Howdy all. I personally hate the key in ignition alarm in my vehicles. I'm too often working on something that needs the door open and key in, or at least want the door open for the stereo. Pretty much every set of instructions have you opening up the steering column, cutting wires, or opening up the instrument cluster and doing some actual damage to make the ding stop.
While either option is well in my wheelhouse, it's definitely more work and more time than is actually needed. At least for my 2002, and should be the same for every vehicle with a similar ignition lock. I have an alternate method if you have the clamshell off of the steering column already but it's not needed.
This is 100% non-destructive and borderline impossible to mess up. If you try hard enough I'm sure you can find a way though.
And if you know this trick already, feel free to ignore me. For everyone else, here you go!
So here's the complete list of tools and parts you will need to do this. It's lengthy.
1. Your key
2. A small phillips screwdriver or similarly sized tool
3. 1" of electrical tape.
4. Less free time than it takes to roll down your windows.
That it, gather the list and let's get started.
Look on the bottom of the steering column under the ignition lock and you'll see 2 holes close together. 1 has a screw in it, the other appears empty. It's the empty one you want.
Put your key in the ignition and leave your door open so you can enjoy the last few seconds of being annoyed that you'll ever get. REALLY take it in.
Slide the screwdriver into the empty hole. On the other side is a metal nub attached to a piece of spring steel. That's the lock that keeps your ignition lock from just falling out. Push up and hold pressure on that nub while you turn your key towards the acc position. That will unlock the ignition and you can just slide it out of the column. This is the correct way to remove the lock, you're not doing any damage or forcing anything.
This is what it looks like.
That little piece you see on the top right is the nub I was talking about. The area you're actually interested in is the metal contact surrounded by orange plastic.
Ok, we're about to get technical. Grab a buddy and a couple notebooks, pay close attention and compare notes as you do the work.
Take about 1" of electrical tape and cover up that contact so it looks like this.
And then put the ignition lock back in. You're done. No more door chime. And ONLY no more door chime. Nothing else will be affected in any way. If you ever want to go back to being annoyed, repeat and remove the tape. You're 100% stock again.
So since I'm one of those people that really enjoys knowing HOW something works instead of just knowing it does, here's the how.
Inside the steering column is where the lock goes obviously. It looks like this.
At about the 8 o'clock position you'll see a piece of spring steel, that's an electrical contact. It's insulated from the car by plastic, but when it grounds it sets off the chime. That's it's entire purpose in life, to annoy.
When you put your key in it allows the orange plastic insulated contact to ground, which is resting against the chime contact providing it's ground, and the car knows your key is in. Combine that with the door being open and it sets off the chime. So interrupt that contact between the 2, and no chime.
The entire lock doesn't rotate at all in the cylinder, so the tape won't get bound up in anything. It's in 1 place forever. The only part that actually moves is (in the first pictures) that rectangle on the far right. That piece moves the lock bar (2 yellow squares in pic 3). Move it in 1 direction and it locks the steering wheel, move it in the other and it unlocks. It also moves the actual ignition switch which is located behind the dash and not in the steering column at all.
Hope this helps