Few things are more frustrating than being locked out of your car. This may happen in case of existing car key loss, or damage. To continue to enjoy the convenience and service of your key, you will need a key replacement. Older vehicle models required a quick trip to the local locksmith or hardware store for a replacement. Whichever the case, before consulting the automotive locksmith, it is important to know the cost of the service. The following are the key factors that determine the cost of car key replacement.
1. Car Key Type
Component cost is a key element in auto key replacement costs. Old key models only need unique cuts on the metal shank. Modern car technology requires more specialised skills as they feature modern components including, transponders, wiring mechanism and batteries. The cost of the component also depends on the car model and year of make. Newer models tend to have more expensive components, and therefore, the replacement cost is higher than older models.
2. Replacement Location
Common car replacement avenues include the local automotive locksmith, DIY and car dealerships. Depending on your handiness, DIY offers the cheapest option. Here, you can buy the blank key online and follow the instructions on cutting and programming. Alternatively, contact a locksmith for some of the harder tasks such as programming only. However, it carries the highest risk of failure, or escalated issues such as damaged car locking mechanism. When seeking the replacement service from the locksmith, hire trained specialists. They offer the prime benefits of high skill sets, flexibility, affordable costs-cheaper than dealerships and often, availability and flexibility-reputable ones offer mobile round-the-clock automotive locksmith services.
3. Replacement Duration
You entirely determine the duration of the replacement process, often depending on the urgency and frequency of use. Do note, however, that the service duration determines the final amount. Different car key types need a different amount of time to make. For example, the older model key requires a shorter time-only involves key cutting, than the fob keys which require additional processes such as programming. In the same vein, urgency comes at a cost. Emergency replacements usually attract an additional cost than waiting out.
The above are the key variables in a car replacement cost. While DIY sounds cheap, it carries the extra risk of escalating issues, especially for the modern car models. Dealers tend to be expensive, and the process can take longer than necessary due to in-house policies, protocols and a high number of clients. A reputable, insured and trained auto locksmith should get you out and about in a few. Most also offer the extra and convenient benefit of mobile services such as temporary keys to retrieve your items. They can also provide you with a written quote so you can know how much you will have to pay upfront.