How to Reprogram a Car Key

by Matthew Fortuna
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Microchiped Car Key image by Christopher Meder from

Introduced in the 1990s, electronic keys can be programmed to your car's engine to offer extra convenience and security for your vehicle. These keys, also known as chip keys or transponder keys, are synced to your starter. Once they are programmed, they are the only keys that can start your car's ignition. You can reprogram lost signals from your driver's seat, in just minutes, as long as you have two programmed keys.

Step 1

Enter your car with your two programmed keys and your new, unprogrammed key.

Step 2

Insert the first programmed key into the ignition. Turn it to the "On" position, and then back to the "Off" position.

Step 3

Remove the first key and insert the second key within five seconds.

Step 4

Turn the second key "On" and then back "Off." Remove the key.

Step 5

Insert the new key within 10 seconds and turn it to the "On" position for one second. Return it to the "Off" position.

Step 6

Wait for the security light to turn on and stay on for three seconds before removing the new key. The reprogramming is now finished.

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