With all the expertise at Ford, designing a high-quality key should be easy. However, with the new Ford Custom keys, someone has really messed up. We’ve written this to look at Ford Custom keys prices and problems, so that when your van key starts to play up, and we think it will, you know why, and what to do.
Ford Custom 2014- Basic Information
The Custom uses two types of van key. With the old Mk7 they had a problem with the vans getting broken into. This is because the old style of lock was very easy to pick open. Fair play to someone at Ford, they decided to change the style of key to a high-security key.
Wondering whether to have a Hykee Lock fitted? Heard about the problems? Click here
Ford Custom Remote Key
We see hundreds of keys of all different makes and models every month. In our opinion, this is a terrible key in terms of quality. It’s like someone has taken all the common key faults and put them into this one van key. The problems are as follows.
Ford Custom Key
Ford Custom Remote Key Problems
The Ford Custom key has a rechargeable battery. Although they should be commended for going ‘green’, it doesn’t really work with this van. From what we’re seeing, the batteries inside are already failing, on 2014 vans. This means the batteries are lasting just three years. Now this is fine for an iPhone, but not much good for a second-hand van key. When the key is new, it charges up as the van drives along. Unfortunately, once the battery is past it’s best, the key will not charge up and it needs to be changed.
The battery is inside a sealed key. When the key’s made, it’s molded inside. This means that it doesn’t open, and you can’t just change the battery. Now, if you break the key open, it’s possible to solder in a new battery and then put the green circuit board into a new repair case. More of this later.
The key blade flicks out when the small silver button is pressed. To be more accurate, it flicks out for the first few years and then the flick mechanism breaks. Now this will depend on how well the key has been treated. If a private owner has the van it will probably last a lot longer. However, the Ford Custom is a fleet van, the most common van on the road. The keys are passed around between drivers, they are thrown and dropped. This really needed an ultra-tough design, but they didn’t do this.
The Spare Key
The second type of key is the non-remote type that has the transponder chip inside. This type of key is fine, apart from the fact that the keys wear quickly and then won’t turn in the ignition.
Ford Custom Blade key
Ford Custom Keys Score
These keys are cheap. If it’s just a spare remote key you need, we think you should be paying from £130- £150, cut and coded.
Ford remote keys used to be the highest quality. However, on this occasion, we think they have fallen short. We’re seeing 2014 vans with faulty keys which means they are lasting 3-4 years. This earns two stars and we think we’re being kind.
To cut the key, a code is needed. Unlike every other manufacturer, Ford don’t keep a central database of codes. A good Auto Locksmith won’t need a code to cut the key, they can get it from decoding the door lock with a special tool. However, Ford will need it, so check with them what their plan is to make a key for you.
Both the dealers and most good Auto Locksmiths will keep these keys in stock. However, the programming is not easy unless the best equipment is used therefore this may slow things down.
The style of lock used on the Ford Custom is difficult to make a key for, unless you have the tools and a lot of experience. Therefore, you may struggle to find someone who can replace lost Ford Custom keys. If the customer has the ‘key number’ then a key can be cut easily. However, we’ve not met an owner that has the key number. If they’ve been given it, unfortunately it hasn’t been explained to them how important this little piece of plastic is.
Ford Key Number Tag
As well as making the key, there’s a problem programming them if they have an alarm fitted. If the alarm is sounding, there may be a problem for anyone, including Ford, to programme a new key. This may increase the cost of losing your keys significantly. If you’ve lost your keys, find a good quality Auto-Locksmith. If you’ve only got one, then get a spare!
We’ve given two stars because you may struggle to find someone good enough to make a new key when they are lost, and Ford cannot do it without the key number.
They’re not that good, that’s it really! Expect problems, set aside a budget for a spare key and accept that Ford have moved on to the next project. I’m sure they’ll learn from this!
Have you fitted extra security locks to your Custom? Click here to find out how Custom vans are getting broken into, all around the country
We are really impressed with the team at Sussex Installations. Click here for some excellent information on van security
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