How to Find a Trustworthy Auto Locksmith Company Online

Beware of The Bait & Switch!

All over the internet you will find promises of 15$, 17$, 25$ locksmith services from scam companies. Don't fall into their trap! They will quote you one price over the phone and then charge you an arm and a leg for a simple 5 min car lockout. The horror stories are all over the internet.

Most reputable companies will charge a service call fee, but they will be able to give you a quote over the phone, and some will offer flat rate pricing for car lockouts. Oftentimes it will be hard for the locksmith company to tell you exactly how much the service of your choice will cost, depending on what service you need performed on your vehicle.

Auto Locksmiths are Not Created Equal!

There are many horror stories that have surfaced over the years involving the locksmith industry in the US. With many states not requiring licensing to perform work, it is easy for non-professional individuals and companies to lure customers into their trap, and with the proliferation of the internet is has become even easier to set up a front that looks legitimate. If you need automotive locksmith work please read on in order to find out the best way to choose a legitimate company that will not damage your vehicle or charge you an arm and a leg for service.

Scams Happen Everyday
Scams Happen Everyday

Warning Signs of a Bad Locksmith:

So what are some things to look out for when looking for a locksmith company?

1. Generic Company Names

This isn't necessarily a sign of a bad locksmith company, but many scammers will have listings in online or print directories that have names such as: (AAA locksmith, A New York Locksmiths, A-1 Locksmiths). The A or 1 at the beginning of a company name helps in some directories to rank ahead of their competition, and they names are not necessarily correlated with a real business that you can find or file a complaint against.

2. Very Low Pricing

Service industries are expensive, and mobile services especially must charge a certain amount to make money. No locksmith company can keep their doors open by providing 19$ lockout services, its just not possible. With the price of gas, having to pay employees, parts and time, you can see why these prices are just a way of duping customers. Most lockout services will cost at least 60$, with extra service charges for emergency services in most cases.

3. Foreign sounding Dispatchers:

Again this is not necessarily a sign of a bad locksmith company, but just be weary. Many scammer companies use VOIP (voice over ip numbers) to forward calls to a dispatch center that is not in this country, and then they dispatch the locksmith in your city that they work with.

Car Locksmiths Cut Keys on Site!

Good car key locksmiths will carry a wide selection of keys.
Good car key locksmiths will carry a wide selection of keys.

Services of the Automotive Locksmith:

  • 24 Hour Lockouts
  • Car Lock Changes
  • Broken Car Key Removal
  • Car Lock Repair
  • Ignition Switch Repair/Replace
  • Replacement Car Keys
  • Key-less Entry (Key Fobs)
  • Glove Box Locks
  • Car Door Lock Re-keying
  • Motorcycle Keys
  • Car Key Programming
  • Trunk Lock Repair

Most good car locksmith companies will be able to provide mobile service, and some are on call 24 hours a day for emergency service. If you have a car that is still in production (within the past 20 years) and isn't a custom ignition assembly it will be easier to find a company to program you new car keys or help you with OEM or aftermarket part replacements.

Locksmith Scam Videos

Does Your State Require Licensing?

Locksmiths are only required to hold a license in 14 states, so if you are in one of these states it will be easy to rule out a company that does not hold the proper license number. Here are the 14 states that require proper licensing.

  • Alabama
    New Jersey
    North Carolina
    Washington D.C.

Car Locksmiths

Program Transponder & Car Key Fobs
Program Transponder & Car Key Fobs

What Service do you need?

What car lock service do you need?

See results without voting

3 Tips:

1. Read Online Reviews - good places include, Superpages & Citysearch, or Angie's List if you are a member.

2. Ask for upfront pricing & make sure you know how much a service call will be.

3. If a locksmith will not take credit cards and want cash - then be very weary of that company.

Good luck with your search!

I hope these tips help you find a great locksmith company near you that will provide effective service for your vehicle. Thanks for reading, and please leave a comment if you have any stories that pertain to finding a car locksmith. Got a great company to recommend? Leave a comment below!

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Ben 3 years ago

Thanks for calling out that bait & switch tactic! My sister caught with that one a little while back but she learned from that and I did too. Great article!

Carol 3 years ago

Thanks for informing me which States require licensing for locksmiths. I live in North Carolina and never knew that. Learn something new everyday!

Greg 3 years ago

Nice hub dude you shedding a lotta knowledge.

Liliane Barr 3 years ago

I really llike the way you've laid out the information in this article. It really highlights some great points to consider when searching for a professional locksmith.

Brenda 3 years ago

Im always losing my keys so I need to keep a locksmith on speed dial lol...

Mike 3 years ago

Nice article, wellwritten.. Bookmarked & shared on Twitter.

Dan L. 3 years ago

Hey, that is a great resource, thanks for sharing!...

Reece 3 years ago

Brainspike, I follow your wor all the time and you always have something good to share.Keep up the great work!

Darren 3 years ago

I'm actually training to be a Locksmith so your writeup really points out some things to help me be more professional. Thank you.

Fred D. 3 years ago

I thought Locksmith service is automatically included with auto insurance these it not?

Mavis 3 years ago

I found your hub in Google thanks for sharing your tips!

Erin Grant 3 years ago

Whoaaa I got a brain spike on this one, a lotta great info to absorb.!

Carl 3 years ago

That was a Great vid and article about avoiding Locksmith scams. Thanks for alerting us..

Edie 3 years ago

Finding a Locksmith is easy. Finding a Trustworthy Locksmith is not so easy. Good thing we have web reporters like you who make our search easier. Keep up the great work!

Rhonda Jensil 3 years ago

My friend emailied this hub to me since I have gotten burned by so many rotten locksmith companies. I'm glad she forwarded this to me because it has really opened my eyes and sharpened my hiring decisions. Thanks for the information

Happy Custimer 3 years ago

I just found a company using the resource you provided,! East Valley Lock and Key came to my house and made me new car keys for my 09 Nissan Maxima.

TheTempeGuide 3 years ago

If your looking for the best auto locksmith in Tempe AZ, check out, I have had good experiences with them in the past!

A Tempe AZ Guy 3 years ago

Also you can find auto locksmiths on the BBB website for your area. They have very stringent process for reviews so you can really trust the reviews on the website.

brainspike profile image

brainspike 2 years ago from Phoenix, USA Author

Also, check out this directory at, they have a search feature and have a pretty thorough directory of car locksmiths.

Las Vegas Locksmith Pros 2 years ago

My company, Las Vegas Locksmith Pros offers car key cutting, 24 hour lockouts, lock repairs, rekeying ignitions and more. If you are locked out in Las Vegas give us a call! visit our website here!

brainspike profile image

brainspike 2 years ago from Phoenix, USA Author

A great resource for the people of Las Vegas. Thanks for the comment!

Candice Harding 2 years ago

It can be tricky to find the right locksmith, but it's well worth the effort. You are putting the security of your vehicle in their hands, it's worth it be to be sure they are properly licensed and experienced. If you don't feel comfortable with the technician and their services, then you should keep shopping.

Candice Harding

Locksmith in Aventura FL 2 years ago

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John Albu profile image

John Albu 24 months ago from Albuquerque, New Mexico, 87102

Thanks for the information, it's good to know for the next time I get locked out of my house, which will most certainly happen. I don't know why it so easy to lose track of my keys, just happens sometimes, I get pretty busy. I know a lot of people use edmonton lock, their fast and have great employees. They are also very professional and helpful.

Jeff Curtis 8 months ago

Thanks for this helpful post on finding a trustworthy locksmith online. I really need to find a locksmith that I can trust. Thanks for the tip on watching out for the bait and switch issue where they originally say they will only charge 15 dollars but will end up charging you a lot more. I will make sure to avoid those signs you have in here of a bad locksmith. Thanks for the help!

JamesLewis16 profile image

JamesLewis16 6 months ago from 1263 Seagrape Circle Weston Florida 33326

Thanks for sharing such informative article !!! It's a great tips for those who don't know how to find a trustworthy Auto Locksmith company online.

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