Automobiles are valuable assets that need full protection so that you can have better peace of mind. Transponder keys were introduced years ago to increase the security system of an automobile and to protect it against thieves. Now almost every new car that is on the market has a transponder key with it. Transponder keys have a multitude of benefits that you must be aware of in order to know what their true value is. Read further to get a thorough overview of transponder keys.
A transponder key, also called chip key, has a microchip inserted into its head. This microchip sends a low-level signal towards the receiver that is present inside a device near the ignition switch. While programming the chip, its manufacturer gives the chip a distinctive serial number. If this serial number matches the serial number encoded in the car, the vehicle will start immediately.
In case, a wrong key is inserted into the keyhole, whose digital serial number is different, the vehicle will not start even if you have entered in it.
How does a Transponder Key Work
All transponder keys work on the same principle. The ignition lock has an induction coil around it. When you insert a key in the hole and turn it, this coil produces an electromagnetic field. This electromagnetic field then turns on the microchip present in the key head which sends digital code signals towards the engine control unit (ECU). When the ECU receives these signals it turns on the engine and the car starts.
Test Whether Your Key is a Transponder Key on Not
You can use the following ways to test if your key has a microchip in it or not.
- The simplest way to check if your car has a transponder key or not is by reading its manual. If the key has a microchip in it, the manual will have mentioned it somewhere. If you do not have a manual then try the following methods.
- Cover the plastic head of your key with a foil made from tin (household tin foil is fine). Now insert this key in the keyhole and turn it. If the car does not start then it means your key is a transponder key because the foil covering has blocked the transfer of signals.
- Mostly, transponder keys have a thick and wider plastic part as compared to keys without a microchip. You can compare the size of both keys to find out which type of key you have.
- Transponder keys are generally expensive. So to test whether your key is a transponder or not, you can contact your car dealer or a locksmith and tell him that you want a key replacement for this car model. If he tells you the price of a replacement key in $50 plus then there is definitely a microchip inside your key and it is a transponder key.
Key Benefits of Using a Transponder Key
A transponder key can give you various security benefits. Its advantages are given below:
- An Alarm Sets off If a Thief Tries to Break-in
You can park your car outside and still be at peace by knowing that if a thief tries to start it with an incorrect key, a warning alarm will be set off, alarming you and others of the thief’s attempt.
- No Other Key can Start the Engine
Mostly, thieves use a master key that works on many cars. But this master key is useless if your car starts after receiving the signals from a microchip. He can enter into your car by using his key, but can only turn the engine on if he has your transponder key. If he has his transponder key, then even that key cannot ignite the engine because every transponder key has unique digital codes. No other key can have the same codes.
- Have More Peace of Mind
You must have bought your car by spending time earning money and then saving it. So losing it will be a great loss for anyone. You can sleep better at night if you know that your car is fully secured due to the exceptional security provided by the transponder key. No simple remote key can provide this much security. A thief can get a simple key’s duplicate easily and rob it whenever he gets the chance.
If you have bought a car then investing a few more bucks in purchasing a transponder key is worth it. Even if you received a transponder key with your car, you can get its duplicate from your dealer or from a professional locksmith to make sure you have 24/7 access to your car in case the original key gets misplaced or is no longer functional.