SAVE UP TO 70% OFF DEALER PRICES
High Desert Lock and Safe offers the most comprehensive automotive key service in northern Arizona! We can supply, cut and program keys for virtually every make and model, including laser cut keys for vehicles such as Volkswagen, Audi, BMW and Volvo! Customers who take advantage of our expert service can enjoy savings of up to 70% off dealer prices!
What is a Transponder Key?
A transponder key, often referred to as a "chip key", is a key with a small micro-chip embedded inside of the plastic head of the key. Each time you start your vehicle, the chip in the key communicates with your vehicle, disabling the immobilizer and allowing the engine to start. Popularized in the late 90's, the vast majority of vehicles manufactured in the last 15 years use this technology.
Sophisticated equipment is needed to program these keys and as each manufacturer uses a different method and technology, many other companies are unequipped to deal with these keys. Fortunately, High Desert Lock and Safe employs not just one, but a variety of state of the art programming tools and equipment allowing us to offer the most comprehensive coverage in the area.
How Do They Work?
The term "transponder", comes from two words, transmitter and responder. Each time you insert your key into the ignition, the antenna, or induction coil around the lock cylinder emits a brief, high powered RF signal which energizes the chip inside of the key, allowing it to emit its own faint signal. Because the chip in the key is energized by the ignition, there is no need to have a battery in the key, providing excellent durability and a long life span.
Once the newly energized chip in the key can emit a signal, the antenna coil around the ignition picks up this signal and sends this information to the vehicles ECM (Electronic Control Module). The ECM then determines if the data sent from the key matches the information stored within the module. If everything matches, the vehicle's immobilizer will disengage, the theft light in the vehicle stops blinking, and the engine is allowed to start. This all happens within the blink of an eye, every single time you turn your ignition over!
Does My Key Have a Chip?
If your vehicle was manufactured within the last 15 years then the answer is most likely 'Yes'. Most vehicle manufacturers started using transponder keys in the late 90's due to pressure from insurance companies. Cars were being stolen at an alarmingly high rate, causing costly payouts from insurers. As a result, Ford was one of the first major manufacturers to hit the market with transponder keys in 1996. By 1998, most other manufacturers had followed suit.
We get many calls every day from customers looking to replace lost or stolen chip keys, as well as others simply looking to purchase a spare. Over the years, we have helped countless customers avoid the high prices and long waits that plague most dealerships. Most transponder keys can be cut and programmed in less than 10 minutes, including the more difficult laser cut keys. Feel free to give us a call for at (928) 445-0197 to speak with an experienced technician about all your car and truck key needs.
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