If you’re locked out of your car and can’t get inside, a quick solution is to call a locksmith to come and make a new key for your vehicle. Locksmiths can provide you with the key blanks you need, or they can program your key fob if you’ve lost it. Some locksmiths have different rates based on which key blanks your vehicle requires, and some charge more than others. You’ll need to compare the cost of service, parts, and warranty policies between locksmiths before choosing one.
To determine how much a locksmith will charge, it’s helpful to gather information and call up to three different locksmiths. You can save a considerable amount of money by negotiating with a few locksmiths. While the larger companies tend to charge more, smaller businesses may not be able to accommodate your needs as quickly. You can ask for a discount to save ten to twenty percent. While some type of locksmiths are more accommodating than others, it’s still worth checking.
If you need a key for your vehicle that’s not compatible with your car, you can try asking for a key made from a transponder chip. Transponder keys are thicker than standard keys and have a chip embedded in them. These keys require special programming. Locksmiths can program a transponder key for up to 20 percent less than dealerships. Depending on the type of key you have, you might be able to save a substantial amount of money by doing this yourself.
Typically, a locksmith will charge between $50 and $150 to come to your location and make a key for your vehicle. However, the price can vary greatly based on the type of key, car make and model, and other factors. The cost of key cutting and rekeying can vary from $50 to $300 depending on the complexity of the job. The cost of a car lockout can also be high, so you should consider the cost of hiring a locksmith as soon as possible.
Choosing a locksmith that specializes in car keys is an important part of the process. Some locksmiths offer only OEM replacement keys, while most dealerships only supply aftermarket keys. However, if you’re looking for a cheaper option, it is advisable to use an aftermarket key. There are many companies that manufacture reliable, low-cost car keys. Buying these keys online can save you money as well.
It is important to remember that some vehicles were designed without the ability to program keys or remotes. To program a key fob, a locksmith needs to have a specialized diagnostic computer (a “scan tool”) to communicate with the car’s computer. This diagnostic computer will allow the locksmith to program a new key or a key fob, and you should also confirm ownership before paying the locksmith.
A good locksmith can cut new keys for cars and trucks with a chip that allows them to unlock the car without using the original keys. Dealers are no longer able to cut new keys, so a locksmith needs to obtain the code from a manufacturer or dealership. Most locksmiths will charge up to $15 per hour for this service. If you need a new ignition, it may be worthwhile to call several locksmiths before making the decision.