If you ever lose your car key and break it off inside the lock, don’t panic! Locksmiths can make a copy of your key even if you don’t have the original. You might not know this but there are many options for locksmith services in case of an emergency like being locked out or needing new keys made.
Types of Replacement Keys
If you’re looking to make a spare key, there are a few different types of keys out there. If your car is from 1981 or earlier, the easiest option may be to cut it from an ordinary metal blank (or “key block”). You can find these in most locksmiths’ shops and hardware stores. For newer vehicles however, transponder keys will need more work done on them for duplication purposes – our technicians know what they’re doing!
- Metal blank key: These are the traditional car keys you’d see for a car made before 1990 and are similar to your house keys except they have ridges on both sides.
- Transponder key: This type of key requires specific programming to send a signal to your car’s computer so it will turn on.
- Smart key: These keys typically allow push button start on your vehicle and may not even have a physical key that goes into a lock.
If you own any kind of modern vehicle like those manufactured after 1990-ish then chances are that one way or another its going to have some sort of computerized chip system called Transponders installed within the key handle itself which makes programming new ones somewhat of a larger task.
A third type of car key is a smart key. Smart keys act as remote controls and do not resemble traditional keys at all. These look like attached fob-like devices that don’t require the usual way of turning on an ignition switch. We have experts who can program these types too!
What if I don’t have the originals?
Having a spare key to get a new key made is always the best case scenario. Sometimes that doesn’t happen and you don’t have another key to get a quick replacement made. What are your options then?
#1: Go to the dealer
Your dealership will always be able to help you get a new key made or point you in the right direction. But with all things at the dealership, it’s going to be more expensive. If money isn’t an issue for you or you’re short on time, this is going to be your best. However, if you want to save a few bucks, a locksmith can do it for, typically, half the cost! Not only that, depending on what type of vehicle you own, your dealership may need to special order your keys which can take days or possibly longer than a week to get a replacement. This may not work for your schedule.
#2: Call a local automotive locksmith
You shouldn’t call just any locksmith. There’s a world of difference between a residential locksmith and an automotive locksmith. There a a ton of different types of vehicles on the road and every manufacturer does their keys just a little bit different. Automotive locksmiths specialize in knowing the ins and outs of every car on the road so the can help fill your needs.
An experienced locksmith will be able to replace your lost key even if you do not have the original. They’ll just need a little bit information about your vehicle to make sure that you get the right key for your needs.
What info does the locksmith need?
Car locksmiths need three pieces of information to help you get a new key for your car
- The year, make and model of your vehicle
- Proof of ownership (registration or title)
- Your vehicle identification number (VIN)
The VIN can be found on either the driver’s side doorpost or stamped onto a metal plate in front of where the steering wheel is.
This information will help the locksmith find out exactly what type of key you need, how much programming your new key will need (if any), and help them get you back on the road as quickly as possible.
If you want to get back on the road even faster, be sure to look for your key identification number (or key code) that can be found in your vehicle’s owner manual. While it isn’t absolutely necessary, it can save your locksmith a little bit of time. Also, if for any reason you think or know that your keys were stolen, be sure to tell the technician before they start working on your new key.
They can configure your key’s programming so that the old keys won’t work let whoever has them into your car. Think of it like moving into a new house and changing the lock on your front door.
Do I need to tow my car?
Not at all. Our skilled locksmiths will come to you!
We use state-of-the art technology to cut a new key or program a smart key on site so our technicians don’t have to bother with figuring out where the lock is located in your vehicle—no matter how old it is! Our services are also perfect for cars, boats, and motorcycles too.
When you’re calling for an emergency locksmith, make sure to provide an address or the nearest major cross streets so we know exactly where you are. Our service technicians will bring everything they need to can program or a new key on-site, no matter where you are or what type of vehicle is involved.