How to Start a Car with a Flathead Screwdriver

If you ever find yourself stranded somewhere with a dead battery and no jumper cables, don’t panic. You can still get your car running again with nothing more than a simple flathead screwdriver! 

How to Start a Car With a Flathead Screwdriver

It may seem like an unconventional approach, but it’s actually quite easy to do and could save you from having to call for roadside assistance or a tow truck. 

In this blog post, we will explore the step-by-step process of how to start a car with a flathead screwdriver so that next time you are in need of jumpstarting your vehicle without any help from others, you know exactly what to do!

What Can I Use to Start My Car Without a Key?

If you’re in a pinch and don’t have access to your car keys, there are several methods of starting a car without a key. One way is to use a flathead screwdriver as an ignition switch. This involves manipulating the ignition system by pushing the screwdriver into the slot where the key would normally go and then turning it clockwise until the engine starts.

It can also be used if your keys are broken or lost, and you don’t want to pay for replacement keys or locksmith services. However, this method should only be attempted if absolutely necessary since it does pose some risks to your vehicle and may void any existing warranty on the car.

Another option for those who don’t have access to their keys is to use a hot wire method. This requires the user to bypass the ignition system and make contact with two of the car’s terminals that are used for starting it up.

The wires must be removed from their connectors and touched together until the engine starts. Although this is an effective way to start a car without keys, it can be dangerous if done incorrectly, as it can cause serious damage to your vehicle’s electrical system.

If you don’t have access to any type of screwdriver or want a simpler solution, there are also some keyless entry systems available. These allow you to enter your car without having to use traditional keys and are much safer than trying to start it manually.

Keyless entry systems work by using radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology to detect when the car owner is near and then unlock the doors. They are a convenient way of getting into your car without having to worry about losing your keys or leaving them in the car.

Keyless Entry Systems Work by Using Radio-frequency

10 Methods on How to Start a Car with a Flathead Screwdriver

1. Find the Ignition Slot:

Before starting a car with a flathead screwdriver, you must first locate the ignition slot. This can be found by inserting the key into the driver-side door and turning it clockwise until it clicks into place.

The ignition slot is usually located around the steering column near where your feet rest when driving. If you cannot locate the ignition slot, consult your car’s owner manual for further guidance. While you are sitting in the driver’s seat, you should be able to see and access the ignition slot.

2. Insert Screwdriver Into Slot:

Next, take your flathead screwdriver and insert it into the ignition slot. Make sure that the blade of the screwdriver fits tightly into the slot so that it does not slip out when turning. You may need to wiggle or adjust the angle of insertion in order for a tight fit.

Once you have the screwdriver in, grip it firmly and begin to turn. When doing this, you will need to turn the screwdriver in a counter-clockwise motion. This will trigger the starter within the engine and begin the ignition process.

Turn the Screwdriver in a Counter-clockwise Motion

3. Turn Key Clockwise:

Once the screwdriver is securely inserted, turn the key clockwise using your right hand while applying downward pressure with your left hand on top of the blade of the screwdriver to help hold it in place.

This will begin to engage an internal starter motor and crank shaft, which will start up your car’s engine once enough revolutions are achieved by rotating your key further clockwise as necessary. Be sure not to rotate the key too quickly or abruptly, as this could damage your car’s starter motor. Once you hear the engine begin to turn over, you can stop turning the key, as your car is now running.

If your engine does not start after a few revolutions of the key, try repeating the process once more. If you find that it still does not start, then you may want to contact a licensed mechanic for further assistance.

4. Increase Rotation Speed:

After a few rotations, you will need to increase speed in order for your engine to start up successfully. To do this, use a steady grip on both hands and apply more pressure with each rotation as if you were winding up a watch or clock mechanism–but don’t overdo it!

If done correctly, you should soon hear the sound of your engine beginning to turn over as fuel ignites inside its cylinders and pistons begin their work in starting up your car’s internal combustion process.

Soon Hear the Sound of Your Engine Beginning

5. Check Oil Levels:

Before revving up your engine, it is important to check oil levels by removing any dipstick present under the hood of the vehicle and wiping off the liquid with a cloth; reinsert the dipstick and pull out again – check the reading found against the manufacturer’s recommended level range (usually between ‘max’/’min’ marks).

If low, add additional oil as necessary before continuing operation; conversely, if too high, drain excess fluid away slowly using a drain plug located at the bottom side nearest ground-level surface area, ensuring all safety precautions are observed throughout (including wearing protective eyewear).

6. Activate Ignition Switch:

Once oil levels have been checked and adjusted accordingly, activate the ignition switch either through the use of a traditional car key or an alternative device such as a universal remote control unit (if equipped) – this will cause the starter motor to fire up.

Allowing spark plugs within the engine cylinder chamber supplies the required electrical charge needed for the combustion process to occur, thus kickstarting the car engine from the cold state (note, however, that some vehicles may require multiple attempts before the successful starting procedure is achieved).

7. Wait For the Temperature Gauge To Rise:

Following successful activation of the ignition switch, wait for the temperature gauge within the dashboard area display screen line-up to move steadily upwards towards the mid-point setting (around 70°C) – this indicates that the coolant system has effectively heated up sufficiently enough to enable full power generation through the internal combustion process.

Without overheating, risk damage occurs either rapidly changing weather conditions or extreme road terrain conditions being encountered during the journey ahead (consult vehicle manual beforehand to ascertain exact optimum settings specific model type). 

8. Accelerate Gradually:

Accelerate Gradually to First Gear to Your Car

When the temperature gauge has reached a suitable level, accelerate gradually to first gear allowing the clutch to release slowly enough to allow a smooth transition from a stationary position forward motion yet quickly enough to keep the momentum going preventing stalling from taking place – aim build speed around 30km/hr before shifting second gear continuing build speed based individual driving style preferences influences road terrains being navigated at the time (elevation changes/windy environments, etc.) 

9. Monitor Rev Counter Regularly:

As acceleration continues, keep a regular eye rev counter present dashboard display line-up – aim to maintain optimal revolutions per minute safely balanced against difficulty accelerating, making sure to keep it below the red line.

This can help avoid engine damage and increase performance. Additionally, ensuring that your car is in gear before accelerating or applying the flathead screwdriver can help to prevent further problems from arising.

10. Adjust Gear Shifts Accordingly :

Regularly Adjust Gear Shifts According to Criteria Discussed

Finally, regularly adjust gear shifts according to criteria discussed in previous points depending on the overall comfort level experienced in driving conditions encountered during a particular journey instance concerned – try to experiment with different speed combinations to find the ideal balance between maximum performance efficiency and cost-effective fuel consumption rates.

For example, the third and fourth gears often provide higher acceleration potential, yet the sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth gears often deliver a smoother ride with less fuel used. The key to successful car management is finding the right combination of gears best suited for the given driving environment and conditions.


If you find yourself in a situation where you need to start your car with a flathead screwdriver, don’t panic. Follow the steps outlined in this blog post, and you’ll be on your way in no time. And next time, make sure to keep a spare key handy, so you don’t have to go through all of this again! We hope this guide on how to start a car with a flathead screwdriver was helpful. Please share it with your friends on social media if you find it useful. And be sure to check back here soon for more informative guides like this one.

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Enrique Howard

Hi, I am Enrique. I started my professional life as a handyman and did a lot of external and internal repair of home and office with a little bit of electric and plumbing support. I have extensive experience in tools testing such as drilling, turning, milling, and non-conventional machining like EDM. So let me help you on your journey towards becoming an enlightened DIYer with amazing tools that you can use on your project.

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