One of the most common calls that many locksmiths receive is for lost car keys. No matter what the reason for losing your keys, the approach to replacing them will vary depending on the type of key that you're dealing with. Understanding what to expect can help you to be prepared. Here's a look at what you need to know about lost auto keys and how your locksmith can help you.
Standard Car Keys
If your car uses a standard key, those are actually the easiest ones for a locksmith to deal with. Standard car keys operate mechanically, the same way that your home's door key works. The key goes into the tumbler and the pins read the key to validate it and turn the ignition.
If you've lost a standard car key, call your locksmith to come out and cut you a new key on the spot. The locksmith will ensure that the key fits the ignition and your doors so that you can be sure that it works.
Switchblade keys, which are car keys that fold into a transponder, are shaped differently than standard car keys. They aren't as easy to replace, but that doesn't mean that you can't replace them. If you lose a switchblade key, reach out to a locksmith who specializes in auto keys.
They can replace the key and reprogram the transponder that the key goes with. You can also get these keys replaced at your car dealer with the VIN number for your car, but you will likely find that a locksmith offers you more affordable services than a dealership.
Chipped keys were a security measure aimed at reducing auto theft. These keys are often shaped like traditional car keys, but they have a computerized chip in the key that communicates with your car. The car must recognize that chip before it will start the engine.
Chipped keys are often harder to replace because the chip must be programmed to your car based on the VIN number. Locksmiths that work with auto lockout issues often have the equipment to reprogram chipped keys, allowing you to replace the key for your car easily.
If you've lost a car key, you should reach out to a local locksmith for help. No matter the type of key your car uses, your locksmith can help or point you in the right direction for a solution.