owned and run small food businesses for 30 years.