How to replace lost/ stolen key?
As I did not have much information when I lost the key, it took some time and effort to run around and get the new set. Now, hope this information helps you in similar situation.
1. What are the options?
If you lose one key (say, the Intelligent key), and one key (say, spare key) is available, you have three options:
(i) Continue to use your car with the spare key. Good: You don’t have to go through the pain of replacing the security system (You have to take the car to the service station and it takes a minimum of 3-4 hours to get the job done). You don’t have to spend any money. Bad: Your intelligent key might be in the wrong hands, and that could mean sleepless nights. You will have to manually lock/ unlock the doors and forfeit all the remote features you got used to, so far.
(ii) Replace the security system. For my Figo, it cost me INR 6200. Good: Your car is secure again with new system. You will have two new keys, one Intelligent key and the other spare key. Bad: It costs money. It costs time. Old spare key doesn’t work anymore.
(iii) Get a new Intelligent key only (not complete new security system). Good: You will again have two keys, new Intelligent key and old spare key. Saves some money compared to the ‘new security system’ option (Ford quoted about INR 3500 for single intelligent key). It takes less time to program just the key, compared to replacing the whole security system that includes lock sets (steering mount and in the driver’s door). Bad: Your lost/ stolen key still works; so if it’s in the wrong hands, may be one-in-a-million chance, but theft of car nevertheless.
2. Where to get it done?
Ford service station ONLY. Most Ford service stations have the capacity to deal with this, but definitely not any other third-party vendor/ dealer/ locksmith/ friend/ watchman.
For over 15 years now, Ford has been shipping cars with computerized security. What this means is, the keys you hold have a chip embedded. This is true for both the keys, Intelligent as well as the spare key. Did you notice the blue tab on top of your Ford car spare key? That is like a cap concealing the chip. These are called “blue chip” keys. There apparently used to be “red chip” keys as well (previous generation). Either way, only Ford has those chip-enabled keys that your car needs. There ARE companies like ‘Autokey Squad’ that do a similar job but not in India yet.
3. What is done?
It depends on the option you choose.
If you opt for additional key only, Ford will program a new key to your car so that the remote control operations (lock/ unlock doors aka central locking, open boot and programmable key-less entry) will work, along with the primary goal – to enable you to operate your car with the new key. This will cost you about INR 3500.
Programming a key is something like syncing the chip in the key to the ECU (Engine Control Unit) so that your key works with your car. If this programming is not done, the key might be able to unlock the doors but won’t be able to start the ignition. ECU is intelligent enough to immobilize the car if the key inserted in the ignition is not ‘linked’ or programmed, as it is called.
If you choose to replace the complete security system, Ford will first replace two locks and then do the programming with ECU. The two locks are (i) the one in the steering mount where you insert the key for ignition and (ii) the one in the driver’s door [handle] where you insert the key to [manually] lock/ unlock the car doors.
4. What should you do in all?
(i) Inform insurance company, if your policy covers such an incident.
(ii) Take your vehicle to Ford service station.
(iii) After Ford finishes the work, confirm that all the functions are working with both the keys, as desired.
(iv) Pay the bill (no insurance scenario)
5. How much does it cost?
Only key – INR 3500. (Intelligent key)
Complete security system – INR 6200.
Note: These are prices as of June 2013 in Fortune Ford, Sanath nagar, Hyderabad. Prices may change from time to time, or could be different depending on your location.
There you go! While I sincerely hope, again, that you don’t lose your key, the information above should help you to get started with replacement, in case you do.
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This article is based on my recent experience with lost key with Ford Figo. This may apply to other brand and model cars to some extent. Your best bet would be to talk to your dealer/ regular service station. If you have any questions, or some information above needs correction, please let me know through comments.