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Dealer tried to program key fob but couldn’t due to no communication to ecm

I brought my newly bought 2011 gti to the dealership to get my newly made key fob programmed and they weren’t able to program it because they said they have no communication with the ecm. They claim every module is reading errors and are wanting to charge me $400 to remove modules and diagnose the issue. The previous owner of the car installed a cheap hid xenon system and they think that they messed something up. Is there a simple fix for this problem or should I let volkswagen do their thing? What else could be causing this communication issue?

I don’t know but I bought a couple replacement fobs for my Pontiac and the dealer had to program them. Same part number as GM but the dealer said they have had problems with fobs bought on the internet. At any rate they had no problem with mine and only charged about $100. So are you sure the fobs are quality? Can they not program even their own? I don’t know what else you can do except deal with the dealer on something like this but might want to talk to another reliable dealer.

There are auto electric shops. Many just repair components that are brought in, but you may find one that can handle the whole car. Might be worth looking into.

I had the key fob (switchblade key/fob) ordered from the Volkswagen dealership and came back to have them program it. This is when they said they weren’t able to communicate with the central eclectronic control module to program them.

Apparently they have to get their machine to communicate with your car’s engine computer. That’s done by connecting to a connector usually under the dashboard. Two common causes why that doesn’t work is the fuse in your car that powers that circuit is blown or there’s a bent pin in that connector. Rule those out before pursuing something more complex. Is the engine running ok, same as before the light bulb system got updated? If so, my guess, unlikely to be anything to do with that. Except that perhaps they blew the aforementioned fuse in the process.

Just curious, if you buy an electronic key fob from a third party, how do you get it programmed to match the car?

I bought two replacement fobs for my Pontiac. That might have been the place, I don’t remember and would have to look it up. At any rate they were exact OEM matches which is important. Some cars you can program yourself to the new fogs but on the Pontiac, it had to be done by the dealer. Thing is you have to cancel the old ones and then program the new ones so if you are doing it yourself and screw up in your driveway, it may have to be towed. I think I paid about $80 for the fobs and it was about $115 for the dealer to program them. The dealer warned me that they sometimes have trouble with customer provided fobs but mine worked fine. If you take them apart, there really is not much to them and the rubber buttons do wear out after a while. If you plug your car into that site though it should tell you what is required for programming or if a dealer needs to do it.

I’ve bought fobs for my Dodge off eBay for around $25.

Take them to a locksmith. He charged like $50 to look up the PIN for the car, but since then he charges only like $20 to program additional keys/fobs.

Try your local locksmith. You might be surprised.

On my 2019 F-150 I did the programming myself. I bought an OEM uncut key/fob (for this vehicle the key and fob are one piece) off of Amazon for about $65. Took it and one of the original keys to a local locksmith. The locksmith charged $20 to cut the key. After coming home I used the two original keys that came with the truck to program the 3rd key which took less than a minute.

You put the 1st original key in the ignition, turn the key to on for 3-10 seconds, turn it off, within 3-6 seconds put the 2nd original key in the ignition, turn the key to on for 3-10 seconds, turn it off , and within 3-6 seconds put the unprogrammed 3rd key in the ignition and turn it on after about 5 seconds the horn honks, which tells you that your new key is now programmed. It was very easy.

The dealership wanted $368 for a new key with programming. I spent about $85 and few minutes of my time.

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Yeah I tried that but it requires the dealer computer for the Pontiac anyway.