Key Fobs

Automotive Key Fobs

There are a tremendous amount of various key fobs that go to vehicles. Every manufacturer has specifications for their remotes and not only are these remotes specific to manufacturers, but specific to years and models. For example, the remote to a 2012 Subaru Forester can not be programmed to a 2001 Subaru Forester, and neither will the remote from a 2009 Honda Civic work on a  2009 Nissan Sentra. All three bits of information (the year, the make, and the model) are equally important in determining which key fob to use. Some key fobs even look identical to others but give off different outputs and frequencies or use a different chipset then needed. Using any key fob other than the one and only key fob designated for your vehicle will result in either a key that will not start your vehicle or buttons that do not function correctly.

Remote head keys

Some manufacturers utilize a remote head key as the main type of key used for their vehicles. These keys look like regular keys but instead of a conventional head, there is a remote. Buttons used for locking, unlocking, trunk release and panic are often included, but you may also find remote start, door open/close, and remote air conditioning functions as well. Often, these keys don’t just have a remote inside, but also an immobilizer chip. Without programming both “brains” of the remote head key, the key will not function as intended.

Does your vehicle utilize a remote head key? Do you need extras or backups? Call us at (206) 823-2288 and we will make sure to be ready for your arrival to get you going as quickly as possible!

Smart keys

If your vehicle does not use a key blade that turns in an ignition and instead uses a push button to start function, you are using a smart key. Smart keys are extremely sophisticated remotes that communicate to the vehicle’s computer by transmitting certain frequencies to let the vehicle know when the key is inside and when it is not. A vehicle using this system will not start the engine unless it senses a programmed smart key inside. Not any smart key will start the vehicle. Only smart keys that are programmed specifically to a vehicle will start that vehicle and only that vehicle. An unprogrammed smart key will do nothing.

Because smart keys do not need a key blade to start the engine, they appear not to have a blade at all. This is rarely truly the case. Smart keys typically incorporate an emergency key that is tucked away inside the remote. This key is only a regular metal key and is not designed for starting the vehicle but rather for using in the door lock if the smart key’s battery runs out. Once inside, you can usually hold the smart key right next to the start engine button to start the vehicle.

We keep all of our machines and software up to date to stay ready for any type of smart key we may need to create. Even if your smart key is totally lost and you need a new one created from scratch, we can help. Give us a call at (206) 823-2288 and we will get the next available technician on the way.