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Fast Keys Blog

Apr
11

Beware when buying used car remote keys on the internet.



    As the technology incorporated into vehicle keys has become increasingly complex in recent years, so has the cost of buying spares. Main dealers and garages invariably charge in excess of £250 to supply a programmed car remote key.

    People looking to save money will invariably search the web and they will find websites offering reconditioned remotes at a fraction of the price.

    The sellers of these products simply state that the buyer will have to do the following:-

    1. Find a locksmith that is suitably equipped.
    2. Replace and cut a new mechanical key.
    3. Reprogram the transponder and remote to the new vehicle.

    All very fine in theory and initially it may seem that there could be a potential saving of up to 50%, when compared to the cost of a remote key from a main dealer. However, buyers should beware of the following facts before acquiring a used/ reconditioned remote key:

    Problem 1. The large majority of Volkswagen and Audi keys will be “Locked” and the transponder chip cannot be re-written to another car. This is also true of Mercedes, BMW, BMW Mini, Seat, Skoda, Vauxhall, Fiat & Honda, as well as most Citroen, Renaults & Peugeots.

    Problem 2. Buying a remote key because it looks identical to the one you require.
    Peugeot, Citroen, VW & Audi all produce remote keys that can look identical, however, the internal components can vary enormously. In all cases for Citroen & Peugeot remotes need to be ordered using the vehicles V.I.N. plate ID to ensure you are supplied with the correct part for your car. The year and specification alone is not sufficient information.

    Problem 3. From our experience at Fast Key Services approximately 70% of used remotes cannot be programmed unless the transponder chip is replaced. This is another cost that will not have been factored into the price.

    When considering the potential pitfalls and the extra costs involved, most customers would be better off seeking the expert advice of a qualified locksmith before embarking on the internet. They would get a much more certain outcome rather than take their chances on the web. Fastkeys are extremely competitively priced compared to dealerships and in most cases will end up working out cheaper than buying the remote and finding someone that can carry the work out cost effectively.

    Please feel free to contact the FKS Trade Counter, should you require any additional information or advice prior to buying a used remote key.

    Email: tradecounter@fastkeys.co.uk Telephone: 01268-562592



Mar
28

Planned maintenance work - website will be down this weekend.

Tags: website


    We will be making some major software upgrades this coming weekend which will result in better functionality and will facilitate some major improvements in the weeks ahead.

    In order to implement these changes, the website will be down from 4pm on Friday 28th March until the evening of Sunday 30th March.



Mar
13

The Renault Three Button Key Card





Here at Fast Keys we have yet another addition to the ever increasing range of vehicle remotes that we can supply & programme at our trade counter in Wickford.


The Renault three button key card was introduced by Renault in 2003 to operate on Renault Scenic, Megane & Grand Scenic models and ran through until 2008 after which they reverted back to a more traditional mechanical remote key.


There is an emergency key blade incorporated into the key card which is located in the battery holder of an existing original key card. The key blade can be used to operate a mechanical key barrel discreetly hidden under a plastic key cab on the passenger door allowing access of the vehicle should the remote facility fail.


The good news for owners of these vehicles is we are able to supply and programme new key cards up to 40% cheaper than a main dealer and we will also complete all the work whilst you wait.




Mar
06

Home Security Guide





Most crimes are against property rather than people, we will outline a few tips on how you can make your home and valuables more secure. Many of the suggestions listed are common sense and if fully implemented will go a long way towards making your home and property more secure and potentially saving you the distress and expense of being the victim of a burglary.


The majority of crimes are opportunistic, spur of the moment events and can be the result of leaving a door or window open or having valuables left on view.


Firstly, let’s start to make life awkward for the burglar by taking these simple and cost effective precautions.


Many burglars are opportunistic and they often don’t even have to resort to using force, they simply let themselves in through an open window or door.


  • Take a look at your property from a burglars perspective.
  • Are there any unsecured windows or doors?
  • Are your window and door locks strong and secure enough?
  • Are there any places hidden from view where someone could attempt to break in?
  • Would they have to make a lot of noise to break in by attacking doors or breaking glass?

Windows


One in three burglars gain entry through a rear window. Window locks are an effective deterrent because they force the thief to break the glass and therefore risk drawing attention to himself.


If the window lock is visible, this will also further deter a criminal. There are many types of window locks available with keys for all kinds of windows and frames from your local locksmith. A qualified locksmith is best suited to advise you on the best lock to suit your requirements.


Fit window locks with keys to all vulnerable windows, in particular all ground floor and basement windows, all upstairs windows that are not visible from the street, all windows that can by accessed via drainpipes and gutters or via flat roofs. You should even consider small windows and skylights - bear in mind that a burglar can squeeze through any opening that is larger than a human head.


For UPVC windows, make sure you check with your window fitter before fitting locks as this may affect your warranty.


Remember not to leave your keys in locked windows and store them in a safe place. Consider getting a small key cabinet, these can be inexpensive and will have other benefits which we will touch on later in this series.


Louvre windows can be particularly vulnerable as burglars can remove window slats with ease. Glue the slats into the end plates and if you can find something suitable for Louvre windows, fit a locking device. Here again your local locksmith might be best placed to advise. Also, if you can - consider replacing louvre windows with fixed glass.


When replacing windows, consider using laminated glass as this is harder for burglars to penetrate. Also, think about fitting security grilles to openings that might be vulnerable to attack, such as basement windows that cannot be viewed from the road.


Doors


  • Make sure all your doors, front and back are secure.
  • Doors should be strong and in good condition and at least 44mm thick (2 inches).
  • Any glass panels located on or around doors can pose a risk to security and you should consider replacing them with laminated glass if necessary.
  • Make sure all doors are fitted with five lever mortise deadlocks and that you use them. They should be fitted about a third of the way up the door.
  • Insurance companies normally ask for locks to have a kite mark to British Standard BS3621.

The benefit of a deadlock is that it can only be opened with a key. So even if a burglar smashed a nearby glass panel to reach inside, he still wouldn’t be able to open the door. Also, if a thief gets in through a window, they won’t be able to carry your possessions out via your deadlocked door.


Letterboxes - do not leave spare keys hanging inside your letterbox as this is an obvious place that a burglar will explore. Thieves are very adept at fishing for keys through letterboxes using poles and magnets, so never leave keys visible anywhere near your front door. That includes your vehicle keys; locking security on modern cars is so strong now that it is virtually impossible to steal a vehicle without having the keys. Hence, would be car thieves have to resort to breaking into homes or fishing for keys through letterboxes. Here again, consider getting a small key cabinet to store your keys. Consider fitting a letterbox cage, this will prevent burglars from getting their hands or special tools inside in order to try the latches.


Exterior doors - Fit solid good quality bolts with strong screws to the top and bottom of exterior doors. For French doors, fit a mortise lock in conjunction with bolts top and bottom of the door.


For UPVC doors check with your installer to ensure that you are not invalidating your warranty before fitting locks and bolts. It is also worthwhile getting some expert advice from your local locksmith.


When buying UPVC or metal framed doors or windows, make sure they come pre-fitted with built-in locks.


Garages and Sheds


Garages and sheds should be kept locked and secure as they are often full of expensive tools and things such as ladders that the burglar could use to break into your home. If the garage has a door connecting it to the house, the burglar can easily try and gain entry via the inner door unobserved.


Make sure your shed has a good sturdy door with strong hinges and that it has a good quality hasp and staple fitted with a security padlock.


If possible make sure ladders are locked away in a garage or shed. If left outside, ladders should be chained up to a strong bracket and in a horizontal position. Check to see that there are no other objects outside that can be used as climbing tools to gain access to first floor windows.




Feb
19

Programming Blue 3 button remote keys





Ford Transmit Van Remote Key 2006-2012,
Programming Blue 3 button remote keys,
Ford Part Number: 6CIT 15K601 AG-1721051



The blue coloured remote key used on Ford transit vans is unique and differs in various ways from the standard black remote which is used on many Ford vehicles.



One major difference being, that the battery is boosted each time the key is turned in the ignition lock. As the battery is effectively self-charging, the remote casing is sealed in order to protect the circuit board and battery.



Depending on usage, the average life of a remote for these transit vans is around six years. Being sealed units, the batteries on the blue headed remote cases cannot be replaced; hence, when the battery eventually fails; the buttons will no longer operate the central locking system and your remote will need to be replaced and programmed using diagnostic equipment.



Some Ford owners will be aware of the procedure to synchronise a remote to the vehicle. This is done by turning the key in the ignition barrel to position two and then back to position 0 four times in six seconds; on the fourth and final turn a beep from the dashboard is the signal to press any button on the remote. Once this process is complete, the remote will be synchronised to the vehicle.



This procedure however does not apply to the blue remotes for Ford transit vans, as there is no manual process to synchronise the remote to the vehicle. This can only be completed by using specialised key programming equipment via the vehicles OBD (on board diagnostic) computer port. This operation simultaneously programs the vehicles transponder (engine immobiliser) chip and remote facility.




Feb
12

Double Function Euro Cylinders Explained



double function euro cylinders

According to various locksmith forums, recent years have shown a marked increase in the amount of people becoming locked out of their homes. Particularly those in new builds or homes that have been fitted with a UPVC door.


In line with new building regulations most new door installations use a facility on the Multipoint locking door mechanism known as split-spindle.


A split spindle system separates the inner and outer door handle. This means that, if you close the door from the outside; you will not be able to open the door using the outer door handle, unless you have a key. However, if you have left a key inserted in the lock on the inside of the door; you will be unable to open the door from the outside with another key.


A solution to this problem is to fit a Double Function Cylinder. These locks use a unique pick up cam which will allow the key to fully operate the cylinder even if another key is inserted on the internal side of the door. This also works, even if that internally located key is in the locked position.





Jan
16

Most Vehicle crime is preventable



Most Vehicle crime is preventable. It can take as little as 10 seconds for a thief to steal something from your car. Make sure you take extra measures to ensure your vehicles is as secure as possible. Don’t be a victim!

Here are our top 6 tips to prevent vehicle crime.


1. Never leave valuable items in your car, or on display in your car. This includes items such as sunglasses, satellite navigation units, in car stereo displays or even loose change

2. Wipe away the satellite navigation suction mark on your windscreen. If there is a mark on the screen then there is a chance a satellite navigation unit has been left in the glove box.

3. Fitting anti-tamper screws to your number plate will help to prevent vehicle cloning. Thieves can steal your number plate and put it on a identical vehicle to commit crimes.

4. Never leave your car keys where they can be seen from the front door. Thieves will try and reach (phish) them through your letter box.

5. Park with care, particularly at night or if you are leaving the vehicle for a long time. If possible park in a busy, well-lit area.

6. Always have a spare key.



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