Car Key Duplication FAQs

There’s many reasons that lead people to ask to duplicate their car keys – whether they want to share their vehicle with another person, or are anticipating the nearing breakage of an old beat up key. In this blog post, the lock and key experts at Master Locksmith USA will answer some of the most frequently asked questions that we receive about automobile key duplication services.


Can I get a duplicate of my key if I don’t actually have the key?

No, if you don’t have a working key then car key duplication isn’t the service that you need. You will require a car key cut specifically from code, a service which our locksmiths can easily provide – but is still different than the process of duplication.


Is there a reason my car key duplicates won’t work?

This could be because they require a transponder key to be programmed to match your car’s internal transceiver codes. It might also be due to a structural issue with the original key – even slight variations are exponentially multiplied when a key is copied, making it too different to work inside the lock.


Is there a difference between key cutting and key duplication?

Yes and no. Key duplication falls under the service umbrella of key cutting, along with the process of cutting a key from code. To duplicate a key you need a physical original working key – and this process doesn’t necessarily include programming key fobs or transponders. Code cutting doesn’t require the presence of an original working key, and is done according to specific code numbers.


Can the hardware store duplicate my keys?

Sometimes, but not always. Most hardware stores can copy regular house keys, but cannot copy high security keys – and can only very rarely copy car keys, as they often don’t have the expensive machinery required to reprogram automobile key fobs to the transponder of your vehicle.


Can you duplicate any type of car key?

In order to duplicate a car key, you need at least one physical metal key. If you want a smart key cut from code through our key fob programming services, it’s a technically different service, and will require proof-of-ownership of the vehicle as well as the vehicle’s transponder code.


Can I start my vehicle with my duplicate keys?

It depends – if you have an old car that functions without a transponder, then of course. If your car works with a transponder, a duplicated key will only be able to start the vehicle once the key fob has been programmed to match the coding within the ignition transceiver.

November 2nd, 2017