Modern car keys do a lot more than just open the door and turn on the ignition — they communicate with your car's onboard computer to let it know that it's safe to start. Transponder keys have done a lot to prevent theft, but they are more costly and time-consuming to replace than older keys. Automotive key replacement can cost hundreds of dollars and see your car taken off the road for a day or more. However, it's possible to avoid or reduce the challenges of replacing a car key. Here are a few tips to help make the process easier.
If you don't have a spare key already, the time to get one made is before the original goes missing. You may not feel like paying for a spare before you need one, but there are plenty of advantages to doing so. First, you'll minimise the amount of time you spend off-road if you lose a key. Even more importantly, you reduce the risk of a much more expensive outcome. If you have a backup key, it's easy to get a replacement for a lost key; your dealer or locksmith can simply clone the key you have. On the other hand, if you lose all of a vehicle's keys, you may have to get the computer replaced or reprogrammed, which can be much more expensive than simply getting a duplicate key made. Keeping a backup key will help you avoid this situation.
Know where to go
When they need to replace a vehicle key, most people's first instinct is to call their dealership. Auto dealerships can replace these keys, but they tend to charge higher prices for their services. They can also take longer to produce replacements, leaving you stuck until the process is complete. To get the same service at a more affordable price, the best option is to call an automotive locksmith. In addition to being able to provide you with duplicate or replacement keys at a better price than a dealership, a locksmith will also often be able to come to your location, saving you the trouble of getting to a dealership without a car key.
Replacing an automotive transponder key can be not only expensive but also inconvenient. An automotive locksmith can help reduce both the expense and the trouble, either by making you a backup key to keep in case of emergencies or by replacing a lost key quickly and affordably. Contact an automotive locksmith in your area to learn more.