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How to Repair a Jeep Key FOB

by Susanne Koenig

Jeep is one of the few domestic dealerships that require you to bring in your key fob for professional programming on most of its models. Sometimes the key fobs have to be re-programmed due to a frequency problem caused by electronic interference. However, with a bit of a do-it-yourself spirit, you can repair a Jeep key fob that has been damaged by everyday wear and tear. It is a matter of refreshing the conductivity that exists between the fob's buttons and the tiny circuitry board that is on the inside of your fob. It could also be a simple as replacing your battery.

Open your key fob. This can be done either by loosening the screw on the back of the key fob or using a small flathead screwdriver to pry open the fob using the seam in the middle of the fob. Once open, take out the battery. Take a moment and spray canned air in your remote to remove loose debris and dust that might have gathered. Replace the battery, making sure to place the positive side up.

Test your remote to see if the battery was the problem by snapping the key fob together and trying it on your car. If this does not solve the problem, re-open the key fob and clean the contacts. These are the little golden squares on the circuitry board. Place a small amount of isopropyl alcohol on a cotton swab, then rub the contact gently. Replace the cover and try the key fob remote on your car again.

Check the contacts on the circuitry board for wear. If they are worn, renew the contacts by putting a small amount of condutivity paint on the surface. Allow this to dry, then replace the battery. Snap the cover on and give the key fob a try. You can also use a pencil to re-establish contact by gently rubbing the lead on the surface of the contacts.

Take your remote to an automotive locksmith. A reputable automotive locksmith can repair your fob cheaper than the cost of replacing a key fob at the dealership or even online. Use a professional association to find a locksmith online.

Tip

  • The Associated Locksmiths of America has a thorough database of highly trained professionals on its website. Just search the site by zip code.

Warning

  • Sometimes to save money a Jeep owner might buy a key fob online. Do not buy a key fob for your Jeep if you do not have a professional, such as an automotive locksmith or the dealership, that will accept it for programming. Most professionals will not program a fob that has been ordered through another dealer, for proprietary and security reasons. Check first.

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About the Author

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