Lost your car keys? Here’s what you should do

Lost your car keys? Here’s what you should do  27th February 2023

Losing your traditional car keys is a minor concern as you can quickly get a duplicate key made by the car service centre. However, as vehicles have become more technologically sophisticated, getting new keys can be more technical and expensive than ever.

It can take several steps and leave a dent in your wallet to replace a lost or stolen key, depending on the type and model of the car you drive. Fortunately, when comparing new car insurance rates, you can purchase an add-on coverage to protect your car keys.

While the add-on cover can limit your expense, here's what you should do if you lose your car keys.

1. Verify carefully:
Before deciding, conduct a comprehensive search for the keys everywhere. Retrace your steps and cover all the spaces you may have placed your keys.

2. Inform your insurance provider:
When you lose your key, the first thing is to write to the insurance provider and tell them what happened. With a misplaced key, there is a considerable risk of vehicle theft. Additionally, they may require the submission of an FIR filed with the nearest police station.

3. Reach out to a franchised dealer:
Contacting a manufacturer's dealer for your car is recommended if you need an OEM replacement key. It frequently costs money and takes time to obtain. If your original key offered features like a hands-free boot release, you will receive a new key identical to it in addition to programming for those features.

4. Decide on your car's essential type:
If you lose the existing key and have no spare, consider switching your key type. Traditional transponder, FOB, and intelligent keys are options to choose from.

How to recover different kinds of keys.

1. Traditional key:
You must put a conventional car key into the ignition cylinder to start your vehicle mechanically. If you misplace your car keys, you can phone an auto locksmith, who can immediately make you a new key. You might need a new ignition lock cylinder and key from the dealer or another repair facility.

2. Transponder key:
These keys are more advanced and detected by the Electronic Control Unit that starts the engine. A skilled electronic locksmith can help as they have spare keys equipped with the same tuning chips as your car. But they bill you more than they would have for a regular car key.

3. Smart key:
Modern vehicles almost universally include push-button start and keyless entry. However, we advise keeping a spare in your glove compartment for emergencies. If you lose your keyless entry FOB, you can buy a spare key or have your car towed to the closest brand dealership, where they will program a new FOB to pair with your vehicle. Smart keys are the most expensive set of keys among all types, and you should only get them from your authorised car dealer.

Losing your car key is not a significant concern as there are several ways to recover a new one or attain a spare key. Also, consider purchasing key protection coverage while evaluating new car insurance rates for comprehensive coverage of your car and its key. It's always a safe option to watch out for your car keys and keep them safely in your pocket and avoid leaving them unattended.

Click HERE to buy comprehensive car insurance.

Disclaimer: The information provided above is for illustrative purposes only. To get more details, please refer to policy wordings and prospectus before purchasing a policy.