View Full Version : Car key replacement: Does this sound like a scam?

Frederick Skelly
07-25-2018, 8:08 PM
My Dad has a toyota where the keyless entry buttons are part of the key. He needs a replacement because he dropped in and it literally broke apart. Wierd, but ok. I steered my Dad to a small company I used about 2 years ago. The guy came out in a company van with their name on the side. He programmed the key to open the doors. Then he cut the key wrong. When you put it in the ignition one way, the car will turn over. When you flip the key, it won't turn in either the ignition or the door keyhole. (Car won't start in either case because the immobilizer hasnt been programmed yet - I was watching and verified that by trying it myself.)

The guy wanted to try and salvage the electronic part of the key (buttons, chip, etc) by installing a new blank blade in it. So he took it to the shop and was to return today. This PM he called my Dad to rechedule. Dad asked whether he was able to swap the blade he cut wrong for the new blank blade. He said no, they had to copy the code to open the doors to the electronics on a brand new key. Dad asked if they wiped/destroyed the old electronics and he said they did.

I can't decide if this is just a fluke or if they are setting my Dad up to steal his 5 year old toyota. I dont find anything listed for this company on the Better Business Bureau and no reviews on Angies List. I googled car key scams and didnt find anything like this.

I just have this nagging feeling Im missing something. What do you folks think?


Eduard Nemirovsky
07-25-2018, 8:15 PM
It is sound very complicated for a scam. Just a fluke, I think.

Bruce Wrenn
07-25-2018, 9:21 PM
You used them two years ago. Has anything bad come from that experience? If they were scammers, as you question, most likely by now they would have been caught. I run my own business (40+ years) and don't have my name on vehicle, or print business cards. All new work has been by word of mouth from existing customers. As for them stealing your dads 5 year old car, being locksmiths, they could do it anyway, without his key

Ed Aumiller
07-25-2018, 9:36 PM
The guy messed up and it is going to cost him the price of the damaged key... he is trying to avoid that cost...

Frederick Skelly
07-26-2018, 6:20 AM
Thank you guys. I appreciate you taking a minute to give me a hand!

Barry McFadden
07-26-2018, 6:35 PM
Seems like a lot of trouble to go through to replace a key fob. The keyless entry fob on my Caravan wore out (buttons quit working and cleaning doesn't help). Any Dodge dealer up here wants $350 to replace and program it. I ordered one off of ebay from a company in Miami for $16 and had it programmed by a local locksmith for $50.

Matt Meiser
08-02-2018, 3:30 PM
If they want to steal a 5 year old Toyota it seems like there's probably a few easier ways.

Lee Schierer
08-02-2018, 5:15 PM
When I needed a new key fob for remote entry for our Mazda, the dealer wanted $160. I ordered one from the internet and also found instructions on how to program it to my car. It worked just fine for the 2-3 years I owned the car after that.

Chris Padilla
08-13-2018, 2:21 PM
So my daughter has started driving and she wanted her own key and fob. Being a 2006 Tacoma, it still has 'em as two separate pieces. I found a fob online for $10 but thought for sure it had to be a joke or that it wouldn't work but other than being super cheap, it sure seemed to be correct. Further, the sequence to go through to program it was the craziest thing I have ever seen. It was a bunch of turning the key to the correct position and opening and closing the driver's door. Amazingly, we got her fob to program on the first try and it has been solid ever since. I thought it would be a $100+ charge and a trip to the dealer to get it working so I was quite pleased with this outcome.