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Top 5 most commonly asked questions for car key locksmiths

The dedicated team at OEM has sat down to answer some of the most frequently asked questions customers want to know the answer to. The questions change as technology changes, and some of the new answers might surprise you! 

We understand how expensive and time-consuming getting replacement keys for your car can be, and we’re dedicated to making it a better experience for you. 

All cars are different, depending on the make and model, and each vehicle key has a different programming. This is a security measure that was implemented to keep your vehicles safer from theft. 

How do I get a new key for my car?

People lose or accidentally damage their car keys all the time, and it’s a good idea to know how to get a new key for your vehicle in advance.

You’ll be pleased to know that it is a relatively simple process to get a new car key fob. A specialist car key locksmith can have a replacement key ready for you in the shortest time, so don’t be tempted to postpone getting one: a spare key is necessary when you decide to sell your car at a later date.

Our advice is to get your spare key sorted out while you still have the original key for the car key specialist locksmith to work from to create the new duplicate key. What to do if you don’t have a car key? Then the locksmith will have to decode the vehicle’s computer system, using specialist diagnostic equipment. 

Next, a professional car key locksmith will imprint the lock on your car to decode the new key correctly. Each method used - with a car key to work off or not - will have a different price point.

What is a transponder key and how do I know if my vehicle has one?

If the make and model of your vehicle is post-1998, there is a very good chance the car key will have a transponder chip embedded in it.

What is a transponder chip, you might want to know? Transponder chips - along with many other anti-theft devices - were introduced at the end of the last century to deter car theft. The chip in the transponder is programmed to interact with the unique signature in your car’s computer system by way of an immobiliser.

So, when you click your car key fob to unlock your car doors, it’s the transponder that stops all the other car doors in the carpark from opening.

How much will a new key for my car set me back?

New car key prices are dependent on the make and model of your vehicle. You’ll be pleased to know that it is cheaper to get a new car key from a specialist locksmith than it is from the car dealership, because you will be cutting out the middle step. 

It is important to note, however, that there are some car brands where the keys can only be supplied by the car dealership. It might be worth it to ask about replacement car key costs at the dealership before committing to a specific vehicle. 

Certain car brands only offer custom key fobs exclusively available from the dealership due to their bespoke service.

If you want to check on how much it will cost to have a replacement car key made, please contact OEM for a quote. Remember that it’s much cheaper to have a replacement car key fob made with the duplicate or existing key and during office hours than it is to need an emergency call out.

Should I carry a spare car key battery around with me?

Unfortunately, many car keys have the batteries soldered and glued to the plastic casing. In this instance, you might need to have a new car key cut with a fresh battery inside the casing. This is something you might want to ask the car dealership before committing to a new car purchase.

You’ll be pleased to know that OEM stock a range of different car key batteries for all NZ makes and models vehicles. If you aren’t sure how to change your vehicle key battery, we will be happy to do it for you. 

How do I go about replacing a smart key for my car?

Smart technology is rapidly replacing key fobs. If you have a new car, the chances are it came with a smart key. The question of how to replace a smart key is becoming a frequently asked one.

Keyless entry, also called a push button start, is a vehicle system that uses smart key tech. In an effort to combat car theft, Mercedes introduced keyless entry at the end of last century, in 1998. Smart key tech has increased over the last two decades and is no longer an innovative feature associated with high end vehicles.

In fact, you will struggle to find a new car dealership without every vehicle having smart key technology!

Not all smart key tech is duplicate-friendly. This is especially a feature of high end vehicles specialising in bespoke car services and extended warranties as part of its exclusivity. At OEM, our locksmith service devoted to automotive key cutting is working on bespoke car key duplication services to help our customers who don’t want to return to the dealership for a new smart key. 

Please contact us if you are interested in a replacement car key service and we will be able to help you find the best duplicate car key for the make and model of your vehicle.

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