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How to Test a Transponder Car Key

Updated February 21, 2017

Transponder car keys are electronically synced to your engine, providing an extra level of security and convenience. These keys, also known as smart keys or chip keys, can be synced to your engine from your driver's seat. Once programmed, only a coded key can be used to start your car. You can program and test your key in just seconds and have the new or reprogrammed key ready to use immediately.

Enter your car, insert your transponder key into the ignition and turn the key to the "On" position.

Wait for the security light to turn on and leave your key idle in the ignition for 10 minutes until the security light turns off.

Turn your key to the "Off" position within one minute of the security light turning off.

Repeat Steps 1, 2 and 3 another two times, ending with the key in the "Off" position after the third cycle. This will take about 30 minutes.

Remove the key from the ignition and then insert it again and turn it "On" to test the programming.

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About the Author

Matthew Fortuna is a full-time freelance writer with a journalism degree from Wayne State University, living in the Detroit metropolitan area. He has written about a wide range of topics across varying publications, including Demand Studios, wiseGEEK.com and Suite101.com, among others. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Wayne State University.