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What to do if your Toyota Smart Key isn’t working

By Product Expert | Posted in FAQ, Tips and Tricks on Thursday, September 27th, 2018 at 9:20 pm
Man holding a key fob in a car

Toyota won’t start when press Smart Key

Technology is a wonderful thing. In fact, it’s features like the Toyota Smart Key that make driving even easier. With Toyota Smart Key you don’t have to use a physical key to start your vehicle. As long as the key fob is in the vehicle, you can press the start button on the dashboard and the engine will turn on. It’s really that easy! With that said, there are a few things that can happen that will prevent the engine from starting. If you’re Toyota won’t start when you press the Smart Key, you’ve come to the right place. Here is how to troubleshoot.

Why isn’t my Toyota Smart Key working?A key fob

There are several things that could be causing your Toyota not to start. But before we dive in, it’s important to check for the most important thing first: the key fob. Is the key fob in the vehicle with you? You don’t necessarily need to take it out of your purse or pocket, but it does need to be inside the vehicle for the Smart Key and engine start button to work. Got the key fob? Excellent. Here are some other reasons why the Smart Key might not be working.

1) The brake isn’t being pressed firmly
Make sure your foot is pressing down on the brake while you are pressing the engine start button.

2) The Smart Key battery needs replacing
It’s possible that the signal from your Smart Key isn’t strong enough because the battery is old. If this is the case, you can still start the vehicle by holding the Smart Key next to the engine button as you press the start button. (Check your owner’s manual for details on how to replace the battery.)

3) Your engine battery needs replacing
If your Toyota’s battery isn’t up to snuff, if can cause a whole lot of other issues, including a poorly functioning Smart Key.

4) Reset the Smart Key deactivation switch
Sometimes in the process of getting in and out of the vehicle the Smart Key deactivation switch could get pressed. When this is engaged it turns off the ability to use the engine start and Toyota Smart Key. Double-check to see if this switch was set by looking for it under the instrument panel, under the steering wheel.

5) Sometimes the system might need a reset
One trick we like to try if the Smart Key isn’t working is to get out of the vehicle (with the key fob) and then enter the vehicle again. Sometimes the process of bringing the key fob out and back into the vehicle can trigger the system to recognize the fob.

 Read More: Who can service a vehicle under warranty?


How did it go? Is your Toyota Smart Key still giving you gruff? Our team is here to help. We invite you to give us a call today. We will help you troubleshoot and figure out what the issue may be. From all of us at Le Mieux & Son Toyota, we look forward to speaking with you!

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