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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.

  • Read the title and the first thing that came to mind was that scene from the movie Zoolander: "The files are in the computer?" – MooseLucifer Oct 13 '16 at 15:19
4

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.

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    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
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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.

  • 3
    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
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    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
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I used a code generator downloaded from this site and it worked fine: http://www.freefordradiocode.co.uk/.

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 (http://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/i.html?_trksid=p2050601.m570.l1311.R1.TR4.TRC2.A0.Xford+radio+rem&_nkw=ford+radio+removal+tool&_sacat=0&_from=R40) its worth a go.

I can't work out which number is the code I need to input. Any ideas? See picenter image description here

  • The code generator works fine and is safe and simple, no installation required. – Rob Kam Dec 4 '16 at 21:22
  • The calculator for the A, C and L calculator on that site no longer works. Does anyone else have it? – Hashim Jan 10 '17 at 19:45
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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.

  • If only that were true. Most radio units I've heard of only allow for 10 incorrect entries before it's locked for good and needs to be taken to a dealership to unlock it. Which makes me wonder what exactly the dealerships do to unlock them... – Hashim Jan 10 '17 at 19:52
  • So they're smarter than a satellite TV decoder? Ah well. – Captain Kenpachi Jan 11 '17 at 7:54
  • Why, satellite TV decoders don't have an anti-brute force mechanism? That's interesting. What tools are used to brute force them, if you don't mind me asking? – Hashim Jan 11 '17 at 17:55
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    20 years ago I spent about 90 minutes "guessing" the parental control PIN on our's so I could watch Basic Instinct with my 14 year old friends. – Captain Kenpachi Jan 12 '17 at 14:36
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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.

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This works for Jag radios up to roughly end 2005 : Enter any code 3 times so that the display shows "PLEASE WAIT"

Simultaneously press ">>" "PTY" "A.MEM" should only take 2 or 3 seconds and the radio turns on.

Worked on mine (end 2005)...

MAY work on Ford radios as they probably used the same innards.

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You got to check some number and the brand on the backside of the radio, most car radios can be unlocked by keygens, except for instance Clarion PP3001M, and not all keygens are malware.

protected by Community Apr 16 '15 at 1:57

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