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How Much Does a Replacement Car Key Cost in the UK?

Losing or damaging your car keys can be a frustrating experience. Not only do you face the inconvenience of being unable to use your vehicle, but you also have to consider the cost of getting a replacement key. In the United Kingdom, the cost of a replacement car key can vary depending on several factors.

The first factor to consider is the type of key you need. Modern cars often come with transponder keys or remote fobs, which contain electronic chips that need to be programmed to the vehicle. These keys are more expensive to replace compared to traditional metal keys.

On average, a basic metal key can cost between £5 and £10. However, if you require a transponder key or remote fob, the cost can range from £80 to £200. Luxury car brands, such as BMW or Mercedes, may have even higher replacement costs due to their advanced key technologies.

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Another factor that affects the cost is where you get the replacement key. Going to a dealership for a replacement key is usually more expensive compared to using an independent auto locksmith. Dealerships often charge higher prices for both the key and the programming service.

Additionally, the make and model of your vehicle play a role in determining the cost. Some cars require more complex programming, which can increase the price. Older models may also have higher replacement costs due to the limited availability of their keys.


1. Can I get a replacement key without going to the dealership?
Yes, you can contact an independent auto locksmith who specializes in car key replacements.

2. How long does it take to get a replacement key?
The time required depends on the locksmith or dealership, but it can typically take anywhere from a few hours to a few days.

3. Will my car insurance cover the cost of a replacement key?
It depends on your insurance policy. Some policies may cover key replacements, while others may require an additional coverage option.

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4. Can I program the replacement key myself?
In some cases, you may be able to program a basic metal key yourself. However, transponder keys and remote fobs usually require professional programming.

5. Is it possible to get a spare key made to avoid future replacement costs?
Yes, it is recommended to have a spare key made to avoid the hassle and expense of getting a replacement key in case of loss or damage.

6. Can a locksmith program a replacement key for any car?
Locksmiths can program keys for most car makes and models, but it’s always best to confirm with them beforehand.

7. Are there any precautions to prevent losing my car keys?
You can consider using a key tracking device, keeping spare keys in a safe place, or using keyless entry systems to minimize the risk of losing your car keys.