Car key duplication: How much does it cost to copy a car key?

Even if you don’t believe you will ever need a key made for your car, having an extra key can and will come in handy in more than a few ways:

# Having an extra key greatly reduces the chances of being locked out of your car!

# Losing your keys won’t be as horrible as losing your last set of keys, and will provide you extra time to get another copy made.

# Having a key duplicated is cheaper than having a new key made altogether.

There are a few differences between car key duplication, replacing your car key, or cutting a new key altogether.

A duplicated key is in essence cutting a copy of your existing key, so in order to duplicate your key, you will need to have your key available and present. If you don’t have a physical copy of your key present, the prices regarding duplicate keys are irrelevant to you.

Whether your key broke in the door lock or ignition switch, or if you lost your keys altogether, you will need to get a new key made, and in this case, it won’t be the same pricing as a duplicate key made.

How to factor key duplication cost:

  1. Where you get the key duplicated:

Taking your key to your local hardware store, might be the cheaper option, yet you have to keep in mind that their employees lack the experience needed to assist you with different questions or issues that might arise, and in fact, all they do is insert your key into a machine that creates the key copy for you.

Calling your local locksmith store or dealership where the car was purchased at, provides you with a more experienced technician that is trained on most matters regarding your car key, and can assist you with questions or concerns you may have regarding the duplication process.

Even though it might cost you more, dealerships and locksmith shops also carry a larger variety of keys and can assist with key duplication for most cars in the market, whereas hardware stores only carry a limited variety of key blanks.

As well as the stated above, the cost of getting a duplicate car key will differ on the average cost in your area and the cost of the key blank itself.

  1. Type of car key:

The year, make and model of your vehicle is a very important aspect in determining the cost of duplicating your car key, since the key blank changes with the type of vehicle you own.

Certain times the type of key blank you need will be the average cost, the same as other blanks, yet in some cases, it can be found at a higher cost, whether you’re driving a luxury vehicle or a collector car, key blanks prices and availability will differ.

Before researching the cost to duplicate your car key, make sure you know the exact year make, and model of your car, to avoid confusion and wrong pricing.

That information can be found on your car registration, manual, or in some cases on the door frame itself. This will help us, as well as you, to determine whether a simple car key duplication is needed, or a replacement key is this case. Your car manual will tell you if your car key is a standard key, or if it has added features. Standard keys are easy to duplicate and are also priced the lowest.

However, most car manufacturers use key fobs, transponder chips, laser cut keys, push to start, etc. These features make it harder and more complicated to duplicate car keys, yet it’s a good thing since it makes it harder for burglars to manipulate and steal your car. Very few manufacturers still make standalone keys anymore, and more often they are used in a specific vehicle, by using a transponder chip.

  1. Type of machine used

This is a cost factor since the type of machine used to duplicate your keys influences the time, precision it takes to duplicate the key, as more complicated car keys requires special machines.

The more time spent on cutting the key, as well as the more precise key cuts will influence the cost of getting a duplicate key.

Cost of duplicating \ copy car key:

After stating the different factors that play a key role in determining the cost, here are average prices:

(Again remember that these prices vary depending on the reasons stated above)

# At your local hardware store the price of duplicating a basic key ranges from around 15$ to 25$, however, more than often, they will be able to cut only basic or standard keys.

# At a locksmith shop the basic cost would of car key duplication be between 25$ to 65$, yet they will have a wider variety of key blanks to fit most cars.

# At a locksmith shop, the cost of transponder keys, chips, etc, starts at around 120$, and again the price differs depending on the type of vehicle you own and the key blank it requires.

# At your dealership, the average cost of duplicating your car keys is upwards of 150$ since they don’t carry basic car keys, and mainly work on transponder keys or key fobs.

These prices focus on the cost of the key duplication and don’t take into account the additional services you might need. For older vehicles, duplicating them should be enough for it to work, yet newer cars that use key fobs or transponder keys will need to be programmed to fit the keys with the vehicle.

Transponder and fob keys make the cars harder to steal as well as make the keys harder to duplicate. The chips send and receive a signal emitted from the receiver inside the ignition, so even if the key is cut to match the bitting, the key won’t start the car unless programmed properly, and that is a different service you will need to be provided: 

# At an automotive locksmith shop, the cost for programming a transponder key will run between 45$ to 85$ which will raise your duplication cost, in some cases, it may be higher for more luxurious cars, and more high-security systems.

# Getting a key programmed at the dealership can cost up to 150$ depending on the type of vehicle you have.

(Please note that hardware stores don’t offer programming car keys)

In conclusion, in order to receive more accurate and closer prices car key duplication, please remember to provide as much information as possible, as experienced automotive locksmiths will be able to more accurately provide you with a price for your car key!

For more information and any questions you may have, please contact Unlock-It Locksmith services!

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