Even though they know how valuable car keys are, many car owners are often aware of them theirs valuable only after losing they. Most car owners and drivers don’t know how much it costs A car key replacement. It’s true that it won’t cost a fortune, but it will definitely make you raise some eyebrows.
You’ll have to endure the inconvenience of not being able to use the car until replacement keys become available after just a few hundred dollars. It takes at least one full day for the new included key generation cut the key and encode it.
If the cost of replacing a single key is high, just imagine what you are will have to bear if you lose many other keys!
Why is car key replacement expensive?
Car security systems have evolved with time and technology, and have become highly sophisticated, which ensures better security for vehicles. The quality and characteristics of car keys have also changed due to being driven by technology.
Gone are the days when you could go to a hardware store or call a locksmith to make a car key similar to a padlock.
Not that easy to copy keys that incorporate several technological features including computer programming. This has pushed up the cost of car keys significantly.
alternative key supplier
Auto dealers aren’t the only place to buy replacement car keys, although the name comes to mind first when you’re looking for replacement keys. Auto locksmiths are an alternative and legal source for genuine, working car keys as well as keys you can get from the dealer. Locksmiths are experts in the manufacture and repair of all types of car locks replicating the original in appearance as well as functionality.
Locksmiths who specialize in car key handling are experts in their field, besides arranging replacements they can also repair damaged car keys. While a malfunctioning car key can happen on its own, most of the damage occurs during an attempted theft.
Locksmiths have the proper knowledge and technical skills to handle all types of car locks. In this article, you will get to know about the different types of car keys.
Electronic key fob
Most modern cars have electronic key fobs also known as transmitters or remotes which form a combined unit with the key set. This is the lowest form of car key in modern vehicles. Fobs are programmed to allow the vehicle to recognize the key.
Unless the vehicle’s systems can identify the key and respond to the fob signal, the key will not activate, even if you insert it into the slot.
Car keys saw further improvement in the late nineties when vehicle manufacturers started using transponders in car keys. Transponder key use a small transponder chip, which is housed in the plastic head of the key, to send a signal to a receiver in the ignition circuit.
The receiver acts as an immobilizer because if it detects a signal indicating that the wrong key has been inserted in the ignition slot, the vehicle will not receive the signal and cannot start.
Transponder key shank are either laser cut or basic cut keys, but their specialty is programming that helps identify keys and activate them. Specialist locksmiths have the ability to program car keys, and cost significantly less than dealers.
Laser cut lock
Laser cut keys have thick shank with fewer number of engraving grooves. The winding cut on the shank gives the lock a distinctive look, also known as a sidewinder lock. Expensive key cutting machines are needed to make laser cut keys, and this makes the keys expensive too.
Only specialized locksmiths are equipped to handle locks that have a built-in transponder chip which requires programming to make the lock work. Locksmiths qualified to manufacture and repair laser cut locks are often members of the Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA).
Unlike the traditional locks that we usually use, smart lock is not a lock at all, at least from appearances. This is a keychain that you keep in your pocket or tuck into the dashboard. To operate the lock, you simply press the button which activates rolling security codes.
The system is capable of using random methods to identify the correct code which reduces the chances of being hacked by thieves. The vehicle will start only when the car’s computer system verifies and recognizes the code.
However, only dealers are willing to replace smart locks, at least in the case of Mercedes Benz.
The more sophisticated the locking system, the higher the cost of replacing the lock.