This article will shed some light on how to bypass Ford PATS without key. Now before we get into the details, you need to know what exactly is PATS. The full form of PATS is a passive anti-theft system. It is a very important system introduced by Ford to improve the safety of your Ford vehicle.
Even though some might see it as a useful way of keeping the car safe, some people have faced problems with this system. This system does not allow people to easily replace the ignition key. Hence this article will focus on how to work around it.
The whole point of the passive anti-locking system is to prevent anyone from starting the vehicle if they do not have the original key with the transponder chip. This can be extremely problematic at times and can be a cause of concern, especially if you have lost the original car keys with the transponder chip.
Without the original key, you will not be able to bypass it. Therefore, if you have lost or broken your original key (in which case, you’ll have to consider learning how to open car door without key), you might have the question, “how to bypass Ford PATS without key” in mind, in addition to how can I start my car without a fob.
Only if you have the original key, is there a way to permanently bypass the PATS system. Alongside that, we will also shed some light on the different things you can do to tackle this problem.
- PATS System
- Ford Anti-Theft System Reset
- Transponder Key Bypass
- Ford Passive Anti-Theft System Disabled
- Signs Of A Failed PATS Module
- Final Conclusion
- Frequently Asked Questions
PATS or more commonly known as the passive anti-locking system was introduced by Ford was introduced in 1996. As the name suggests, it is an anti-theft safety system for all the Ford cars that are produced. Ford’s PATS system is also known as the Securilock or just a simple engine immobilizer.
The basic understanding of how this system works is that it acts as an anti-theft countermeasure to ensure that the car can only be accessed through the original key. This helps in preventing thefts through lock picking. Even if someone has copied the original key or an identical key to the original, they still would not be able to start the car.
To be able to understand this system better, you need to know about the components that form the Passive Anti-theft System. The system consists of components like an encoded ignition key, transceiver module, powertrain control module, theft indicator, and instrument cluster.
How Does The PATS System Work
To better understand the PATS system, you need to know how it works. The encoded ignition key has a small chip inside called the transponder chip. This particular chip emits a unique RFID, also known as the Radio Frequency Identification signal. This chip does not require batteries and it can last a lifetime.
When the encoded key is inserted into the ignition, the signal that is emitted from the chip is received by a small antenna. This antenna is placed inside the steering wheel column shroud. When the key is turned to start the engine, the antenna picks up the signal. Once the signal is picked up, information is sent to the transceiver module.
The signal is then passed on to the instrument cluster and the powertrain control module. If the unique frequency signal matches the car, the powertrain control module will allow the car to turn on. All of these communications are made over the standard corporate protocol communication network.
The system is paired permanently, and it is almost impossible to hack this system. Even with the battery being disconnected, the internal memory of the vehicle will remember this unique frequency. Only the correct RFID can allow the car to start.
For any attempt to start the vehicle without the correctly encoded key, a theft indicator will appear on the dashboard. Even though it is almost impossible to bypass the RFID system, there is a chance of bypassing the system. Hence this is some insight into the problem, “bypass Ford PATS system without key”.
Ford Anti Theft System Reset
If someone tried to start your vehicle with a duplicate of the original key without the transponder key the PATS security system will be triggered. The transponder or the PATS key is programmed to a specific vehicle.
This usually causes a red light to flash faster than usual on the dash. Usually, this mode remains until either the original key is used or 15 minutes have passed. If neither the original key nor waiting 15 minutes works, then it is the engine immobilizer (be mindful of any immobilizer problems) that has been activated within the time frame.
This would cause your vehicle to be rendered immovable. Once this happens, you need to reset the whole PATS system. This reset only needs to be done if you have tried using the PATS key or you have waited 15 minutes.
You need to follow some steps to reset the PATS system. First what you need to do is insert the PATS key into the ignition and turn the engine on. If it does not turn on, you need to wait 15 minutes. There will be a flashing red light on the dash to inform you about these 15 minutes. Once done, then try both keys again.
If your vehicle still fails when you try to start it, you need to make some changes under the hood. Firstly you need to raise the hood and disconnect the battery for about 15 minutes. After that, you need to reconnect the battery and try this whole process again.
Transponder Key Bypass
Now that you have an idea of how the PATS safety system works, we will talk about how to bypass this system when you have damaged the transponder key. You will still need the RFID chip from the original key to bypass the system. Your vehicle would not start without a signal from the transponder chip.
Original keys are often referred to as the chip key or the transponder. You have to remember that your vehicle will not start without a signal emitting from the chip. Although, our guide on how to start my car without a chip key shows that there are some workarounds.
Otherwise, if you do not own an original key, you will need that chip to start your vehicle. Before we get to bypass the PATS system, you need to make a copy of the original key that will fit into the ignition. Here are some of the tools you will need to get done with this job.
You would be in need of a new key, that matches the shape and size of the original key. Secondly, you’re going to need a flathead screwdriver to remove the chip from the original key. Lastly, ducktape is the savior gluing the chip near the ignition.
It is important to know that bypassing the PATS system for a Ford car is not the permanent solution you hoped for. The security of your vehicle is obviously compromised. Ensure to get a new chip with a new RFID to protect your vehicle from getting stolen. The following steps will help you bypass Ford PATS without key.
Bypass Ford PATS Without Key, Step 1
The first step for bypassing your PATS system is to cut the new keys. The new keys that you made or get made, must definitely match the original key. You can also take your old key to the dealer so that they can have the new key cut to match the original keys.
Once the duplicate matches the main key as much as possible, it will trick your system into thinking that you have the correct key. The duplicate key will cause the system to think that you have the right key to start the vehicle. You still do not have the transponder chip to bypass the PATS system. This is when the screwdriver comes into play.
Bypass Ford PATS Without Key, Step 2
Once you have the RFID chip alongside the matching key, you are ready to bypass the PATS systems on a Ford vehicle. If you are able to take the transponder chip from the original key with the chip undamaged, you will have everything needed to bypass the PATS system. Here is how you can take out the chip and the key.
Firstly you need to take a flathead screwdriver and carefully try to open the black box on top of the key. You should not apply too much pressure to avoid damaging the chip. Once the box is open, take out the transponder from the original key. Once you have the transponder key, you are ready to set bypass Ford PATS without key.
Bypass Ford PATS Without Key, Step 3
Once you are done will the steps listed above, which is a make duplicate match to the original key and the transponder key. Once you have these two items you can bypass the Ford PATS system with the following steps.
The first step is to put the transponder close to the ignition so that the RFID can match the signal saved on the car. Once that is done, insert the key in the ignition and start the vehicle. Unless… You have an issue where the key is stuck in the ignition, or if the key won’t turn in the ignition.
If your vehicle does not start on the first try, try repositioning the transponder chip so that it can be easily read. It does take a few tries to make sure the right place to put the chip. Once you have the correct spot, you can mount the transponder chip and use duct tape to hold it into the correct spot.
This is how to successfully bypass your Ford’s PATS system. You can continue doing so for as long as you get it permanently fixed. This is not a permanent fix because it makes your car valuable to being stolen. Also if you end up damaging the transponder chip, the PATS system will not allow you to start your vehicle.
What you now need to do is get a new key from the dealership that will be reprogrammed to work with the vehicle. We will know about how to disable the PATS system later on in this article.
Ford Passive Anti Theft System Disabled
Before that, feel free to head over to our guide on how to program a Dodge key fob without a working one to get an idea of how it all works. Dodge or Ford, the process is roughly similar. We also have a couple of articles on key fob programming near me and how to program a key fob to shed more light on this.
Disabling the PATS system on your Ford increases the risk of your car getting stolen. It is absolutely not recommended to do this as it can put your car in a compromising position.
But if you are keen on resetting the Fords PATS system, here is how you can disable the passive anti-theft system. This will help you get over the problem of, “bypass Ford PATS without key” and in general, look at how to turn the ignition without a key.
Bypass Ford PATS Without Key #1: Wrap Wire Around The Key
This is the first step of disabling the Ford PATS system. What you need to do is wrap a standard piece of wire around the key. Once you have done that make sure to use the ducktape to make sure that this said piece stays there. You will need a key that has a transponder to make sure that it can communicate with the PATS module.
Bypass Ford PATS Without Key #2: Connect To The Module
The second step to disable the PATS system is to connect the module. Most Ford cars usually have their PATS module placed behind the steering wheel. Now what you want to do is open the steering column so that you can get access to it easily.
After that look for a wire that connects it to the ignition. That’s the wire that powers the transponder. It is responsible for sending a signal to the PATS module to start the vehicle.
Bypass Ford PATS Without Key #3: Fix The Wiring
Now that you have located the wire that powers the PATS system. You need to disconnect this wire to disable the PATS system. You should not drive around like this as it can make you look a bit sketchy. Make sure to make the wiring clean in case you get pulled over while driving.
Signs Of A Failed PATS Module
It can be extremely frustrating when your vehicle does not start and you do not know the root cause of the problem. The problem can be with the PATS module or with the ignition. If you know how to check your PATS module, that should be the first thing you should check.
If you don’t know how to, here is a list of signs of a failed PATS module.
1. Flashing Theft Light
One of the most common signs of a failed PATS system is the theft light. The theft light will be constantly blinking if you put in your key in and the vehicle does not recognize it. In this case, you need to get the key programmed and then start your vehicle. The flashing theft light is the main sign of a failed PATS module.
Note, this light isn’t just exclusive to Fords. If you own a Nissan, you might be familiar with that car with a key symbol on your Nissan dashboard. Otherwise, a security or anti-theft light would show up as a blinking red light on the dashboard of most other cars.
If you put in an original key, that was programmed for the vehicle, the theft light would stop flashing and stay solid for a few seconds. The light should turn off when you take out the key from the ignition. This is also a symptom of a failed PATS module.
If you’re keen on trying to disable the anti-theft mode, there are some ways that you can do this. We’ve previously covered it in two separate guides, both on how to disengage the anti theft system, as well as how do I get my car out of anti theft mode.
2. The Engine Doesn’t Crank
If the engine of your vehicle, does not crank alongside the flashing theft light, you’re in the clear and there is definitely something wrong with your PATS system. You have more reason to believe that the PATS module is malfunctioning. In some cases, the engine will crank but the car would not start, especially if you have a failing PATS system.
3. Stalling Engine
If the engine of your Ford stalls immediately within a couple of seconds after you start your vehicle, there can be an issue with the PATS safety module. Before you take your tools and start taking the ignition on your steering column, get your PATS system checked by a professional.
If you know how to check the PATS system for malfunctioning, do so before coming to a conclusion. If you can start the car by solving or getting around the PATS you should do that before you show your vehicle to a professional
As said before, the Ford PATS system is a safety feature that keeps your car safe. To help you understand the PATS system better, you have to understand that this system only allows the original key to start the vehicle. There is a transponder chip inside the original key of your vehicle. This chip emits a particular and very light radio signal.
There is an RFID reader in the car. Hence when the original key is put into the ignition, the radio frequency connects with the transponder chip and only then allows the engine to crank. If anyone tries to duplicate car keys with chips and use them to start their Ford, the engine will not turn on (or if you’ve lost them, you’ll have to learn how to start a car without a key).
Even though this is an amazing safety feature, if you lose or break the key, turning on your vehicle can be a nightmare. Hence here is everything you need to know, “bypass Ford PATS without key”. Or, if you have a similar problem with your GM-branded vehicle, check out our guide on how to permanently disable the GM PassLock system.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here is a list of common questions that people have related to the question, “bypass Ford PATS without key”.
How To Hotwire A Car With A Chip Key
We hope that you do not use this information for bad and be responsible with this important piece of information. Now to hotwire a vehicle, you need to remove the plastic cover and the steering column. Once that is exposed you can easily locate the ignition switch. You might need to look around a bit. You can open this plastic cover with the help of just a screwdriver. The most important part of hotwiring a vehicle is to figure out which connector is doing what. The three connectors are the battery, ignition, and starter. Once with the help of a manual, you have understood which wire does what, you need to cut and strip these wires. Connect the battery and the ignition wire and see if the lights on the dash turn on. Once that is done hold the starter and battery cable to crank the engine.
How To Bypass Ford PATS System Without Key
As stated before in this article, it is extremely difficult to bypass Ford PATS system without key. To do this you would need the transponder chip, if you do not have the original key or your original key is broken. To take this transponder chip out, you would need a screwdriver. This tool will help you to open the key and carefully take out the chip. Once that is done, you need to make a duplicate set of keys to bypass the system. The next thing that you need to do is place the transponder chip on the steering column. You would need to move the chip a little bit, for it to connect to the RFID transmitter. Once you find the perfect spot, use ducktape to place the chip over there. You can then further use the duplicate keys to start the car.
How To Reset Anti Theft System Ford
The first thing you need to do is use a duplicate key to trigger the PATS system before you start resetting it. This usually causes a red light to flash faster than usual on the dash. Usually, this mode remains until either the original key is used or 15 minutes have passed. If neither the original key nor the 15 minutes wait does not work, then it is the security engine immobilizer has been activated. Once this happens you can start to reset the PATS system. Once that is done, you need to do is insert the PATS key into the ignition and turn the engine on. If it does not turn on, you need to wait 15 minutes. There will be a flashing red light on the dash to inform you about these 15 minutes. Once done, then try both keys again.
How Much Does It Cost To Reset Anti-Theft System
As said before, resetting the PATS system can be extremely problematic. Most of the time doing this as a DIY project can not only cause more problems, but you might end up harming your vehicle. It is always better for a professional at the dealership to do so. Another thing you should know is, only certain mechanics and dealerships are allowed to reset the PATS system. The cost of resetting the anti-theft system on your Ford car usually depends upon the make and model of your car. In most cases, you can expect to pay a few hundred dollars to have the system reset by the professional.