Losing your car keys can be very stressful. All of a sudden you realize that you can’t go where you need to go..now what do you do? First thing to do is to stay calm, if the keys are really lost, a locksmith can usually get you back into your car within 10-30 minutes once they arrive.
Car key replacement can be handled in a few different ways.
- You can go to the dealership – Most expensive option, not for emergencies
- Do it yourself – Need the tools and knowledge but still possible
- Call a locksmith – Can be there quickly, will get the job done, less expensive than dealership
What type of Car Keys have you lost?
Letting your locksmith know what type of car keys you have is another critical piece of information that they will need to have in order to perform the job with optimal efficiency.
Transponder Chip Keys
Most cars after newer vehicles have transponder chips are programmed to a specific car. All keys madein the last 20 years are required to be fitted with an immobiliser system.
This will require a transponder key, which has an embedded electronic transponder chip in the key to start the vehicle.
If this kind if key is broken or lost, then you won’t be able to turn the ignition and the vehicle will not be able to start. You will need a replacement transponder chip.
Remote Key Fob
These are generally a keyless entry push button key that controls the locking to doors of the car and turns off any alarm system.
Non-Remote Car Keys
Non-remote keys will have no remote central locking and have no remote control functions on the key. These type of key is normally known as a ‘copy key’.
What Do I Do If My Car Keys are Lost?
Your next step is to call a reliable locksmith. Their job will be to reprogram the locking system to render the old keys useless and, in some cases, reconfigure the door locks and ignition as well – depending on the age of the vehicle.
You are going to need to collect a few pieces of information to make the process smoother for the locksmith to get you back into your vehicle. Before the task can be done, you will need to provide:
- Vehicle make and model
- Vehicle registration number
- Vehicle identification number (VIN)
- Personal identification
- Your current location
Why do we need all of this information to make a key?
Some of it is technical, basically so that the key can be reprogrammed. But we also want to make sure that you are the owner of the vehicle. Imagine if locksmiths did not verify that you were the owner of the vehicle..anyone would be able to call a locksmith to get into almost any car they wanted.
What Models of Car Keys Can a Locksmith Help Me With?
A qualified locksmith should be able to assist you with keys for all makes and models of vehicles, from standard family cars to exotic and luxury cars. In the rare instance that your locksmith does not work with your specific type of vehicle, rest assured that they can direct you to someone who does.
The same process applies to all vehicles such as trucks, motorcycles, RV, etc.
Can I Get a Car Key Made Without the Original?
In short, yes. Many of today’s best locksmiths have the tools and technology to cut and program an identical car key to the one you have lost. Contrary to popular opinion, it is not mandatory to have the key code on hand when you call the locksmith – all you need is the above information to have a new key created.
Do I Need to Go to My Main Dealer to Get a Spare Transponder Key?
No – the majority of locksmiths serve as the primary provider of transponder key duplication. Many dealers today practice the outsourcing of this service to locksmiths.
This means that you will save a significant amount of time and money by going directly to the source, since they will mark up the price of the locksmith that you could have called directly.
Can a Locksmith Replace My Electronic Chip or Remote Key Fob?
As a general rule, your local locksmith will have the tools needed to duplicate an existing item or program a blank one to function in accordance with your vehicle’s entry system.
Do I Need to Take My Car to the Locksmith to Have Keys Made?
In most cases, no. In fact, one distinguishing characteristic of a good locksmith is that they provide a mobile service and are fully equipped to perform the job onsite.
That’s one of the differences between a locksmith and the dealership. A locksmith will come to you, while you would most likely have to have the car towed to the dealership for them to work on it.
How Long Does It Take to Make a Spare Set of Keys?
Creating a car key will take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes, depending on the type of key and complexity of the transponder system. In rare cases where your locksmith does not have a blank key in stock, rest assured that they can order it for you and provide a spare set as soon as possible.
How Much Does It Cost to Replace Lost Car Keys?
The cost of replacing lost car keys in Milwaukee can range anywhere from $50 to $350, depending on the make and model of your vehicle and the overall scope of the work. Although a locksmith’s services cost less than your local dealer’s, there is no defined cost structure that locksmiths must follow: hence, your ideal solution is to obtain a quote from more than one locksmith.
Consider having more than one key made if you have found yourself in this situation. Once the locksmith is there, it is not that much extra to fabricate another.
Your car is more than just a means of transportation: It gives you the freedom to not only accomplish your daily tasks with greater speed and efficiency but also to go wherever you want, whenever you want. Whether you are 16 or 96, owning a car is something that you likely take for granted, which is why finding your car keys lost or stolen can be absolutely devastating!
Fortunately, a trained and certified locksmith like Milwaukee Lockstar can resolve the problem before your very eyes.