Vauxhall Flip key Upgrade

We’ve written about how often Vauxhall keys break, they’re the most common key we fix at our shop in Lincoln. Now we’ve found a new type of case that we wanted to tell you about. It’s perfect if you’re looking for a Vauxhall Flip key upgrade.

The new style case has smooth curved lines and hard wearing buttons that won’t perish like the older style cases. Based on the new range of Vauxhall keys, we believe this Vauxhall Flip key upgrade is worth a look.

What do I need for my Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade ?

Not much, it’s really simple. Firstly you need one of the new style cases. They come in either 2 or 3 buttons, just like the genuine key.

There are only three things that are tricky and we have full instructions below. Here’s a video, plus there are instructions below.

Vauxhall Flip Key upgrade – Stage One – Get the new key cut

Once you have a case, you need to get the blade cut to suit your car. This should be the first job, as you must make sure you have a new key case that turns the locks, before you break open the old key.

Who can cut my key blade?

There are some issues with getting keys cut. Some of the major key cutting chains refuse to cut keys they haven’t supplied. Our local Timpsons stores in Lincoln won’t entertain any key that’s not come from them, and won’t cut the Vauxhall Flip Key upgrade case.

So look for an independent shop, or an Auto Locksmith.

Need to find a good Auto Locksmith? Click here for our advice, wherever you are in the UK.

When we cut eBay or Amazon keys in our shop, we charge £10 and we believe this is reasonable.

Why can’t I swap the key blade on my Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade?

It’s possible but not straight forward. The key blade is held in to the key body, by a pin. Often, the original key blade from the old case will not fit into the new case. If you want to do this you’ll need to modify the old key blade and this is possible, as the video shows.


However, we think it’s easier just to get the key cut.

Vauxhall Flip Key upgrade – Stage Two – Open the old key.

************* Disclaimer *********

We open up old Vauxhall flip keys all day long at our shop without any problem. However, it’s possible that when the case is opened, the circuit board gets damaged, or the chip fails. When this happens, there’s a chance the car won’t start.

We see Vauxhall flip keys fail even without upgrading or repairing them and have written at length about the problem and the symptoms. So we recommend that you have a spare key, before you decide to carry out your Vauxhall Flip key upgrade.


Ok, back to business. This is really easy if you have a set of Circlip pliers.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

These pliers are unusual because the jaws open when you squeeze the handle. They’re perfect to open keys because you can control what you are doing, instead of forcing the case open with a screwdriver etc.


Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Place the tips of the jaw in the gap by the flip.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Give the handles a squeeze and the case will snap open.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

You’ll need to pull the case apart and carefully remove the green circuit board. That’s it! You’ve done the tricky part. Next is a putting together your Vauxhall Flip key upgrade.

Vauxhall Flip Key upgrade – Stage Three – Build the new key.

This may take a few attempts. You may feel you need an extra hand! But just be patient and you’ll manage this no problem. Open the case using the Circlip pliers again. Don’t worry if the key all falls apart, we’re going to show you what to do.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Firstly, put the circuit board into the half of the new case that has the buttons. there are small rubber noggins that locate in the holes. Now put this half of the case down now for a minute.

Fit the pin into the blade holder, (it will only fit one way).

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Next the spring needs to go into the blade holder

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Locate the plastic spigot in the case and place the spring over it.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Wind the spring counter-clockwise, we recommend two full turns. Then hold the blade shut.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Now put both pieces of the case together, locating the silver pin first and then lining up the two halves.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Once it’s all lined up, give it a squeeze and it should close up nicely. If there is any resistance, it’s because something isn’t lined up. Just open it up again and check it out.

Then when the case is shut, try the flip-out to make sure that your Vauxhall Flip key upgrade has been a success. Then join the case using the two screws.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Lastly, don’t forget the battery.

Vauxhall Flip Key Upgrade

Just pop off the battery cover and we recommend a fresh, good quality CR2032. Don’t go cheap.

Vauxhall Flip Key upgrade Conclusion

Well done, you should have a new flip key case that looks good and works perfectly!






How Can you programme your car key?

Look at eBay and Amazon and you’ll see there are plenty of new and second-hand car keys for sale. The question is, can you programme your car key yourself?

This is the most common question we’re asked, so after answering lots of emails, here’s everything we know.

Programme your car key 101

The first thing you need to know is how the car key works. There are two parts of the key, the first parts is the transponder chip.

programme your car key

Various chips

The chip is important because the car checks it out when the ignition is turned on. It happens in the blink of an eye, and when the car recognises the chip, the car starts. You’ll only notice this happening when you have a car key problem.


Before the car will recognise the chip, it needs to be programmed to the car. This is just a simple introduction, telling the car to accept the chip in future.

Can you programme your car key chip?

The bad news is since 2001, most transponder chips can only be programmed in using a diagnostic computer. The exceptions to this rule are certain Toyota and Lexus cars, early Fords and a few City Rover cars.

I’m not sure you’ll want to admit having a City Rover, let alone need to programme your own car key to one. So we’ll leave it alone

As a general rule, if you buy your own car key from eBay or Amazon, you’ll not be able to programme it to start your car. The programming equipment is expensive and it can be tricky to use. You’ll need to find a local Auto Locksmith, or key cutting shop, or the dealer.

How to find a good Auto Locksmith

So are eBay sellers lying?

No not necessarily. The second part of the key that needs coding is the remote control buttons. In the olden days, most of the time, there was a simple manual method to programme the key.

Watch our  video playlist showing how to programme car keys yourself, your key may be covered.

So if you have a Ford, Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Mazda and early Nissan, then there’s a good chance you’ll be able to programme your car key buttons yourself. This is what eBay sellers are referring to when they suggest you can programme the key they sell.

The problem is the buttons code in easily, but the car still won’t start.

Comments from our YouTube Channel

Here’s a recent comment on our YouTube channel from someone who bought an eBay key.

‘Hi. Thanks for the useful trick to lock and unlock with a spare key. However, when attempting to start the engine with the second key, the red light in the middle of the dashboard blinks quickly leaving me with no other response.

Basically the lock/unlock system is now working for the second key, but the same cannot be said when trying to start the engine. I have this problem on a late-2007 Ford Focus for which I bought a second key.’

Here’s another comment which shows the problems with trying to programme your car key yourself

‘The new fob opens the locks etc remotely using the method in the video but it will not start the car in my case. The ignition lights come on but turn the key to start, and nothing happens. The PATS light flashes. When original remote key fob is used, it works fine.’

This is a common problem we see. Our advice is simple. Before you spend money on eBay or Amazon, contact a local expert, to see if they can code it in. Otherwise you’ll be wasting your money.

We hope this has helped you. Please ask any questions in the comments below.









Buying Peugeot Car Keys Online

Buying car keys on-line can save you lots of money. Buying the wrong car key on-line will waste your money, and cause you to waste time. There’s a problem with buying Peugeot car keys online and we want to tell you about it.

It should be easy. If you have a Peugeot 207, it should be a case of looking for a Peugeot 207 key on eBay or Amazon. Simple.

If you do this search, you’ll find thousands of keys that are available. Buying Peugeot car keys online is a lottery, and the odds are not in your favour.

In order for you to get the key to be programmed successfully, the following must be correct about the key.

Buying Peugeot car keys problem 1 – The correct part number

Peugeot 107 /207 / 208 / 307 / 308 / 407. These are different type of cars, with different computers and systems fitted. The keys have a different number of buttons. They also have a different style of lock and hence, a different key blade.

Unfortunately, these five models have over 15 different type of Peugeot flip keys between them. Of these fifteen models, only the correct one will programme to both start the car and operate the remote central locking.

This means that you have 1/15 chance of getting the correct part for your car.


buying peugeot car keys

In this example of an eBay listing, it claims to cover several models including 207,307,308 and 407.  It’s just not possible, so this would be a complete waste of money.

Buying Peugeot car keys problem 2 – The key must be brand new

Peugeot keys can only be programmed to your car if they’re brand new, we call them ‘virgin’ keys. This is a big problem because we see our customers buy Peugeot car keys online, and then want us to cut and programme them.

A virgin key, never programmed before, has a blank space on the chip. When the key is coded, the car writes information to the key.

Simultaneously, the unique key information is written into the car memory and then after that, the car will start.

buying peugeot car keys


The problem with buying a used car key off eBay, or a scrapyard, is that when the car tries to write the information to the key, it can’t do it. This is because it’s already been written to before, when it was programmed to the last car. So again, any money spent is wasted.

Buying Peugeot car keys problem 3 – It’s a case, not a key

Careful when you’re getting a bargain. As well selling car keys on eBay and Amazon, there are many replacement cases available. These are really useful when trying to fix your car key.

Sellers will normally state clearly that you are buying just a case, but we see customers every week that think they have bought a complete key.

This key case is selling for nearly £12, so it feels like you are paying a reasonable amount. This key case is probably very good, and perfect for a repair. It does state clearly, ‘Key Shell Case’. However, it’s easy to make a mistake.

How can eBay sellers get away with selling Peugeot car keys online?

Well eBay is a market, and there will always be buyers who want a bargain.

They get away with it in two ways.

  1. They normally put in a disclaimer which will say, ‘buyers must check that the key is compatible’
  2. It’s possible they don’t know. If it was working on their car, it’s reasonable to believe it can be made to work another car.

So how can you get a good deal when shopping online for car keys?

It’s tricky. There are some good sellers, who sell genuine unused keys with the correct part number. If you can find a good seller, you may save some money.

Another way is to find a seller that can supply aftermarket keys. These have been made compatible with particular models and can be a lot cheaper. It’s the equivalent of buying a Halfords oil filter instead of a genuine Peugeot filter. These work well and we cut and code these regularly for our customers.

However, it’s common for them to have been sent the wrong type of key. When this happens, the key starts the car, but the buttons won’t work. Again, a disappointed eBay customer.

Good Luck. It’s a bit of a minefield out there and so much money is wasted buying second-hand car keys. Please feel free to leave questions and comments below and we hope this has helped you.










Broken Transporter Key Snapped in Lock

This weeks car key review was easy to choose. When our customer arrived with his 2017 VW van, we couldn’t believe our eyes! With a broken Transporter key, he needed help.

broken Transporter key

German engineering? It used to stand for something. The old VW cars and vans would run forever. The keys from 2003 era vehicles are still in one piece, fifteen years later. So what happened to this broken Transporter key?

broken Transporter key

Was the broken Transporter key the customers fault?

The van is used for courier work. Frequent stop/starts with the ignition being turned 150-200 times every day. This is common in the world of multi-drop delivery drivers. 

So will the New VW Transporter be able to cut it looking forward? Are the  keys strong enough to withstand the job? You’ll have to think about this when choosing your new van. Inferior Design and manufacture are now common place in the motor trade, although a broken key that’s just one year old is extreme. 

We recognise that multi-drop drivers use the ignition lock far more than most of us as regular users. However, the weakness in these keys is a warning for us all. It’s a look into the future of VW keys. The same as Ikea testing the kitchen drawer all day and all night long until it fails. 

Is a Broken Transporter key covered under warranty?

Unfortunately not. We’re told this is user error, the key has been mis-treated and therefore, isn’t covered. To replace a broken Transporter key at the dealer will cost £246 per key.

Can the broken Transporter key be fixed?

Yes. This isn’t simple, because of how the key case has been fixed together. Good news.  Following our method to open the key won’t damage the electronics inside.

To find out how to fix the new style of broken Transporter key, watch out for out YouTube video next week. 

We believe there are big problems ahead for VW, Seat and Skoda keys. They already have problems with the newer style key. 

You’ll need to keep an eye on the flip mechanism, losing blades and ignitions that fail. 

Let us know if you have this problem, we’d love to hear from you

Broken Car Key Top 5 Problems

If you read our blog, you’ll know we’ve tried to spread the word about car key problems, and get you ready for a broken car key.

We get daily emails from around the world, and they all have a similar question. How can I fix my broken car key ?

So here’s our list of the most common faults, and our best advice on how to deal with each fault. Whether you’re stranded at the drive-in, or just curious about the problems, read our list to find out more.

Broken Car Key Problem 1 – Transponder Chip Fails

We’ve chosen this as number one for a very simple reason. If your chip fails, you’re going nowhere in your car. With all the other faults, you can cobble together a rescue plan to use your broken car key for a few days.

However when your transponder chip fails, it’s game over. The car won’t start. You must look out for the warning signs.

What makes a transponder chip fail?

Modern car keys have tiny electronics inside them. Car Keys get dropped, thrown, get hot in the summer and frozen in the winter.

How can I tell if my Transponder chip has failed? Read our detailed guide that explains everything you need to know, Click here to find out more

Broken Car Key Problem 2 – Wobbly or Loose Blade

It was always going to happen.

Along with our phones, we use our car keys day in, day out. The designers should have invested time and effort into making a much stronger car key. You must keep an eye on your blade, especially if you have a modern car.

A good example is the early VW/Audi/Seat and Skoda (VAG) keys. In my first ten years as an auto Locksmith, I never saw a broken one.

However VW, along with Seat and Skoda have gone to the dark side. They are some of the weakest and worst car keys we see. In fact we have a post set aside for you if you have a new VW, Seat or Skoda. Our readers are reporting problems all around the UK

Click here to read more

broken car key

broken car key

But VW are not alone








and now even Ford!

They all join the group with shoddy, second rate keys. They’ve all given us wobbly and broken blades!

Because this is such a serious problem throughout the motor trade, we’ve written a whole article about the problem. Click here to find out more, along with how to fix the problem.


Broken Car Key Problem 3 – Outer Buttons wear out

This is so annoying. They spent millions designing car central locking systems that let you unlock the car by pressing a button. Then they spent pennies designing and manufacturing the keys that use this system. Madness.

broken car key

The problem is caused by a combination of poor quality material and bad design. Along with this, when the buttons get tricky to use, we all have a tendency to press the button harder, or dig in finger nails!

This doesn’t help long term, and damages the key further.

Unfortunately we’re stuck with this problem. There are lots of reasons why the buttons no longer work, so we’ve written a whole article, explaining the problem in detail.

Click here to find out more

Broken Car Key Problem 4 – Worn Key Blade

Different to having a broken key blade. Having a worn car key blade make the lock gradually difficult to turn. As the lock gets more difficult, this can lead to a broken car key or lock, so it’s important you get it fixed before then.

Key blades wear for several reasons.

This Ford Fiesta blade is a common fault. We see it in both the Fiesta and Custom models and we think the lock wears the key quicker than it should.


The Ford Custom key blade above has a ‘shadow’ at the high points of the key. This is where the key has been worn down over time.

Sometimes the design of the key and lock mean that the key is not smooth from the very start! This Renault key above has been designed with sharp teeth, and it ‘saws’ the lock every time it’s used.

Want to know more about worn car key blades and how to fix the problem of your broken car key? Click here to read our guide on how to get a new car key blade.

Broken Car Key Problem 5 – Rechargeable Battery failure

If your car key has a rechargeable key battery, this is for you.

Land Rover Freelander and Discovery.

Ford Custom and Transit.

Various BMW and Mini keys.

The problem we have is that the key is sealed up, and cannot be opened up. This means if the key buttons stop working, you end up with a broken car key and no way to fix it easily!

We’re often asked

‘why have the sealed the keys?’  and

‘what make such an easy job difficult?’

We’re not sure to be honest. Someone in an office got a good promotion off the great idea of a key battery that never needs to be changed. Unfortunately they were only looking five years out, and hadn’t considered what happens when the battery fails after this time.

We end up with a broken car key.

We’ve written at length about this problem, and demonstrate how to change these batteries. It’s not simple, because the key has to be broken into, but we’ve found several tricks to open up your broken car key. Click here to find out more

That’s it!

Our top five problems. We really hope it helps show you what to look out for as there are plenty of car key problems now.






Broken Vauxhall Key Problem

Every week we talk to customers who are pulling their hair out, with a broken Vauxhall key.

Good news – they are easy to fix.

broken vauxhall key

Here’s all you need to fix your broken Vauxhall Key

Broken Vauxhall Key  – What you’ll need to fix it.

Most Importantly.

Both parts of the key!

If your blade breaks away from the key body, keep it safe.

It’s common for the key to be used long after should be, with the broken blade in the ignition, and being turned with the broken remote. This will keep you going for a long time, but we hear from people who lose the blade, and that’s bad news.

Broken Vauxhall Key Repair Key Case

Available as both a two button repair case and a three button repair case. You’ll need a high quality case that allows the electronic parts to be swapped over.

Some cases are held together by glue, but the better cases also have a screw that keeps both halves together.



Circlip pliers – perfect to open up your broken Vauxhall key

Pin Removal punch

This luxury will make swapping the blade over easier. If you don’t have a punch then you can also get the key blade cut. The problem you have is that many key cutting shops will not do this if they haven’t supplied the key as well.

Normal everyday Pliers

These can be hand when refitting the key blade pin.



This is really important. You have to remember that you’re doing something you’ve never tried before. Whilst it’s fairly simple to do, you need to put some time aside so that you’re not in a rush to fix your broken Vauxhall key.

******** Important ********

Before you break open the key case and try and swap it all over, make sure you know how to do it.

Every week we see keys that have been ruined, simply because of heavy handiness, or a slip with a screwdriver.

For a complete guide to open the old key and rebuild the new one, click below

Link to order ebook

This will take you to a link with our Broken Vauxhall Key repair guide that will show you exactly what you need to do.

It’s just as important to know what NOT to do, so you don’t damage the key.

Good luck and we hope this helps










Car Key Battery Failure Problem

‘Why can’t I just change my car key battery?’

Welcome to another blog post, today we’re looking at rechargeable car keys.

This problem is getting worse. When your car key buttons stop working, you just want to change the battery. We get it.

Unfortunately you can’t, at least not easily. There are several type of keys on the market that have a rechargeable battery inside. These include the following.

Land Rover Keys

Ford Keys

BMW Mini

Why have a rechargeable key battery?

We’re not sure. Maybe someone in an office had the great idea. By making the battery rechargeable, it would never need to be changed. Unfortunately, instead of paying £10 for a new key battery, you now face the prospect of paying £200-£300 for a new key.

Bad car key design.

If the battery is going to live forever, it needs looking after, protecting from the elements.

In most cases the rechargeable battery is held on to the circuit board by two thin metal legs.

Need a new VL2330 Battery?


Click Here to Buy this Battery on Amazon

If you’re going to break open the case, then you may want to treat yourself to a new one, giving it a fresh new look.

Click Here to Buy a new case on Amazon

With legs this thin, is it any wonder that they break? The video below shows the problem.


The new Ford keys are a similar design to this cheap, copy Freelander key. These are common on eBay and are really poor quality.

Fortunately Land Rover do a better job with their genuine key. The battery is held in a protective cradle. However, even with this cradle, after 6-7 years, one of the thin legs breaks, and the contact becomes intermittent. When this happens, it will not charge up correctly.

Ford don’t bother supporting the key battery at all, just as shown above. It sits in fresh air, without the cradle that Land Rover provide. Once it’s dropped a few times, the legs start to weaken and eventually they break.

We’ve seen Ford Transit and Ford Custom keys that need a new batteries after just three years!

Can the key battery be changed?

Like any problem in the motor trade, there’s a way to change these batteries. A service that the dealers cannot provide.

Rechargeable key battery replacement.

We’ve made several YouTube videos showing the best technique for replacing rechargeable car key batteries. Find the links below.


We see a lot of these keys that get ruined due to poor technique. When removing the old battery, it’s very easy to damage the delicate electronic circuit. We’ve done it ourselves in the early days of figuring out the best method.

Top 3 Tips

  • To remove the battery the solder needs to be really hot. Make sure the solder is completely molten before trying to pull the leg from the circuit board.
  • Use ‘solder mop’ to remove as much as the excess solder as possible.
  • Use plenty of ventilation, the fumes aren’t very nice.

Need some help?  Here are our videos that show how we change these

We hope these videos help, if you have any questions, just let us know.

This post contains affiliate links.

Affiliate Disclaimer

Links on this website may lead you to a product or service. They provide an affiliate commission to the owners of this site should you make a purchase. In no way does any affiliate relationship ever factor into a recommendation.  Nor does it alter the integrity of the information we provide.

Please note that we have not been given any free products, services, or anything else by these companies in exchange for mentioning them on the site.  The only consideration is in the form of affiliate commissions.




New Ford Key Battery Change

Need to change your Ford key battery? then this is for you.

Today we’re looking at the newest type Ford proximity key that is used on many vehicles, including the new Mondeo. The key will be similar to this one.

Ford Key Battery

If you’re in America, you may have additional buttons according to the model, but they are basically the same.

To method used to change the Ford key battery is identical, whichever model.

HOW TO change New Ford Key Battery.

The two halves of the key split apart along the length of the key.

Ford Key Battery

Release the two halves by sliding the catch at the end of the key

Ford Key Battery

Pull the two halves of the key apart then place the cover aside.

Ford Key battery

HOW TO Open the Ford Key Battery compartment

Next, the key splits again, and this can be very tight. we’ve found that a penny is good because it’s the correct size and isn’t sharp. Find the slot at the end of the key.

Ford Key battery


Twist the penny and them the case opens

Ford Key Battery

Pull the two halves apart, again, they may be very tight.

Changing the Ford Key Battery

You’ll need two high quality CR2025 car key batteries inside this key, which is a new feature on Ford keys.


You’ll notice that you cannot read any writing on the first battery.

Ford Key Battery

Use a thin screwdriver to lever the battery out as they’re held in tightly. Next, you have a piece of paper, that tells us to change both batteries, thanks Ford.

Ford Key Battery

Move the paper out of the way and then you’ll notice that the writing on the second battery can be read.

Ford Key Battery

Again, lever out the battery with a screwdriver, or something thin.

Putting the Ford key battery back together.

Make sure the batteries go back in the correct orientation, with the paper between them.
Next is to join the two halves of the Ford key battery compartment back together. There are two plastic lugs that need to locate in the correct place.

Ford Key Battery

Ford key Battery
Once you’ve done this, squeeze the key back together and it will eventually snap shut. It’s very tight.

Ford Key Battery

Then the two halves of the key need to be re-joined. There is a small curved lug that hooks into the key. You must locate this first.

Ford Key battery
Next, squeeze the key together while. You’ll need to slide the catch while you do this, otherwise it will break. Don’t just force the two halves together.

And that’s it!

We’re not sure how long these batteries will last, the older style Ford Key Batteries last 12-18 months. We hope that helps






This post contains affiliate links.

Affiliate Disclaimer

Links on this website may lead you to a product or service. They provide an affiliate commission to the owners of this site should you make a purchase. In no way does any affiliate relationship ever factor into a recommendation.  Nor does it alter the integrity of the information we provide.

Please note that we have not been given any free products, services, or anything else by these companies in exchange for mentioning them on the site.  The only consideration is in the form of affiliate commissions.