Car Key Technology Has Advanced in the Last Decade
Older car keys have a series of tongues and grooves that become damaged and can break or fail to make a connection with the ignition because of wear and tear. What owners of newer cars fail to realize is that the newer cars with new technologically advanced keys can also have problems and malfunction at the worst times. With chips present and programming the newer keys malfunction quite a bit. Most owners with technologically advanced keys do not feel that a locksmith can assist but this is incorrect. A certified locksmith will have the updated training to take on any number of technical key issues quickly and conveniently for you.
Let’s discuss the types of technology advanced keys first.
- Transponder keys
These are also called “chipped” keys as they contain a programmed chip that responds to RFID (Radio Frequency Identification). When a key is inserted into the ignition the car’s ignition responds to the signal as the ignition is also programmed.
- VATs keys
Introduced first in the 1980s these keys provide extra security as they are electronically programmed to only work with one vehicle at a time. Used on expensive cars first, to deter car thieves, they have advanced now. Going to an automotive store or even your local automotive dealership usually will not assist in replacing a VATS key. Only mobile locksmiths usually can replicate or replace these as they use a VATS interrogator which tells them the exact specs, they need to know to replicate the key. VATS is the abbreviation for Vehicle Anti-Theft System.
- Remote keys
These keys are an improvement over the VATS key and are the ones most car owners of today use and are familiar with. There is a push-button that locks and unlocks a car remotely, and some cars even come with a key that can remotely start a vehicle before a driver is in the car. These are also called “smart keys” and again, only a good mobile locksmith can usually assist affordably with replacement or perhaps repair.
- Non-key push button cars
Although the push button cars technically do not need a key to start the ignition or even a key to open the doors, there is a key fob that is programmed that is needed. While these cars can seem quite a great convenience, there is always the chance that a fob is left in a car that is still running, because the push button has not turned off the car, or a car is left in a drive mode where it rolls on its own. Losing or looking in a fob for a push-button car needs attention ASAP. Owners of these cars can and do make up a great deal of the work of mobile locksmiths who are experienced with the technology and available 24/7. The owners of pushbutton ignitions are in a bad state when a fob is locked in the car or when lost and the engine is running. These cars will run out of gas quickly and a mobile locksmith needs to assist immediately.
24/7 mobile locksmiths with experience are needed now more than ever, and the field continues to grow with the technology now in place. But experience does count so choose carefully and ask about the latest in trends in automobiles and if a locksmith has experience in these trends.