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Old July 21st, 2009, 09:55   #1
Keven
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Default Flip key went through the wash, can I fix it or do I need to replace it?

My VW key went through the wash about a month ago and stopped working. I took the key apart right away and let it dry while I went out of the country until now. Well I just put it back together hoping that it would be good to go but it isnt. Tried switching batteries too. Can it be fixed? Thanks!
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Old July 21st, 2009, 10:06   #2
RamMan4x4
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in my experience, water+circuit boards = new paperweight...but I suppose if you know your way around a board you might be able to fix it. New keyfobs plus programming gets pretty expensive. Do a search on this site, you should be able to find more info.
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Old July 21st, 2009, 10:12   #3
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Clarify for us:

The Key does not start the vehicle.

The key starts the vehicle, but the remote does not work.

Thanks! I know a GTI driver who has washed both fobs many times and it still locks/unlocks the car, just the fob itself is toasted -- an easily replaced/programmed. The key itself is not so easy to cut and program.
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Old July 21st, 2009, 12:21   #4
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My guess:

Quote:
Originally Posted by kcfoxie
The key starts the vehicle, but the remote does not work.

The fob is actually two parts... the switchblade and immobilizer chip are in one section and the remote is in the other. The immobilizer chip is passive, the part with the circuit board and battery is the remote and is what will fry under water.

VW will sell you just the remote part... you can get 'em on eBay as well as well as other suppliers. If you have two working remotes still you can program the new one yourself, if not you'll need to search a bit (I believe there's a Vag Com way to adapt the new remote) or get VW to do it.

The immobilizer end is the one that's a PIA to reprogram, so from that persepective you're in luck!
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Old July 26th, 2009, 14:41   #5
Keven
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The key that went through the wash still unlocks the car and starts the car, just the keyless entry does not work. So if I buy just the back half of the key with the buttons, I should be able to use it and program it with my other key? Any third party keys I should stay away from?
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Old July 26th, 2009, 15:42   #6
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You got it!

Pull the bottom half from the top half, it does come apart. You can see the divider line on the front of the key.

Just ensure to get a remote for your year model range and you should be ok. Use your good key as the master key and follow this here:

Insert master key into the ignition lock & switch on the ignition (do not start car).
Using second key lock the vehicle from the outside manually (use key in door lock).
Press unlock button on the remote control one time, wait at least two seconds or more.
Press unlock button on the remote control one time, wait at least two seconds or more.
Manually open car using key in door lock.
Remove key from ignition.
Test your remote.

If you don't have a master key, there is a vagcom list that you can check for someone local to program the key with vagcom.
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Old July 26th, 2009, 21:39   #7
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I also ran mine through the wash and it work with a battery replacement, a few weeks later, the girlfriend did the same to her Beetles key and would you believe it works fine with no repair and hers was SOAKING in the washer overnight!!
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Old July 26th, 2009, 21:42   #8
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I have washed mine before, replaced the battery and its back to normal. Hit up the watch stand at the mall!!!
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Old July 27th, 2009, 09:56   #9
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It all depends on how much corrosion happens to the circuit board. I've run one through the wash a couple of times, but quickly disassembled the unit, carefully wiped the battery cells, watching for corrosion across the seams. Then make sure the contacts on the circuit board are clean, everything is really dry, reassembled, and...

no workie. Rats.

Problem solution was to reverse the cells and put them back in the way they were intended.
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Old July 27th, 2009, 12:03   #10
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Mine survived the washing machine. I took it apart and let it dry on a sunny window sill for a few days. It still works fine... and it's still on the original battery.
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Old July 27th, 2009, 16:46   #11
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This happened to mine just 2 months ago. I thought I had dried mine out enough to get it to work but it wasnt. It was still wet underneith the circuit board. What I did, aand I only did this because I thought it was already ruined, but I took it apart and removed the circuit board, took the batteries out, I poured some 90% Isopropyl alcohol in it and on the circuit board. After that I let it dry a minute, and then I dried all the parts with a har dryer held about 2 feet away on medium and let it dry out - you dont want it to get too hot. I put everything back together...and it works - YMMV though.
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