How Much To Fix Getting My Car Out Of Anti Theft Mode

The cost to fix this problem would probably be the cost of a new key. You will simply need a new key if the system is not recognizing the old key and the anti theft system doesn’t shut off.

This is mostly because of a burned chip inside of the key. A new programmed key by an experienced locksmith will do the trick. And your car will run well as new once again. A new key also comes at a cost. You will highly likely have to pay about $250 or more in some cases.

If you go through the dealership, you will need to pay even more. Since they require a ton more money for simple services like these. And going through them for this issue is only in the worst cases. If nothing else helps to fix this problem. Also, an immobilizer bypass device is an option as well. These are fairly cheap but require some knowledge to set them up.

Use Key in Door

Another tip you can use to try to disable your anti-theft system is to use the key in the door. You want to make sure to use the driver side door and the physical key to having a chance of this working. Insert the key in the door lock all the way and then turn the key to unlock your car door, but don’t release it. You want to hold the key in the unlock position for twenty to thirty seconds. This lets the car recognize that you have the right key and will disengage and reset the system. If this doesn’t work, then you can try to turn the key back and forth in the lock a few times. Some cars will recognize the key this way if the key is being turned in the door lock cylinder. If using this method shuts the alarm off and disengages the anti-theft system, then you can try to start the car.


Do Anti-Theft Systems in General Affect car Batteries?

Thus far, we have already concluded that an anti-theft light won’t drain your battery. Yes, it will draw some power, but the amount consumed is so little that it wouldn’t make any difference. What about the entire anti-theft system?

Owning a car without an anti-theft system is quite risky especially in these modern times. Burglars are continuing to diverse newer and better ways of accessing vehicles without the owner’s keys.

And car owners need to stay ahead of the game by installing anti-theft systems to safeguard their investment.

Whether factory or aftermarket, car alarm systems rely on battery power to do their job. And when in standby mode, the alarm can’t easily drain the battery even if the battery isn’t charged in weeks.

However, if an alarm is triggered, it can drain the battery in days or after a couple of hours depending on how good your battery is.

Triggered alarm systems are designed to go on and off after a couple of minutes. And this increases the amount of power it consumes from the battery.

Also, if you have instructed your alarm to activate all features such as flashing lights and sirens, it will use up more power and your battery can be drained faster.

You need to understand the different ways these two consume battery power. The anti-theft light won’t drain your battery. But, if you leave the car alarm to go off for long, it can drain the battery.

Can Resetting the Anti-Theft System Help Prevent It from Draining a Car Battery?

Because it’s not the cause, then even if you reset it, nothing will change. Anyway, if you want to learn how to reset an anti-theft system, here is how to go about it.

Ensure that the battery is fully charged, put the key in the ignition, and turn it on but do not crank the engine. Give it some 10 minutes and then remove the key.

Wait for another 10 seconds and put the key back in and switch to on. Repeat this process thrice, your anti-theft light will go off and you will have successfully reset the alarm system.

Problems With the Anti-Theft System

Occasionally, you can experience problems with PATS which cause the alarm to go off and prevent you from starting your truck. Sometimes, a loud bang such as a firework or thunderclap can set off the alarm. Even somebody accidentally bumping into your truck can trigger the system.

If the battery in your transponder key is getting low, the alarm can start to go off randomly. If that happens, try using your spare coded key. If the problem stops, you know that you need to replace the battery in your primary key fob. 

You should avoid carrying large metal objects, electronic devices, or a second coded key on the same keyring as your main key as they can cause issues when starting your truck. Be sure not to allow these types of items to touch the programmed key while you start your engine. While they won’t damage the coded transponder, they could cause a temporary issue. If you have a problem, turn off the ignition, remove all items on your keyring away from the programmed key and try starting the engine again.


Hello & Welcome to Driving & Style. My name is Dennis Wren, founder of this blog & I live in Albany, Georgia. is a dedicated resource for Driving, Drivers & Car owners with all about Car care & other Vehicle info, guide, tips, and accessories recommendations & reviews. We aim to cover a range of topics & resources in the car industries, we hope you’ll find them useful!

The Car Alarm Vs. The Anti-Theft System

While technically the car alarm is an “anti-theft” system – it’s not what we’re talking about here.

 Car alarms might be loud and useful for scaring off burglars, but they work better to prevent the theft of the things inside of the card than the car itself. In fact, even if the car alarm is going off, you can still get it started, provided you have the proper key, and the electronic immobilizer anti-theft system is working correctly.

Meanwhile, the immobilizing anti-theft system won’t make a sound, but it will keep a potential thief from taking off with your car. On the flip side, the system tends to act up, so it can keep you from getting the engine started.

Troubleshooting a Faulty Anti-Theft System

Just like every component in your vehicle – if it works now, at some point it can break; the same applies to an anti-theft system. While anti-theft systems are pretty reliable – occasionally they’ll act up, and it’s important to know what to do if something like that happens to you. 

How to Identify a Fault Anti-Theft System

Before diving into the anti-theft system to figure out what’s wrong, you need to verify if what exactly is the problem! 

If your anti-theft system is acting up, you won’t be able to start your car. Furthermore, you’ll notice a light with either a lock or a key on your dashboard (depending on what you drive). This is your security/anti-theft light. Sometimes your vehicle’s ECU will illuminate this light in conjunction with your check engine light.

This light can appear l even if the key is the problem – since it’s not picking up the transponder code. It will turn on when you try to start the car – even if everything in the system is working correctly!

Always Start with The Battery

Whenever you’re troubleshooting an electrical problem, start with the battery. Your vehicle might trigger the security light because the receiver isn’t getting enough power – and that is also probably why your car won’t start.

Bad or dead batteries are one of the most common reasons for a “faulty anti-theft system.” They’re also one of the most manageable problems to fix, but also one of the most overlooked. You can spend days chasing your tail if you don’t start with the simple things!

Reset the System

If you’ve checked the battery and everything looks normal, the next thing you should do is reset the system. This might sound hard, but it’s actually one of the easiest things you can do.

All you need to do is disconnect the positive terminal from the battery and leave it off for about 15 minutes before reconnecting. This resets your entire vehicle’s electronic components – including your anti-theft system.

This might not seem like it’ll do much, but if your vehicle’s anti-theft immobilizer does get tripped, sometimes it won’t reset unless you reset the entire system.

Check if the Steering Wheel is Locked

If you’re inside the car and can’t get the key to turn at all – it might be because the steering wheel is locked. Typically, this happens after the steering wheel, someone or something slightly turned the wheel after the key was out of the ignition.

This problem is more annoying than anything else and is relatively easy to fix – even if it does take a bit of persistence. 

All you need to do is wiggle the steering wheel around a bit until it loosens up. You’ll feel the noticeable difference. Sometimes you might need to turn the key in the ignition while trying to turn the wheel to get it to loosen up.

Take a Closer Look at Your Key

It’s the easiest component to see and the easiest to check for glaring defects. Each key has a transponder – and if that transponder is broken or missing, you won’t be able to start your car.

If you see anything wrong with the key, you’ve likely found your problem. If you have a spare key, this is extremely easy to check. 

Simply try starting the vehicle with a spare key after you’ve reset the system. If it starts, you’ve found the problem!

You’ll need to replace the key – as most manufacturers won’t fix just the transponder chip.

Read the Code!

If you’ve completed the previous steps and yet you still struggle with the anti-theft system, it’s time to read the code. 

Just like a check engine light, a code reader will tell you why the light is on. It might be that the receiver isn’t getting a signal from the key, or it might be that your receiver isn’t getting any power.

A code reader won’t tell you what you need to replace – but it’ll point you in the right direction.

Troubleshoot and Replace the Highlighted Component

This is where things get a little more complicated – since there are tons of different codes, there are tons of troubleshooting trees you could follow.

But when troubleshooting, keep the basics in mind. If you know how the system is supposed to work, you can’t reason out why it’s not working based on the code’s data. If the receiver isn’t getting a signal, it’s one of two problems – the receiver or the transponder.

Either way, you’ll need to get a key to match the new receiver – so you might as well save a little time and replace both components.

However, if a lack of power is your issue, you’ll need to dive into your electrical troubleshooting – or take it to a mechanic.

What is an Anti-Theft System?

Modern cars all come with some form of the anti-theft system – but the one that will keep your vehicle from starting is the electronic immobilizer anti-theft system. 

Several countries mandated that manufacturers installed immobilizers on all new vehicles in 1998 – and since then, they’ve become standard on just about every vehicle.

The Economic Journal reports that they have reduced car thefts by 40 percent since 1995. Nowadays, they are so common that every new car in the United States has them.

Conclusion On How Do I Get My Car Out Of Anti Theft Mode?

So, to sum things up real quick. We strongly hope that we answered the question of how do I get my car out of anti theft mode? We learned a lot about the safety systems that are installed in our vehicles. And what you could expect the car to react if the anti theft system is on.

Then we learned how do I get my car out of anti theft mode? We covered all the ways that you can use to pull this off. But you will likely need to get a new battery for your key. Or a new programmed key for your car.


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