I searched everywhere for this. I finally found it on another forum,
but the writer said it only applied to 1998 1999 2000 2001 and 2002
Buick Regal models. I just programmed my remotes for a 2003. Here are
the full instructions for programming a key fob for anyone who's
I bought my remotes from Remotes 4 You at
http://www.shoppalstores.com/remotes4u /. I paid $20 per remote plus $6
for shipping. Shipping took about 5 days. Compared to the $160 the
dealer wanted to charge me, it was a steal.
Please note that in step 6, the LOCK position just indicates that you
need to leave the key in the ignition.
1) Sit in the drivers seat
2) Remove key from ignition cylinder
3) Close all the doors
4) Press and hold the UNLOCK on the door lock switch
5) While holding the door lock switch in the UNLOCK position, insert
and remove the ignition key twice. DO NOT ROTATE THE IGNITION CYLINDER.
6) Insert the ignition key a third time, leaving the key in the
ignition cylinder. The ignition MUST remain in the LOCK position for
the rest of the procedure.
7) Release the door lock switch. You will hear 3 chimes. This chime
feedback indicates the transmitter programming is active.
8) Press and hold the LOCK and UNLOCK buttons on the remote for 12
seconds. You will hear two chimes. This chime feedback indicates the
transmitter has been accepted.
9) Repeat step 8 for each additional transmitter
10) Remove ignition key from cylinder to exit programming.
11) Verify functions of remotes.
I just programmed my Regal's remotes and am now looking for a spare
ignition key. The dealer that wanted $160 for two remotes wants to
charge me up the ass for a spare key. I found a few suppliers online,
though. Since many GM cars, including mine, have a chip in the key, I
have to do a little extra work to get a spare. The ignition key has a
resistor embedded in it. The resistor has one of 15 settings and is
read by the ignition switch. GM calls the system VATS, Vehicle
Anti-Theft System. Here are the instructions for determining which
type of key you'll need.
There are two ways to determine which VATS key you have. Your key can
be read using a VATS tester. Most locksmiths have these readers, and
don't charge anything to read your key. If you have a volt meter,
you can determine your VATS value yourself. Set your meter to 20K
Ohms. Touch each lead of the volt meter to each side of the chip in
your key. Match the value on your meter to the list below. The value
you read may not be exactly one of the values here. Just pick the one
This works for any Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GM or Pontiac that uses
VATS. If you have a VATS key, you'll see a small black plastic box
embedded in your key with a metal contact on either side.
VATS -- Ohms
1 -- 0.402
2 -- 0.523
3 -- 0.681
4 -- 0.887
5 -- 1.130
6 -- 1.470
7 -- 1.870
8 -- 2.370
9 -- 3.010
10 -- 3.740
11 -- 4.750
12 -- 6.040
13 -- 7.500
14 -- 9.530
15 -- 11.801
A lot of Google searching
I suppose I should have posted the original URL's ...
I found the keyless programming instructions at
www.automotiveforums.com, but I can't find that thread again.
I first learned about the VATS stuff from a company that sells a bypass
for remote start systems here http://www.drdetailshop.com/gmpellet.htm .
After some more searching, I found an eBay seller who listed the
instructions for finding the VATS value here
I'm not sure about whether that eBay seller has a great value, though.
At $23 for a key plus $15 for additional keys, I think I'll shop
around. $10 for shipping?! For a key?!! I think not.
Good info, but 1 minor correction: the resistor pellet values, as you
innumerated them, are in kilo-ohms. For example, the VATS Key #2 is
0.523 KILOohms (523 ohms).
Also, according to GM, a valid resistor pellet should measure within
2% of the resistance value in the chart, though the VATS decoder will
function with resistor pellets as far as +/- 5% from nominal value.
In this area most locksmiths charge $25 including cutting for a VATS
key: I found that out the hard way when I bought my 1994 Regal. AND,
that is assuming you know what the code is. I've seen the key blanks
on eBay for as little as $3.00.
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