How does a locksmith replace a car key?

How do locksmiths make car keys without the original? I lost my car keys (again) and I heard getting a new one made at a locksmith is cheaper than buying a new one from the manufacturer.

Hana Sabah · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
“I’m sorry to hear about your car keys. They can definitely be expensive to replace.
But you are right! Locksmiths can remake your car key—even without the original and even if your car has a push-start ignition.
Experienced locksmiths have a few methods to make new keys. The most popular method used is scoping. It involves a tiny specialized scope that the locksmith inserts into the lock. The scope captures all the grooves and locking cylinders so your locksmith can make a new key.
When contacting a locksmith, you’ll need to have your vehicle identification number and personal information handy. The locksmith will use those details to prove that you are the owner of the car.
Alternatively, the locksmith could use your information to acquire a key code via the National Automotive Service Task Force. This key code can be used to cut a new key. Once this process is complete, the locksmith may need to reprogram the onboard computer on your vehicle to recognize your new keys.
If you misplace your key often, you may want to get roadside assistance. With
in your pocket, you’ll never have to worry about being stranded again. Jerry provides roadside assistance, including jumpstarts, lockout service, key replacement, and towing for under $5 a month.”
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Jerry partners with more than 50 insurance companies, but our content is independently researched, written, and fact-checked by our team of editors and agents. We aren’t paid for reviews or other content.

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