Locking Cars

How to Reprogram Key Fobs Yourself at Home

In Electric by 107 Comments

Electronic car keys, also called key fobs, are extremely useful in controlling your car’s doors, trunk and alarm, and can even remotely start your car from a distance.

Like any other electronic device, these key fobs can malfunction after some time, typically due to signal loss. However, in such a case, you can easily reprogram the remote yourself so that you can still use it.

In this article, we will explain step-by-step how you can reprogram your car key remote so that you don’t have to take it to an auto-dealer and spend your precious money.

How to reprogram a key fob

Different cars have different ways to reprogram their key fobs. The process mentioned below is the simplest way to reprogram any remote in general. This guide works with most cars on the market, but sometimes you need to find information for your exact car model. You can find more specific information about your car’s remote from the owner’s manual.

Total Time: 5 minutes

2. Get inside the car

Locking Car

Get in the driver’s seat with your car keys and the remote and close all the doors. Closing the doors is very important, as it may disturb the process if you leave one open.

3. Turn on the ignition

Ignition Lock

Once seated, insert the key into the ignition and turn to the ‘On’ position so that the electrical systems are powered. Make sure that the ignition is not in the radio mode, and do not start the engine.

4. Press the lock button on the remote key


With the key in ‘On’ position, press the fob’s lock button and turn the key back to ‘Off’ position. Repeat this process at least three times, ending the cycle with the key in ‘On’ position. This sends an indicator to your electronic control units that it’s your key in the ignition that’s sending out the signal, and it does save the data afterward.

5. Listen for a Lock Sound

Locked Car

Once you have repeated the above process, you will hear the lock sound. This indicates that you have entered the programming mode. Once this is done, press the lock button again within five seconds, and the programming will be successful.

7. Turn off the ignition

Key Fobs

Once the above steps are performed, turn the ignition back to ‘Off’ position to terminate the programming procedure.

8. Step out from your car and test the result

Open Car

Take your key fobs with you and leave the vehicle and close all doors. Test to both unlocks with all your keyfobs that got programmed to verify the function.

Specialist Hardware Required to Reprogram Key Fobs

For some cars, reprogramming key fobs may not be easy, and in that car, specialist hardware may be required. Typically, we would suggest that you call your authorized car dealer to take care of the situation, but this can be expensive.

You can have your car remote key re-encoded from any other auto locksmith company or a mechanic workshop for a comparatively lower price and have a separate master key made as well.

Creating a new master key may require a code card which can be found in your car’s manual.

Understanding Vehicle Security

Key Fob Reprogramming

Car security can be divided into two categories – Car entry and Starting the car.

In most of the modern cars, you are not required to insert keys to open the doors since they come equipped with remote locking/unlocking. The older car remote entry systems used RF systems which were not fully secure as their signal could be easily captured and played back to unlock and enter the vehicle.

The modern entry locks use a more sophisticated rolling code system that generates a new code every time. The receiver on the vehicle also produces the same code, so both the electronic devices are perfectly synchronized. Infrared systems were also used previously by some European manufacturers who required pointing the remote towards the car to unlock. Still, most of them have been replaced with RF technology now.

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Talking about starting the vehicle, traditional cars had a simple key lock system that could be unlocked from any similar key. This was convenient for thieves as it allowed them to drive away with any car easily. However, new cars are equipped with ECU technology as well as a transponder for added security.

Luxury vehicles, on the other hand, can be coded according to the driver’s specification. For instance, vehicles such as Rolls-Royce have a memory function, and as on as the driver inserts the key, the seats, headrest, mirrors, and steering wheel are adjusted according to the driver’s settings.

Manufacturers are now working towards removing the need for the key altogether and adding a fingerprint recognition system.

What is a Transponder?

Transponder technology is now apparent in many areas that require security access and are now popular in modern automobiles. New vehicle keys now feature a transponder chip, and as the key is inserted into the ignition, the chip is triggered by the radio frequency signal sent from the ignition barrel.

The chip then transmits a signal to the car’s ECU, which, when found to be correct, disables the immobilizer and starts the engine.

Need more car repair help?

If you need more help with your car repair, you can ask your car questions in our community for free. You can find our community here.

107 thoughts on “ How to Reprogram Key Fobs Yourself at Home ”

  1. I have a 2001 Dodge caravan and I replaced the battery and even had it checked to see if it’s working. It is! But I’ve tried numerous ways to program the key fob and no results

    1. Yeah I got a fob but it doesn’t lock the doors if I programed it wrong can I re try to program it ? Also when I was programming it I acicdentently started it before the programmming was complete can I un do the battery in tbe car and key fob

      1. Tried to reset tire pressure system by holding both unlock and lock button now lock button is disabled wasn’t working manually either somehow fixed that now I can unlock manually but the unlock button on the key fob isn’t working

        1. I have a 2005 Honda Accord. My key fobs will lock and unlock the doors, but the one I replaced a case on won’t start the car.

      2. Ive got an old nissan quest. My problem is that the engine shakes so much that i can the rattle all the way to the back of the vehicle. What is the cause of the shaking?

      3. I have a 2002 Toyota vitz push to start but the blinking light always flashes whenever I push the start button yerevan the car won’t start

      4. Ive tried re programming my central locking but no click is made and it wont do it. How else can i get my central locking to work?

      5. I have a 2018 ford transit 350. The factory keyfobs have been reprogrammed with an aftermarket remote start. I want to add a wireless keypad. Can I just follow the directions on the new keypad? Will it interfere with my remote start? Thanks for any help

      1. Hi ,I have a 2013 Kia Optima, I have alarm system that came with the car . I set the alarm, I heard alarm being disarmed ,I hit alarm again ,and again I heard when it was disarmed ,I’m assuming someone is trying to still the car ,but how are they able to disarmed it? We took the battery out and manually locked doors. Your help please.

    2. I am Dugba, I need coaching on how to use ancel to programme and reprogramme keys.

      1. I purchased 2 new fobs for my 2011 ford escape and programmed them. They both work to lock/unlock and turn the car on so radio/windows etc work but the vehicle will not start. What can I do to get them to start the vehicle? Thank you.

        1. Can you help me program an aftermarket fob for a 2013 volvo xc60? I bought the car used but they only gave me one fob, and I need two fobs.

    3. I have a Golf 5 2litre car. It doesnt start the engine because of the key sign which keeps flushing on the dashboard. Kindly assist.

    4. Hi! My vehicle is a 2014 ford focus titanium and I changed THE BATTERIE OF my key but for some reason it says key not detected???OF

      1. I have a 2008 Nissan Altima can I reprogram a new key fob myself ? Or my old one? If so what steps do I do to do that ? If not can a lock smith be of any help to me?

    5. I have a Nissan detail 2017 just changed battery in remote and now key fob won’t work ‘ it is a stop start engine how do I programme my key fob to work pleass

    6. My land Rover Range Rover, battery was completely drained out having no power to unlock my car how can I unlock it and access the car

  2. Author

    Turn on your Ignition
    Press the UNLOCK button on your fob 4-10 seconds
    Press the panic button for 1 sec while holding the Unlock button.

    I hope this helps! 🙂

    1. Hi
      My car is locked and I have only one key and I lost it and I can’t get inside
      What should I do
      It’s a 2016 nissan murano

  3. I have tried everything! Nothing is working. I’m so aggravated. I don’t want to spend money I don’t have to get it programmed. Someone please help me……

    1. Author

      Unfortunately, if these methods are not working you may have to let a workshop with the right diagnostic equipment to reprogram/repair it for you. There might be a problem with your keyfob.

  4. Any advice for a 2005 G6? I know everything I’ve read says I have to have it programmed by locksmith or dealership, but I’m a geek and chronic DIYer. I would like to learn how to program FOBs through ODB2. I have Telus Drive, but it won’t act as an interface, even if it reports errors and such like another scan tool. I have a couple of new FOBs for my Pontiac because the original was a universal remote and the battery tabs broke away from the circuit board and then it reset itself. (I got it working but now it isn’t synced with the key transponder.) Any advice on where to go from here with programming the FOBs? As it is, I can’t even manually unlock my door with the key without activating the alarm until I start the ignition.

  5. I bought a 2002 Passat Volkswagen it has a busted ignition system and I have no key is there any way around that system thank you

  6. I am trying to program 2 new key fobs for a 2000 Buick LeSabre.

  7. trying to pro gram a new remote fob for 2013 chev traverse is this possible if so can you help

  8. Changed ignition barrel on 2007 Hyundai Accent & now car won’t start…it has immobilizer light flashing on dash. How do I reprogramme the new keys?

    1. Take the “Chip” from old key and put it in your new key. It is a small black plastic piece inside your key. It worked for me because I can take my key apart because it contains a battery for remote. Some keys are sealed and you cannot open them. You can take out chip from original key and glue it to the car ignition. That is the cheapest way. Hope this helps.

  9. My key fob was working Thursday night, it stopped working on Friday and now I can’t program it. It will enter programming mode and that’s all. 99 Taurus so 3.0 ohv v6.

  10. Hi I’ve lost the key to my 1998 VT SS 5ltr in Australia,
    Been stuck for nearly a year now I’m so disappointed my cars jst sitting there at the moment any advice to help me program a new key/fob
    Due to every day living expenses these days has put me in a spot where I just can’t afford to other wise at the moment
    Any help would be great thanks

  11. 2014 Mitsubishi outlander sport. Replaced the battery now it unlock the doors but car wont start .please help, im stuck at work.

  12. If I have a 2012 Honda Civic, can it be reprogrammed by myself using the on and off on the ignition and hitting the lock button? Would that also handle the immobilizer and I should be able to start my car?

  13. I’m glad you mentioned that cars that utilize key fobs will have different ways that they are programmed. The key fob for my wife’s car recently stopped working, and I don’t know if it is because the battery is dead or if it needs to be reprogrammed. I don’t want to break anything, so I think I will take it to a professional locksmith to have it fixed.

    1. I washed the key pod by accident in my husband’s pants I dried it all out the only part on it won’t work is the lock or unlock I put the key pof up to the handle of the car I could get in I could start the car too by the remote but when I get out I have to lock it manually.it will not lock I put new battery in it lights go on blinking but no locking sound and it will not lock the back hatch
      2015 Tucson is there any way of me fixing it , Thank you

  14. We have a 2012 Volkswagen Beetle that the ignition switch locked up on so we ordered a new ignition switch and key but the car won’t run it starts but runs for a few seconds and quits can we program it our selves instead of having to haul it two hours to a Volkswagen dealership

  15. I have a 2009 chrysler 300c

    Replaced the batteries two times cant figure out how to do it myself. Any advice? Besides the locksmith who wants about 400

  16. Hey there,
    I have lost the key to my 1998 VT SS 5ltr in Australia,
    Been stuck for nearly a year now I’m so disappointed my cars just sitting there at the moment any advice to help me program a new key/fob
    Due to everyday living expenses, these days has put me in a spot where I just can’t afford to otherwise at the moment. I have chosen the best Locksmith Tools at that time.

    Thanks for sharing…

  17. 07 Nissan versa sadan I have the key but lost the fob. Remote entry. I have a problem trying to program the fob I cant get my key in and out of the ignition fast enough. Is there another why to program this new remote?

  18. Had keys stolen for Honda Civic 08 2.2 diesel. Changed ignition and locks and exit to correspond with new key. Now all I’m getting is little green key flashing to say not working with immobiliser.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated and any advice on what to change as got another full car there for all computer bits

  19. 2013 Dodge Durango Key fob w/push to start. I lost one….ordered a replacement on Ebay. I will need to get the emergency key cut, but how can I program this on my own?

    Thanks for having this site.

  20. Had to replace the battery in my 2015 Jaguar XF, ow my flob keys will no start/stop the car. I have the keyless lock flob. How can I reprogram the keys.

  21. Hi im trying to reprogram my key fob for my 2006 dodge durango but i cant unlock my doors to get in and put key in ignition i was wondering if there’s a way i can reprogram my fob without getting in my vehicle

  22. 2006 Mazda 6 key fob and car battery both replaced now, nothing! I turn key to start position, it does nothing. The lights and dash board work, in on position and only when I’m on position will the doors lock and unlock but not with key fob. Help me start my car please.

  23. Just put a new battery in my key fob,all electronics work,but car won’t start
    My car is a 2007 proton

  24. have a 2013 Cadillac SRX and have lost the key fob. I called AAA and he got me into my car…no fob. I thought maybe it was in the car And had a dead battery. No go. I now have a new keyless entry fob that is an exact duplicate of the one I lost. However, I cannot unlock the car with it. What should I do? If AAA gets me into my car again, can I program the new fob myself?

  25. Tod.
    I purchased a 1998 Dodge Ram (2500 series) Van. I have 2 Keyless Entry fobs that seem to have lost the signal to the van. I replaced the batteries and they were tested, they do send out a signal but my van is not responding. The fobs are rectangular with only two buttons on each, lock & unlock.
    Can someone please help me with information on how I can program these fobs to my van?

  26. can I reprogram a 2005 nissan pathfinder key fob in order for it to work on a 2010 nissan rogue

  27. i have a 2013 chevy spin. Remote key case was broken and the circuit board was lost.
    Is purchasing a new remote key and reprogram it possible?

  28. i lost the transponder part of my bmw key, i still have the keyblade so if i buy a new transponder can i program it myself?

  29. I had a 2015 Kia Sedona ex., unfortunately it was totaled. I recently purchased a 2015 Kia Sedona sxl. The sxl only came with one key. I still have a fob from the ex. Can it be reprogrammed to use on the sxl. Is this something I need a locksmith or Kia dealer for. It is a fob only no key needed inserted in ignition. Push to start? Any help would be appreciated.

    1. I have a Kia Sorento 2011 (fob only) push button start.I also have fobs from my 2013 Kia Sorento (which got totaled ) .do I have to go to dealer to get programed

  30. Bought a spare key fob for my 2018 dodge caravan already have the original but came with one fob so bought one just need to progrAm it

  31. I have an old FOB (no keys)from a Toronado. I would like to be able to get it programmed for use on my Buick Century. Is there a way to do this?

  32. I tried starting my 06 Octavia VRS with just the key, left the fob in the house, car turns over revs half way then cuts out. I left the fob indoors as I was replacing it as the old one was tatty. Have I activated the immobiliser? How do I fix this problem now?

  33. The remote control for my 2008 va transporter shuttle t30 stopped opening the doors but would lock so I changed the battery and now it won’t do either

  34. Good morning. Can u help please.I have a mazda axela and the car wont start and my mechanic suggested car remote reprogaming.

    1. Trying to program another key fob to my nissan alitma 2008 2door coupe I have the actual key but the fob got lost and now I cant start my car it has push button start on it

  35. hi I have a Peugeot 3008, I have had to replace the keys, but the problem I have is the keys programmed ok to start the car but the remote will not operate the the doors etc. tried to initialise by turning on and holding button for 5 seconds but this does nothing .

    is there any buttons I am meant to switch to activate programming or sequence

  36. Hi there. I have a 2018 Chevy Express Van that used to be a uhaul. I would like to add a remote start to it but it seems that uhaul put a blocker code on the transponder and it cannot be reprogrammed without it being removed. No one seems to know how to remove this program a remote start for my vehicle. Uhaul is no help and chevy said without uhauls help, they don’t know what to do. Any suggestions that you have are very much appreciated. I can’t find any information on this anywhere.

  37. Hi
    I got Jeep Cherokee 2005 model 2.8crd auto.my key can only operate manually,but it cant remote control.It started after it fell down.I can open doors manually,the indicators will flash until I enter the key into ignition and turn it on.No security alarm sound even though the harzards flashes Please help

  38. 2019 Nissan armada. changed battery in key fob now it doesn’t work. Looked every where for reprogramming information, no luck. it is a keyless start vehicle. no place for a key. can I reprogram the key fob?

  39. I have a 2007 Nissan Altima that is actually owned by my boyfriend who is in prison. When we first started our relationship the Nissan was in a auto repair shop. Reason was because his ex girlfriend stole his key fob. We paid $1300 to get the car out of the shop. I have suspicions that there is a duplicate of my key fob used by unknown . Is that possible? When getting the car out of shop the fob that was handed over looks like the original but it’s missing the door key that goes into the slot of the fob. Yet suspicious I found a copies door key to the Nissan in glove box buried and my boyfriend actually thought the key belonged to his mom’s car and he never made it clear he knew of the keys existence or not. Either way I just don’t like the idea of the old key fob working for this car. And what exactly the process that was taken with the auto repair shop that cost $1300 seems expensive I think . Overly expensive. As well of his stock stereo being stolen while in the shop as well. And along with the fact they left all the windows down and when we got it it was full of dirt and nasty. The car was their for an extensive amount of time months. My boyfriend tool it to that shop got arrested and didn’t get out for a while. So that might of added to the cost being so high. However the guy who released the car conveniently no longer works there. I needed to obtain a receipt for private reasons. Nothing to do with their services. Other then proof for a judge in my boyfriend’s case relation. Something just doesn’t seem right about the whole new programming done by that auto repair shop.

  40. good day

    I have Mg6 model 2012 car, the time I bought the car they gave me one key and I decided to buy a back up key and I want to program it, can anyone help.


  41. Hi got a corsa d on a 07 plate my battery died and it has immobilised my key so it wont start the engine the key needs recoding anyway i can do that cheers

  42. 2018 Jeep Renegade. One fob stolen by someone in the neighborhood. We want the other fob programmed to a different code and then a copy made so we have 2. Auto keyfob locksmith told me he couldnt do it, that I must take it to dealer. Is this correct?

  43. replaced my 2009 lexus es350 with a 2012 es 350. Now I have one key to the 2012 and one key for the 2009. I figure I can teach the 2012 to accept the 2009 as and added key, but all the instructions I find online have a step that includes inserting the key in the ignition. I don’t have an ignition keyhole. Any help please

    1. I have a 2012 Kia Optima and i just replaced the battery in my key fob. I need to have it reprogrammed. Please tell me if i can do this on my own. This is a push start vehicle. Please help.

  44. Hi,
    I tried using this method but it didn’t help. I am using the Kia Cerato 2009 sedan model.
    Can you please help.

  45. Hi. Purchased a 2014 Mini Cooper s hardtop f56. Keyless remote needs to be held close to steering column to start car . Lock and unlock buttons on remote don’t work. New battery in remote. Also purchased from e-bay new matching numbers remote and needs to be programmed.

  46. i use 203 c240 benz car my fob battery get bad after one week and some days after replacing the battery, pls what is the cause and how do i fix it. secondly when the fob key is working i cant unlock the car from a distance i have to go close to the sensor in the car handle and point before the car will open but i can lock the car from a distance without getting close to car sensor .pls whats the cause of it and how do i fix it. expect your reply. thanks

  47. I have 2008 c70 volvo i bought a new battery for my key remote i did the reprogramming but remote is still not working

  48. Purchased a program brand key fob for a 2001 320c Mercedes Benz. Can I program this myself?

  49. I bought A new key fob with blank key. I programmed it and everything works but the key won’t start the vehicle. It’s a 2007 Lincoln Navigator.

  50. I am an auto engineer, but have been trying to program a volkswagen beetle 2016 model but it is not successful, please i need your help. Also, which model and make machine can program the vehicle successfully.

  51. I have a 2016 Ford F-150. I used to be able to start the truck with the remote from inside the house or after coming out of a store. It won’t do that anymore. It still unlocks the doors and starts the vehicle when I push the starter inside the vehicle but not from the remote fob. Can you help me?

  52. Good Morning,

    I have a nissan X trail 2012 with transponder fob, i only have one, so a backup remote key is perfect. no remote start, just lock and unlock option, with the buttons on the door. Also the transponder is needed for starting, no need for keys.What can i do?

  53. Mazda3 2010, new fob programmed to lock/unlock doors but won’t start car. I think its transponder needs programming but I have only one working fob. How to program the new fob to start the vehicle?
    Thank you,

  54. Hi chief, my car start stop switch and smart entry system has stopped working automatically. When shown to the company they said you have to change the ECU, however can the same be repaired as it’s an expensive part in the car

    1. I have a 2006 Nissan Xterra with alarm and command start. 2 carstar key fobs. The lock and command start buttons do not work. The unlock buttons do work. I have replaced the batteries in the key fobs. What can i do next? Thanks in advance for any info.

  55. 2005 Colorado. Fob stopped working so replaced the battery. Will not work now to lock/unlock doors unless I am in the vehicle or by reaching in through the open window. The key can be in or out of the ignition.

  56. Have a 2007 Camry hybrid. One fobs works sometimes and yes, it has a new battery. The second fob I have had to purchase a replacement since we lost the other. Can this new replacement fob be programmed by me? There is no where to insert a key in the ignition, it is only a push start…

  57. I have an issue with my pittle sisters car key fob. She went to work and called saying that she went to lock her car after arriving at her worksite but noticed that only the lights functioned when using the lock mechanism on the fob but also noticed that the actual locking mechanism to lock all doors did function, as all know that youd be able to hear as well. I may have heard wrong but her fob key battery may have gotten changed but i think it was said in accordance of the cars battery. Also days prior her vehicle did not want to turn over and start. With my mother there with her they told me that my mom just took out the fuses and relays and put them right back in then went to start the carand it ran.. Now after this was all done the key fob was still functioning properly. However maybe the third day after doing the shizz with the fuses it all of a sudden did not work. So if you have anh insight or know how to program the specific vehicle please contact me at my email… THE VEHICLE IS:
    ’03 SATURN ION

  58. I have a 2014 infiniti q50 hybrid sport key fobs are not being recognized unless i put it directly to the dash and turn on button. I have replaced the batteries and still having issues. Please help

  59. Hi there. 2009 Nissan Maxima 2 intelligent key fobs. I changed the batteries for both and can’t get them to reprogram or work other than by inserting into the keyless entry port specific to Nissans. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  60. Hello I have a 2008 Chrysler Crossfire and I replaced the battery in the fob now I can’t seem to make the fob work now?

  61. 99 Honda CR-V, can’t progress the FOB tried different ways but nothing. Is there anything I should check for programming in the Veichle

  62. Hi I have hit a problem which I do not know how to solve. My key fob to my 2008 VW Jetta stopped working and I came across this site and tried to follow the problem solver and nothing, so I ordered a completely new fob case and wen it came I followed the instructions and transferred the circuit board and key into the new case and put in a new battery. Then I went to the car and it opened and locked which I was most happy about but then I tried to start the car and it wouldn’t start cus the immobiliser was on and I dont know what to do or how to do to program the key and fob and turn off the immobiliser. Please could you help me to reprogram my new key fob to open, turn off immobiliser and start the car. I am disabled so need my car and would really appreciate any help, also I have no books at all for the car so no reference.??

  63. hi,
    ford explorer 2008. i lost original remote fog. bought one online, programmed it ok. lost fob turns up a week later. can i program original fob again?

  64. I read your advice on programming a key fob. It said some are trickery than others. Should I attempt buying and programming one for a 2005 Nissan Xterra? If so is there a brand you prefer? Thanks for any help

  65. My husband lost inside to key fob our other fob is broke so he ordered 2 new one’s we have a 2005 Buick lacrosse how can I set them myself do not have money to pay to have programming done

  66. I have a 2011 Toyota Venza with the smartkey fob with liftgate , keyless entry pushbutton start….the remote wont start the car, how can i reprogram it myself ? I am in a desperate mode right now because I am not working because of the COVID-19 situation and I have very limited finances and I have to choose between spending 500 to get it reprogrammed or being able to eat and have a place to stay….is there anything that can be done?

  67. Hey good thanks and yourself ?

    I have a vw golf 5 2006 fsi ..immobilizer actice after i got my steering wheel locked with my key still in the ignition oraait anyway long story/process then after some days i lost my metall peace of my ignition so i had to get a new key cut and ignition barrel recut so anyway i then had to send my cluster ecu and ignition ,key to get my immobilizer active cleared then the mechanic told me no there now chip im my keys thats why fault immobilizer active is on and cant drive my car so he gave me a second hand chip from a bmw but i dont know what can stil be the problem with the immobilizer active….

    So i would really like to disable my immobilizer so i can drive my car again…would you please give me steps to do so i can disable immobilizer

  68. Hi I have a 2014 Dodge Charger and I’ve lost the remote! It’s push to start without inserting a key! If I buy a remote can it be programmed with your help??

  69. Need help with key fob for 2011 ram 1500 SLT all 3 buttons on key fob stop working

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