Car keys can always be lost anywhere in between your coat’s pockets and that of your couch’s cushions. Some of these keys get lost and the damage they bring can be irreparable. Getting a spare key from your car dealer can be a good idea but sometimes it would be too late. Sad to say, these keys can be easily copied thus resulting to a worse-case scenario that leads to car theft.
With the advancement in today’s technology, it would be good to know you can get a replacement right away, but they can eventually be pricier than you have expected. Due to these reasons, you might want to consider a list of options that will help you deal with a lost car key. Here is a rundown of your options depending on the type of car key you once owned.
Basic keys have been very popular replacements to lost keys up to the late part of the 90s. However, these basic keys do not have the same security features that you are looking for in your car key replacements of these days. Basic as they are, they look like your house keys with the usual cuts and grooves found on the shank.
Electronic key fob
This is considered an integral part of the key locking mechanisms in more modern cars. You can actually order replacement from your car dealers with costs that will depend on how complex the fob’s design is or the name of the dealer behind it. Complex as they are, they require programming from auto dealerships. If you are lucky enough, the dealer can render the service for free. Others though would make you pay for labour costs.
Using transponder keys
After the basic keys, the transponder versions were introduced in the market. Transponders are actually found in the form of chips and are located on the key’s plastic head. This chip is small but powerful enough to receive signals from the ignition’s receiver. When a wrong signal is detected, the car will not start at all. Transponder keys have shanks that can either be like the basic keys or can also be laser-cut. Some cars using transponder keys have the fob integrated in them too.
Laser-cut keys of today
Laser-cut keys are different from basic keys in that they have thicker shanks with fewer cuts and grooves. Otherwise known as sidewinder keys, these keys have winding cuts found on their shanks. They are made from specialised machines that cannot be found in any ordinary machine shop around the corner. These machines are more expensive than the standard key cutters thus getting this key would surely be more expensive than the basic key.
Laser-cut keys also feature the transponder chips found in transponder keys. These transponder chips can be reprogrammed by a certified locksmith to make the keys work for you if you have lost your original car keys. They have to be typically replaced by the dealer thus adding more expense on your pocket.
The more-advance switchblade key types
Switchblade keys can be pictured as highly technical keys that have incorporated the shank and the fob altogether. You can actually fold the shanks into the fob with a press of a button if you do not use the keys. Otherwise, you can press the button too if you want to use your keys once more. Switchblade keys can either be basic or laser cut. What makes it a standout amongst other types of car keys is that you can buy their parts separately. In some occasions though, that is, when you have lost your car keys and both the shank and fob goes missing, then you should buy all components thus giving you more expense.
And then there are smart keys
Smart keys are more advanced keys for your cars. They have no shanks but they have the fobs to be inserted on your car’s dashboard. You can also hide the fob inside your pocket or purse. You simply have to press the button to turn your car between on and off mode. This more complex, highly technical key version works using rolling security codes. The system would work by randomising the codes making sure that they are correct in order to prevent burglars or thieves from hacking into the codes. Your vehicle’s computer system will recognise the codes in the smart key. This will help verify if you are the owner before the engine starts.
There are different types of car keys. All of them can be lost with accidents or unavoidable circumstances. The costs vary depending on the type of key you own but all are guaranteed to make you shell off some cash from your pocket.
If you are looking for a cheaper, guaranteed way to help you deal with your car key concerns, you can ask help from locksmith services and automotive lockout assistance. We at MTL Express Lock Smith offer excellent services for your convenience.