Updated at: 11-08-2022 - By: Lucas

You may be perplexed as to why your automobile won’t start after you had a replacement key cut by your local locksmith, even though the key is identical to the original. It doesn’t matter if your original key doesn’t have any remote lock functions, there is still a transponder chip buried below the plastic that acts as an additional layer of anti theft security.

Without the transponder chip, there is no way to start an automobile. There is a workaround if you wish to use many keys but only have one chip.

What is a Transponder Key

How To Start My Car Without Chip Key

Key FOBs or transponder keys, as they are more commonly referred to, are metal keys with an anti-theft chip embedded in the plastic cover.

Layered safety systems for vehicles exist, with the key being one of the most important components. The original key is the simplest and most obvious way to steal a car. Thieves would steal keys for a split second and leave behind impressions that they might later use to recreate them.

Manufacturers introduced transponder chips to prevent this from happening. Because there is no chip to broadcast RFID Radio Frequency Identification, even a perfect copy of a key will not start the engine.

Cars check for unique RFID frequencies when keys are put into locks. Transponder key chips generate weak signals that can only be detected in close proximity to the lock. Thieves will have no choice but to steal your transponder key if your car has one, and you’ll be able to react in time to prevent the theft if you have one.

How to Start My Car Without a Chip Key?

How To Start My Car Without Chip Key-2

You cannot start a car without a transponder chip since they are not designed to be bypassed in any way. The appropriate frequency can be read from your car by an authorized dealership and a replacement made. If you just have one transponder chip, there is a workaround.

  • Remove the plastic cover from your key. You may need to use a screwdriver or pliers to apply leverage as the seal is very tight.
  • Take out the transponder chip. It looks like a very small black square or a see-through tube.
  • Place the chip on a piece of tape, then attach it near the ignition lock.
  • Try to start the key with your disassembled key, or a replacement key that doesn’t have the chip.
  • If the car doesn’t start, reposition the piece of tape and try again.
  • Once you’ve found a spot for the chip that works, secure it in place with superglue.

If you have a copy of your ignition key, it will work as if it had the transponder chip.

Obviously, you’re sacrificing some level of security. The fact is that automobile security systems serve as deterrents. Professional thieves are unlikely to be deterred by locked doors and wheel immobilizers, which are only effective against thieves of opportunity.

In some cases, it may actually be a superior security system because of the interference that occurs when two transponder chips are close together. If you glue a key close to the ignition, you should not use a key with the transponder chip still inside.

To make this book more comprehensive, I’ve compiled a list of important problems and their solutions that may not have been covered in the preceding part.

How to Start a Car Without A Key Fob

How To Start My Car Without Chip Key-3

With the advancement of transponder chip technology, current keyless fobs can start a car’s engine by simply being near the ignition. So manufacturers ensured you have an easy way to open the car door and start it up if the battery-powered chips fail.

It’s possible that you aren’t aware that the key fob contains a little physical key because you’ve never had to use it. You’ll find an L-shaped metal key by removing a little cover from one side of the fob. In order to use it as a standard key until you obtain new batteries, insert it into the fob in reverse order.

The smartphone app can be used to unlock and start the vehicle instead of the key fob. One of the following apps must be installed on your phone, depending on the manufacturer:

  • Audi: MMI Connect
  • Dodge, Jeep, Chrysler, Fiat, Alfa Romeo: Uconnect
  • Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC, Buick: OnStar RemoteLink
  • Ford & Lincoln: Sync Connect
  • BMW: Connected Drive
  • Hyundai: BlueLink
  • Nissan: Nissan Connect
  • Infinity: Infinity InTouch
  • Lexus: Lexus Enform
  • Subaru: StarLink

How To Program a Transponder Key Without The Original

Probably a lot of people have told you to do something like this method:

  • Place the key into the ignition and set it to the On position
  • Leave it in the On position for about 10 minutes, then turn it back to Off.
  • Repeat the process two more times.
  • Remove the key.

This is a terrific way to waste 30 minutes and a significant portion of the charge in your battery. RFID chips cannot be programmed as simply as some claim, despite what some may claim. Actually, you won’t be able to program them on your own at all. Without an authorized dealer or an independent locksmith, you cannot copy the chip code from one transponder key to another.

As I don’t know how the transponder chip is programmed myself, the difficulty is that you need the correct instruments to replicate the frequency of one and save it in the other.. Locksmiths who don’t have the original radio frequency identification (RFID) code can either search the database and discover your car’s RFID or use special gear to extract it from the vehicle.

The fact that the car is receiving rather than sending makes it difficult to pick up a frequency and determine what it wants to read, further complicating the situation.

Always Have A Transponder Key Backup

Even if you still have a perfectly functional key, you should read this part because it won’t be long before it comes in handy and saves you hundreds of dollars. To begin, have your transponder key duplicated as soon as possible if you still have it.

It’s far simpler to copy an existing key than it is to create a new one from scratch.

For a low price, you can easily make a copy of the key and control the remotes yourself. Due to the growing popularity of using RFID chips as building entrance locks, many locksmiths now have the ability to duplicate them for your automobile key as well. For the sake of future copy protection, I’d even make a second RFID chip, whether it be for a car or a gate.

Cheapest Way To Get A New Transponder Key

A new key will have to be made if you’ve already lost all of your old ones. In the $200-$600 range, you may expect to spend.

On the surface, going to the dealership seems like a good idea. After all, you bought your car from them, therefore they should have the most efficient and least expensive method of duplicating the key. It is precisely the opposite: You will have to bring your automobile to the shop, and you will also have to pay $400 for a new key

An freelance locksmith, on the other hand, may do the task for a fraction of the price, and some will even travel to your location. Contact every locksmith in your region and compare prices. Set the terms, on the other hand, so that you only pay if the work is completed successfully. When a locksmith tries and fails to duplicate your car key, he or she may act as if your vehicle is to fault.


Can I start my car without the chip key?

The chip key is required to start a car. Call the manufacturer’s on-road assistance service or use a mobile app to get started. Towing the vehicle home or to a dealership is the only other alternative, depending on how a new key is made.

How do you tell if there is a chip in your car key?

Take a look at the owner’s manual or disassemble the key to look for a small black square or tube-shaped chip.

How do you start a push-button car without a key fob?

If you’ve misplaced all of your key fobs, the sole option is to remotely open and start the car using a phone app. The only alternative is to get a new key if the first doesn’t work. However, if your keyless fob’s battery has gone, there is one more thing you can do.

Determine which corner of the remote can be loosened. Some keyless remotes include a metal back-up within, which is something most consumers are unaware of. Remove the key from the remote and insert it backwards to produce a normal key.

Is the push button or start better?

Technology used for push-button start has advanced substantially, but its tradeoff is still unchanged. Using a push-button start provides convenience and safety, although a key start is still deemed more trustworthy. Ignition locks can also fail, as we’ve seen in this post, therefore I think the push button is a superior alternative altogether.


It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to start your automobile without the transponder chip, but you now know how to get inside. Please check out our other guides and reviews for additional helpful information regarding car care and repairs, as well as innovative methods to save money!