Types of Car Keys

types of car keys

All You Need to Know About Types of Car Keys


Cars play an important part in our daily lives. It is one of the most crucial ways of transportation in the modern world. With this in mind, there is no doubt that cars keys are a crucial tool in accessing these reliable machines. Car keys are the ultimate link to the cars and should always be treated with utmost care, as they can also be used to illegally access the cars, for instance during theft. Therefore, being conversant with different types of car keys, as well as how they are used is crucial to any car owner.

Transponder Keys

This type of a car key has a computer microchip that is electronically coded and embedded in a plastic body. It was first introduced in 1995 and is still in use. The code in the microchip is essential in detecting the car keys when inserted in the ignition. This code has to be matched to enable the key to start the car engine. If in any case the microchip in the transponder gets broken or misplaced, then it will not be possible to start the car engine. An ultimate way of resolving such a problem is by reprogramming the immobilizer control so as to match it with the new car key with the new reprogrammed code. This process may be costly depending on the model of the car, as well as other factors such as location and urgency.


Remote Controls

Almost all the cars that are in the market today are supplied with remote car controls. Even though, they are not the same as traditional car keys, remote controls plays a crucial role in locking and unlocking car doors, opening and closing car trunks, as well as turning on and off car alarms. Remote controls use either radio transmitters or infrared to send a coded message to a receiver that is fitted on the car. The frequency of these remote controls varies, and in some rare cases, the radio signals may not be sent; thus ensuring that the car cannot be unlocked. This can call for the need of using the remote control near the car for it to easily send the signals. Again, remote controls use batteries and may refuse to work if the batteries are flat. If the remote control is missing, then a replacement of a systematic receiver bypass may be required.

Rolling Codes

This type of a car key was first introduced in 1999 and has become a common feature of modern cars. This unique type of key sends a new code each and every time the car key is used. It is slightly different to transponder key in the sense that it sends a different code every time the car key is used, while transponder keys have a fixed code. This feature is advantageous because the rolling codes are virtually impossible to replace, thereby guaranteeing car security. On the contrary, this type of a car is highly expensive to replace and may cost in the region of $500.

Master Keys

Even though slightly outdated, master keys were not meant for normal use in the cars. They came with the cars, but were used by locksmith dealers to program a replacement in cases where car keys were missing. Losing a master key would be extremely cost, and would sometimes require a complete overhaul of the engine management system. On this note, it worth noting that many modern cars are not supplied with master keys. Instead, car dealers have car security information that has a central database for storing among other things, car key reprogramming information.
Car keys are an important part of the car’s security and that of anything that might be in the car. Knowing the above mentioned types of car keys is essential information that is beneficial to car users.