To make duplicate car keys, take the original key to a local hardware store to have the key laser cut and duplicated, order a replacement key from the manufacturer or dealer or contact a roadside assistance or key making company to custom duplicate car keys. Duplicate keys must be processed or crafted by professional key makers.
- Determine the key type
Look up the key type in the vehicle's owner manual to determine if it is a basic key without security features, a fob with automatic keyless entry or a laser cut or switchblade key. Since the 1990s, manufacturers have begun crafting keys with security enhanced features, chips and remote components that make duplicating a key much more challenging for consumers. Therefore, depending on the type of key, a replacement may need to be ordered versus duplicating an existing key.
- Visit a hardware store
To duplicate a key without any security chips or features, take the key to a local hardware store to have it cut to match the existing key. The hardware specialist makes a duplicate by matching the key type to a generic key and cutting the specifications with machinery designed to craft car keys.
- Purchase a duplicate from the manufacturer
To duplicate car keys with advanced technology or security chips, request a duplicate at a car dealership or order a duplicate from the manufacturer. Consumers can place key orders online by entering the vehicle identification number and proof of ownership. In addition, a phone call to the manufacturer provides information on how to have a key shipped or picked up after it is duplicated.