There’s nothing quite like the feeling of driving a new BMW. However, losing or damaging your car key can quickly dampen that excitement. Fortunately, getting a replacement key is easier than you might think.
Whether you’re dealing with a lost key, broken key, or simply need a spare, there are several options available to help you get back on the road as soon as possible.
“Getting a new BMW car key doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. With a little bit of knowledge and preparation, it can be a quick and painless process.”
In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about getting a new BMW car key. From where to go to how much it will cost, we’ve got you covered every step of the way.
So whether you’re in a rush to replace a lost or damaged key or just want to be prepared for any future issues, read on to learn more about how to get a new BMW car key.
Go To An Authorized BMW Dealer
If you’ve lost your BMW car keys, the best and most reliable option is to go to an authorized BMW dealer. Dealerships have access to the latest technology and equipment needed to replace a key that matches your specific model of BMW.
While it may be more expensive than going to a locksmith or DIY replacement, working directly with a certified dealership ensures you get genuine BMW keys and avoid any potential complications in programming or compatibility issues with non-OEM parts.
It’s important to note that attempting to save money by using a third-party vendor or website may jeopardize not only your warranty but also damage your vehicle or create security risks.
Ensure You Get Genuine BMW Keys
When heading to a licensed BMW dealership, make sure to check their credentials to ensure they are authorized and can guarantee OEM keys. Genuine BMW key replacements will match the look and design of your original key, which includes the metal key blade, buttons, remote entry components, and electronic transponder chip.
“Counterfeit auto parts present significant safety and economic implications. They pose a potential threat to drivers, passengers, and road users,” -Roger Morris, Chief Communications Officer at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Genuine BMW keys undergo rigorous tests and inspections to ensure they’re built to exacting standards and safety protocols, providing peace of mind for drivers when accessing their vehicles.
Expect Superior Service from Trained Technicians
BMW technicians specializing in car key replacement offer several services beyond creating new keys, including:
- Diagnostic Testing: In cases where the car key needs reprogramming.
- Key Fob Battery Replacement: Changing batteries on the fobs in cases when the structure is still functional.
- Reprogramming Keyless Entry Remotes: Re-syncing remotes that have lost connection to your car’s ECU due to various factors, e.g., programming errors or alteration of system settings.
Expert BMW technicians drive the car themselves or often use bench testing under controlled conditions to verify the new key fob operates perfectly with your car. The replacement process guarantees a seamless experience without requiring additional dealership visits, thanks to their comprehensive understanding of connecting all components for successful operation.
Benefit from Access to Specialized Equipment
BMW dealerships come equipped with top-of-the-range diagnostic tools and technologies essential for proper rekeying of your vehicle. Apart from creating a replacement key, these equipment offer:
- VIN Identification Authentication: Verification through VIN and immobilizer-specific software before transponder data is written onto it enables secure and accurate decoding during the copying process of original keys.
- Replacement of Any Type Of Key: Replacement of an emergency key, a smart key, or an advanced push-button type of key requires specialized devices consigned to only certified dealerships.
- Insurance coverage: Accredited dealerships are covered by insurance for any accidental damage caused during service.
“A major advantage of dealer replacement keys is that the warranty typically covers them,” -Frank Scafidi, National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) public affairs director
This means you’re covered should anything go wrong after installation, including parts failing within the first few months or faults developing during the re-programming phaseIn summary, replacing your BMW car key involves working directly with authorized dealers who can guarantee genuine OEM keys while providing access to state-of-art technology and highly-trained technicians for the best and most reliable results.
Provide Proof of Ownership
If you lose your BMW car key or it gets stolen, getting a new one is not just about going to the dealership and asking for a replacement. You need to provide proof that you are the rightful owner of the vehicle before they can issue a new key.
Bring the Original Vehicle Title
To prove ownership, you will need to bring the original vehicle title with you when you go to the dealership. The title shows that you are the registered owner of the vehicle and have the right to request a new key.
If you have lost or misplaced the title, you can obtain a duplicate from the state DMV where the vehicle was originally titled. Keep in mind that there may be fees associated with obtaining a duplicate title, so make sure you factor this into your budget.
Provide a Valid Driver’s License
In addition to the vehicle title, you will also need to show a valid driver’s license to prove your identity and ensure that you are legally authorized to operate the vehicle. This allows the dealership to confirm that you are indeed the same person listed on the vehicle title.
If you do not have a driver’s license, you can use another form of government-issued photo identification such as a passport or state ID card. However, keep in mind that the dealership may require additional documentation to verify your ownership.
Note that if someone other than the registered owner needs a replacement key, additional paperwork may be required to establish their authorization to make the request.
“When requesting a new BMW key, it’s important to bring all necessary documents proving your ownership of the vehicle.”
While losing your car key is definitely an inconvenience, getting a new one doesn’t have to be a huge headache as long as you come prepared with the right documents and identification.
Expect to Pay a High Price
If you’ve misplaced your BMW car key, prepare yourself for the sticker shock of having to purchase a replacement. A new key can cost anywhere from $100 to over $500, depending on the model and year of your vehicle.
The high price tag is due in part to the advanced technology used in BMW keys. Most models have a transponder chip within the plastic head that communicates with your car’s computer system to allow it to start. This added security measure helps prevent theft but also makes replacing lost keys more complicated and expensive.
It’s important to keep track of your keys and have a spare on hand if possible. If you do find yourself in need of a replacement, be prepared to spend some money to get back on the road.
Understand the Value of Genuine BMW Keys
When purchasing a replacement key for your BMW, opt for genuine keys sold by an authorized dealership or locksmith. While aftermarket keys may seem like a cheaper option, they often lack the same quality and functionality as original equipment manufacturer (OEM) keys.
In addition to being more reliable, OEM keys also come with benefits such as having the correct programming codes and being able to reprogram the remote locking and unlocking features of your car. Aftermarket keys may not be compatible with all aspects of your vehicle’s electronics, leading to potential issues down the line.
“Aftermarket parts are sometimes okay, but in the case of BMW keys, stick with the OEM ones.” -BMW Blog
If you’re unsure whether a key seller is offering genuine BMW keys, ask to see their credentials and ensure they are authorized by the manufacturer to sell and program keys. It’s better to pay more upfront for a reliable product than risk damaging your car’s delicate electronic systems with a cheaper, subpar imitation.
Consider the Cost of Reprogramming Your Car’s Computer System
When purchasing a replacement key for your BMW, you’ll also need to have it programmed to work with your specific car. This process can cost several hundred dollars in addition to the price of the key itself.
If you go through an authorized dealership or locksmith, they will have the necessary tools and expertise to reprogram your car’s computer system quickly and accurately. However, if you opt for a cheaper alternative such as a mobile key programming service, be sure to do your research on their credentials and reputation before handing over your hard-earned money.
“Some car owners attempt to program keys themselves using online instructions or buying expensive equipment that may take hours to figure out…In the end, not only could this void any warranties, but it could leave drivers without access to other features.” -Autoblog
In some cases, vehicle owners attempt to reprogram their keys themselves, leading to costly mistakes and even damage to their cars’ onboard computers. It’s important to weigh the potentially high cost of professional services against the risk of causing further problems by attempting a DIY fix.
Getting a new BMW car key is not a cheap or straightforward task, but it’s an essential one if you want to get back on the road. Remember to seek out genuine OEM keys from a trusted source and factor in the additional cost of having them programmed correctly to avoid potential headaches down the line.
Wait for the Key to be Programmed
If you have lost your BMW car keys, getting a new one may seem like a daunting task. Not only does it require time and money, but there are also specific steps that you need to take in order to get a new key programmed. Here is what you need to know:
Be Patient and Allow Sufficient Time for Programming
The process of programming a new BMW key can take some time, so it’s essential to be patient throughout the entire process. When you contact a BMW dealer, make sure that you ask them how long it will take to program the key.
“It typically takes between 30 minutes to an hour to program a new key,” says Steven Adelman, service manager at BMW of Manhattan.
This timeframe may vary depending on the dealership. Keep in mind that if you have not already purchased a new key, this could add additional time to the overall process.
Ask for an Estimated Timeframe for Completing the Job
When you visit the BMW dealership, make sure that you speak with the technician who will be doing the programming. Ask them how much time they will need to complete the job and if they need any information from you regarding the vehicle.
“In most cases, we just need the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and proof of ownership of the car before starting the programming process,” says Adelman.
Making sure that you provide all necessary information upfront can help avoid any unnecessary delays during the programming process.
Confirm That the Key is Fully Functional Before Leaving the Dealer
After the key has been programmed, make sure that you confirm that it works correctly before leaving the dealership. This is especially important because if there are any issues with the key, it’s easier to address them when you’re still on site.
“At BMW of Manhattan, we offer a 30-day warranty on all keys we program,” says Adelman. “This means that if there are any issues with the key within the first thirty days after programming, we will replace it free of charge.”
If you notice any problems with your new key, be sure to notify the technician right away so that they can make adjustments before you leave.
Getting a new BMW car key may seem like an overwhelming task, but by following these steps and being patient throughout the process, you’ll have a fully functioning key before you know it.
Consider a Third-Party Locksmith
Losing your BMW key can be frustrating, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. You might think that the only option is to go to the dealership, but there are other solutions available. A third-party locksmith can often provide the same service at a lower price.
Keep in mind that not all locksmiths specialize in automotive keys, and even those who do may not have experience programming BMW keys. That’s why it’s important to take time to find a reputable locksmith who can meet your needs.
Research and Verify the Reputation of the Locksmith
Before agreeing to work with a locksmith, research their reputation. Look for reviews online or ask friends and family for recommendations.
You may also want to verify that the locksmith is licensed and insured. In some states, locksmiths are required to have a license to operate. Insurance can help cover any damages that may occur during the process of creating your new BMW car key.
“When looking for a locksmith, don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions about their experience and qualifications.” -Angie Hicks, founder of Angie’s List
Ask for a Quote Before Agreeing to the Service
Prices for BMW car key replacement can vary depending on the locksmith you choose. It’s important to get an estimate before agreeing to the service so that you know what to expect.
Be wary of locksmiths who offer unusually low prices. They may be cutting corners or using subpar materials. On the other hand, high prices do not always guarantee quality work. That’s why it’s essential to do your research and get several quotes before making a decision.
“The cheapest is not necessarily the best when it comes to locksmith services.” -Jeff Kastner, owner of Pop-A-Lock Indianapolis
Ensure the Locksmith Has the Necessary Equipment and Expertise to Program BMW Keys
BMW car keys are more complicated than standard keys because they have electronic components that need to be programmed. Not all locksmiths have the tools or expertise to program these types of keys.
Before agreeing to work with a locksmith, ask if they have experience with BMW car key replacement. You may also want to ask about their equipment to ensure that they can properly program your new key.
“Make sure they have the proper diagnostic and programming equipment specific to your brand of vehicle.” -Consumer Reports
If you do decide to use a third-party locksmith for your BMW car key replacement, make sure to keep a copy of your new key in a safe place. Losing your key again will only cause more frustration and expense. With a little research and patience, you can get a new BMW car key without breaking the bank.
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do if I lost my BMW car key?
If you have lost your BMW car key, the first thing you should do is contact your local BMW dealership. They will be able to provide you with a replacement key or suggest alternative solutions. Additionally, you should consider filing a police report to protect your vehicle from theft.
How can I get a new BMW car key?
To get a new BMW car key, you can contact your local BMW dealership and request a replacement. They will need to verify your ownership of the vehicle before providing a new key. Alternatively, you may be able to order a replacement key online or from a locksmith who specializes in automotive keys.
How much does it cost to get a new BMW car key?
The cost of getting a new BMW car key can vary depending on several factors, including the model and year of your vehicle, as well as the dealership or locksmith you use. On average, you can expect to pay between $100 and $400 for a replacement key. However, some newer BMW models may require more advanced keys that can cost upwards of $500.
Can I get a replacement BMW car key if I don’t have the original?
Yes, it is possible to get a replacement BMW car key even if you don’t have the original. Your local BMW dealership or a locksmith who specializes in automotive keys can help you obtain a replacement key by verifying your ownership of the vehicle and programming a new key to work with your car’s security system.
Is it possible to program a new BMW car key myself?
No, it is not recommended to program a new BMW car key yourself. BMW keys require specialized equipment to be programmed correctly, and attempting to do so yourself can result in damage to your car’s electronics. It is best to leave key programming to a professional locksmith or dealership.
Where can I find a trusted locksmith to make a new BMW car key?
You can find a trusted locksmith to make a new BMW car key by asking for referrals from friends or family, searching online for local locksmiths who specialize in automotive keys, or contacting your local BMW dealership for recommendations. Be sure to choose a licensed and insured locksmith with a good reputation to ensure that your new key is made correctly and your vehicle is protected.