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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 11-13-2007, 08:46 PM   #1
KBFPAUL
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Reprogramming keys/New keys???

Hi everyone, I'm new to the board and have instructions that I found on re-programming the keys. I have a few questions though if anyone could help, I recently purchased an '01 330ci. It only came with one key, I searched around but was unsure that if I tried to "reprogram" my key myself, will the key still be able to start the car??? From what I've read in the manual, theres an immobilzer chip in the key. I only have one key and was unsure if "reprogramming" unsuccessfully will stop my car from starting. I called the local BMW dealer today about getting another one, itll cost $200. Should I buy a blank off ebay and have the dealer "cut" the key instead to save some money?

Thanks,
Paul
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Old 11-13-2007, 11:09 PM   #2
Villium
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Hey Paul

I had the same issue when i got my car. I ended up getting a new key from the dealer because i had made a deal with the dealership that i got it from that he would cover the cost of it.

It all depends on what you need the spare for. If you only really need the one key then you should be fine. I got mine a while ago and i havent used it at all but it is a good idea to have a spare, its also is good if more then one person uses the car.

lates

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Old 11-24-2007, 06:52 PM   #3
bmwsam
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reprogramming keys

I recently bought a "blank" key for my 03 330i because it only came with one key. I had to the get the key cut @ a locksmith because BMW won't do it. Programming went fine by following the DIY directions. I only spend $60 for the key which is a big savings over getting it from the dealer!
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Old 11-24-2007, 07:36 PM   #4
ToddInLou
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The blank key you purchased on ebay, was it the key only or key with remote? Can you post a link to the instructions you used? Thanks!
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Old 11-24-2007, 07:55 PM   #5
BMW BRAD
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Question Keys please

Yeah, I got a "NEW" blank key from ebay that will open the doors with the remote, but wont start the car unless I start it with the oem key, shut it off quickly and then insert the new one quickly! What the........? Any thoughts would be appreciated! Thx, B
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Old 11-25-2007, 11:24 AM   #6
ToddInLou
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sounds like the security chip needs programed. I'm not sure if this is something you can do. Might have to tell the dealer it won't start the car anymore and see if they will help you out. Let me know how it comes out. I will look in alldata today to see if I can help you out

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Old 11-25-2007, 11:34 AM   #7
Scud Runner
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Hold on here, you can start the car with the key? Can I? I also only have only one key, and my nearest dealer is 400 miles away!

#*$#%@
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Old 11-25-2007, 01:37 PM   #8
Tom Busby
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After I bought a 2001 325i with one key I bought a 2nd one from the dealer. I had a very hard time finding correct instructions to reprogram the car to recognize the new key. The key type I have is the rechargeable, non-replaceable battery, and has 3 buttons: 1) unlock; 2) lock; 3) open trunk
Have all your keys with you when you do this. This works:
Get in and close all the doors.
Turn the ignition to "Run" and the turn it off quickly. (Note: this is the middle position for the key, not "Accessory" or "Start")
Remove the key.
Hold the key up to your left shoulder.
Hold down the UNLOCK button and Press the LOCK button (center button) 3 times. After you release the LOCK button the third time the doors will lock to confirm the operation.
Quickly repeat the key-button-clicking steps (ONLY) for all your other keys. Note: Do not put any of the keys back in the ignition until you have reprogrammed all your keys
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Old 11-25-2007, 01:46 PM   #9
silentak1
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I've tried this procedure and it has worked for me.

1. Turn the car to position 2 (middle) and turn it back to OFF. Do this 5 times without any time gap. So it's going to be OFF, Position 2, OFF, position 2, etc. (5 times total)
2. Remove the key and do the following immediately within 30 seconds.
3. Press and hold UNLOCK and tap the center BMW button 3 times. The doors will unlock and lock to confirm successful programming.
4. Immediately within afterwards, repeat step 3 for your second or third key.

That's it. PM me if you need more help.
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Old 12-06-2007, 06:36 AM   #10
Kiske
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help! my key jus died on me ! both my main n spare key.

tried the steps, didn't work, would like to ask, do u all mean middle position as in?

the radio lights up n the mileage lights up?

the roof convertible sensor is up along with the radio?

or all the sensors light up as in the position where u can crank the throttle but not cranking?
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Old 12-06-2007, 07:57 AM   #11
bmwbun
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The instructions for initializing a new key are on page 147 of my owner's manual.
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Old 12-08-2007, 07:58 PM   #12
PaulC
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I just replaced the actuator today (after it not working properly for 3-4 years), and the key did not operate the door until I followed the instructions above (Key On, then Off. Hold Unlock, press Lock 3 times). Just got it done before the sun went down and started getting real cold (no garage - working outside).
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Old 02-27-2008, 11:13 PM   #13
bmwsam
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Hey everyone, my luck with the key I bought on ebay (and posted on earlier) has gone awry. It now unlocks the car, but won't start it. I've been advised to give up my first born and pay the dealer for a new key that they can program to work properly. Sorry for the bad advice.

Last edited by bmwsam; 02-27-2008 at 11:17 PM.
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Old 02-28-2008, 01:17 AM   #14
NOVAbimmer
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I lost both of my keys a while ago, had both replaced by the dealer, then just have to drive my car to the dealer to have them program the remote...very quck, very painless
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Old 02-28-2008, 09:01 PM   #15
Alex111
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New member, have to say, this is the greatest website! I just got a 2nd key from dealer, they gave me preprinted instructions and they didn't work. Came here, and followed Tom Busby's instructions, which were very similar but importantly, not exactly the same, and it finally worked!
I don't know if it was the middle position on the ignition or the left shoulder (those were the differences from the dealer's instructions), but thank you Tom. Love this site!
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Old 02-28-2008, 09:48 PM   #16
denver325ix
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My key stopped working with the remote but would open the door (with the manual key) and run the car just fine. I went to the stealer today, they tested the key and said the chip in the key was bad, but the key was still programmed to the car. I asked if there was a battery to replace inside, they said "No." I bought a replacement key that will take 2-3 days to get for $158. Does anyone know if there is a rechargeable battery inside I can replace? I did not want to pull my key apart (it's the only one I have) until I had my new one in hand. Thanks in advance for your help!
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Old 04-28-2009, 10:59 AM   #17
gavin877
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hi everyone

is it possible to get a second key that would be cheaper than one from a dealership?
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Old 06-23-2009, 06:02 PM   #18
william_1
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Just a comment on re-programming keys. Even if both keys are de-programmed, you can still get them both to work.

Just repeat the procedure mentioned above within about a minute of each other. Although I don't know about the need to turn on/off the ignition 5 times.

I did that once (with the 1st key); when you do this you essentially are re-programming the 1st key anyways. Then when you do the 2nd key (without the need to put it into the ignition); the 2nd key picks up whatever the 1st key just picked up. So do them close together within a minute or so and you'll find both keys work.

HOw do I find this out? I programmed one key; waited 5 minutes to do the 2nd, the 2nd key works, but the 1st was not.

So program them close enough to each other and voila; they both work.

So even if you "master" key on another thread is dead; you are NOT sol....
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Old 10-12-2009, 03:08 PM   #19
tjafar
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Hello there
Does anyone have written instructions on available options that can be programmed into the keys (mirror positions, favourite radio station, etc) ?
How about written instructions to do the programming without using teh Stealership .. I like the freedom to change the settings and or the items controlled whenever I feel like it rather than wasting my time visiting teh dealer ??
Thanks
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:11 PM   #20
DenaliXTC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silentak1 View Post
I've tried this procedure and it has worked for me.

1. Turn the car to position 2 (middle) and turn it back to OFF. Do this 5 times without any time gap. So it's going to be OFF, Position 2, OFF, position 2, etc. (5 times total)
2. Remove the key and do the following immediately within 30 seconds.
3. Press and hold UNLOCK and tap the center BMW button 3 times. The doors will unlock and lock to confirm successful programming.
4. Immediately within afterwards, repeat step 3 for your second or third key.

That's it. PM me if you need more help.
just did this and it worked no problem. thanks man!
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