Key fob cars have become part of our modern life in the 21st century. We are living in a world where every one of us is searching for comfort and convenience. We are ready to adopt any piece of technology that will enable us to live a better life. To tell the truth it’s hard to talk about the drawbacks of having this technology when we know how it works for our benefit.
The truth is that keyless technology is not perfect. You should be ready for the potential downsides of this system. Manufacturers offer various solutions, but the latest statistics showed that it is not enough. they need to do more in the future to improve it. The most severe issue is safety. We live in a dangerous world, where the number one priority is creating a safe environment. It is necessary to feel secure in any situation. Is it the same for you? Before you answer this question, learn more about modern automobiles.
So, let’s take a closer look at smart key cars, how they function, and what are the advantages and disadvantages of owning them. Keep on reading to learn more.
What are key fob cars?
Keyless systems first appeared in America in the early 2000s. Firstly it was a feature of luxury models but later it became the feature of most popular vehicles. First, let’s define that it is an electronic authorization of an entry. The small transponder takes over the functions of the traditional key. It has an RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chip inside. The vehicle and the key send these unique, encrypted signals to each other and lock and unlock the automobile.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) express their concerns related to those cars. They talk about the carelessness of the drivers who leave their automobiles in the park and forget to shut off the engine. This can be a great danger to the environment. The subject of concern is also drivers who do not know shutting down the engine of their vehicle in the event of an on-road emergency.
Are all keyless ignition systems the same? No, they vary according to models. There are push buttons, which are the most common, but there are also rocker-type and rotary switches. In addition to that, there are differences in alerts. So if you want to have detailed information about those details, read your owner manuals where you can find everything you need to know.
Which automobiles have this technology?
Key fob cars have become standard in today’s world. It’s usual even for the least expensive economy models. Every manufacturer names key fobs in their unique way. According to McGuire Lock & Safe their names are as follows:
- Audi – Advanced Key
- BMW – Comfort Access
- Chrysler Group – Keyless Enter-N-Go
- General Motors – Passive Entry Passive Start (PEPS)
- Infiniti – Infiniti Intelligent Key
- Mercedes Benz – Keyless Go
- Mitsubishi – Free-Hand Advanced Security Transmitter (FAST)
- Suzuki – SmartPass
This is not a full list of manufacturers. The point is that they all serve the same functions. We are talking about their secret functions in the following paragraphs. Before we do that, let’s see what happens in case of losing them.
Smart key cars – Problems
The most common problems and challenges are related to key fobs. There are several possible variations, you may lose it, break it or come across battery-related issues.
When you lose it, it’s unavoidable to buy a new one. According to consumer reports automotive analyst Mel Yu, the cost of replacement ranges from $50 to as high as $400 depending on the brand. Additional expenses are related to programming. When you buy a new one, don’t expect that it starts working on your automobile. You will need to program it.
There are two options, do it yourself or address professionals to help you. First, check your owner’s manual, and search for the section which lets you know if your key is self-programmable. If it is so, all you need to do is to follow instructions patiently, it can be a time-consuming process. On the other hand, you may need professionals to help you, call your local locksmith or dealership. At a dealership, you get a high level of security, they do not program it until you prove ownership of your automobile. The security is guaranteed since thieves can’t write down your VIN (vehicle identification number), so they do not program a new fob for your automobile.
Another challenge you may come across is battery depletion. Manufacturers make it easy for you to change it. It just takes 2 minutes, whether you do it yourself, you need only a screwdriver. Just look through the manual or Youtube videos. You can ask the dealership to do that for you. The cost of batteries is reasonably low, only $10 or less.
Key fob cars can do more than you can think
As it seems, this little piece of advanced technology – A key fob is for more than just unlocking your auto. Are you ready to know its magical capabilities? I’m sure you are. According to Reader’s Digest, there are several secret uses of that key you may not know. Let’s review some of them.
Lowering your windows. As it seems this function is available for most automobiles. Just need to press the unlock button, release it, and then press it again. Ready. Get a breath of fresh air!
Fold your mirrors. It can be extremely comfortable when you have to park your auto in a tight space. It is a stressful experience, so folding your mirrors effortlessly is a great help. All you need to do is press the lock button for several seconds.
Open your trunk. Let’s agree on that, it is one of the most convenient features. Just pressing the button is enough. You do not need any effort, remember, how to open it with a traditional key?
Starting your automobile. Yes, starting and stopping your engine remotely is possible. Just make sure that you have the fob near you.
Regulate seats. You may find it frustrating when you share an automobile with a person who is taller or shorter than you. So, you both need to adjust seats according to your will. With the help of advanced technology, GMC produces some models which can remember how you adjust your seat.
Feel safe at home. Believe it or not, it can decrease the chance of a break in. How? Just put the fob at your nightstand, if you hear a noise at night, just click the panic button. Criminals feel danger and run away. That is a good trick to stay safe at home.
What disadvantages should I expect?
Smart key cars are extremely beneficial at any rate. Owning such an automobile is associated with comfort and convenience. However, manufacturers have trouble solving safety challenges you may encounter. I mean, those autos are vulnerable to theft. Stealing a keyless automobile has become a common crime today. All crooks need is a device available on any online market. This is a special tool, namely a signal booster. The automobiles are stolen using signal boosting technology to relay the key fob signal from outside the owner’s house. Moreover, it doesn’t matter where you are, criminals can snatch your auto effortlessly in several minutes.
Most manufacturers are still struggling to solve that problem, some of them just ignore it. That is a reason for the high crime rate. Owners are offered various solutions to avoid such situations.
How to fight against auto crime?
I bet you’ve heard the advice a million times, but the first thing you can do is use your common sense, park your automobile in protected areas and do not put your key near the door or windows.
Everything comes down to protecting your key fob because it is a subject of attack. So, the main goal is to block electromagnetic fields. For this purpose owners purchase faraday pouches or special wallets to block signals. Some people use strange methods, such as storing the key in a microwave. Adding an alarm system is another common practice.
Do you want to know what is the latest tool that solves the security issues of key fob cars once and forever? If you want, I have good news. In the following paragraph, I am going to tell you about it.
A Secure FOB
An innovative DIY chip is designed to guarantee flawless security. This is a great tool against signal extenders. How does it work? It covers the battery from both sides and with a motion sensor detects to turn the fob on/off. It deactivates the key fob after 3 minutes of being motionless. It consists of a 3D motion sensor, LED indicator, microprocessor, and flexible base.
What’s so special about it? This chip is not only a great protection solution but also allows you to enjoy the additional benefits. It can extend battery life, so you no longer face this problem very often. Apart from this, the tool is user-friendly, which indicates that it can be installed in less than 20 minutes and you do not need soldering or cutting cables.
So, you already know as much as possible about smart key cars. It’s normal if you want to enjoy all the benefits it offers. However, it will also be a good idea to realize that this technology is not perfect in terms of safety. Investing in safety tools is an asset. It depends on your choice, choose the one that ensures guaranteed protection. It’s the best way to enjoy your late-model automobile fully and take control of everything at the same time.