This is obvious, but for many car owners, it is an important step in preventing car theft. Of course, it is most effective for cars that have a low value. Expensive cars are usually stolen by thieves with better skill and equipment. In some cases, an expensive car may not be the prime target. If a thief can first obtain stolen car keys, stealing the car becomes easy. For this reason, a person must secure their car as well as their keys.

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How They’re Made

Key fobs actually take the form of a variety of objects from hotel card keys to garage door openers. Your car’s key fob allows you access to your vehicle using external physical buttons that activate an internal keyless transmitter. Inside the fob, tiny versions of complex computer components generate codes that tell your car whether you want to open the trunk or activate the alarm. The devices inside use a pseudo-random number generator to send these signals to your car. Your car’s key fob has a limit: After 256 random number generations, the key fob will stop transmitting properly.


Benefits of Keyless Entry

For the most part, keyless entry offers many benefits to the average consumer. You don’t have to rummage in your pockets every time you want to open your car, you may be able to deter criminals who can’t access your keyless transmitter and you can get into your car much more quickly than if you had to open it manually. The only real downside to owning a car key fob is that over time the internal transmitter may wear down, or you could lose the device. In this case, programming car key fobs becomes a minor inconvenience.


Heat the Lock

If all else fails and there is an electrical outlet nearby, prolonged heating of the lock with a hairdryer will melt the frozen condensation. In addition, a hairdryer is the best option to open a lock that is completely covered with ice after an ice storm or freezing rain. Individuals may need to find an extension cord or a battery-powered hairdryer if there is no electrical outlet nearby. A hairdryer may also be useful for warming a key to melt ice within the lock. However, hot water should never be poured over a lock to melt the ice because this can cause an increased buildup of condensation within the lock.


Replacement Issues

What can you do if your keyless entry system fails or your key fob needs to be re-programmed? And how long does it take? The answers to these questions depend on your car and dealer. Most dealers will charge hefty service fees to replace the key fob because keyless entry systems are so crucial to the security of your car’s lock system. In reality, programming car key fobs can be done by an experienced locksmith at autolocks just as easily and in a fraction of the time it would take a service tech at your dealer to do it. Depending on your car make and model, key fobs can be programmed in anywhere from 15 minutes to more than an hour.