Are Volvos hard to break into?

Safety is one word that is synonymous with Volvo cars.  Over the years, Volvo has been able to maintain that status, especially in protecting both drivers and road users. But what about safeguarding the car? Are Volvos hard to break into?

Volvos are hard to break into because of a design mechanism; the doors are strong and tight fitted. Most people, especially in the 80s and 90s, found it difficult to break into a Volvo. However, people daily employ new hacks and means to break into Volvos.

Why Volvos are hard to break into

While Volvo designed features to make their cars safe for drivers and road users, they also want your car to be safe. Therefore, they made the doors strong and tightly fitted, so people wouldn’t easily be able to break in. This, however, does not mean that people do not break into Volvo cars at all, just that the rate is low compared to other cars.

The difficulty of breaking into a Volvo depends on majorly two things. One, if the car is yours; two, if the car is not yours. What does this mean? A Volvo owner that wants to break into his car would take his time to achieve this.

But for those who are not the owners, in reality, they would always want to get in real fast. While trying to get in fast, the fear of getting caught, makes it more difficult for them.

A Volvo is not a car that you can use just anything at your disposal to open. Getting in without the key requires certain skills, tools, and time. If these are not in place, the easy job may become difficult.

  Can you sleep in a Volvo XC90?

So why do people break into Volvos?

Reasons people break into Volvos

A reasonable thing would be to quietly open your car with a key or keyfob and enter. But perhaps that’s not an option. So, why break into a Volvo?

  • The owner forgets the key or keyfob inside the car, especially for Volvo models that lock without the key or key fob.
  • The key is broken
  • Keyfob is faulty, or power is out
  • Key or keyfob gets lost
  • Car theft: thieves who steal people’s car

How to enter your Volvo without a key/keyfob

There are different ways to get into your Volvo if you get locked out. But which method to employ may depend on why you were locked out, your car model/year, the tools at your disposal, and what services your insurance will cover.

There are several approaches you can take:

Using a Slim Jim

A Slim Jim is a tiny metal strip made from string steel, about 2-4cm wide and 60cm long. This method is ideal for Volvo owners who forgot their keys or keyfob in their car. If this happens, it means your Volvo is one of those models that can be locked without the key or keyfob.

To open the door, insert this tool into the tiny space between your window and door frame. Try to spot the location of the lock, hold the slim Jim tightly, then pull it up. This should open the doors and let you inside to get your key.

Inflatable wedge

This tool consists of an inflatable part that can slide between a car’s door and weather stripping together with a hand pump. It uses air to open a car. To use one, place the air pump bag between the door and weather stripping. Then, using the hand pump, expand the bag.

This should create a space wide enough to slip in tools to open the car. The inflatable wedge works like a screwdriver, but while a screwdriver may dent your car, the wedge won’t. However, a quality wedge is pretty expensive.

A coat hanger

This method is suitable for an older Volvo model that has its locks placed horizontally. Get a coat hanger, straighten it, then twist the end to form a hook (L or J shape). Place the hook around the lock, hold tight the coat hanger and pull up. Enter your car and get the keys.

  Are Volvos expensive to maintain?

Unlocking remotely using door lock/unlock features

This method is for newer Volvos that have the car lock/unlock remote features, such as the T8 model. It comes in handy for drivers who forgot their key or keyfob in their cars. The feature helps lock, unlock and do many other things on your vehicle. You can access this feature using the Volvo app, apple watch, or the Volvo On Call call center.

Volvo App

To unlock your car using the Volvo app:

  1. Ensure the app is up to date with necessary information set up already
  2. Log into the app
  3. Select doors and window
  4. Press unlock (it has a padlock symbol)
  5. Insert your password
  6. You should receive a notification on your status bar that your car is unlocking.
  7. The app will ask you to open your car’s tailgate to unlock the other doors. You must open the tailgate within two minutes, or the car will lock again.

Apple watch

To use this feature, ensure your apple watch is synchronized with your smartphone and make sure your Apple watch software is up to date. Also, ensure your pin is already set, then follow the same process the app uses to unlock the car.

Volvo On Call

All you need do is call Volvo On Call at 1-855-399-1576 and request them to unlock your car.

The operator will ask for a four-digit pin which you must have set before getting locked out. Once you provide this pin, the Volvo call center will unlock your car.

Using a locksmith

This method is ideal for people who have lost or forgotten their keys or keyfob in their Volvos. A locksmith has all the tools and skills to open your car without causing paint damage. They can also make a new key for you (if you misplaced yours). But you must prove that you’re the vehicle owner by showing identity documents.

Other Methods

Other means may include using a screwdriver or breaking the lower window glass to get in. Screwdrivers not used carefully will damage your car’s interior/exterior. While these may help you get in, you will have to spend money to fix the car damage afterwards.

  How long do Volvo batteries last?

Call Volvo car assistance

Volvo has customer service centers. If your car does not have the remote lock/unlock feature, you could call Volvo customer service for assistance. Someone will come to help you out. But you must provide proof that you own the car.


Which Volvo models are the hardest to break into?

All Volvo doors are built strong and fitted tightly. How easy or hard it is for one to break in depends on the method used and the owner. A thief who hurriedly wants to break in makes the job difficult. Worse is if he doesn’t have the right tools/skills.

This is compared to an owner who has all the necessary papers to prove he owns the car. He will carefully utilize the right tools to open his car without fear. He can call for roadside assistance or even contact Volvo customer care for assistance.

Can a thief break into my Volvo?

Yes, a thief can break into your Volvo. It may be difficult but not impossible. As manufacturers make advances in car protection technology, these thieves also look for new means to steal. Do your part in keeping your car safe. Install an alarm system if you don’t have one; park your cars carefully; and keep valuables inside our car out of sight.

What should I do if someone steals my Volvo?

Report the theft to your local police station. They should be able to trace the car using the tracker installed in your car. There are also Volvo keyfobs that help you trace your car. As long you have it with you, you can get the car’s location and other vehicle information.

Osuagwu Solomon

When I am not writing about cars, I’m in a mechanic garage troubleshooting and fixing cars. I started writing automotive articles to provide accurate information to car owners and fellow mechanics.

Recent Posts