There’s perhaps no greater source of frustration and annoyance than losing your car key. It’s the ultimate trigger for what must look like a strange, frantic dance from the outside; a pocket-emptying, couch cushion-flipping, and garbage bag-rummaging panic that can last hours or even days.

When your keys go missing, there are some steps you should take to track them down. First, try to remain calm and retrace your steps. It’s easy to miss things in the midst of a panic, so double-checking everything can help you find your lost car key. Be sure to check all the places you’re used to keeping them, such as your purse or backpack and any other pockets you might have used. Feeling around zippered areas is also helpful, as are the small compartments in a backpack or purse.

Using a smart key finder is another great option for finding lost car keys, especially if you’re driving a newer model vehicle that requires an electronic fob to operate it. These devices will use your smartphone to help you locate your keys and can be a big help when it comes time to get a replacement car key.

You’ll likely need to go to the dealership in order to get a replacement car key if you don’t have a spare, but this can be expensive. If you’re looking for ways to save on replacing a lost car key, consider going straight to a locksmith instead of the dealer. They can typically make you a blank, generic key for much less than what it would cost to get one from the locksmith


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