• car stuck in anti-theft mode while trying to start it with unpaired key. I've changed keyfob battery, which unpaired the key, pairing key put the car in an anti-theft mode.


  • resetting the battery - kept disconnected from + all night, and 30 min intervals
  • holding panic button
  • keeping drivers door lock cylinder in open position with mechanic key

What happens:

  • car does not react at all
  • dashboard is not lighting up as before, only speed tick dials turn white
  • locks on doors lock/unlock electronically when using mechanic door key
  • everything else is dead

1 Answer 1


Few things here.

-Changing the battery in a remote or proximity key should NOT loose any type of programming. The data is kept in non-volatile memory (designed to retain data regardless of power status). Its more likely you damaged the remote/prox then it losing memory.

-Trying to start a car with an unpaired key does not put it in any type of permanent theft mode. It will only disallow starting for that key and/or make the noisy alarm go off. Once a paired key is used or you program the unpaired key everything would be normal. This fob can only be paired diagnostically.

I suggest to first make sure your cars battery is charged and making good connections. I see many times people just have a low battery and think their keys are bad. If battery is good then call a local reputable locksmith or mobile programmer to program the key, replace defective key and if problem remains then they should be able to narrow it down a little with data from scan tool.

  • 1
    This was exactly it. I ended up towing to dealership, and they just changed the car battery. Its a coincidence that car said it doesn't see the key after its battery replaced, and then while trying to pair it - car died flat. Since I didn't know how car behaves in anti-theft mode, I assumes this was it
    – Dmitry
    Oct 27, 2021 at 20:24
  • Glad you got it sorted out. thanks for the update!
    – narkeleptk
    Oct 27, 2021 at 23:08

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