Losing a set of keys for your car can be an issue if you only have one set, and you may need to have a new set made. You can sometimes replace lost auto keys through the dealership where you bought the car, or for older cars, a locksmith can often make keys for you.
Chipped Auto Keys
Many of the newer cars on the road use a key that has a microchip embedded in it, and the vehicle will not start unless it gets the correct code from the key. If you lose these keys, you can replace them through a factory dealership, but they can take some time to get.
The dealership has to submit an order for lost auto keys to the manufacturer, and replacement keys will need to be made. You will need the vehicle identification number (VIN) of the car so that the manufacturer can access the information about your vehicle and encode the key properly.
Not only does this process take several weeks, but it can also be pretty expensive, and most insurance companies do not cover the cost of lost auto keys.
If you need new auto keys made quickly, some automotive locksmiths can make the keys and program them for you in a couple of hours. The locksmith will have to get the code from the dealership or from the manufacturer to program the chip on the key.
The process is faster than ordering a new key from the dealership, but the cost can be several hundred dollars for the key and programming the chip. If you are in a pinch and can't use the car, it might be worth the cost to you, but you will need to pay for the service when the locksmith finishes the key, so check with the locksmith about the price and the payment types that they accept.
There are still some cars on the road that do not use the chipped keys, and replacing the keys for these cars is still complicated. Often the car is old enough that the key is no longer available from the dealership or manufacturer. Replacing the locks and ignition are easier on these cars and may be an option you want to consider.
A mobile locksmith can also typically make keys for older vehicles like these by just having access to the car, and the cost may be cheaper than replacing the entire lock and ignition system in the car. Lost auto keys are common, but no matter what kind of car you drive, they are problematic to deal with, so having a spare set on hand at home or with a relative is sometimes the best option and can help eliminate all of these situations.
If you need to replace a lost auto key, reach out to a locksmith in your area.