How much does it cost to program a key automotive?


You want to install a key and how much does it cost to program a key. In fact, the cost for key installation in each area will be different and depends on many different factors. Follow Eurocartool’s analysis in the article below to have the right estimated budget!

How much does it cost to program a key on the market?

How much does it cost to program a key will depend on the type of lock you want to make. Because depending on the type, locksmiths will have different installation and key making processes. Specifically, it is divided into categories including:

  • Traditional mechanical key: This is the same type of key as other normal keys, making a new key is very simple. But the security is not high. They are often used on older car models and only cost about $10-$12 to rebuild.
  • Remote control key: Vehicles manufactured after 1996 are equipped with this type of lock, which allows users to open the car door and many other functions from a fixed distance. To install the key, the technician needs to read the code in the control box and install it on the new key. Because this step is quite complicated, it will cost about 200-250 USD.
  • Switchblade key: A type of smart key that contains part of the key designed to fold into the keychain when not in use, the other part is a FOB key with remote control features. Replacement costs are usually between $100-200
  • Smart key: The most popular type of key today when operating based on proximity sensors to unlock car doors and start without a key. Installing a new key is usually expensive, ranging from 200-300 USD


Factors affecting car key replacement

The average cost of making a key will range from 50-500 USD depending on many other influencing factors such as the type of lock, your area, the service cost of the locksmith,… Specifically.

  • Functions on the key: Each car company designs its key with different available features. Therefore, it also has a big impact on the price when making keys.
  • Your region: Each region and country will have different prices for key making.
  • Time of day: If you want to install the key immediately in a short period of time or do it outside of office hours, you will likely have to pay a higher price than usual.
  • Number of keys you want to make: The cost of making keys will increase according to the number of keys you want to install.

Where can you install the key?

Locksmith: Depending on the area and the service cost of the locksmith you want to appoint, prices will vary. However, choosing a locksmith at a repair workshop will cost less than a locksmith at a dealership but the quality is still guaranteed.

  • Auto insurance providers: Insurance providers can also help you install your keys in case of loss or damage. The cost you pay will depend on the terms and conditions of the insurance you purchase.
  • Franchise agent: This is the surest and safest option. Dealers have the right to directly install the key for you. However, you have to spend a large budget along with many related documents to complete identity verification and authorization.
  • Install the key yourself: You are the car owner but are completely capable of installing the key through smart key installation tools. Through these devices, you will be authorized as an agent and install keys easily and at a much lower cost.

How much does it cost to program a key depends on how you do it, you can use technical support services or professional equipment.

Can specialized software be used to perform key programming?

By relearning the key, you can use specialized software and equipment to conduct programming. Depending on the car model you use, you can prepare different software and equipment.

For VAG vehicles, you need to use Odis software or VCDS software, diagnostic tools, online login account (Audi login online, Volkswagen login online, Skoka login online,…). Depending on the vehicle model, you can choose the corresponding accounts.


With GM vehicles, you can use Techline software, GM online login (to use SPS 2 function), connection devices (MDI, MDI2, Autel, VCM 2, VCX SE,…). If you already have enough software and equipment, you can refer to the article Instructions For GM Key Programming With SPS2 (Techline) on our website.
If you want to know details about programming with other car models, you can contact us for the most detailed advice.


In addition to using software, you can also use specialized devices to make keys for existing car models on the market today such as Autel IM608, XTOOL X100, Launch X431,…

In general, how much does it cost to program a key will depend on many different factors or you can even do it yourself to save maximum costs. However, the implementation process requires guidance from experienced locksmiths to minimize errors that occur during the implementation process. If you need support or learn about programming devices, please contact WhatsApp: +13155472355 to receive direct support from Eurocartool experts.


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