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Old 2nd January 2013, 17:40   #16
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
.

Do these smart keys carry any additional circuitry apart from RF transmitters and immobilizer code chips? Assuming they should, how much more prone to failure are these smart keys?

What happens if I drop the smart key some N number of times, will I be able to start/unlock the car if that particular equipment fails inside?
These smart keys have one additional component : LF receiver.
when the door handle switch for unlock is pressed, the LF antennae in the vehicle broadcasts an authentication request. The smart key, receives this broadcast signal, via the LF receiver, and replies back to the authentication request of the vehicle. Only if the Smart key has been paired with the vehicle (this pairing is done at the vehicle factory), the door unlock is perfomed by the vehicle. Similarly the lock happens on a lock request.

Similar to normal remote keys, smart keys are also subject to various mechanical stress tests. so you be assured about the structural strength.

However, if the damage to the key is severe, you cannot perform the smart lock / unlock. This is the reason, why the smart key also has a mechanical key blade. If all else fails, you can unlock the doors using the key blade.
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Old 2nd January 2013, 22:04   #17
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

Is it not RFID that is used in the smart keys? If that is so, in simple words, unless you hammer the key to bits, the smart key will still work. Same with my iCats immobiliser. It is the size of a micro sim, and is resistant to falls, and other general damage. Of course nothing is indestructible if one has the will to destruct something.
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Old 2nd January 2013, 22:22   #18
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

The key of my A-Star Zxi is defenitely durable. It has been dropped numerous times and has gone through a full wash cycle in the washing machine not once or twice but FOUR times. Beat that.
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Old 3rd January 2013, 11:00   #19
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

^^ The nippon remotes are waterproof. I have tested that
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Old 6th January 2013, 20:37   #20
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

I got the Cobra security system from Hyundai installed on my Zen. The remote connects to the key chain via a rubber tube, and this tube has become brittle and has cut in both the remotes.

Apparently this is a common problem with Hyundai Cobra system, a neighbour of mine who has Hyundai Santro reported the same issue. So, I carry the car keys and the remote lock separatley; as a result it tends to fall off from my hand quite frequently (usually in the car park), and touchwood - no issues so far.
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Old 7th January 2013, 00:22   #21
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

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Originally Posted by sgiitk View Post
I have also heard about Toyota keys failing fast. What I did also hear was that they were giving two or three keys with the remote. Maybe they know what is up! Another recall of keys!?
Mine (Corolla key) gave up after about 6 years. Replacement was expensive (13-14K) and took for ever. Not sure if we get 2-3 keys with remote. WE got 1 integrated key with the remote and 2 other manual keys. The integrated key went bad (all the covering started to come off over a period of time) and had to be ordered again.

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Old 7th January 2013, 14:56   #22
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

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Originally Posted by vasanthn21 View Post
I got the Cobra security system from Hyundai installed on my Zen. The remote connects to the key chain via a rubber tube, and this tube has become brittle and has cut in both the remotes.
This is what I meant:

How durable are the remote keys of our cars?-imag0995.jpg
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Old 7th January 2013, 15:01   #23
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

You can buy the Cobra rubber from Autocop (who make the systems for Hyundai) for about Rs.100 each. I bought it twice.
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Old 7th January 2013, 17:56   #24
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

hey Folks, let me give you two set of perspectives. First as a user and 2nd as a H/W designer by profession with some understanding of what kind of reliability testing various devices undergo.

As a user I have a autocop system on my 8 yr old Ikon. Its a small dongle on the keychain. Over the years it has seen numerous falls and eventually the plastic casing hardened with age and is all cracked and broken off in parts exposing the PCB (printed circuit board) inside but it works just fine and is very reliable. I do once in a while open it up and clean the PCB of all the dust and grime but other than that no issues with mechanical switches or the electronic components. My 2nd car Figo has the same key that is shown in the beginning of this thread and has seen bunch of falls as well. Again no issues but its less than a yr old. Build quality being a OEM item is definitely miles ahead of after market autocop on my other car.

Now coming to the more technical aspects and keeping it short and simple . What exactly are the modes of failure on a PCB with shock that results from a drop or other mechanisms. Majority of them are to do with SJR (solder joint reliability). In lay man terms the components soldered onto the PCB develop really small micro cracks which essentially break electrical contact and result in non-functional unit or malfunctioning one. Another issue can be at times the shock rips off the copper etched on the PCB breaking the pad from the connecting traces again resulting in electrical contact broken.

Each industry like Auto/Aerospace/CE/PC/MObile has its own standards for reliability and shock testing resulting in different PCB technologies and assembly and solder material selection that will meet those shock and drop criterias. This basically will define how reliable your product is. So in a nutshell likelihood that an OEM follows all of these standards with there products is higher than an after market autocop kind of systems but then its still not guaranteed.
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Old 8th January 2013, 21:29   #25
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

I can vouch for the quality of remote key fobs provided by GM (its an Autocop make)
My wife drop tested it from a 7 storey building, got up with a small scratch and its still working perfectly.
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Old 16th January 2013, 19:32   #26
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

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Originally Posted by supertinu View Post
Majority of them are to do with SJR (solder joint reliability). In lay man terms the components soldered onto the PCB develop really small micro cracks which essentially break electrical contact and result in non-functional unit or malfunctioning one. Another issue can be at times the shock rips off the copper etched on the PCB breaking the pad from the connecting traces again resulting in electrical contact broken.
.

Million thanks man!

After four years, both remotes of my SX4 were acting up. So I had switched to valet mode permanently. When I opened up and did some cleaning, they used to work perfectly. Again they used to fail in some time. I checked the switches and they were fine. Then I saw this post of yours and I pressed the crystal oscillator. The remote worked perfectly. As I was used to soldering, I melted the solder and left it to harden. Did it to all the contacts of the oscillator. The remote works like a charm now! Same for the other remote too. Another problem is that in the car, the remote keeps slamming against the dash when the car moves on potholes. That is the next problem I need to solve.
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Old 20th February 2013, 11:40   #27
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

A different view on durability(battery life)
The battery life of your remote key may go up to years. However keep on swapping the keys once in every 6 months. This will help to extend the battery life. Also please save the remote key tag number which help you to get a new set of keys from the ASC in case you lost it.
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Old 30th March 2013, 10:51   #28
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

Guys, I am in a fix. My city's keys broke inside the washing machine. The whole thing has come apart. Tried putting it back and started the car, car started but turned off immediately. I think the chip inside the key got screwed too. Being the 's' model, the second key is a normal key without the remote. We are using the duplicate for now. How does one go about a key replacement ? And the approximate costs for a new key ?
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Old 31st March 2013, 09:23   #29
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Default Re: How durable are the remote keys of our cars?

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Originally Posted by promit View Post
Guys, I am in a fix. My city's keys broke inside the washing machine. The whole thing has come apart. Tried putting it back and started the car, car started but turned off immediately. I think the chip inside the key got screwed too. Being the 's' model, the second key is a normal key without the remote. We are using the duplicate for now. How does one go about a key replacement ? And the approximate costs for a new key ?
Tough luck mate. :-/
Your best bet would be to buy a new remote key from A.S.S. It can cost anywhere between 2000 to 7000 rupees; not sure of prices for the City.

There are also outside shops that make keys for almost all cars with OEM casings, but I don't know any in NCR. Why don't you check the directory listings to see whether there's one in your city?
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Old 31st March 2013, 12:42   #30
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I would like to share my experiance here. Some days back i accidentally dropped my i20's flip key and it broke. The metal part and the plastic key-fob came apart. Then when i tried to start the car with just the metal part, it would not start without the plastic key-fob. I somehow managed to attach the metal and the keyfob with a rubber-band and the car started.

Hyundai after sales is asking 2000 for the replacement key so i'm using the 2nd key for now. Will have to shell out 4000 when this one breaks too :(
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