Can A Locksmith Make A Car Key? Yes!

A locksmith, it turns out, can replace conventional keys with or without the original. Furthermore, locksmiths increasingly have the skills and instruments to replace and reprogram transponder keys. When compared to your dealership, a locksmith’s services can save you up to $30 or more; however, cost may vary depending on the intricacy of the key replacement process.

Will they require identification? Who else is capable of producing replacement keys? Continue reading to find out more about them and how to replace your car key!

How Do Locksmiths Make Car Keys?

Tracing the key code

The automobile key code may be thought of as the signature of your keys. It is a one-of-a-kind code that your locksmith will translate and use to cut the key.

You may have seen some people with a glove box that is handed over to the automobile buyer at the moment of purchase. The box can also be used by the locksmith to create a new key for you.

The cost of a key varies depending on the vehicle. The vehicle identifying number, or “VIN,” can also be used to create a new car key.

According to ISO 3779 and 4030, it is a serial number that has been affixed to every vehicle since 1954. This number is plainly visible on your dashboard or behind the driver’s seat.

Cutting a key

The cutting procedure is crucial because metal is cut during the process to manufacture a vehicle key based on your key code.

This method requires the use of a highly precise high-end key cutting machine. To acquire you a replacement automobile key, the metal is manually fed into the machinery.

A code reader is then used to provide the computer the automobile identifying code. The machine begins to bite away at the metal in order to trace the exact pattern deciphered by the key code reader.

Manual labor is necessary at several stages during the operation, most notably when adjusting the key for vertical and horizontal cutting.

When the processed key is removed from the machine, it will be sliced just like your original key. Make certain that your locksmith is licensed and has sufficient experience for this job.

Programming the key

The task of programming a new key is crucial. Your auto key manufacturer must operate swiftly in order to complete the procedure, and precision work is essential.

This step requires the services of a skilled locksmith. All vehicles sold after the year 2000 have an immobilizer system.

An immobilizer system implies that you have a key fob with a transponder inside that connects with the immobilizer system to allow you to start the automobile.

In layman’s terms, the vehicle key programmer is attached to your automobile via the OBD port, which creates a connection with the ECM and informs it that it has to learn a new key.

You may be feeling the difficulty of the task now, which is why you need a professional to complete it.

Making new keys using scoping

Push-start locks are contemporary locks that offer keyless entry.

Despite the widespread use of this new method, the basic lock mechanism on the majority of automobiles remains unchanged.

The scoping method is a sophisticated approach used by skilled locksmiths to assist drivers who have forgotten keys inside their car, commonly known as a lockout situation.

This is a unique way that can save the motorist money on transponder replacement. The locksmith examines the lock cylinders with a very small scope inserted within the lock.

As a result, he cut a key with a similar pattern to the original key. When he’s finished, you’ll be able to unlock your lock and collect your original key.

Being locked outside of your car or losing your car keys is a really unpleasant circumstance that we hope you never have to encounter in your life.

Still, accidents happen, and if you find yourself in a jam, it is evident that you should contact a professional locksmith right away rather than pondering how locksmiths produce vehicle keys.

If you are locked out of your automobile, a trained locksmith can assist you with techniques to unlock the car lock. Misplacing your keys is a more unpleasant occurrence.

Because the procedure of creating new keys is complicated. It may take a long time for a locksmith to manufacture you a new set of keys.

What If the Car Key Replacement Without The Original?

Before an auto locksmith can replace your car keys without the originals, they must first determine the brand, model, and manufacturing year of your vehicle. For traditional vehicle keys, auto locksmiths frequently have a blank key on hand, especially for older models, so they can simply make a copy for you on the spot.

Making a transponder key from scratch, on the other hand, is a difficult process. Cutting and shaping the metal component of the transponder key is simple, but programming the correct signal is more complicated. Locksmiths can program a transponder in around 30 minutes, although certain microchips must be acquired directly from the dealers or manufacturers. This ordering procedure might take several days and adds to the overall cost of the service.

If your transponder key is stolen or misplaced, you can get it programmed and the ignition reprogrammed by an auto locksmith. This technique may be more expensive, but it will render the lost or stolen key worthless. To guarantee that the automobile is yours, auto locksmiths will want evidence of ownership before commencing the reprogramming procedure.

What Is the Cost of Auto Locksmith Services?

Prices for vehicle locksmith services can vary greatly depending on location, time, and complexity, as with most things. The table below shows the average pricing range for vehicle locksmiths across the country, according to HomeAdvisor.

  • The standard hourly wage is $50 to $100. If you contact a vehicle locksmith after hours, the prices will range from $75 to $125 per hour.
  • The cost of unlocking an automobile is between $50 and $100. The complexity of the lock will most likely decide the price (key or keyless, etc.).
  • The average cost of a complete lock change is $75 per hour.
  • If there is a sophisticated lock or other impediments, the cost might reach the $200 level. As is customary, getting this done at a dealership will very certainly cost you much more.
  • Rekeying a vehicle (for example, when a car owner has separate keys to unlock and start the automobile) can cost between $50 and $300. This is a wide range, but prices tend to be on the lower end, so averaging between $50 and $150 is probably a good bet.
  • New keys range in price from $10 to $150. As you may expect, the price will rise as the rekeying process progresses to more advanced ways involving chip programming. However, if it’s just a regular key, the price should remain modest.
  • A replacement ignition switch will typically cost between $125 and $275, not including materials and installation.

How Do I Show A Locksmith Proof Of Ownership?

A close-up shot of an automobile key

Auto locksmiths are eager to assist you in obtaining a new car key, but they must first verify that the vehicle is yours. Locksmiths will need personal identification, particularly your driver’s license. Your registration or title, vehicle identifying number (VIN), and key identification number will also be required.

Your vehicle identification number (VIN) may be located on the side of your door or on a metal plate on the driver’s side dashboard. Your key identification number may be found in your vehicle’s owner’s handbook. Your KIN assists auto locksmiths in replacing your transponder key.

Is it possible for AAA to make a new car key?

The American Automobile Association (AAA) is a non-profit organization that offers its members insurance, vehicle loans, and other services. The group does not produce new automobile keys, but instead hires state-licensed locksmiths to make replacement keys for their members. Members of AAA can receive up to $100 (or more, depending on their membership level) to pay key replacement and duplication costs.

Is it possible to get spare keys from Autozone?

Autozone will offer you blank automobile keys for as little as $10 and can also cut and duplicate a spare for you. Transponder key fobs are also available at Autozone, with prices ranging from $15 to $90. These costs rise if the automobile key replacement necessitates ordering transponder microchips from dealers.

Is It Possible For A Locksmith To Replace An Ignition Switch?

In addition to replacing automobile keys, auto locksmiths may also repair ignition switches. The ignition switch is located in the ignition cylinder, where you enter your keys. The ignition cylinder might malfunction at times. Failures to start the automobile and breaking the key while within the cylinder are two examples of ignition switch problems. Fortunately, vehicle locksmiths can also repair and replace these.

Ignition switches and cylinders are model and brand specific, therefore changing them might take days owing to delivery. The actual repair and replacement process only takes 20 minutes.



It is inconvenient to break or lose a car key. Not only does losing your keys leave your vehicle useless, but it also puts your vehicle at danger of theft. Fortunately, vehicle locksmiths can assist with this. Most auto locksmiths have the instruments necessary to repair anything linked to your vehicle’s locks, from standard and transponder keys to ignition switches. Auto locksmiths advise getting a duplicate car key before you need it. This manner, you may prevent any further towing charges as well as the trouble of replacements.

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