When your car key breaks or stops working it’s a major inconvenience. Fortunately, you have many options.
Try searching online for aftermarket replacement electronic keys. They’re often cheaper than a dealer but will still need to be cut and programmed so you have to be careful who you use for that.
Lost or Damaged Keys
Car keys don’t last forever and are subject to wear and tear over time. Sometimes they break or the internal connections may loosen and make them not work as intended. If you lose your keys or they get stolen it is always a good idea to call a professional locksmith as soon as possible.
Using a locksmith is less expensive than going through the dealership and you have more options as far as key replacement goes. Dealerships generally charge more and they also need to program your new key to the specific vehicle. If your car is under bumper to bumper warranty the dealership might cover this cost.
The best option for getting a new key is to call a Car Key Replacement DC. They are usually cheaper than the dealership and you can often find a mobile locksmith that will come to you. The locksmith will need to program the new key to the car which can be a little complicated depending on the specific vehicle.
If you have a car that has been made in the last 20 years or so, it is almost guaranteed to come with a transponder chip. These chips are a part of the anti-theft system and help deter thieves because they emit signals that are unique to each key. The car’s computer reads these signals and if it does not receive them, the vehicle will not start. These keys are a bit more expensive than non-transponder keys and it is important to find a reliable locksmith to replicate them for you.
A reputable locksmith has similar equipment as your local dealership and will be able to replace your transponder key, saving you the hassle of having to go to the dealer. Also, a good locksmith will be able to do this much cheaper than your car dealership. A FOBIK chip key or a smart key, which is a type of remote flip chip key, can also be replaced by your local locksmith.
Today’s key fobs do more than just unlock and start your car. They also serve as security and a theft deterrent. That complexity makes them costly to replace if they’re lost or damaged.
Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to reduce the cost of key fob replacement and repair. First, if the key fob battery is dead you can try replacing it yourself. You can buy these batteries at most hardware stores, big-box retailers, or even some online vendors. Make sure you know your vehicle’s make and model so you can find the right battery for it.
Before you begin, it’s a good idea to write down your vehicle’s VIN number so you can get the new key fob programmed correctly. The majority of dealers won’t program new or replacement key fobs without proof of ownership, so this will be helpful when trying to find someone who can help you. You’ll also need a spare key fob in order to expedite the process and ensure you can complete this task properly.
If you’ve lost your car key, you can get a new one from the dealership, but it may be expensive. Getting a replacement from a locksmith is less expensive.
Rekeying is a process that can be done on all of the locks in your home so they open with the same key. This saves you money and gives you peace of mind knowing that your keys are not being copied.
You’ll need a kit to rekey the lock, but it is not difficult. On a clean surface, dump out the pins from the plug and remove the old key. Replace the pins with a different order and insert the key. Make sure the new pins are flush with the top of the plug.
You may also need to program your new key to your vehicle. This process varies by manufacturer and car, so consult your owner’s manual for instructions on how to do this. The process usually involves opening and closing doors or pressing a certain combination of buttons.