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Can I Replace a Car Key Without Having the Original?

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Filed under Automotive, Editorial

Sooner or later, everyone loses their car keys. You might tear apart your entire house looking for them, growing more frustrated by the minute. Then fear sets in as you wonder if you can replace a car key without having the original.

The good news is that it is entirely possible to replace your car key and get back out on the road again.

How Do I Get a Replacement Car Key?

If you only have one set of keys for your car, you will need to get a replacement key. The first option is to go to the car dealership where you purchased your car. However, this option can be expensive since dealers charge a premium service. 

Additionally, many car dealerships will simply outsource this work to a locksmith. That means you’re better off going right to a locksmith to cut out the middleman. It will be more cost-effective, too.

What Do I Need to Replace My Car Key?

Before you call a locksmith to replace your car key, you will need to make sure you have some important information. This information prevents random people from having keys made for cars that aren’t theirs. Having it ready speeds up the process, allowing you to get back into your car and on the road faster.

To have a locksmith make your replacement key without having the original, you will need the year, make, and model of your car. You will also need to provide your vehicle’s registration, title, and VIN to prove you’re the owner of the vehicle.

Types of Car Keys

Older vehicles will have a standard key that doesn’t have any specialized electronic components. These are much easier to replace and cheaper, too — though that doesn’t mean you’re out of luck if you have a newer model that has a transponder or chips in the key. 

Most of the newer car models today have a key fob. A locksmith with automotive services can still have one replicated for you. The cost of replacing electronic or specialized keys could reach as high as $250 or more.

What to Do If You’ve Lost Your Car Key and Don’t Have an Extra Set

Some people get lucky and find they have an extra set of car keys hidden in a drawer in their home. Others may have only received one set when they bought their car.

If you don’t have the original keys to your car and need a replacement, you should look for car key locksmith services. This will be much more affordable than going to your dealership, plus automotive locksmiths tend to work quickly to help you get back to your normal routine.


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