The transponder key was first made available in 1995, and since then, its use has increased significantly. Today, transponder keys are ubiquitous and integrated directly into car designs. Do you wonder what sets them apart from remote keys? Are there any benefits to switching to one?

What Is a Transponder Key?

This type of key contains a microchip that transmits a signal picked up by the receiver in the car. It is programmed with a unique serial number, and when it is activated, the vehicle’s computer will match this number against its own records. Only when they are identical will the car be able to start.

What Are the Differences Between a Transponder Key and a Remote Key?

At first glance, it may seem that transponder keys and remote keys look the same. However, unless you are an experienced auto locksmith, you likely would not know the difference between them.

There are two ways that remote keys can lock and unlock car doors. The first process involves inserting the key into the car’s door lock. The second one uses radio frequency and requires pressing a button on the key fob to open the car remotely.

A transponder key

A transponder key has an additional layer of protection over a remote key, which is how they differ. A transponder key has the two layers of protection that a remote key does and a third layer of security. The key has an electronic chip that can connect to the ignition lock signal. So if the ignition and key do not have the same unique digital serial number, the car will not start.

What Are the Benefits of Using a Transponder Key?

Its security features are the main benefits of a transponder key over a standard remote key. With a transponder key, your car has an alarm system that will go off should a thief attempt to enter the vehicle without the correct key. That not only alerts you to the danger but also has the potential to scare the thief away. In addition, since RFID technology is used in the transponder key and receiver, it is almost impossible to hotwire the car without the correct key.

Another advantage of transponder keys is that each one has its unique serial number. That makes it impossible to access the car with a different key — something that car thieves are known to do.

How to Determine if Your Key Has a Transponder Chip

Most car manufacturers adopted transponder keys to prevent theft, but some older models still do not have this feature. You must know the make and model to determine if your car has a chip key.

The best way to know if your car key has a transponder chip is to contact your trusted car locksmith service or dealership. They can tell you based on your vehicle’s year, make, and model.

A driver holding a transponder key

Do you operate your car with a metal key? Then it does not have a transponder. Unfortunately, you cannot upgrade an older, non-transponder vehicle to one with a transponder key. It is because older vehicles do not come with a built-in immobilizer system. The opposite is also true — a non-transponder key will not work on a car equipped with a chip key.

Keep Your Car Safe

No matter how advanced the security system on your car is, theft is always possible. So before leaving your car unattended, ensure all the windows are closed and all the doors are locked. Also, be mindful of where you park — choose well-lit, busy areas whenever possible.

Car Locksmith Near Me

Kardo Locksmith is a 24-hour locksmith company that serves Los Angeles, CA, and the surrounding areas. We provide essential auto locksmith services, including car key replacement, transponder programming, and lock rekeying. In addition, our team of experienced professionals is here to help you during emergencies with our mobile locksmith service. So whether you need help getting your car locked up for safety or need a new key made, we are here to help. So what are you waiting for? Call us, and we will take care of your locksmith needs today!

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