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Toyota Camry Key Problem

The Toyota Camry is a popular car with drivers in the market for an affordable commuter vehicle. It’s a reliable and easy-to-drive mid-size car, but it may give you issues with the key fob.

A common issue with Toyota Camry keys, particularly in keyless entry models, is a dead battery in the key fob. When the battery weakens or dies, it can lead to problems like the car not responding to the key fob. Replacing the key fob battery is a simple solution. Open the key fob, typically with a small screwdriver, and replace the old battery with a new one of the same type, ensuring correct orientation.

Another common problem is wear and tear of the physical key or internal components of the key fob. Over time, the key can become worn, making it difficult to turn in the ignition or door lock. If the key is damaged or excessively worn, getting a new key cut from your Toyota dealer or a qualified locksmith is advisable.

A less obvious cause could be an issue with the car’s immobilizer system. This system prevents the car from being started without the correct key. If the system fails to recognize the key, possibly due to a system glitch or a problem in the key’s chip, the car won’t start. Resetting the car’s electronic system by disconnecting and reconnecting the battery can sometimes resolve this issue. If not, professional diagnostic services might be needed to address the problem.

Car keyless remote

If you’re a Toyota Camry owner experiencing issues with your key, read on to find out more about what could cause the issue and how it could be fixed.

Toyota Camry Key Doesn’t Unlock Door

Female pressing car keyless remote

As a Toyota Camry car owner, you may encounter an issue with your key not unlocking the door. Several things can cause this issue, but these are the most common ones:

  • Depleted battery: The main issue that can affect unlocking the door will be the battery in the fob. You can test this by checking if the locks unlock manually. The battery needs to be replaced if they do, but this is a quick and straightforward process.
  • Key differences: Your car may include two sets of keys, and they may not be interchangeable. If you suddenly notice that you have issues unlocking some doors but not others, you may be using a key that’s not the master.
  • Weak signal: Your key may be affected by not receiving a clear signal from the keyless receiver. This could be related to a bigger issue with the antenna or the wiring.
  • Defective button: If the other buttons on the fob work, you may be facing a defective unlock button. This would require a replacement fob. 
  • Miscommunication: Key fobs tend to use a rolling entry code whenever the car is unlocked, or the engine is started. If the code is affected, this will prevent the unlocking of the car’s doors. This issue requires the fob to be reprogrammed.

How to Open Toyota Camry Trunk Without Key

You may find yourself needing to open your Toyota Camry without a key, usually because the fob has either been lost or damaged or simply because it’s not responding to the fob’s input to unlock. In this case, you will have to resort to other methods.

To open a Toyota Camry trunk without a key, you can try out different options. If your model has a smart key system with an electronic key, the trunk will have a failsafe to open if the key is accidentally locked inside. 

If that doesn’t work, you can try opening the trunk via the internal trunk release lever. You can find this lever on the inside of the trunk lid, and it even has a helpful glow-in-the-dark feature to help you if you need it. 

If you have access to the vehicle’s interior, you can also open the trunk without a key by pulling the trunk lever next to the driver’s seat.

Toyota Camry Key Is Not Detected

White car parked on city street

As a Toyota Camry car owner, you may experience an issue where your vehicle will not respond to the input coming from the key fob. This lack of detection can hurt your experience because it will prevent the proper functioning of the key.

Your Toyota Camry not detecting the key can be caused by low battery, either the fob’s or the car’s. It could also be the fault of a broken key fob, a deprogrammed key fob, or a broken keyless operation system. The solution to the problem will depend on the cause.

You can use the physical key to unlock the car, but you may not be able to start the engine if the key fob remains undetected. If you need to start the engine in this situation, here are some tips you can try:

  • Replace the fob battery: Issues with key fobs are usually related to a depleted battery. This will solve the problem in most cases.
  • Use a spare key: If you have a spare fob around, you can use it to start the car even if it’s not the master. This will help if you’re in a hurry, and it will indicate whether it’s a problem with the fob or something on a larger scale.

Toyota Camry Car Key Won’t Turn 

The Toyota Camry car key may sometimes give you the stress-inducing surprise of not turning when placed in the ignition, which will prevent the vehicle from starting. Several factors can cause this issue.

The most common cause behind this issue is the steering wheel being locked. This can happen by accident if you’ve knocked into it while entering or exiting the car, and it won’t be immediately apparent. 

To unlock the steering wheel, you will have to turn it firmly from side to side while simultaneously turning the key in the ignition. Make sure not to overdo it because this might hurt the steering mechanism.

If the problem persists, you may be facing a physical issue with damage to the ignition switch. If you don’t notice anything wrong with the ignition switch, you should check your key. It may be worn or may have been damaged at an earlier point.

We’d recommend dropping by a Toyota dealership to have your issue checked out by professionals in these cases. They will be able to either fix your ignition switch or replace your key.

Toyota Camry Key Locked in Car

Car keyless remote

This is one of the worst moments a driver can have, especially if you’re in a hurry. Accidentally locking the car keys inside is a common occurrence, but it does not make it any less stressful.

Most Toyota Camry car models are designed with a feature that will typically prevent the car from locking if the fob is still inside. Accidents can still happen, but they are significantly reduced unless the fob and the receiver aren’t communicating correctly.

If you have locked yourself out of the car despite this, we recommend seeking the help of a locksmith or the police to recover access to the vehicle. They will get you inside your car quicker and with less potential damage to the vehicle involved.

If you want to try to solve this problem on your own, or if you aren’t able to seek help, there are some options you can test out while attempting to get out of this sticky situation. You should be warned that these may not work and they may cause some damage to the car.

You can try to wedge some plastic materials inside the opening of the door, then use a coat hanger to maneuver in a way that allows you to get enough access through the small space to hit the button that opens the door.

This is not a recommended route, especially if you don’t have the right materials on hand. You should always check your insurance before doing anything like this on your own.

To prevent most issues, try to keep your fob fully charged and uncovered by other items to ensure it sends enough of its signal to the car to be noticed.

Toyota Camry Smart Key System Malfunction

Some Toyota Camry models include smart key systems. These have several functions that can assist you with your car handling, including a handy wireless remote control function, a steering lock function, and a push-button start function.

The smart keys also provide an engine immobilizer function and an entry function. If the smart key system malfunctions, it can cause numerous issues with access to your vehicle. 

One issue you may experience with the smart key system is encountering a message displayed that alerts about a ‘smart key system malfunction.’ This has frequently been reported as an issue triggered by a faulty car battery.

Try to solve this problem by jump-starting or replacing your car battery. This should clear the error and restart the smart key system, allowing you access to all its functions once more.

If you would like to try further troubleshooting before you take your car to the professionals, you should try to have your electric key discovered by the vehicle again. This may make the problem fix itself once the smart key system recognizes the key and resyncs it.

You should also check if your car model includes a deactivation key for your smart key. This may be accidentally pressed, especially if you are not aware of its location. Additionally, check the battery in the key, just in case that is what is causing the problem.

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If the issue you’re having is that the engine isn’t starting and your smart key system is flashing that error, make sure that you’re not pressing down on the brake pedal while trying to start the car.

If all the above troubleshooting hasn’t solved the issue, you should drop by the dealership so that they can do a thorough check and eliminate other potential causes.

Toyota Camry Key Won’t Come Out of Ignition

Car key in ignition

One of the problems that may affect you as a Toyota Camry owner is that your key may get stuck in the ignition after you stop the car and attempt to leave it. This can derail your plans by making it impossible to leave your car out of your sight with the key still in the ignition.

If you find yourself affected by this problem, try not to let the stress get to you, even if you are running late for something. You should always avoid using brute force to try to remove the key from the ignition. This could break it and cause damage to the ignition switch.

There are several things you should check and attempt when trying to resolve the issue of the key won’t come out of ignition:

  • Make sure that the car is in park: If applicable to your model, you should check that the car is displaying as being in parking mode. If it doesn’t show as such, this might prevent your key from dislodging from the ignition.
  • Check the steering wheel: If the steering wheel’s lock mechanism is accidentally triggered, it will prevent your key from being removed from the ignition because the switch will automatically lock in response. 
  • Check the ignition switch: You may be facing a damaged ignition switch or cylinder. If it isn’t a smart key model, you should check if your cylinder has gone out of alignment. This may affect the key by throwing it out of line and making it stuck.
  • Check the key: The key may have debris or damage on it, and you should check it thoroughly to establish whether it’s stuck because it doesn’t fit properly in the switch anymore.

How to Resolve This

To remove the key from the ignition, you should move your steering wheel from side to side to unlock it in case it’s accidentally been locked. You should also check your gears to make sure the car is set to park.

If the key breaks in the lock while you attempt to remove it, you should stop yourself from trying to put the broken half back into the switch. That would only serve to drive the rest of the key further away.

You can try to use pliers to remove the key, but always remember that you can call a professional locksmith to do the job in half the time while minimizing the effort involved. The higher price will seem worth it when the job is done correctly at a high standard.

Toyota Camry Keyless Entry Not Working

Hand pressing car keyless remote in front of white car

One of the draws of Toyota Camry models is the keyless functionality they provide to drivers. The benefits of this functionality make it seem even worse when the keyless entry stops working.

If you notice that the keyless entry has suddenly stopped working, you are most likely looking at a depleted battery in the key fob. This can be easily replaced through a straightforward process that takes very little time to do.

You will have to open the key fob, usually from the sides, and then replace the battery. Once it is closed again, the key fob should give you access to keyless entry again. If the problem persists despite your efforts, you should investigate other causes.

Another option that can affect keyless entry can be a broken connection or wiring. It could even be a lack of signal between the fob and the vehicle. You could try pairing the fob with the vehicle once more.

If that doesn’t work, you should ask for a replacement key fob or for the one you have to be reprogrammed. If that hasn’t solved the issue, ask your mechanic to check the electrical system or even complete a mechanical check-up.

An error in the keyless entry function should usually be easy to troubleshoot, so if you find yourself having further trouble with it, you should consider going to the dealership.

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Toyota Camry Low Key Battery Warning

As a Toyota Camry owner, you may face a message on the dashboard one day that states that the key battery is low. 

This means that it’s time to replace the battery in the fob to ensure its continued functioning.

The batteries used in the Toyota Camry key fobs are affordable and easy to replace. When you have the new batteries, you may find a mechanical key on your key fob. This is designed to effortlessly open the fob.

You should then gently pry the battery board out of the fob and proceed to replace the battery. Once that is done, put the battery board back in its place and secure the fob by applying gentle yet firm pressure until it holds together again.

Suppose the message continues to display even after you’ve replaced the battery. In that case, this may be caused by some interference with other signals preventing the battery levels from being accurately shown. 

Try to remove items that might cause this interference, like smartphones, and then see whether the message clears. You can also try to open the fob again to ensure that it has been put together correctly and that the battery hasn’t moved.

Toyota Camry Won’t Open With Key

Front of white car

One of the most worrying moments you may experience as a Toyota Camry owner is the car refusing to open with the key. This may be a common problem that may not require a complicated solution, but it can still take some time and provoke some stress.

If you experience this issue, you should do a routine check-up of battery levels and external damage. You should also make sure that you are using the master key and not the valet key. The two can be easily mixed up if you are using them in proximity. 

If the Toyota Camry continues to not open with the key, you should use the physical key to access the car. This will also clear doubts about whether it is an issue with the key fob itself or with the car in general.

The physical key is integrated into the fob, and all you have to do is remove it and then use it on the driver’s door. Once that is done, you can proceed to unlock the other doors.

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KnowMyAuto is the sole owner of this article was published on Jul 8, 2021 and last updated on .