Camry Hybrid 2008 electronic key

Car borrowed by friends from other friends who are out of town for a while. I’m just trying to be helpful. I don’t even know how to use this key.

I think the car has been sitting a few days. Elex key not working. Mech key did open door (good design!). Battery of elex key measures proper 3V (no load). Have not figured out if car’s battery (which one?) is OK. My next guess: try a new key battery. If that does not help, go to the dealer.

Any other suggestions?

If the red light on the key blinks when you push unlock the key battery is sufficient.
If the vehicle does not detect a key there will be a message displayed in the instrument cluster. You can push the start button with the key and the system should communicate with the transponder in the key.

I think the 12 volt battery is dead, recharge it.

I’d check the owners manual first and also check the valet switch. I had one car half torn apart before I discovered the valet switch had been flipped.

Thanks for the tips. I’ll get a chance to try them later.

I did not notice any red light on the key. If 12V btty is dead, would instrument cluster display? “Start button” … I did not notice any start button, but I’ll look.

Valet switch – Holy Moley! RTFM, indeed.

To be blunt, I used to be an elex engineer, and I HATE these electronic complications on cars. (Except I admit that Elex Fuel Inj is really good, now that they know how to do it reliably.)

Does this car have the “Smart key” system or conventional keys?

This is how to get the car started if the fob is dead but the battery in the fob should still be replaced (button cell probably a 2032 but the correct one should be listed in the owners manual)

The winner is … Nevada_545!! When I got access to the car again I got no headlights and no horn, and the trick shown in the video linked by wolyrobb did nothing. I charged the 12V battery a bit, and the dead car started fine. Made sure the btty was well charged, and told them they are good to go. I hope.

Car had been sitting for 4 or 5 days. Don’t know if the 12V btty should be able to handle that. Maybe somebody left a light on. We’ll see.

BTW Nevada_545, it has the key shown in your photo. I don’t know whether that is “smart” or conventional.

Thanks again.

Elex—Did this person just invent a word ? Also the few electrical engineers that I know embrace new technology not hate it.

  1. Aha! One of the older children reports that the 3-yr old turned on some inside light last time the car was used, four days ago. That’ll do it.

  2. VOLVO V70 – Sorry, I did not know that we don’t abbreviate “electronic(s)” as “elex” any more. Maybe some people never did.

I DO embrace new technology, after it’s had a chance to prove its value, including its reliability/durability. I’m not convinced about hybrid cars yet, and I don’t see the benefit of those electronic keys (but maybe I could be educated). Indeed, when I was checking to see that the dome light did go out, I discovered that when I held the key near the door lock, the dome light went on. Had me confused for a while – Ok, it’s off; oops, it’s back on; etc.

But let’s not hijack this thread. Thanks, all, for your help.