r/LifeProTips Sep 15 '22 Helpful 1

LPT: Most cars with push button start rely on the key fob with a working battery. So always keep a spare in the car! Traveling

EDIT: SPARE BATTERY THAT IS

I learned it the hard way with my Mazda 3. In the middle of the night I was at a petrol station and my key fob battery gave up. This meant the push button could no longer turn on the car engine. The little store at the service station didn't have the CR2025 batteries. Neither did the supermaket 1 km down the road, but I finally found it from a third store. Made sure to get a pack and now keeping the spare in the car for when this happens again in the future :)

EDIT: I did try the workaround of pushing the button with the key fob itself. I'm not sure if that requires the key fob battery to still have some life in it, because unfortunately it didn't work for me. The push button light remained red and the engine didn't start. FYI the video explainer Link Here.

1.9k Upvotes

u/keepthetips Keeping the tips since 2019 Sep 15 '22

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1.4k

u/biblebeltbuddhist Sep 15 '22 Helpful Wholesome LOVE!

Most push start cars have a fail safe for this even if the battery is completely dead. Use the key fob to push the START button. Instead of using your finger as you normally would, press the key fob against the button. This is a backup system many manufacturers use to ensure the car can start even when the fob is dead.

Also, most keys have a hidden regular key inside it as well that can be inserted into a manual slot somewhere on the console. It’s always smart to check where these are so that you have the information ready in case of a dead battery.

321

u/BrontosaurusXL Sep 15 '22

The real LPT here... everyone remove the battery from your keyfib while at home and try to figure out how to get in and start your cars.

174

u/77ZZ77ZZ7 Sep 15 '22

Or, you know, check the manual.

85

u/ahundiak Sep 15 '22

You mean the one that's inside of your locked car?

50

u/Formula_SAE Sep 15 '22

You can get inside the car with the backup mechanical key that’s inside most key fobs.

12

u/lankrypt0 Sep 16 '22

Wait so this "key" doesn't have a battery and can't die? Sounds interesting! Sign me up!

4

u/certifiedintelligent Sep 16 '22

Kia boys have entered the chat.

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u/77ZZ77ZZ7 Sep 15 '22

No, I mean before you have problems like this. At the very least you should know how to enter and start your car, where your jack points are, and a general idea of your maintenance schedule. You should be brushing up on all of this anytime you get a new car.

Also, most are available online now, so there’s that.

21

u/JMccovery Sep 15 '22

That's asking far too much of the average car buyer.

5

u/broyoyoyoyo Sep 16 '22

It's asking less than asking to take the battery out of your key fob.

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4

u/timmeh-eh Sep 16 '22

I have yet to come across a car with keyless entry that doesn’t have a key built into the fob and a lock cylinder that you can manually unlock the door with. (Though it is hidden on some cars)

6

u/henchman171 Sep 16 '22

Car manuals are pdf now. Keep them in Your phone or on the cloud

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u/sumunsolicitedadvice Sep 16 '22

I mean, yes, but practice, too. Those manuals aren’t always very well written, and diagrams, if there even are any, often suck. So yes, check the manual to try to understand how to do it, but then practice it so you understand and know it works.

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12

u/captain_redballs Sep 15 '22

My 2020 Malibu had a slot in the center console for a dead fob that would allow it to still work.

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395

u/Jefftaint Sep 15 '22

Yeah OP is wrong. All cars have a failsafe.

15

u/newmoneyblownmoney Sep 15 '22

Yep it all depend. Some cars you just hold it next to the steering column and it starts right up. If a manufacturer doesn’t make a failsafe for their push to start that’s probably a car you shouldn’t buy.

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u/LowertownLizard Sep 15 '22

Most, but not all. 2014 Nissans had the key to enter, but no way to start the car.

93

u/eyemhere Sep 15 '22

On my old hyundai the fob itself had to be inserted into a slot in the center console, a bit hidden away. The failsafe is there, you just need to find it (owners manual).

41

u/KindaTwisted Sep 15 '22

Yep. Mine is underneath the cup holders. Need to pull up the rubber bottom, but there's a spot there for the fob to be inserted in order to start the car.

18

u/Uncle-Istvan Sep 15 '22

The classic fobgina. It won’t be missed.

7

u/Environmental_Cup413 Sep 15 '22

Same with mitsubishi outlander. Fob sized hole in middle console. The battery probably just amps up the signal from the key, the receiver is behind the fob slot, so dead key can still connect

60

u/AnarchyPigeon2020 Sep 15 '22

I drive a 2014 Nissan and that's not correct. To the left of the push to start, there's a slot. You insert the key fob into that slot, and then push to start

18

u/suid Sep 15 '22

Both are common.

Older systems have a slot. E.g. my old 2006 prius. You slide the fob into the slot if its battery is dead.

Newer systems just have a proximity detector (RFID) so you just touch the fob to the button while you push it. RFID transmitters are just powered by a radio signal from the car itself to the fob.

4

u/bumdstryr Sep 15 '22

My first keyless was a kia optima. Had a slot in the center console.

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u/stealthdawg Sep 15 '22

The slot is still a prox sensor that needs to validate the fob code, just perhaps requires more precise placement.

3

u/Awkward_Pangolin3254 Sep 15 '22

Just needs to be closer to the transceiver. RFID badges don't have batteries, and thousands of companies use them for access into their buildings.

2

u/LowertownLizard Sep 15 '22

The situation came up about 5 years ago, couldn't figure it out! Good to know although the person doesn't own that car anymore.

3

u/ForceOfAHorse Sep 15 '22

Number of people who buy something so expensive as a car and don't bother to read user manual is astonishing.

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u/John_EightThirtyTwo Sep 15 '22

No offense, but are you sure about that? My Prius can still be started when the key fob battery dies. There's a physical key inside the fob to unlock the door, then the car can be started by holding the fob against the start button. This page on a Nissan dealer site suggests that Nissans work the same way.

3

u/Internal-Lifeguard-9 Sep 16 '22

I drive an infiniti (owned by nissan)and that's how mine works per the user manual.

7

u/innexum Sep 15 '22

So is 2016 Ram, you can unlock the door and the alarm goes off. There is an induction coil around start button to activate the dead fob that should turn off the alarm and enable to start the car but it didn't work for me ..

10

u/seemslgt Sep 15 '22

That’s not true. Nissan’s either have a slot to insert your keyfob if it’s dead in order to start the car. Or pressing the start button with the keyfob

3

u/meental Sep 15 '22

Most nissans you have to hold the fob on the underside of the steering column and it will start, even with a dead fob battery.

3

u/chopper_popper Sep 15 '22

My 2006 skyline has a slot next to the push to start button that you insert the fob into incase of flat battery to get it started

3

u/ravynstoneabbey Sep 15 '22

I have a 2021 Nissan, and the manual (you can get a PDF from Nissan if the book's gone AWOL) has me 1. Make sure car is in park, 2. Press parking brake, and 3. Hold the fob up to the push button. Should make a chime and start the car.

If the battery in the fob dies, though, it has to go to the dealer to get a new battery since it's not easy to access.

3

u/Maleficent_Soft4560 Sep 15 '22

Huh, my 2009 Nissan Altima has a slot to the left of the starting column to insert the key fob when the battery is dead. Also there is a key inside the fob to open the doors. Weird that they would get rid of something that worked.

5

u/TimeTomorrow Sep 15 '22

which nissan specifically? ill tell you how to start it with a dead fob battery.

0

u/LowertownLizard Sep 15 '22

Don't have the car anymore, but good to know there's a way, we couldn't figure it out at the time.

2

u/jam3s2001 Sep 15 '22

My wife's 2014 Sentra started with a dead fob by smashing it into the button. Didn't have a failsafe for the CVT that fell apart at 80K miles, tho.

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u/Alexander-Wright Sep 15 '22

Usually it is a slot in the glove compartment to push the fob into.

This slot is sometimes located under the steering wheel. Check your car's manual before you have problems!

1

u/retirement_savings Sep 15 '22

One time I had a backpack with my key in it. Pressed the button to open the back of the car, dropped the backpack in. Went to open the driver's side door and it didn't open. Neither did any other door. Had to call a locksmith.

-4

u/SupposablyAtTheZoo Sep 15 '22

Nope my BMW e93 has a failsafe key to open the door but if your battery is flat, it won't start.

14

u/seang86s Sep 15 '22

My x3 has a key fob image embossed on the side of the steering column (about where the ignition key slot would be). You hold the fob up to that spot and thru induction (the same tech as wirelessly charging your phone), it will power up your key and you can start the car. I noticed the same image on different BMW steering columns so I imagine it may be universal to all their cars.

3

u/Drohannesburg Sep 15 '22

Same exact thing in my MINI Coop!

1

u/SupposablyAtTheZoo Sep 15 '22

e93 has a slot but I think it's only for the non-keyless cars. I'll test it out someday (just checked the manual, it's not mentioned).

10

u/fuckinIiar Sep 15 '22

Literally everyone claiming their car doesn't have a failsafe just doesn't know how it works.

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u/five_star_clownbaby Sep 15 '22

I am a Mazda 3 owner as well. This is my go-to. I used to keep back-up batteries in the car but I thought that might not be the best idea for storage. The failsafe…never fails me. I also use that hidden key for the outside locks.

OP, trust this. The fucking CPU wants to have a random fit a lot but the start-up and lock failsafe always works for me.

9

u/Buddha176 Sep 15 '22

So my sisters Nissan you had to have the key flat. It has a passive RRID embeddded in the key like some use in ID cards that give access. The start button has an embedded reader. This still took several tries to get it to work with correct key placment

8

u/Islefive Sep 15 '22

It's not always put the button with the fob.

My old 2015 f150, in the center console there was a rubber mat. If you pulled the mat up there was a little indentation that looked like your fob belonged. Whe I you put the fob there my understanding is that there was/is a nfc reader in there and will start the truck.

2

u/NerdOfPlay Sep 15 '22

That indentation is how you program a new fob to your car. But it would make sense that it would also detect or activate a dead one.

8

u/pyroboy101 Sep 15 '22

Most Fords have a spot in the center console you put the key fob into that’ll allow the car to start.

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u/haveYouLookedIntoIt Sep 15 '22

I just wanted to add that on some key fobs the hidden key actually is shaped perfectly to fit into a slot in your fob so you can pry it open and change the battery without any tools needed.

Source, learned how to change the battery on the spare fob for my IS over the weekend lol

3

u/awesomehuder Sep 15 '22

I always wondered how I can start my car with the key when I only have a start button but now I know XD

3

u/TheRealOptician Sep 15 '22

Yep. I imagine OP did a lot of walking to find out this tough lesson lol

3

u/Roook36 Sep 15 '22

I've been sharing a car with my roommates and I used it hundreds of times and only recently found out there's a little key in the keyfob that can be pulled out and there was also a small slot to insert the key fob to start the car. It's a Prius. Was glad I found out before the key fob battery went dead on me.

3

u/zarjaa Sep 15 '22

I've had two key fobs go dead... They provide like a 9 month alert (little led) that they are low. Even when they got low to the point of not working remotely, they fob to start button always worked. I finally replaced my battery 12 months later.

But ngl, I have no clue why I waited. I now fully regret dealing with the low battery hassle. 😆

2

u/321TacocaT123 Sep 15 '22

My Mazda 6 has the hidden key, but I have no idea where to use it lol.

2

u/zarjaa Sep 15 '22

I've had two key fobs go dead... They provide like a 9 month alert (little led) that they are low. Even when they got low to the point of not working remotely, they fob to start button always worked. I finally replaced my battery 12 months later.

But ngl, I have no clue why I waited. I now fully regret dealing with the low battery hassle. 😆

2

u/meental Sep 15 '22

The key in the fob will get you into the car, the fob itself will need to be placed in a certain position that varies by manufacturer to start the car.

2

u/metaldutch Sep 15 '22

Exactly. I even have the same car as OP.

2

u/NotLunaris Sep 15 '22

Yep! While reading the manual on my 2013 Audi S6 I saw a part that said the key could be opened up to reveal your standard insert-and-turn key in case the battery dies. Figured it was the case for other cars as well.

2

u/Formula_SAE Sep 15 '22

In some cars you don’t put the dead key fob near the ignition. I have seen the cup holder as the place to put it to start. Check the owners manual!

2

u/EPHdaG Sep 16 '22

Came here to say this. Good call out.

4

u/Steinrikur Sep 15 '22

I wish I had known that 2 weeks ago when I borrowed a car with a dead fob battery.

I managed to figure out that the key is inside the fob, but that only works on the doors. Then I got to the manual in the glove compartment to see how to get to the battery (no info on this trick in the manual, though). It was a CR2025, so I went home and found a CR2032 and jammed it in so I could start the car.

That was enough to get me to do my errands, which now included buying a pack of CR2025 batteries.

2

u/FequalsMfreakingA Sep 15 '22

The regular key on the inside typically just unlocks the doors. I found that out the hard way when I left my fob in the rain long enough that it damaged it (basic waterproofing doesn't work against a night of heavy rainfall apparently), so pushing the button with the fob wouldn't work because holding it there gives the fob momentary power through induction (which is why it doesn't need a battery) but if the battery works and the FOB is damaged, you're SOL. So I looked for a place to put the key forever before finally giving up and calling the dealer who informed me that the built in key was just for the doors (this was on a 2011 Mitsubishi)

2

u/jbob172 Sep 15 '22

My car has a physical key hidden in the fob, but literally zero places to put it on the car. Makes no sense.

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u/biblebeltbuddhist Sep 15 '22

Check your manual or look for a video. I had one on my old dodge that you had to stick into a small slot that was next to the shifter. You used the key to open a small panel where the slot to slide in the key was.

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u/seang86s Sep 15 '22

My Subaru has a hidden key in the fob. You're supposed to take the key out and use it in the driver's door handle to pop a cap off. Underneath is a standard key slot for the fob key to open the door. Once in, you can hold the fob up to the PTT button and start the car.

I pulled the battery out of the fob when I first got the car and it worked as described in the owners manual.

1

u/iamphaedrus1 Sep 15 '22

This is how mine works

1

u/WillKillz Sep 15 '22

My Infiniti has the key inside the fob but it doesn’t work on the door locks. I have no idea why.

1

u/Metallic_Hedgehog Sep 15 '22

How does this work, exactly? I've always wondered

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u/biblebeltbuddhist Sep 15 '22

It’s called a passive RFID chip. The push button recognizes it and accepts that it matches so it allows the car to turn on. Similar to a keycard at some jobs to open doors. The card inside has no battery, but the place you touch the key to recognizes the RFID chip in the card.

1

u/CazRaX Sep 15 '22

My car (Lincoln MKX) has a programming slot in the armrest compartment where you can, shocker, program new fobs but that is also where the failsafe is. If battery is dead I slide the fob into the slot and the car will turn on by pressing the button.

1

u/Hitman3256 Sep 15 '22

My key fob has a physical key that can slide out but I've never found a keyhole, not even for the doors lol

My battery ran out once and I freaked out cuz I couldn't figure out how to open my SUV. Eventually it worked and I replaced the battery.

But yeah, I gotta find it.

2

u/EngineersAnon Sep 15 '22

The little bezel at the free end of the door handle. Look on the underside, and you should see a little slot. Use the tip of physical key in that's slot to gently pry the bezel loose. The physical lock is behind it.

At least, that's how I've always found it doing roadside assistance.

1

u/drjojoro Sep 15 '22

Mine was little weird, I had to put my key fob in the glove box, there was a little area that it fit in. I closed it and it started. I had to read the owners manual to find it bc my better completely died, car kept telling me key not found.

My flipout key would only unlock my door.

That said, cars are different, sometimes, randomly (ever tried to start a saab?) Keep the owners manual in the car, never know when it'll save you a headache or some money.

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u/[deleted] Sep 15 '22 edited Sep 15 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

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u/Tigen13 Sep 15 '22

Yep. When you replace a battery in your remote you would also buy a spare battery then. 99% chance it will be dead by the time you need it.

Another crappy LPT.

2

u/FirelessEngineer Sep 15 '22

Can confirm it works with Kia as well, battery in key fob died last week.

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u/jdp245 Sep 16 '22

Yup. The real LPT is read your car’s manual!

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u/EnchantedMeat Sep 15 '22

There is usually a way to start it when the Fob battery is dead. Usually it has to do with touching the button with a specific part of the Fob. Check your manual.

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u/theonlyonethatknocks Sep 15 '22

The real LPT is to read your manual. Mine has a indentation in the column that you are supposed to set the fob into while hitting the button.

0

u/Diegobyte Sep 15 '22

You usually don’t even need to. My car tells me to press the fob to the button on the screen

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u/BrappZanniganAgain Sep 15 '22

You might want to get your car checked or double check how you did the dead battery start the fob doesn’t need any juice at all in the battery and should work with no battery installed at all.

I just tested this on my Mazda 3 with no battery in the fob and it works fine.

3

u/Individual_Walk7032 Sep 15 '22

That's interesting, I'll check give it another try tomorrow.

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u/BrappZanniganAgain Sep 15 '22

The Mazda website says what you explained, the start engine light staying red, can happen but it may be indicative of a problem with your engine starting system. So I’m definitely not accusing you of being unaware or not doing it right, just cautioning that if it’s not working you may want to get that checked out.

https://www.mazdausa.com/static/manuals/2018/mazda3/contents/05010201.html

There’s a caution listed here about a quarter the way down the page. I know it says 2018, but with all of our Mazda 3s it’s been the same (2015, 2018, & 2022).

5

u/Individual_Walk7032 Sep 15 '22

Thanks for finding this official guide from Mazda. This is very useful. I'll definitely check my car again tomorrow.

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u/Reddit_Bot_Beep_Boop Sep 15 '22

This is bad advice all around. Keep spare batteries in your car? Are you mad, they'll go bad so fast in that heat. If your FOB is indeed dead all cars have a fail safe way to get it started, just do that.

Or pay attention to your car, mine beeps at me when I get in and out if the batteries going dead. It also puts a message up on my dash screen telling me so.

12

u/BiggsFaleur Sep 15 '22

Everyone should read the important parts of their car manual. Many fobs have a way to open and start the car even if the battery dies.

49

u/TimeTomorrow Sep 15 '22

another shitty lpt. There is ALWAYS a backup way to start the car. know what it is. usually it relays on putting the fob in a specific place.

10

u/illegal_snuggle Sep 15 '22

This, also the car should tell you when the fob battery is getting low. I know mine did last time I had to change the battery

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u/spamjwood Sep 15 '22

If you find yourself in that situation try removing the battery from the fob and then put it back in. Often you'll find that the car will recognize it. It is very rare that a battery goes completely dead like you're describing. Also, there is usually a warning on most cars when the battery in the fob is running low. Either the car will tell you or you will start to get fob not in vehicle warnings even after you are able to unlock it.

5

u/weaver_of_cloth Sep 15 '22

Taking a battery out and putting it back in helps because the chemicals in the battery mostly don't move, so changing the contact surface can increase the amount of charge accessed by the device in question. So can rotating the battery in place.

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u/luckystrike_bh Sep 15 '22

The Life Pro Tip should be spending 30 minutes skimming your car manual to see all the tips and tricks it has. Like what to do if you have dead key fob battery.

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u/pimp_juice2272 Sep 15 '22

"If you want the right answer, post a completely wrong one online."

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u/Kadesh1979 Sep 15 '22

My Audi has an actual key you can pull out of the fob and use even if the battery dies. I'm assuming other companies do this as well?

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u/Individual_Walk7032 Sep 15 '22

My Mazda has a key inside the fob too, but no key slot to start the engine.

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u/nbdys_bznz_bt_mn_8t Sep 15 '22

Mazda 3 owner here. On the right side of the steering column is a round key slot hidden under a cap. Pop the key out of the fob and pop off the key slot cap and voila, you have a regular ignition and key with which to start it.

7

u/Wallisaurus Sep 15 '22

That makes 0 sense. There should be a cap you pull off on your steering wheel, right side, that's where you put the key in.

3

u/whiteout86 Sep 15 '22 edited Sep 15 '22

Acura has the key in the fob as well, but there isn’t a slot. The dead battery method to start is to hold the logo on the fob against the start/stop button and it will let your start it. The key is for the door and glove box

12

u/lazymutant256 Sep 15 '22

Not a smart lpt...

Having a key left in the car will allow anyone to get in.. those cars have buttons on the door and will unlock the door just for having a keyfob nearby..

3

u/avanross Sep 15 '22

Every wireless kep fob that ive ever seen in my life contains a hidden key inside it.

Also, the key fobs have credit card reader tech, so it doesnt need battery power if it is tapped against the receiver.

There are multiple redundancies to prevent people from getting stranded.

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u/vipeboy2000 Sep 15 '22

I don't know if you tried , or what year the car is but I read that of the key warning illuminates red and doesn't start normal with the key fob pressed then press and hold the push button start until it starts . 🤷 I guess you can try by removing the fob battery to see.

3

u/F0X_ Sep 15 '22

Former valet here, you can still start the car with a dead battery trust me.

3

u/a20xt6 Sep 16 '22

It doesn't need the battery to start. Use the key to open the door then use the fob to push the push button. The chip in there will still work. Save your valuable glove box space. They can be a pain to change, you're not gonna do it in a parking lot.

8

u/D34TH_5MURF__ Sep 15 '22

I certainly hope you meant a spare battery. Keeping a spare key in the car is dumb.

3

u/jellytrack Sep 15 '22

I'm thinking that keeping a spare battery in the car with the temperature fluctuations of the harsh summer/winter would probably drain it faster than the one in your fob.

1

u/Individual_Walk7032 Sep 15 '22

Yes, spare battery that is :)

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u/calico810 Sep 15 '22

Just touch the push start with the key fob. Fail safe method. Never leave your key in your car. What if somebody smashes the window, takes your key and drives off with your car?

3

u/Evilsushione Sep 15 '22

I think he meant keep a spare battery.

4

u/EffectiveCycle Sep 15 '22

Which also sounds dangerous, especially in warmer climates

-1

u/Individual_Walk7032 Sep 15 '22

We're talking about coin cell battery

3

u/Froggy_hop Sep 15 '22

Is a coin cell battery not a battery?

2

u/seamonkey420 Sep 15 '22

most cars will have a spot by or near the steering wheel that you hold your fob by to then start if fob battery is dead.

2

u/RondaMyLove Sep 15 '22

Not just push button. Any key fob cars. Happened to me with my Dodge Grand caravan too!

2

u/LordOfTheTennisDance Sep 15 '22

We have come a long way, by making a one step process into a two step process

2

u/samtbkrhtx Sep 15 '22

Not buying a car with push button start.

2

u/number31388 Sep 15 '22

Aahh OP gonna learn how to start a car with a dead fob real fast.

2

u/rottenskull Sep 15 '22

Yep my Harley has a fob, I keep an extra battery in the little baggie with my registration.

2

u/DirtyArray Sep 15 '22

The workaround for the Mazda 3 was slightly different - you should have the emergency key near the start button when pressing it. Meaning you have to take the key out of the rest of the fob first.

2

u/PinkbunnymanEU Sep 15 '22

I'm not sure if that requires the key fob battery to still have some life in it,

Did you take the key out of the fob first?

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u/WanderingWeasel Sep 15 '22

Toyota Prius, Porsche Boxster, Jaguar F Type, Cadillac CT4 V Blackwing all can be started with a flat battery in the key.

Edit: forgot the E90 M3 was also cake. Just stick it in the slot if I remember right.

Tested on all of them with the battery out and can start them. I’m paranoid because it did NOT work on my Mazda RX8 lol

2

u/Bigbird_Elephant Sep 16 '22

The fob has a solid state battery backup so you can hold the fob up to the start button to start the car

2

u/Anivia_Mid Sep 16 '22

Almost all keyless start vehicles have a place where you can insert either the fob or the key that's in the fob directly into the vehicle.

This may be in your center console(elbow rest) the dashboard, or even under the push to start button.

Learn where that is.

Any battery bought just sitting in the car will probably go bad.

2

u/_zeen Sep 16 '22

If the fail safe others have mentioned failed it may be due to a dead or low (idk car terminology) battery. That was my experience.

2

u/ladytri277 Sep 16 '22

I just replaced mine 2 days ago!

1

u/Lee2026 Sep 15 '22

Damn that’s dumb. I know bmws don’t have this issue. If the coin cell battery in the fob dies, the key slot is still able to read the key when it’s inserted

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u/SupposablyAtTheZoo Sep 15 '22

Does the keyslot work battery-less?

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u/el-em-en-o Sep 15 '22

My mom just got a car with push start and this really is good to know, including all the alternatives in the comments. I could see a battery not working in very cold weather. I’ll check her car manual.

1

u/lucky_ducker Sep 15 '22

I do carry a spare battery, but my Nissan has a special slot below and to the left of the steering column, where you can insert the entire fob - and the car uses some sort of NFC to read the fob data.

1

u/Beestung Sep 15 '22

ITT: a bunch of people that have never tried to start their car with the battery pulled from their fob. Go test it, people.

1

u/theonetruejay Sep 15 '22

Ford CMax owner here. Concur. Having spent most of my life looking for jumper cables and then someone nice enough to jump-start me while having battery issues, I finally dropped the $50/75 for a portable jumper box (small rechargeable battery with cables). Has saved me and several others. Worth it. Buy as a gift. It is like cheap insurance.

1

u/mommaymick Sep 16 '22

Keep a battery in you purse or wallet too. Or you may be locked out of your car if it doesn’t have a key/hole

1

u/supagirl277 Sep 16 '22

I literally just did this this morning. Luckily we had another car to drive to the store so I could grab some new batteries.

0

u/Your_Trash_Daddy Sep 15 '22

Yes, be absolutely certain that literally anybody who gets into the car can start it and drive it away.

1

u/Malnurtured_Snay Sep 15 '22

Be careful about keeping batteries in your car, as they can explode if they overhead ... and parked cars can tend to get very hot.

1

u/D34TH_5MURF__ Sep 15 '22

The way to workaround a dead key fob is different for different vehicles. For my vehicle there is a slot on the glove box for the dead fob. This basically places it right next to the receiver.

The thought that Chevy put into working the vehicle with a dead fob is actually impressive. My doors also work off of proximity to the key fob. The fob has a hidden key that opens the hatch. Inside the hatch there is a pull to open the driver's door. On the inside there are pulls on the floor to open the door. And then the aforementioned slot in the glove box. Even if my key fob does, I'll be able to get to a store to buy a new battery.

1

u/Herrowgayboi Sep 15 '22

There's a way for you to still start a car even without a battery in the key fob. Either its putting the dead key fob on the steering column or on the push button start. Read your car manual.

1

u/Wallisaurus Sep 15 '22

All cars with these have fail safe.

Not only that, but the batteries used in these last about 10 years. So you typically won't have to worry about it.

1

u/TheSubtleSaiyan Sep 15 '22

This is timely Just got the low key battery alert ant not sure where to go

1

u/Malvania Sep 15 '22

The fact that the fob for the start didn't rely on passive RFIDs is weird.

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1

u/_njhiker Sep 15 '22

All the GM products I’ve driven/owned have a ‘hidden’ key fob holder you need to place the key fob in the event of key fob battery failure to start the vehicle. I can’t imagine other manufacturers haven’t also done this. Read your owners manual.

The vehicles I’ve owned also tell you on the drivers information screen that the key fob battery is getting low so you don’t find out the hard way.

1

u/EnergyFighter Sep 15 '22

My 2010 mazda 3 has a physical key in the fob and a key slot hidden behind a plug on the steering column.

1

u/martusfine Sep 15 '22

Be careful as some fobs are “comfort” meaning they help open doors without having to touch the fob. If left in the car then the battery drains and compromises entry, too. :)

1

u/DroolingSlothCarpet Sep 15 '22

• This sub has no place for amateur tips.

• This post has more information that's incorrect versus correct.

• There's no such thing as a RC2025 battery. And, the CR2025 battery is not even a battery.

1

u/kendonmcb Sep 15 '22

Especially helpful when the keyfob is also the remote to unlock the car. /s

1

u/lipp79 Sep 15 '22

I have a Mazda 6 that's push button start and the fob has a key inside it that if the battery does die in the fob, I can remove the key and insert it into the slot on the steering column. Then you just push the start button.

1

u/BlurryRogue Sep 15 '22

In most cars with a push start, particularly Fords (I'm a tech at a Ford dealership), there's a designated slot or method of starting the vehicle if the fob battery dies. You can generally find it in the owner's manual, it's usually something in the center console that's like a indentation molded to the shape of the key fob. You put the fob in the slot and you can start the vehicle normally until you replace the battery. Other methods involve simply pressing the push start with the key fob itself

1

u/[deleted] Sep 15 '22

Mazdas you take a specific part of the key, I believe the logo, and touch it to the start button and turn the car on with that.

For my current car that doesn’t have a push button, you just place the key in a certain spot to turn it on.

Neither need any battery left.

1

u/Rocko9999 Sep 15 '22

Most can't lock the car with a key fob in the car to prevent locking it inside. So no LPT here.

1

u/321TacocaT123 Sep 15 '22

My battery has died out several times on my Mazda 6. You just have to hold the key very close to the button and hold the button down and it will start.

1

u/cofclabman Sep 15 '22

My Toyota has a small square spot about 3 inches below the start button that you can hold the fob to while pressing the start button.

1

u/RadialRazer Sep 15 '22

Most, if not all, key fobs have an alternative method that you can use to manually turn the car on. I doubt Mazda overlooked this, but if they did they are in the minority. While this isn't necessarily a bad LPT (extra batteries are always good to have on hand), any car I've driven in the past several years has had some sort of alternative for things like this, so this LPT doesn't have much value.

1

u/phixer00 Sep 15 '22

My 2020 chevy has no key holes, the door handle key lock is under a cover on the handle, the key is hidden in the keyfob. If the fob is dead you have to put it in the left cup holder and then you can use the push button to start it.

1

u/Ricky_Rollin Sep 15 '22

That push button comes off and reveals a keyhole. Your key fob actually should have a hidden key inside it to start the car manually.

1

u/AccipiterCooperii Sep 15 '22

My fob had a hidden key and a slot in the column to put it if the battery dies. Boomshakalaka.

1

u/Rounder057 Sep 15 '22

Yesterday I went to pick the kids up from school and it wasn’t until I got home that I realized I left my keys in the house. Luckily, the car doesn’t die if it gets too far away

1

u/racallen Sep 15 '22

Same for my Dodge Challenger. Key inside the key fob which unlocks the door. Then as the alarm is going off ☺️ you have to remove the actual push button and insert the key fob (with key back inside) and start the car all manually again 🙄 lol they definitely all have to have a fail safe

1

u/Adhominoid Sep 15 '22

LPT add on: Put non-chip copies of your car keys zip tied under the car for lockouts.

1

u/CMDR_omnicognate Sep 15 '22

Almost all push button key fobs have essentially an NFC chip in them so in the event the battery runs out you can still start the car by holding the key up to the button and turning it on, your Mazda should have this since I’m fairly sure my mx5 has this ability too

1

u/Maxxover Sep 15 '22

My Mazda CX-9 with keyless entry has a physical key hidden in the fob.

1

u/m945050 Sep 15 '22

My grandfather's Packard had a push button to start but no key fob. Does that count?

1

u/eekamouseee12 Sep 15 '22

Most cars have a place to hold or put the key to start with a dead battery. Read your owners manual.

1

u/AVBforPrez Sep 15 '22

There should be a manual slot for the FOB that works regardless of battery

1

u/severoon Sep 15 '22

Not saying they don't exist, but I've never owned or seen a push button car that didn't have some kind of backup way of starting the car when the fob is out of battery.

I've seen a fob with a hidden key in it.

I've seen a fob with a passive, unpowered RFID that requires you to place it into a fob slot to start the car if the battery dies.

Tesla gives you a credit card if your phone key dies.

TBH, for me this would indicate a problem that would make me question the manufacturer's design intelligence if I have to take steps to ensure I can start my car. If there genuinely is no backup method for starting a Mazda, I don't think I'll be buying one ever.

1

u/Phantommike20 Sep 15 '22

When your fob dies use YouTube and find out how to start your specific car. I've had rentals for many many years working on the road and it seems like they all have a way to start. Like placing fob in cupholder etc.

1

u/apartment49 Sep 15 '22

my Mazda3 fob has been dead for weeks, I just start the car by pressing the button with the fob

1

u/OakTree11 Sep 15 '22

Someone reads this without the edit, gets their car stolen because the doors won't lock and there's a key inside.

1

u/truth_pudding Sep 15 '22

With my Honda, if the battery is dead in the fob as long as i hold the fob close to the push button it activates the car to start as per usual.

1

u/WhatYouExpect514 Sep 15 '22

The keyfob opens and has an emergency key in it for that reason

1

u/NightFuryToni Sep 15 '22

Or know where the workaround built into the car is. On BMWs you usually hold the key to the steering column, on some Mercedes you pull the start button out and stick the key itself in, there is a keyhole behind the button.

1

u/tech_auto Sep 15 '22

This is false, there is always a region to detect the fob as failsafe in the inside of your car. Please close this

1

u/spore35 Sep 15 '22

your Mazda keyfob has a key inside

1

u/photoguy423 Sep 15 '22

The fob that came with my Mini charged itself when you drove it. So every few months I'd swap keys to keep the battery charged up just in case I needed the spare key.

1

u/Party-Loan7562 Sep 15 '22

Most keyless cars have a key the fob

1

u/mtvdt Sep 15 '22

or you may have to place the key fob in the spot between the seats. there may be another spot other than the push start button...the manual should tell you that..

1

u/LurkingDrDeath Sep 15 '22

RTFM. Our beetle you put the key in the alcove sunglasses usually live in. Our van you pop the button off and use the fob as the key. Your manual will tell you the failsafe.

1

u/Sasspishus Sep 15 '22

Also, learn how to turn the electrics on independent of the engine. You will need to know how to do this if you ever put the wrong fuel in the car.

1

u/tinyman392 Sep 15 '22

Most cars have a system set up where you put the key fob up against the push button start to get the car to start if the fob is dead. Additionally, constant temperature cycles you'd see inside of a car's cabin throughout the day probably isn't the best for the battery.

1

u/Boring_Dimensions Sep 15 '22

There is typically still a key in the fob that will turn on the car. You just have to find the keyhole in the car. My car (not a Mazda) has a slot at the bottom of the center console that fits the entire fob not just the key.

1

u/upkeepdavid Sep 15 '22

I need the whole fob so put the spare in the wife’s purse and I keep her spare somewhere

1

u/AaronDotCom Sep 15 '22

Ok I'll an extra gas station in my pocket