If you’re coming out of a long lockdown, we hope you’ve kept safe and virus-free. It’s the middle of May 2020 and this week we’ve taken a lot of calls from Ford owners that are locked out. So this article looks at what to do when Ford key buttons don’t work after lockdown. The type of key we’re looking at is below

Now we’re not technicians, we’re locksmiths. So if the technical details are lacking I’m sorry. However I’ll try and describe best I can what the problem is, and how to fix it.

Ford Key Buttons Stop Working ?

When your keyless Ford is sat for more than a few weeks, it’s possible it goes to sleep. When your car is in normal use, the keyless system is like an alert dog, sitting and listening for your key signal. At the slightest noise, or signal, it comes to life and responds to the key.

Your Ford Car is Sleeping

However, when your car has been on alert for more than a few weeks, it gets tired and decides to have a nap. I’m sure the technical reason will be that the car starts to shut down non-essential services to preserve it’s battery. Unfortunately, this is when your Ford key buttons don’t work anymore.

It won’t matter how many times you press the key buttons, or whether you change the key battery, the car will not respond.

It’s Time to Wake Up your Car

The good news is it’s easy. The bad news is, there’s going to be some noise!

Most cars that use this type of key have an alarm. Don’t worry about the alarm. It’s just a bit of noise and it won’t last too long. As well as this, no-one really takes any notice of car alarms anyway!

The first thing you need to do is to remove your emergency key blade from your car key.

If you need help opening the key, please take a quick look at our video.

This emergency key blade is inside your key for when your Ford key buttons don’t work. It’s going to happen eventually so don’t worry about having to do this at all.


When you put the key into the door, you may find it’s difficult to turn, simply because you don’t have much to hold on to. Place the key over the top of the blade and use it to turn the blade as shown.


Turn it Anti-clockwise and the car should unlock. When you open the door, you may find the alarm sounds, this is normal. Next put your key blade back inside so it doesn’t get lost.

Waking Up Your Ford Car

So now your car is waking up. There’s a chance your car key buttons may work already. If they do, use the unlock button to turn off the alarm, however if not, you need to start the car as you normally do.

If you try to start the car but nothing happens, this is normal.

Why won’t my Ford Start?

The first thing to check is your main car battery. Do the dash lights come on? Do your hazard lights work? If none of your electrical services are working, there’s a good chance you have a flat battery. Once you get the battery replaced, or charged, everything will work.

However, if you have plenty of power, but it won’t start you may see the following warning, or something similar.

Ford key buttons don't work

This message tells you that the car still can’t detect your car key. Don’t worry, again, this is normal when the car has been sat for a while. It’s time to do an emergency start!

Ford knew this would happen and they designed your car with an emergency start location. This means when you can put your key in a special place on the car, the key is recognised and you can start it!

Where is my Ford Emergency Start Location?

The bad news is that it depends on your make, model and year of your car. Sometimes it’s obvious, other times not so.

You need to look out for this symbol.

Ford key buttons don't work

but it may also look like this

Ford key buttons don't work

Or there may just be a slot to put the key into like this.

Ford key buttons don't work

We’ve also made several YouTube videos that should help you to get your car key working again. Click on the following links if you have these models.

The good news is that once you get your car started, everything should work normally again. If you still have problems, contact your local garage who will be able to help you.

That’s it! Hopefully you’re up and running and everything works. If you have any questions, please ask in the comments.


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