Realizing your car keys are missing just before you head outside is a common experience for all. Most of the time the key is located after a short search. However, sometimes the key cannot be found and it is lost forever. If you find yourself in a similar situation this article can help you handle it right.

These are a few common problems you might face with car keys:

  • Missing/lost keys
  • Broken Key
  • Drained battery
  • Water damaged keys
  • Keys locked inside the car
  • vehicle not responding to clicks

Types of car keys and replacement methods

Basic car key

car keys

Simple laser cut car key

These are the Machine cut or laser cut keys seen in old cars. Replacing these keys was a simple task. Locksmiths are used to file and shape a replacement key within a short time. These keys were easy to replace, thus making theft simple in the past.

Remote car keys

car keys

Remote car key

We can call these the second generation of car keys. The remote keys come with a transponder that emits radio waves. The coded message sent through radio waves signals the central locking system to lock and unlock the vehicle. Remote keys use CR44 type batteries for power. These batteries need replacement once in 3-4 years. If you Damage the entire remote, the whole set has to be sent to the dealership for reprogramming and replacement. This is an expensive solution, so keep your keys safe.

Smart keys

car keys

BMW’s Smart car key

Almost all new vehicles come with a smart key. This type of key makes keyless entry and start possible in the new cars. The car can sense the presence of the key when it’s nearby and the data transmitted enables the vehicle to unlock the doors without having to press any buttons. Smart keys are the safest option available currently. This type of key use dynamic codes instead of static codes. Therefore, making them almost impossible to hack and requiring special equipment to reprogram the key.

Is the car not responding to clicks?

At times the key might not be the problem. The problem might be inside the car. Issues with onboard computers and engine management systems can cause trouble in locking, unlocking, and even starting your vehicle using smart keys. If you find issues with the central locking system it is always recommended to call your service provider or dealership. Internal issues can be complex and only expert help can solve the matter.

Tips for car key Maintenance and replacement

  • Car keys are made for locking and unlocking cars. Using them as tools or mishandling them can damage them.
  • If a smart key or remote key is not working, try replacing the CR32 or CR34 battery. These batteries are available in almost all electronic shops.
  • Adding additional weight to the key or keychain can damage the ignition barrel of the vehicle. 
  • Keep the keys away from water and humidity. 


  1. When should I replace my car keys? 

Usually, car keys rarely need a replacement. However, if you lose the key or the electronics inside the key stop working, you might need to replace the key or battery.

  1. Can I replace the car keys on my own?

Replacing the CR44 battery is an easy task. But only a service station or dealership can replace the entire set because of complex technicalities.

Also, read:

How to take care of your car battery?