5 Steps to avoid losing car keys on a road trip
You have decided to go on a cross country road trip with a few friends. You are sure to have a good time while seeing some new scenery and driving across the country. You and your friends stay out late one night, maybe you had a little too much fun, and you end up losing your car keys. This is an all too common scenario. Losing your car keys on a road trip can be extremely frustrating, just take the following steps and next time this happens to you it won’t be such an unfortunate situation.
1. Keep a spare key under the hood
Many cars already come equipped with a spare key and a holder for it. This holder is usually magnetic and is made in such a way that you will be able to attach it to your vehicle under the hood of your car. If you do not already have one of these you can easily purchase one online. It may be a wise investment that will save you a lot of trouble if you end up losing your spare key on a roadtrip. However, if you do not wish to keep a spare key under your hood using a holder there are still other options.
2. Use a ziptie
This solution may sound strange, and most people may be a bit wary of it at first. However, you should not let your initial caution to outright dismiss this proven and tested method. Simply take a ziptie, loop it through your car key, and find a somewhat obscure place where you can loop the rest of the zip tie to your car. Zip Ties are incredibly strong and will stay attached to your car given almost any scenario.
3.Leave a spare at home
I was out skiing in Colorado. I drove there from Texas and was too short sighted to bring a spare key with me. I ended up falling incredibly hard on the slopes, so much that the zipper pocket on my ski pants unzipped and my car keys fell out. Luckily I left a spare key back home with my brother. I was able to leave the car at the ski resort overnight and he was able to send me my spare car keys. If you consider going on a road trip one thing you can do to ease your mind is leave a spare with a family member or friend that can mail you the key in case of emergency.
4.Make a cheap spare
Many cars today come equipped with what is known as a transponder car key. A transponder key offers additional security for your vehicle. This is done by using a chip that has to be registered with the car’s internal software before allowing you to turn the ignition over and the car on. Unfortunately, as with any additional security, it comes at a cost. In this case the cost is the price of the transponder key, which is far more expensive than the price of a traditional metal key. However, you can go to your local locksmith and request they make you a spare key without the transponder key. This key will be able to be used to unlock the doors of your car, but more importantly, it can be duplicated later on if you end up losing your transponder key. Duplicating the cheap metal key will save you more money in the long run, as it is much cheaper than duplicating a car key using your car’s VIN number.
5.Duplicate using VIN number
If you do end up going on a road trip, have lost your spare key, and did not take any of the previous four steps this may be the only option you have left. Unfortunately, it is the most expensive option of the five, however, there are ways to make it more cost effective. Often times people will call a car dealership to duplicate their car key using a VIN number. However, dealerships do not specialize in locksmithing techniques such as key duplication or transponder key programming. As a result, calling a dealership may be extremely expensive. If you do end up needing to duplicate your car key using a VIN number, we suggest that you call a trusted local locksmith that is licensed and bonded. Because locksmiths specialize in these services, not only will they be able to provide you more rapid service than a dealership, but also a more cost effective service. Using a Locksmith service can sometimes save you over 100 dollars over the service of a car dealership.
Do not let the possibility of losing your car key stop you from going out and having a fun road trip with friends. Just take some simple precautions to prevent further hassle if you do end up losing your car key. Always make sure to keep a spare key attached to your vehicle, and at home with a trusted family member or friend. If you do end up losing all of your spare keys we recommend that you call a trusted locksmith service before contacting a dealership as the former is likely to be more rapid and cost effective than the latter.