A Guide To Transponder Car Keys
It goes without saying that car keys will always have to be cut correctly to operate the locks on your car. This used to be the only safeguard against the theft of you car, however now car keys are also used to disarm vehicle immobilisers.
The majority of keys to cars built after 1998 contain transponder chips. The purpose of a transponder chip is to disarm a vehicle immobiliser when the car key is used to start the engine.
When the car key is turned in the ignition, the ECU on the car sends an electronic message to the key, and it will only allow the car to start provided it receives the correct message back. So, even for a simple car key without any buttons, the key must be cut correctly to turn the locks, and also programmed correctly to disarm the immobiliser. Car keys with chips can be programmed using special equipment, it isn't necessarily a main dealer only job. We can programme many types of transponder car keys, however there are some which require specific diagnostic equipment. These car keys would need to be programmed by an independent garage with the correct equipment, or a main dealer.
Car Keys with remote central locking
Many modern car keys also have buttons to operate the central locking remotely. These buttons use electronics completely independant from the transponder chip, and must be programmed in separately.
Normally if you see instructions to program your key, this relates to the remote central locking. In some instances the transponder can also be programmed (such as early Fords and some VW/Audi/Seat/Skoda) however this should be confirmed as is not always the case.
Getting a cheap spare car key
The price you pay for your key will reflect how much it can do for you. A normal normal key with no transponder chip will open all the locks fitted on the car. It will be fine as an emergency key should your other keys get locked inside, or if you just need to get into the car and not drive it. A key without any electronics is also ideal in situations where it could get wet or damaged by the elements, such as at the beach, or when taking part in other outdoor pursuits such as surfing, sailing, rock climbing or mountain biking. This would allow you to take the basic key with you, and lock the chipped key in the car. Keys without any electronics range from £7.50 to £15.
The next step up would be to have a spare key with a transponder chip, but without remote central locking. This is a cheaper way to get a spare, just in case you lose your main key. It would allow you to get into the car, and also to get another main key with buttons coded if you wish to. Chipped keys range from £30 to £45, plus chip programming.
Programming costs will vary depending on the car you have, and where you get it programmed. We always advise getting quotes first.
We can supply spare, lost, or replacement car keys with chips for Alfa Romeo, Audi, Citroen, Daihatsu, Honda, Fiat, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lexus, Mercedes, Nissan, Peugeot, Porsche, Renault, Range Rover, Toyota, Saab, Seat, Skoda, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Kia, Vauxhall, Opel, and Volkswagen cars. Our keys can come with or without transponder chips to disarm your car immobiliser, ready to be coded to your car ecu. If you need a replacement key blade for a flip remote, no problem! We can do that too. We supply the best quality chipped car keys, at the cheapest discount prices. So whether you have an Audi A3, a Ford Focus or Fiesta with tibbe keys, or maybe a VW Polo or Golf with flip keys, give us a call, we'll be able to help! We also specialise in chipped motorcycle keys for Kawasaki, Honda, Ducati, Suzuki, Aprilia, Moto Guzzi and many others. Have you lost the keys to your bike? Do you have the Honda HISS system, and you've lost your keys? Just send us your ECU and we will send you back two coded keys!! We can also clone keys, without the red master key, so, panic over, just keep on riding!