1-800-UNLOCKS Blog

I Locked My Keys In My Car, Can a Locksmith Help Me?


Locked out of car with car keys in ignition.

Our automotive locksmiths can easily unlock your car without damage.

If you have never locked your keys in your car, chances are one day you will. We’ve all done it. One day you might get distracted, look away for a moment, and your car door shuts and locks behind you. You will pull on the handle, but the door will not open. You will check your pockets, and will not find your keys. At that precise moment, you realize you are locked out.

You will frantically start looking through the vehicle windows. First, you will scan the front seat, then the back seat. Then you will look down at the floorboards, and finally, you will spot them. Less than a foot away, you see your keys dangling from the ignition. You would love to grab them and go, except there is a pane of glass and a locked door separating you from them.

I Locked My Keys in My Car, What Do I Do Now?

If your keys are locked in your car, this is the perfect time to call your local car locksmith who opens cars and trucks. One of the many duties of a locksmith company is rendering emergency roadside assistance to stranded motorists.

Having an auto locksmith’s phone number on speed dial, will save you time and the hassle of searching for assistance. Whether your keys are locked in your vehicle, lost, broken, stolen, or in your trunk, most locksmith businesses will promptly assist you 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

How Fast Can a Locksmith Open My Vehicle?

The best answer we can provide is, “That Depends.” Over the years, all car and truck manufacturers continue upgrading their vehicles, making it extremely difficult to gain quick entry without a key, a fob, or a remote. It is not impossible to get in, but rather caution must be used, so the vehicle does not get scratched, dented, or damaged when attempting to gain entry.

As for unlocking older model vehicles, without your key, fob, or remote, it is relatively quicker, provided the locksmith has the proper tools, extensive training, and years of experience. Please note, though, older cars and trucks still require using the same amount of caution when unlocking the vehicle. They, too, can get damaged or a vehicle’s window shatters because the wrong tool got used.

Will a Slim Jim Open My Car?

do not use a reach tool in your car

We do not recommend using reach tools without training. It can cause more damage than it’s worth.

Again, it all depends. The practice of using a Slim Jim or flat bar was prevalent many years ago. However, newer and newer cars cannot be unlocked using this primitive car opening tool. Consideration for the year, make, and model of your vehicle and any potential risk of damage to the car is a must.

That tool, by its design, can do extensive damage inside a newer car’s door where there is internal wiring, door sensors, and side-impact airbags mounted to the driver and passenger doors. That is why we highly recommend not using this tool due to the potential risk and damage it can do to your vehicle.

Do All Locksmiths Have Experience Opening Cars and Trucks?

Not all locksmiths have car or truck opening experience. Some locksmith companies do not offer any services for cars and trucks. Their business focuses primarily on other areas of locksmithing, i.e., residential, commercial, safe and vault or institutional locksmithing.

For that reason, when you call for car unlocking services, you will need to ask the owner or technician of the locksmith business if they have experience unlocking vehicles. If they do not, then ask them to refer you to a professional automotive locksmith they would recommend.

Will My Car Insurance Cover the Cost of Using a Locksmith?

To the best of our knowledge, if a customer has roadside assistance coverage through their insurance company, for their vehicle, you must call the 800 number on your insurance card or policy for further details and instructions before calling a locksmith for assistance. Should you need to call a local locksmith to unlock your vehicle, but are required to pay for the service, we have one recommendation.

When your vehicle gets opened, ask the locksmith for a written receipt that you can submit to your insurance company at a later date for reimbursement consideration. We cannot guarantee you will get a refund, but if you are eligible, then having a written receipt showing you paid for services is what your insurance company will require from you.

If I Lost My Car Keys Do I Have to Go to the Dealership?

handing car keys back to the owner

When you need your car unlocked or new car keys programmed, call a verified local locksmith first.

If you’ve lost your car keys and have a newer car, you may have to go to the dealership. More modern vehicle’s lock and key systems are set up where the owner of the car can only obtain a new or replacement key from an authorized new car dealership. Fortunately, many vehicles do not have that restriction. So, you can use a local locksmith to replace your car key. To learn more, call local locksmith companies in your area about the year, make, and model of your car.

Ask them if they make or can duplicate keys for your type of vehicle. If they have, ask them if they have the key blanks in stock, or do they need to order them. Furthermore, ask them if they have the equipment to program your vehicle’s fobs or remotes. If they do, they will also have the necessary battery replacements for these units and will replace them while you wait.

How to Find a Locksmith

Getting locked out of your vehicle takes everyone by surprise. We never think it will ever happen to us until it does. When it does, come here to 1-800-Unlocks for a quick search for a locksmith near you for prompt service. Or, before that day arrives, go ahead and call around to your local locksmiths and ask them about their roadside assistance help. Then save their number to your cell phone and keep them on speed dial. You never know, one day you just might get the chance to rescue a friend or relative when they get locked out.

Sam Wilson
Author: Sam Wilson

I am a licensed locksmith and the owner of 1-800-Unlocks. The goal of our locksmith directory is to provide a safe place for customers to find a local legitimate locksmith and avoid the pitfalls of being a victim of scamming locksmiths.


  1. I lost my keys an car is locked. Do you come to Ware Ma? Will need a new key for 2013 CRV. Can you replace it on sight? What would the charge be?
    Deb Polleys

    1. Hello Deb, so sorry to hear you’re locked out of your car. Yes, a local locksmith can definitely come to you and open your car without damage. I would recommend this compapny, as they are the nearest locksmith in your area. Feel free to scroll down to their local phone number and give them a call. https://1800unlocks.com/locksmith/massachusetts/amherst/amherst-lockworks/

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