How Much Do Keyless Entry Keys Cost? [What You Need To Know]

Keyless entry has become a standard feature in many new vehicles due to its convenience and security. However, if you lose the key fob, how much is it to replace it? Let's look at what you can expect to pay for a replacement.

Generally, you can expect to pay $250-$600 for replacement keyless entry keys, depending on the brand. The cost includes buying the new keyless entry fob and the labor to program it. Most of these replacements will need to be done at the dealership.

It may seem a little crazy to pay that much for a key fob, but why are they so expensive? This article will discuss the cost of a keyless entry key fob replacement and why the prices differ from regular keys. In addition, we will answer other frequently asked questions about vehicle keys, so read on!

Dealership owner giving the car keys to the new car owner, How Much Do Keyless Entry Keys Cost? [What You Need To Know]

Why Are Keyless Entry Keys So Expensive?

When the keyless entry feature started, it was generally seen in luxury brands and top-tier trim packages. However, it is becoming more common as a standard feature. Even budget-friendly brands are starting to offer it as an option.

Keyless entry sensor


The keys are so expensive because they have a built-in computer chip that needs to be programmed. In addition, the key needs to be able to communicate with the car's computer system.

The keyless entry key fobs are programmed with a security code that makes it difficult for hackers to replicate. The coded message in the key fob transmits to the vehicle, allowing you to enter it and start it without using a key.

Due to the programming code involved, keyless entry key fobs have a hefty price tag. So if you need to replace it, expect to pay anywhere from $250-$600.

If you lose your key fob or it stops working, you will need to get a replacement from the dealership. This is because they are the only ones who can program the new key fob to work with your car.

The reason dealerships charge so much for this service is because they need to recoup the cost of the key fob and the labor involved in programming it.

Programming a new key fob can take up to an hour, so the dealership will charge you for their time. In addition, they may charge a fee for the key itself.

When you add it all up, the cost of replacing a keyless entry key fob can be pretty expensive. However, it is still cheaper than replacing your entire car if it gets stolen!

How Much Does It Cost To Replace Regular Car Keys?

If you lose a regular key, the cost to replace it will depend on the year, make, and model of your vehicle. Older vehicles will have more straightforward keys that are easier to replace.

You can expect to pay anywhere from $50-$200 for a replacement key and remote. The cost will depend on the complexity of the key and the labor involved in cutting and programming it.

Typically, older models have keys that don't have a chip, so little to no programming is involved. All the dealer or locksmith has to do is cut a new key. These types of keys can be under $50 for a replacement.

If you have a newer vehicle, the keys may be more complex. For example, they may have a transponder chip that needs to be programmed to work with your car. In addition, if you also need a new remote for locking, unlocking, and opening the trunk, that will add to the cost.

The best way to find out how much it will cost to replace your key is to call a local dealership or locksmith. They will be able to give you an estimate based on your vehicle's year, make, and model.

How Can I Avoid Losing My Keys?

No matter how careful you are, keys have a way of disappearing when you need them the most. However, if you are constantly misplacing your keys, you can do a few things to keep them safe and avoid costly replacements.

Keys hanged on the keyholder mounted on the wall

First, invest in a keychain or key fob holder. This will help you keep track of your keys and prevent them from getting lost.

For a keyless entry key fob, try starting the vehicle. It will still start if the key fob is somewhere inside the car. You know that the key fob fell under your seat or somewhere else in the vehicle if it starts.

Second, always know where your keys are before leaving the house. Put them in the same place every time to easily find them when you need them.

Third, if you have a keyless entry system, use it! This will help reduce the risk of losing your keys and having to replace them.

Finally, if you do lose your keys, don't panic. The first thing you should do is call a local dealership or locksmith. They will be able to help you get replacement keys and have them programmed to work with your car.

Can I Still Start My Car If My Keyless Entry Fob Is Dead?

Car owner holding key fob

If you have a keyless entry, you will have to push to start. If the key fob battery dies, you may feel out of luck since you don't use a physical key to start the vehicle.

However, most vehicles have a way you can start the car even if the key fob is dead or on its way out. For example, some vehicles like Ford models will have a key fob slot in the middle console.

Consumers can place the key fob in this slot and still start the vehicle.

You may have to press the push start button with the key fob in other models. This will help the vehicle recognize that the key fob is close by and allow you to start the car.

If you are unsure how to start your vehicle without a working key fob, consult your owner's manual or call a local dealership. They will be able to help you figure out how to start your car until you can get a new battery for your key fob.

How Long Should A Key Fob Battery Last?

Like any battery, at some point, it will die. However, key fob batteries typically last between 3 and 4 years.

The lifespan of a key fob battery depends on how often you use it. For example, if you use your key fob to unlock your car every time you get in, it will die faster than someone who only uses it to lock their vehicle.

In addition, extreme temperatures can also affect the lifespan of a key fob battery. For example, if you live in a cold climate and use your key fob to unlock your car every morning, the battery will die faster than someone who lives in warmer weather.

To help extend the life of your key fob battery, try not to use it unnecessarily. If you can, lock and unlock your car manually. You should also avoid leaving it in direct sunlight or in a hot vehicle since this can speed up the process of the battery dying.

If you notice that your key fob isn't working as well as it used to, it may be time to replace the battery. You can replace most batteries easily by opening up the key fob and popping in a new one.

If you bought your vehicle used from a private owner, ask them about the key fob battery. They may have already replaced it and can tell you how often they had to do so.

In this case, it is worth picking up some spare batteries so you are prepared when the time comes.

Should I Get Two Keyless Entry Keys From The Dealership?

Car dealer giving the car keys to the new car owner

When you buy a brand new vehicle, you should get two keyless entry keys from the dealership.

These keys will come in handy if you ever lose one or it stops working. In addition, having a spare key will save you time and money since you won't have to go to the dealership to get a new one made.

Before you sign papers, be sure to ask if there is a spare key fob. As you found out earlier in this article, they aren't cheap, and it would be a bummer to have to pay for one later on.

Even if the vehicle is used, ask for a second key fob. Dealerships get special discounts on these key fobs, so they may be willing to give you a second one at a discounted rate or free within the deal.

Final Thoughts

Dealership owner giving the car keys to the new car owner

While they are convenient, keyless entry keys can burn a hole in your wallet if you need a replacement. Therefore, always ask for a second key fob when you buy a vehicle, so you have a spare if you lose one or it stops working.

In addition, have spare batteries on hand, so you can replace them when the time comes.

Made it to the end? Here are a few other articles you may enjoy:

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