Take note of your car’s VIN since this is going to be a great help when it comes to looking for the exact same key that works on your vehicle. In most cars, the VIN can be found on the drivers side dashboard and is visible through the window.
Your cars VIN can also be found on a rear wheel well or the front of the engine block, door jam, in the trunk or on the frame of your car between the carburetor and windshield washer. If you cant find your cars VIN in your car at all then look up the number on your car insurance info and should be in the top left hand corner of each page.
VIN is consist of 17 digits of letter or number however, letters I, O and Q are not in VIN to avoid confusion with numbers 1 and 0. This only works on after 1981 and there were no VINs before 1954. You may also take note of the year, make, and model of your vehicle. This information will also help you figure out which type of key you need for your vehicle.
After getting all these info your next step would be to contact a nearby auto locksmith. This should be your first option. They will give you the best deal on a new key, about half as much as it would cost to get a new key from a dealer.
Locksmiths will open up your vehicle and proceed to make a new key. While hardware stores arent generally equipped to make new car keys, locksmiths usually have a lot of tools to use to get the job done. The older the vehicle, the better the odds that a locksmith will be able to help with replacing a lost or broken key.
An experienced and licensed locksmith may be able to help you make a new one depending on how unique the lost/broken key was. Locksmiths are not just good at making, duplicating keys but also program a smart key remotes which often requires a scan tool. Be sure to bring any other key fobs associated with that vehicle with you, as they sometimes wont work until the new key is programmed. Some cars requires a specialized equipment to program keys that locksmiths and dealers have.
Look for a discounted replacement key or remotes online. Aftermarket keys or even factory replacements can be found online for less than it would cost you to get them direct from the manufacturer. You may have success with a reputable dealer, but otherwise look for companies intended specifically to replace car keys.
Although be aware some cars require specialized equipment to cut and program. Call around to see who would be willing to cut and program a key bought online before you purchase one. You may visit www.autolocksmithfinder.com and use your zip code to look for a Locksmith that can do the job and compare programming charges.