How do Locksmiths Open Locked Vehicles?

Finding yourself locked out of your car or misplacing your keys can be incredibly frustrating. In such an event, the best course of action is to get in touch with a professional auto locksmith.

Depending on your car make, there are several ways a locksmith can unlock it. Below, we have run through a few of the many ways auto locksmiths open locked vehicles, to provide you with an insight into what our team do.

Car Key Reprogramming

car key reprogamming

If you have ever wondered how do locksmiths open locked cars that feature a keyless entry system, then the answer is quite straightforward. Reopening such a vehicle simply involves the locksmith reprogramming the locking system to once again work with the relevant keys.

This process involves inserting a blank chip that has been reprogrammed to work with the vehicle into the responder or fob. A locksmith will typically carry an extensive range of manufacturer and dealership pin codes with them on call, allowing them to reprogram and access the majority of vehicles on the roadside.

However, some vehicles do require a login code or may not even allow for the key to be cloned, which will require the use of a diagnostic machine and the locksmith returning to their workshop.

Key Analyser and Code Key Cutter

Similar to reprogramming, a key analyser is also designed for vehicles with keyless entry systems and works by determining the electrical resistance of the lock. Once the vehicle is open, a mechanical code key cutter can be used to allow for the creation of a new key or fob. 

Immobiliser Reflashing

An immobiliser is a security device designed to prevent the vehicle from starting without the correct key or fob. However, if there is an issue with your immobiliser device, an experienced locksmith will have the know-how and tools to resolve the issue and get you back in your car.

The process works by programming the vehicle immobiliser with a special file to return the device to its original factory settings. The vehicle is then ‘reflashed’, allowing it to accept new keys, which the locksmith can create to reopen the doors. 

Car Lockpicking Tools 

One of the more traditional ways auto locksmiths open locked vehicles, lockpicking can end up damaging the car or van if not carried out by a professional.

However, advanced lockpicking tools, typically known as Lishi tools, are still used for certain vehicles. These tools work by picking the wafer in the lock to reopen the door. The information gathered from the wafer also allows for a replacement key to be made with typical ease – ensuring that any lost or damaged keys can quickly be replaced.

Long-reach Tools 

Typically used for older vehicles with an unlock button by the inner panels, long-reach tools allow for the door to be reopened from the inside.

First, a wedge will be used to create an opening, typically between the top of the window where the glass meets the weather stripping or between the door and the door frame, to create a slight opening. The long-reach tool can then pass through the space created and press down on or lift the button to unlock the vehicle’s doors.

Broken Key Extractor

Being unable to open your vehicle due to having snapped the key in the lock can be incredibly annoying. To help resolve this issue, an auto locksmith will use a broken key extractor to remove the damaged pieces from within the lock.

A broken key extractor works by being placed alongside the biting of the broken key and catching on to the teeth before twisting to allow it to slide out with the extractor. Once dislodged, the locksmith will then use the broken pieces to create a replacement key and reopen the vehicle. 

Ways in which Locksmiths Open Car Doors: Final Thoughts

Getting locked out of your vehicle can be frustrating, though it is a far from uncommon experience. If you find yourself unable to access your car or van, we always recommend you contact a professional locksmith, such as ourselves, to save time and avoid damaging your vehicle.

We hope our guide to how locksmiths open locked vehicles has provided you with a clearer understanding of the many methods for accessing vehicles we use. If you end up locked out of your car and require assistance, you can always rely on We’ve Got The Key to help you regain access.


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