Ziptide, August 2014

GM Key Blank Recall


Editor’s Note: The following letters are in response to our Notes from the Editor enewsletter about the GM ignition key recall. Read it here:





Could this oval hole issue turn into a potential locksmith industry wide liability issue due to the fact that we have, and sell, many keys with that configuration? Does this render all of our inventory obsolete without replacement inventory available? Does someone just using one of the available key blanks set oneself up for litigation? Just a thought. I'm going to check my liability insurance.

Thank you for the heads up.

Joe Sebren

Security Lock Service





FWIW, when the “long slot” GM keys first came out, there were engineering/design issues.  Not because of a way-in-the-future potential recall of such magnitude, but simply because they would not fit on pegboard hooks in the showroom!   Evidently the design originated with those who never hung key blanks—or had to put them on a key ring of any substantial size. As the saying goes… “if it were COMMON sense, there would be a lot more of it!”

Sadly, not sure the “small centered hole” will be much of an improvement for those of us who work with such items in the real world; suppose time will tell.

Jill M. Reed

Reed’s Lock & Access Control Systems, Inc. 

Annville, PA 




Poor choice of words “only about a dozen deaths… “Had any of my loved ones been among that dozen (or so), I’d feel even more strongly about that.

Furthermore, GM’s initial response, after acknowledging that there “might be” a problem, was to weigh the costs of a corrective recall  vs any client casualties, ultimately deciding that customer attrition and some investments in PR-driven spin  would be more cost-effective than a recall.

A $35 million fine doesn’t address the problem either. That and other monies should be earmarked to compensate the victims.

Allen Ackerman

SFO Facilities Lockshop

San Francisco, CA


Send Your Letters

The editors of Locksmith Ledger welcome reader input. Share your comments and suggestions on any of our articles or general industry trends and topics.

Our mailing address is Ziptide, Locksmith Ledger, 3030 Salt Creek Lane, Suite 200, Arlington Heights, IL 60005. Letters can also be faxed to 866-827-8020 or E-mailed to