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Key fob


August 24, 2012
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City, State
Lakeland, FL
Year, Model & Trim Level
1999 Explorer XLT 5.0
I just got my 1999 explorer alt and it just has one key. I am wanting to get a key fob and the local auto parts store has replacements in stock what do I need to do to make it work? I do not have any key fobs at all.


Explorer Addict
July 30, 2009
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City, State
Florence, KY
Year, Model & Trim Level
1998 XLT 4WD 4.0L SOHC
You should get a second key. Get a key blank and have a locksmith cut it to match your existing key. Next you need to program the PATS security to accept the second key. This can either be done at a dealership, at "some" locksmiths, or using an OBD2 dongle connected to a PC (laptop, etc) running Forscan app.

Once you have the 2nd key programmed you can do an owner oriented programming sequence where you add all the keyfobs. Once you have that 2nd key programmed in you can even use the owner oriented programming method to program in additional keys, just not the second one having only one key so far which will require the dealer, a locksmith, or Forscan app to do so.

Note that you do not have to pay the (typically)high dealer price for a fob. Those like the key blanks are available on eBay for around $8, but I don't know who is selling them cheapest *at the moment*. Here's a couple examples:

NEW Ford PATS Transponder Chip Key Blank - USER PROGRAMMABLE | eBay

2pcs Replacement Keyless Entry Remote Control Car Key Fob Clicker Transmitter 736950656645 | eBay

Be aware that some sellers of very cheap keyfobs are selling just a replacement empty shell and button pad, in cases where your originals were worn and you wanted to just swap the circuit board to a new case.

Beware of "clone" keys that function by duplicating the authentication of the original key. They will work to start the vehicle but are not recognized as a 2nd unique key and so cannot be used to program further (3rd, etc) keys or keyfobs.

EDIT: I may be confused. It is possible you only need one key to program keyfobs.

Page 109 of the owners manual states:

Replacing lost transmitters
Take all your vehicle’s transmitters
to your dealer if service is required.
If you purchase additional
transmitters (up to four may be
programmed), perform the following
To reprogram the transmitters
yourself, place the key in the
ignition and turn from OFF to ON
eight times in rapid succession
(within 10 seconds) ending in ON. After doors lock/unlock, press any
control on all transmitters (up to four). When completed, turn the
ignition to OFF. The doors will lock/unlock one last time to confirm
completion of program mode.
All transmitters must be programmed at the same time.​