What Steps Should I Take When I Lose My Car Key?

Imagine you’re on a weekend break and you get your car keys out so you can lock your car, only to fumble and watch them drop down a drain. Other times your car keys can be stolen or you can drop them accidentally. The cost and nuisance associated with replacing car keys would be high up the order of annoying, every day, things that can happen. But what do you do if you have lost your keys, or don’t have your spare set with you and need to use your car fast? Here are the first steps to take when you lose your car key:

Don’t Panic!

People freak out when they lose car keys, forgetting that there are several simple, reasonable solutions available. But, realize that car replacement is not a DIY situation. People try breaking the ignition, which results in a costlier fix. Plus, many cars have an anti-theft system that prevents the car from starting even if you get its ignition to run.

Retrace Your Steps.

Sometimes it’s in your best interest to retrace your steps, as many times, you may have just dropped your keys or left them behind. Visit any bars, restaurants, or other venues you traveled to the night or day before. If you have any luck, some Good Samaritan may have given them to management or put them in the lost and found.

What type of key did you lose?

You then have to figure out what type of key you use. If it’s an older car – like a Holden Astra, Commodore, Cruze or Mitsubishi Lancer – odds are you will be dealing with a traditional old school key, similar to the ones used in your home. If your automotive offers push-button start and remote unlocking, however, then it is likely you are dealing with an electronic key fob. Query from your car dealer or car key specialist on whether they can replace that type of key.

 

Car Key Specialists.

If you are in a pinch and need your car key replacement right away, a car key specialist may be your best option. These specialists will help you to avoid the cost of an expensive replacement from your car dealer. An ordinary key may be replaceable for a few dollars. Car key specialists offer the most-effective solution because they have the equipment and knowledge to program a new key or make a copy from a spare key. This is the only way your car will recognize the key and you will be sure that you did the right thing. Whether you’ve lost your keys and need a new copy, or your keys have been stolen, car key specialists are undoubtedly the best solution.

Car Key Specialists also offer mobile services which are especially useful if you find yourself in one of many car lockout scenarios. A mobile specialist can come out to the vehicle, open the car and if necessary, and make a key for you. And if you lost a key fob, the car key specialist may be able to help you make a new one – depending on how sophisticated the key was. Additionally, they should be able to assist you to reprogram the replacement key, though your manual may also have instructions on how to do that. Be sure to bring any other key fobs associated with that vehicle with you, as they sometimes won’t work until the new key is programmed.

Prepare the following information for your car key specialist.

· Make and model of your vehicle.

· Registration number of your vehicle.

· Vehicle identification number ( found on your V5 document – see your vehicles log book ).

· Personal identification ( documentation showing name, photo, address to help confirm ownership of the vehicle ).

· Postcode of where you are, should you require an emergency car key specialist to come to you.

The biggest advantage to working with car key specialists is that they can have your lost auto keys replaced within the day, which is an enormous relief given the busy schedules of most people nowadays. They also cut the key on-site as opposed to dealerships, who order the key itself from elsewhere (usually the manufacturer) to maintain each key’s brand-name status, which leads to a wait time of up to two weeks.

Check with your insurance.

Your car insurance policy should cover any costs incurred by losing your keys, but you should check to see if claiming will affect your no-claims bonus. It would also be worth comparing the cost of replacing your keys with the excess on your policy. Some insurance companies offer breakdown cover, which can include help with accessing a car that you’ve left keys inside, recovering and delivering a spare set to you, or the cost of replacing them.
Whether you’ve just lost your auto keys or fear that you might do so, it’s a good idea to obtain an extra copy and hide the extra set in a safe place. Then the next time you lose your car keys, you’ll be able to replace them within a few minutes.

 

Author: Gordon Knowlton

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