How To Use A Slim Jim

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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Forgetful motorists often ponder breaking into their own cars to retrieve their keys but aren't sure how to use a slim jim. Most travelers don't even have slim jims at their disposal should they need one, but there are other objects such as wire coat hangers that can work in their place. Still, there's no substitute for a high-quality spring steel slim jim to unlock your car when your keys are missing.

The best way to learn how to use a slim jim is to follow the instructions in your manual. Some slim jims are better suited to opening some types of cars and not others, and any good slim jim will tell you which makes and models are easiest to enter with your particular device. Using a slim jim that's too thin, thick, or short for your car may not only prove ineffective, it can do permanent damage to your window, door, or locking mechanism as well.

How To Use a Slim Jim: A Hands-On Guide

If you're using a slim jim for the first time, expect a bit of a challenge. You'll have to penetrate the seal between your driver- or passenger-side window and the rubber piece of weatherstrip around its edges. From there, lower your slim jim down toward the control arm directly in front of or behind the locking mechanism. Your instrument should be long enough to let you disengage the lock and enter the car without breaking in.

Ideally, you'll want to learn how to use a slim jim before an emergency arises. If it's a matter of life and death, pass up your slim jims and auto jigglers for sheer force. Replacing a window is obviously a small price to pay in return for access to your car in dire circumstances.

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