You probably don’t need a spare car key…
Most people never lose their car keys. If we think about the population around us in Lincoln UK for example, approximately 60,000 adults, we get just 2-3 calls every day. If we scale this up to ten per week, say 500 per year, then it’s a good bet that it won’t be you.
Let’s be honest to see how important a spare car key is to you. The answer really depends on who uses the car, what type of car it is along with its service history. So, we think the following are important factors in deciding whether you need a spare car key.
It’s cheaper to replace your car keys if you have a photo of your car key Click Here to find out why
The most important thing is, do you have a back-up plan if your only car key gets lost? Can you get to work, get the kids to school etc if you lose your car key?
If the answer to this question is Yes, because you have a second family car, or you can get the bus, then straight away you can relax. The most stressful thing about losing your car keys is not the money, it’s the lack of mobility. So, with a back-up plan, you have time on your side for them to be found.
What Car do you drive?
This may seem strange, but the type of car you drive is really important. Not all cars are equal in the eyes of an Auto-Locksmith. The make and model determines how quickly and easily someone can get you a replacement car key. So, for instance, a 2007 Ford Fiesta is a very common car.
The keys are easy to make and they’re straight forward to programme. Therefore, an owner of a Ford Fiesta like the one above, would have little bother getting a replacement key made.
However, if you drive a 2007 Toyota Yaris it’s a different story.
For a start, if you don’t have a master key, you can’t easily make a second key for a Toyota. This means is that if you lose your only car key, you’re in big trouble. There are only a limited number of Auto Locksmiths who could do the job and the dealer can’t programme a key without a master key.
Their answer would be to replace expensive computers on the car to get you running. We’re currently in the process of scoring each car on how difficult a replacement key is, so you know the facts. If you have a Toyota, it would be a good idea to think about a spare car key.
Where the car is
Again, very important. If your car is accessible with a van, then it’s considerably easier to make keys, than if it was at the top of a multi-storey, or underground car park.
The more difficult it is to either recover your car to the dealer, or to get a van next to it, the more expensive your bill will be. So, if you use a multi-storey car park regularly, it may be a good reason to think about a spare.
Two different car keys?
Do you use a different key to unlock the door, compared to turning the ignition? Or, better put, do you know if your ignition key fits the door? This, again, is a very important thing to think about. When a car is built, it is uses one shape of key all over the car. However, as cars get older, locks get replaced and cars are often on two different keys.
If you use a blip-key to open your doors, there’s a good chance you won’t know if the door lock works.
The reason this is so important is that if your car is locked up, the average Auto-Locksmith will make a key to fit the door. It’s reasonable to assume that it will fit the ignition.
Likewise, if you order a key from the dealer, it will come cut to the original pattern, as it left the factory. If it’s had a different ignition fitted at some point, then the door key won’t fit the ignition.
This is very common if the previous owner has gone to a scrapyard and bought a second-hand lock off another car.
Your neighbourhood and your routine
This last point is often not under your control. However, are your car keys safe, during your day to day routine? There are lots of places that keys can get mis-laid or stolen. Here are a few places that keys can be taken or left.
- The Gym. If you must leave your car keys in the locker, they are at risk.
- The Pub. Once you’ve had a few drinks and your defences are down, it’s easy to lose track of personal items. Nights out are a common time to lose car keys.
- Shopping. Car keys left on a counter, or handbags left in changing rooms are all easy pickings for someone who is out to steal. They may not want the car keys but if they’re inside your handbag, they’ll go missing and be dumped.
- Travelling. Do you spend time on the train or on a plane? Again, there are hundreds of sets of keys handed in every year on the underground. They’re just left on the train!
There’s a tremendous number of items just left on the tube, including over 10,000 sets of keys. Read all about it here
So, do I need a spare car key?
So how you live your life, makes a big difference as to whether you’re more at risk of losing your car keys. If you potter about your local town, with a simple routine and no drunkenness, there’s a good chance you’ll not need a spare car key. However, if you’re busy, use public transport, take your keys with you on nights out, you are at risk. You may even just end up with a bent car key, if you do, don’t panic.
Consider these things and decide whether you are feeling lucky!