How to Get Your Car Keys Created?
If you’ve lost your car key or the fob stopped working, you are stranded until you get a new key for the vehicle. Sadly, this process isn’t as simple as you might think. You first need to determine where you can get your car keys. Then, follow the steps.
There’s always the option to call a locksmith. The replacement keys can be obtained from your local dealer. You can also contact your local auto parts or hardware shop. Online ordering is possible if you are able to wait.
We will be describing the steps to make new keys for your vehicle. You can also see the estimated cost.
- Where to get car keys made
- How much does it cost to replace a car key
- How can I program my car key myself and save money?
- What to do if your car keys are lost?
Where to get car keys made
While the locksmith is the most costly option, it may also be the fastest depending on your car. The locksmith can easily duplicate the key if your car is more than a decade old.
It’s with the newer models that the process becomes hairy. It is possible that the key will need programming and may require assistance from a locksmith.
2. Car dealer
If your vehicle is more recent, you might prefer to have the locksmith cut completely and take the car to the dealer. They will have to program the key.
Contact your dealer and give them the VIN. You will receive the VIN and they can cut the key or program your key fob quickly.
3. Automotive Parts Store
Many people don’t know that the local auto parts store can cut keys. This is a great option if you just need the metal key and it doesn’t have any special features to it.
Although the auto parts shop might have the ability to provide some special keys, programming may require you to go to the dealership. It doesn't hurt to go there anyway so you can get your key.
4. Hardware store
Numerous hardware shops can offer the same service as the dealership. The staff is qualified to cut keys.
Ace Hardware has specialized equipment that can program keys. Sometimes, it might not be necessary to visit the dealership.
5. Online retailers
If you are looking to get a duplicate key and aren’t in a hurry, visiting an online platform might save you a lot of money. You can even find places like Amazon You can sell your car keys.
The key can be ordered online and shipped to your house. It is easy to program the key by simply ordering it online.
How much does it cost to replace a car key
1. Key to Metal Car
This is far easier to replace than the traditional, metal key. These mechanical keys don’t require any form of programming.
One copy is all you need. For a key metal, expect to pay between $3-$10 If you are looking for something specific to your classic vehicle, however, it is possible to pay more.
2. Important Information about VAT
Vehicle Anti-Theft System Key (VATS) works just like any mechanical key. The resistor is inside the key. Thankfully, the resistor value is set upfront, so there’s no programming required.
To work correctly, however, you will need a new key that matches the value of your old one. To have a VATS-key made, you will need to spend close to $25
3. Transponder Key
If the car key contains a chip inside of it, it’s called a transponder key. These keys come with additional programming fees. This key must be programmed or the vehicle will not recognize it and you won’t be able to start the engine.
Some locksmiths are able to program transponder keys. This service will cost you between $50 and $100. This service is more expensive if you own a Chrysler key. The Chrysler automaker will require a code that you can program.
RELATED: Programming Transponder Keys Without an Original
3. Laser-Cut Key
A laser-cut key doesn’t have any traditional cuts on the side of the metal. Instead, cuts are made into the metal, but they don’t go all the way through. The key will show a straight line.
High-end machinery is required to create laser-cut keys. Also, these can be more difficult to manufacture. The price of the key will vary depending on its type, and where you need to look for someone who has it.
4. Auto Key Remote
Both the car's remote key combination and its remote control work together so they must be both replaced. Depending on which car you have, the cost could be anywhere between $10 and $100.
Some vehicles can still be operated without the remote. Temporarily, some vehicles can be started and locked with a key that you have in your hand.
5. Key Fob
To quickly get your key fob replacement, you can visit the dealer if you have keyless ignition or proximity keys. The dealer can provide the VIN so you can get the key fob quickly.
You will pay more to replace your keys. Depending on the car you have, many of these keys cost $50 to $400.
RELATED: 8 Easy Steps to Programming a Key Fob at Your Home
How can I program my car key myself and save money?
You might be able program your car's key by yourself, depending on the manufacturer. Search online for the car model and make to find out this information. You can find someone online who will show you the way if you have the ability to do this yourself.
The manufacturer can provide instructions. You will often need at least one key working to program a new one. If you lose the key, then this method might not work.
What to do if your car keys are lost?
1. Double-Check your Area
It is important to verify that you have the right key before doing anything. After all, there’s no sense putting yourself through this trouble if the key is simply misplaced.
You can retrace the steps and see if there was a misplacement or drop of keys. The first step can be avoided if the keys are found. You can continue on to our guide if you don't find the keys.
RELATED: I Lost My Car Keys & Have No Spare (What To Do?)
2. Find Your Car’s VIN
You will need your vehicle identification number (VIN) to get a duplicate key. This 17-digit number/letter combination can be found in multiple places on your car.
It’s on a tag at the bottom of your windshield, closer to the dashboard. It can be found on the engine of your vehicle. Otherwise, it can be found on the rear wheel well, inside the trunk, on a label found on the driver’s side door jam and on your insurance cards. It’s also helpful to know the year, make and model of your vehicle.
3. Phone Locksmith /Dealer
The final step in getting a new key for your car is finding out where you can get it. After reviewing your options, we have shown you all the possible costs. You can cut down on time by choosing a locksmith. There are many professionals who will visit you.
A simple key for your car can be handled by the locksmith. The locksmith can also help with older vehicles. Automotive locksmiths can also work with more complex car keys. The most advanced tools available to professional locksmiths allow them to deal with both side-milled keys and the programming required for transponder keys.
The locksmith could have an issue at one point. If the key is etched with a specific code, it’s often difficult to replicate. If this is the case, you might want to contact your local locksmith. But most people start with a locksmith and see what they can offer.
Dealerships are your only choice if you drive a luxurious car or have sophisticated technology. For a new key, call the service and parts department. If they can’t create the key for some reason, they can order it from the original vehicle manufacturer. Obviously, this option would be the most expensive and take the longest, but it’s rarely the case.
Most dealerships will allow you to phone ahead and have the key delivered to your home.
4. Place the replacement key in a safe place
You want it to be safe after you have gone through the hassle of having a car key manufactured. Make sure you have your car keys handy when you come home after a long day. Also, make sure you keep your keys close to you when in a public place, so they don’t get lost.
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