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Replacing car keys

cleanshaved

I’m stumped
I need a new car key for my 2001 Holden. sigh.
That use to be a cheap and easy thing to do but as it is a transponder key it needs to be programed.
The dealers or is that stealers want a arm and leg to replace a key.
I saw a aftermarket key that you could program with a tool your self. After a few minutes looking at it I decided to try it. Well that was a rush of blood to the head.
Then it hit me that this looked too good to be true, so done some more digging.
It appears it does not just programe the key but also changes the cars code.

Basically you put the new key in the ignition, turn till dash lights are on, then the plug in the programming tool. It then programs the key.......
This is the tool.

tool.png

So this no longer sat comfortable with me. There appeared a good amount of positive feedback but those who had problems state it stopped the already working keys as well as not working for the new key.
Now that may have been because they did not use the right key/programer for their car or they just did not follow the process correctly. I don't know. But what I do know is I lost sleep over buying it thinking of what if it did not work properly.
It's still on the way to me but today I booked in to get a new key with a locksmith tomorrow.
I'll try to get my money back on the purchase but if they don't I'll put it on the auction site.

So have I been over cautious or is this the newest greatest thing for do it yourself car key programing?

This shows how simple it is.........I will not be plugging this into my car, so will never know.

 
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No, not over cautious. Any time the battery is disconnected the computer defaults to original factory settings. It will want that factory original key.

And I've got a feeling it could be subject to hanky panky. May disable other security features, or install a generic code that anyone with the same key could use in your car.

I'm all for saving a buck, but maybe not here.
 
There's no pat answer. My vehicle does not require a special tool to change keys, but that does not hold true for all vehicles with chip keys. The bottom line is if you're uncomfortable with it, don't do it. If you think you could be giving yourself a more expensive repair, that's more than enough reason for caution.

Even though everyone calls it programming the key, my guess is that the vehicle interrogates an RFID chip in the key itself. So programming is likely simply telling the vehicle "Okay, this is a legitimate RFID." Reading between the lines, mine has memory space for two keys. That's probably not the case for every vehicle.

Whether or not the vehicle loses stored RFID depends on the type of memory. Some cars, circa late 1980s/early 1990 did not like loosing full battery power at all. In others, you lose some settings but not all. In my wife's vehicle, when the battery died it killed the clock but didn't erase the radio settings. Noticed that the parts store used an auxiliary power supply while changing out the battery (I can change a battery, but since stripping a brand new side terminal mount battery years ago, prefer to let someone else do it). Maybe that auxiliary power source was for convenience of the customer, or maybe they had bad experience with some vehicles.
 
I recently had to buy a new transponder key as well. I ordered the key online and shopped for a locksmith near me. I got what I feel was a pretty good deal over the dealer cost, as well as a lot of locksmith people.
 
Called the Toyota dealership for the cost of an extra key. $125 four years ago. Went to Walmart and saw a display of transponder keys. Asked the cashier how much, $65. Worked every bit as well as the factory key.
 
I just bought a Ford Ranger this spring that only came with 1 key. This is the first time running into the whole transponder key thing. Dealer wanted $150! Went to a local locksmith that wanted $25 for the key and $50 to program it. He explained that if I had 2 working keys I could program it myself. I asked about the ebay ones for $5 and he told me to run away. He says alot of them use cheap chips that often stop working after awhile. I asked about walmart keys a he said that they clone your key. I asked what the difference was and said that with two different keys anyone can program a third but with a cloned key the system only sees both keys as one and you can't program a third.
I also found out that Ford only allows 5 keys to be in the truck memory. My truck already had 3 programed in. Apparently the previous owner had lost 2 keys. I had him make me 1 key for a back up that I keep in a safe place at home.
 
The last car I bought before I moved to Japan was a 2006 Pontiac GTO, which, under the Pontiac nameplate, was a Holden Monaro. It used the same type of key your car uses. My dealer warned me that replacements would be expensive, and included 2 extra keys (for a total of 5). My GTO became a submarine when I swerved on the road late one night to avoid hitting a dog. I no longer have the car, but I still have the keys.
 

cleanshaved

I’m stumped
The last car I bought before I moved to Japan was a 2006 Pontiac GTO, which, under the Pontiac nameplate, was a Holden Monaro. It used the same type of key your car uses. My dealer warned me that replacements would be expensive, and included 2 extra keys (for a total of 5). My GTO became a submarine when I swerved on the road late one night to avoid hitting a dog. I no longer have the car, but I still have the keys.

That was a nice gesture from the car saleman, the keys can get expensive now.
Shame about the car. This is the last year that Holden will me manufacturing as they are pulling out of Aussie. The name will carry on but imports from Europe......pass.

Yes that would be the same key. For what ever reason they soldered the battery into them. Guess they wanted people to get new keys if the battery failed.
My local Holden dealer (AKA Just holding together) wanted $350 NZD. I ended up getting a locksmith to cut and programm one for $200. It took him 20 minutes from hello to goodbye. You can get the unprogrammed key for $95, so he still turned a quick profit on the job.
The one I'm not going to use was $75 for the key and $75 for the tool. Not worth the risk for only a $50 difference.
I had a quick look at the price for my wifes Mazda 6 and people are saying the dealers wanted $300+ as well. One chap says he was quoted $900 for my 98 Mercedes CL500 :a47:

Next car I buy, I'll push for a new spare key at least.
 
You need an automotive locksmith, When my wife broke her van key locksmith told me to buy a blank of amazon. I did and next day he was able to program the key to the van. He cut the first key blank and i put the old guts into it, and he cut and programed the second key blank.
He used a special computer and had to buy the code for the van using the vin.
Only cost me $50 for him to cut and program 2 keys.
I cant remember the brand of computer he used, but I looked it up the day he did it and the computer ran $10K with $600 yearly software.
 

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