As many of today's car burglars continue to come up with clever ways of picking or breaching car door locks to gain access to car interiors, car makers are not watching the situation with their arms crossed. Most of the new cars being introduced into the auto market come with an automotive transponder key to act as an anti-burglary feature. The key is also called a chip key because it contains a small chip that sends a low-level signal to a receiver located near the ignition switch. Once the receiver receives the signal, the computer inside the car will allow the vehicle to run. If the wrong key is used or the car gets hot-wired by someone, the car won't operate completely.
While using a transponder key to operate a car is a great way to minimise the risk of car theft, this car operation mechanism has a downside. If you lose your chip key or the key gets damaged, you will have no way of operating the vehicle. Luckily, most modern auto locksmiths have the expertise and equipment needed to repair or replace your transponder key.
Here is what you need to know about transponder key repair and replacement.
Transponder key repair
This auto locksmith service is required for an original transponder key that no longer seems to work. But before approaching a professional auto locksmith for help, it is important to first establish if repair service is really necessary. Sometimes, transponder keys may fail to work simply because they need a change of batteries. This is an easy fix you can do yourself by consulting your car owner's manual. However, if the microchip on your transponder key is undamaged but doesn't work, it may need to be reprogramed. This is a technical job that should be handled by a qualified auto locksmith.
Transponder key replacement
For lost or irreparably damaged transponder keys, replacement is the only feasible option. Transponder key replacement involves making an exact replica of your original key and then programming it as per your car manufacturer's instructions. Keep in mind that even if you find your lost original chip key, you may no longer be able to use it again once its duplicate has already been used on your vehicle. Why? Because your vehicle's computer will only recognise signals transmitted from the new key. On the upside, you can be sure that someone else won't start your car using the lost key.
If your car has a transponder key, consider seeking assistance from a professional auto locksmith if ever need any of the above discussed services.