Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for mechanics and DIY enthusiast owners of cars, trucks, and motorcycles. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I bought Ford Mondeo 2004 but I forgot about the radio code. After unplugging the battery the radio now requires code and is locked.

What options do I have now? Is it in essence possible to unlock a radio without a code? Are the codes freely available? Should I contact the manufacturer? I tried to google but found lots of crap, deceit and even a malware.

share|improve this question
up vote 3 down vote accepted

The Ford dealer can do it by using your vehicle serial number, I have no idea what they charge for the service. If you are a regular customer they may be nice and do it for free. An alternative is to remove the radio get the serial number off the radio and use one of the on-line services that provide access codes. If you aren't comfortable removing the radio the dealer may be the best choice. My advice after this is to leave the radio uncoded as the odds of a ten year old radio being stolen are pretty slim.

share|improve this answer
And even if it were stolen, any competent thief knows how to go online and lookup the reset code the same way you would do it. – R.. Jun 16 '13 at 4:27

If you're lucky these are sometimes hand written inside the owners manual or on a a business card that says "radio code" on it that's placed inside the document holder that was supplied with the vehicle.

People are also known to write it on the top/bottom of the actual radio itself. This would require removing the radio.

Dealerships can usually access this information by the VIN number. If not then they'll pull the radio for you and use the Serial Number on the Radio.

If it's simply just the dealership looking it up via the VIN number then there should be no charge and can usually be done over the phone. If it requires pulling the radio, then I would imagine it's a flat fee which is somewhere around a half an hour labor. ~30-40 dollars is an average of what I see in Los Angeles.

share|improve this answer
If you're going to have to pay the dealer $50 or so to pull it and reset the code, if you're not completely happy with the stereo, this might be a good time to replace it -- if you shop around you can probably find a bluetooth+USB MP3 stereo for around $100 including installation. – Johnny Jun 17 '13 at 14:22
that's more a matter of personal opinion or going around the problem not resolving the issue. – cinelli Jun 18 '13 at 3:54
That's why I added it as a comment instead of an "answer"... Replacing an 8 year old stereo with a new one is a valid option. But whether or not it's a solution depends on whether the real problem is "My stereo stopped working because I forgot the code, how can I play music in my car again" or if it's "I really like my car stereo, but I forgot the code, how do I make it work again". – Johnny Jun 19 '13 at 19:46

I used a code generator downloaded from this site and it worked fine:

If you got the right model and know the radio serial number (written on the radio when you pull it out. You can buy the keys off ebay for a couple of pounds ( its worth a go.

share|improve this answer
I would never dare to run that EXE file on my PC and if you like your credit card data you should not either. – daniel.sedlacek Sep 24 '13 at 15:18

If you have the time, you could always try brute-forcing it. There are 10000 possible combinations if it's a 4 digit code, but if you take some liberties, like starting at 7000, you might get lucky.

This is not the best solution, but it certainly IS one.

share|improve this answer

As with odometer fraud and disabling the immobilizer there is always the option to desolder the EEPROM in the radio, put it in a programmer, dump it and look through it with a hex editor to find where the code is or just modify the firmware to completely bypass the code check.

share|improve this answer

You got to check some number and the brand on the backside of the radio, all car radio can be unlocked by keygens, and all are not malware.

share|improve this answer

protected by Community Apr 16 '15 at 1:57

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.