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Category : Keys

  • How Locksmiths can Help with Key Fob Replacement

    Posted on April 23rd, 2020 0 Comments

    Transponder / key fob based car keys are somewhat temperamental pieces of equipment, but are totally crucial for the operation of cars, motorcycles, and other vehicles today in 2020. When key fob/ transponder keys have issues, it can be deeply frustrating for drivers – not to mention dangerous! In this blog post, the expert automotive locksmith team here at Chicago Locksmiths will detail some of the ways that locksmiths can provide important assistance through key fob replacement services.

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  • Professional Guide to Rekeying Locks

    Posted on January 27th, 2020 0 Comments

    Re-keying is a unique, convenient, and special service that saves our clients much time, money, and stress. In this blog post, the rekeying and lock repair experts here at Chicago Locksmiths will provide you with a basic guide to the basics of rekeying, and why exactly it can be so useful to home and business owners throughout Chicago.

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  • Car Key Loss Prevention

    Posted on May 28th, 2019 0 Comments

    Losing your car keys can prove to be stressful, costly, and even dangerous. Usually people misplace their car keys when they are in a big rush to get somewhere. Here’s some fantastic tips from the expert locksmiths here at Chicago Locksmiths on how to prevent losing your car keys.

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  • Buying New Smart Car Keys

    Posted on June 23rd, 2018 0 Comments

    Smart keys, aka transponder keys or key fobs are special car keys that are programmed directly to work with your vehicle. If you lose your car key, it’s not as easy as making a key directly from the key cylinder profile, as a few skilled locksmiths can do. You will need to find an avenue for obtaining and programming a transponder key blank to match your vehicle’s data profile. The expert emergency locksmith team at Chicago Locksmiths can help you do this; but before you contact us, here’s some excellent information about purchasing new smart car keys so that you can be better informed about the various aspects of the process in order to maximize your budget.

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  • Lost House Key Strategies

    Posted on February 18th, 2018 0 Comments

    Young sad woman lost her house keys. Girl sits in front of the door

    Young sad woman lost her house keys. Girl sits in front of the door

    The expert residential locksmiths at Chicago Locksmiths regularly perform lockout services for our valued customers. There’s a few strategies, however, that homeowners can tackle when trying to regain entry into their homes that can be attempted before contacting a locksmith. In this blog post, we’ll detail what the first steps you should take are for when you experience a lockout.

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  • Types of Car Keys

    Posted on October 9th, 2017 0 Comments

    Types of Car Keys

    There’s a wide variety of car keys that we commonly deal with in out capacity as professional automotive locksmiths. Here’s a brief guide to the types of car keys most commonly available today, as prepared by the experts at Chicago Locksmiths.

     

    Wafer Keys

    These keys are designed to open wafer locks and have grooves on the upper and lower parts of the blade. These double serrations are made so the key can be inserted in two ways, so the biting on both halves of the blade can move some wafers up and some wafers down. These locks are similar to normal pin tumbler locks. The wafers are spring loaded and the pins are raised to a height proportional with the wafers. The longer the wafer the deeper the lock groove, and vice versa. These locks do not’ offer fantastic security since there are many tools like Marshal keys, wave keys, and kiggle keys that can be used to open up the lock. Wafer keys can be upgraded with transponder chips that prevent thieves from being able to turn on the ignition of your car.

     

    Slider Keys

    These keys, not to be obvious, move sliders. They have a serpentine path cut into both sides of the blade, which, similar to as with wafer keys, can be inserted in two ways, and similar as raise or lower aspects of the lock. The sliders correspond to the path of the key’s cut, raising it to precise height. However, different from wafer locks, slider locks have multiple gates – with a single gate, the deepest one, being the one necessary to allow the lock to turn, and many additional false gates being present in order to provide additional security functionality. These are the ideal keys for the majority of smart key systems, as they are commonly integrated with electronic fobs.

     

    Transponder Keys

    These use multiple key systems in conjunction, the traditional slider or wafer key which unlocks the doors, or trunk according to normal pin raising/lowering principals, and a transponder chip – which fuses the technology of a transmitter and a responder in order to provide a unique and custom electronic signal that allows the key ring wrapped around the ignition cylinder to turn on the car. This security system will prevent unauthorized attempts to turn your car on if a misprogrammed or blank key is used. If a transponder key is lost you will need to program a blank transponder key to fit your car’s specific needs, a process which the experts at Chicago Locksmiths can easily carry out.

     

    Key Fobs

    This term describes the electronic remote part of a key that can unlock doors, open trunks, or even turn on the ignition in push button cars. They key fob works as a security token that authenticates that you are the authorized user through either near field communication, infrared, or Bluetooth technology. Some cars will automatically unlock when the key fob approaches its vicinity – these keys are known as smart keys, which can turn on your car before you are inside it. Key fobs can either be housed inside the key itself, or located in a separate device.

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  • When Keys get stuck in car ignition

    Posted on January 30th, 2017 0 Comments

    There’s many reasons that car keys sometimes get stuck inside the ignition of the vehicle. If it occurs constantly, it’s most likely a structural issue with the ignition switch itself. There’s a large chance that there’s some sort of wire or button inside the structure that houses the ignition mechanism that’s misaligned, preventing the key from turning to the fully disengaged position where it can be removed. This counts as a full jam in the device – but if you jiggle the key around or lightly hit the steering column, the key can be released.  Here’s Chicago Locksmith’s automobile expert’s guide to stuck car keys.

    Locked Steering Wheels

    There’s other situations where there’s no inner structural malfunctions, but the steering wheel itself is locked in a closed position. In these situations, you just need to slightly rotate it left or right to help release the key. Another tactic to implement is to check to see which direction the car’s wheels are turned to, and turning the steering wheel in the other direction. When cars get parked with their wheels facing opposite directions, it can put great pressure on the steering wheel making it jam. When you release it with this method, there’s a loud click, signaling that the ignition is freed up.

    Manual Removal

     

    You might be trying to move your key when it breaks off inside the car ignition. Try to use pliers to manually yank out the part of the key that you have access to. If you don’t see it, try applying a small amount of superglue to the head of the key that broke off, stick it inside so it can touch the part that broke it off, wait a few minutes, and pull it out. REMEMBER: only use a small amount of superglue, as if it get’s into the mechanism it can break it.

    If the key is STILL stuck, it’s probably due to a shifter mechanism malfunction. In this situation you will need the help of a professional. Call a licensed car repair service as soon as possible, as these malfunctions can cause airbags to suddenly be deployed, which can be quite dangerous.

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  • Skeleton Keys

    Posted on July 17th, 2016 0 Comments

    Skeleton Keys

    Skeleton Keys have always carried an element of mystery as they have been central plot devices of many mystery and detective stories. However, despite their shrouded reputation, there’s no magic or mystery to skeleton keys – they operate according to simple mechanics. Let’s learn what skeleton keys are all about.

    What are they?

    When most people hear “skeleton key” they think about an old fashioned looking key with an extended neck and rounded/decorative top. There are actually two kinds of keys that are known as skeleton keys. Old fashioned skeleton keys work with old fashioned warded locks – these are only really found now in older furniture, however due to how easily they can be picked, these hollow locks aren’t really used anymore. These locks take skeleton keys, barrelled, rounded shaft keys. The projections inside warded lock key holes blocks flat or incorrect keys from turning inside it, making it necessary for a key to be made that exactly matched the projections inside the lock.

     

    Master Keys

    These keys are also referred to as skeleton keys; these masters fit inside multiple locks within one facility, for example in hotels or schools. While many individual keys are fashioned to only open one door, the master key is able to open any door, including ones that some of the single-door keys can also open. Pin and tumbler style locks can be opened by multiple keys – the single key designated to that door, as well as a master key. This is made possible by situating a 3rd pin near the first two – that can be raised according to the dimensions of the key that would be used.

     

    Both these keys work according to mechanics – no electricity, codes, or programming is needed. The locksmith accomplishes the simple task of making a key that matches the mechanical aspects of the lock, whether the internal mechanisms are a series of tumbler, pins, or channels, or a old fashioned warded lock.

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