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Lily&Me 01-16-2019 02:16 PM

NEVER leave w/o spare key!
So I stopped for fuel this morning, and my key snapped in half.:huh:

Fortunately, not while still in the ignition.

Stuck at a fuel pump since about 10:30 am.

Spare is usually in the bottom of my bag, but it is not. Probably took it out to wash the bag, and it is in my jewelry box or some such place.

Not a small feat to get a new key made for these rigs, no locksmiths in the area have the blade, nor the Dodge dealership, it is being sent overnight from Houston and I will have a new key tomorrow, but not one that fits in the fob....that is a whole nother issue, the fob with key is an $800+ part...tho I have a fob, it is just the key that is broken.

This process has taken the last 4 hours, and I am about to be towed from the gas station to the campground across the street.

Annoying and frustrating, but a small matter in the great scheme of things. :innocent:

Never, ever, leave home without your spare key!


rowiebowie 01-16-2019 02:36 PM

Good advice. I have hide-a-keys on all my vehicles and for my house. If I can just remember where I hid them.:).


Alex AVI 01-16-2019 02:49 PM


Originally Posted by Lily&Me (Post 2200514)
Never, ever, leave home without your spare key!


MAGGIE - Very sorry to hear. I happen to be one of those who thinks they will not forget their key locked inside the van and knock wood I have not (yet). But this puts a different twist (no pun intended) on the key issue. Thanks for warning. I will take your advice and ROWIEBOWIE and hide one inside and have another made so my wife carries the spare. Great advice.

OTRA15 01-16-2019 04:00 PM

Sorry for your troubles Maggie!

"Spare key" in the singular?

Multiple spare keys IMO, including:

-- one hidden outside the vehicle, which can at least get a door open;
.....[and maybe not operate the ignition if possible -- in "the old days," there were separate keys for this :)];
-- at least one well-hidden inside the vehicle;
-- an exterior electronic touch pad if possible to retro-fit;
-- one in your pants pocket [usually a male location], and/or in the purse [mostly female IMO -- forgive the generalizations!];
-- a duplicate to be carried by any passenger or partner-in-travel on their person.
-- a master spare at home and/or with kids/GC.


Wait . . . does this add up to something like 6 or so?

So be it!

Cheap insurance IMO.


PS -- "Spare keys" results here --

Alex AVI 01-16-2019 04:20 PM

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Not affiliated with this, just found it after searching alternatives (outside of expensive MB dealership) where I can get more keys to heed MAGGIE's advice. There are 3 very close to my house. And checked OC in So. Cal. where we frequently go and they have much more. They seem to have franchises all over the USA. Never heard of them before but headed there tomo. They come out on-site 24x7 too.

rmkrum 01-16-2019 04:26 PM

We have a combination lock spare key holder on the Airstream with spare door keys to get into the trailer. The necessary data to unlock the box is stashed in multiple locations about our persons, and available by phone call if need be. This key box is mounted with bolts very securely to the AS (in an undisclosed, concealed location...) A spare complete set of tow vehicle keys are stashed inside in the Airstream in a well known location.

DW carries a spare set of TV keys on her person. Main TV driving key set is either in the ignition or clipped to my person on a key ring set with a sturdy carabiner clip on it..

Don't forget that spare key sets should include one for your tonneau cover or shell, the gas cap, and any hitch locks and compartment doors you may also need to get into if the master driving key set goes missing.

Locksmith charges to get into your vehicle may be covered by AAA, but they may not get lucky...

Lily&Me 01-16-2019 04:30 PM

I wasn’t locked out, the key had broken in half. Not sure exactly how that happened, I found it in two pieces.

I do have a spare, on a fob, at home, and my son is going over to retrieve it this evening, in case I need him to overnite it to me. :huh:

I’ve never had one of those little magnetic boxes, perhaps need to get one.

The locksmith explained the Sprinter Van/Mercedes engine issue with the key, making them special in some way, as in not necessarily readily available.

Then something about the key in the fob having to be programmed, the vehicle having to be present to do made my eyes cross. :huh:

I will get a key without a fob, but which must be used with the fob near the ignition, or it won’t work.

People apparently tape the replacement key to the fob?



Alex AVI 01-16-2019 04:44 PM


Originally Posted by rmkrum (Post 2200540)
This key box is mounted with bolts very securely to the AS (in an undisclosed, concealed location...)

RMKRUM - The great thing about the AS or AI is it is so large with so many hiding cavities, that a key box (or just a plain flat door key to get to the other keys inside) can be literally in thousands of locations that even a pro thief won't be able to find. And since it's a "break in case of emergency only" location anyways, people will never see you access it vs. the "leave spare key under doormat" folk's predictable hiding locations.

Lily&Me 01-16-2019 04:48 PM

Speaking of multiple spares, these are not like traditional keys, and apparently only work in conjunction with the fob...and fob+key is an $800+ part.


Alex AVI 01-16-2019 05:03 PM


Originally Posted by Lily&Me (Post 2200549)
$800+ part.


OUCH! You gotta love Benz. I love their cars but they still gouge us for the privilege of loving them :lol:

az-streamer 01-16-2019 06:23 PM

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Attachment 331861

Itís not a matter of if- it a matter of when.

Minimum three sets: one in your pocket when outside the AS or on a key hook when you are inside. One set in the tow vehicle. One set secured somewhere on the outside of the AS.

Likewise an extra set of TV keys inside the AS.

Lily&Me 01-16-2019 06:43 PM


What are these keys made of, that they break?

I think mine was on the drivers seat, and I sat on it...a soft surface, and Iím not gi-normous. :bb:


bweybright 01-16-2019 06:59 PM

Deep breath, then remember one word: Adventure
This all part of why do this....right?
Of course some adventures are best left for dreams and not having to live through. Good luck getting it all fixed and back on your trail.

Lily&Me 01-16-2019 07:31 PM

Thank you, and I do realize it is a small thing in the great scheme of things...and while I have been I think remarkably calm today :lol:, it is nonetheless frustrating to find oneself absolutely immobilized for want of a key that cannot be readily replaced. :bb:

My son is unable to find the spare at home, and I fear I squirreled it away somewhere in here, only to forget where I put it. :huh:


Tomorrow I should have a replacement, and be on my way, and I will be grateful for the sweet tow truck guys and the diligence of the locksmith who tracked down a blank. :)


bweybright 01-16-2019 07:46 PM

From your past posts you are a wonderful person, someone I try and need to be more like.
I am sure the people you had contact with today for help were more than happy to do so, and felt good about themselves after helping you.
So not to derail this thread - inquiring minds want to know: where off to?

brick1 01-16-2019 08:09 PM

I have a spare set of all keys to the Airstream in the TV. I have a spare TV key in the Airstream. And TV has keypad entry, so covered all around.

Hiho Silver 01-16-2019 09:04 PM

When I lost my FOB and key for my 2018 F150 the dealership price was outrageous. Luckily I was home and talked to my locksmith who suggested They sell the real Ford FOB, not a copy. Only $79 for new Ford FOB with key. Locksmith charged $35 for programming and cutting of provided blank key. I did have another FOB and key available, which makes a big difference for programming I think.

Lily&Me 01-17-2019 05:08 AM

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Originally Posted by bweybright (Post 2200616)
From your past posts you are a wonderful person, someone I try and need to be more like.
I am sure the people you had contact with today for help were more than happy to do so, and felt good about themselves after helping you.
So not to derail this thread - inquiring minds want to know: where off to?

Thank you, and I try to be a good person, am always a work in progress. :lol:

The tow guys from Fat Boy Towing were lovely, the owner a rather big, burly guy with a nurturing, very considerate approach which prompted me to hug him thank you and goodbye. Donít come across those types just every day.

Assuming I get out of here today, I am going to visit fellow Airstreamers for a night, who have invited me to use their courtesy parking. :)

These Sprinter Van/Mercedes keys for our Interstates apparently are not your basic trailer nor TV key, which is why this is in the Class B sub forum.

I donít understand all the tech gobbledygook, but thereís something about a chip in the key, maybe, and the key and fob having to be programmed to work together. ???

The key itself is difficult to replace, but if you donít have the fob with it the key will not work.

Iím going to have to tape the key to the fob, apparently.

And, keep looking for my spare. :innocent:

If I had to be immediately immobilized, at least this didnít occur on a rural road where I had stopped to let Lily run in a cemetery, or some other out of the way place.

Iím still incredulous that it snapped in half.



InterBlog 01-17-2019 05:56 AM

MB will cut a fobless T1N key for about $70. I use that as my spare when Iím traveling solo. IIRC they call it a Mickey Mouse key internally.

They donít like to cut them - they prefer people to pay for the whole fob. But they will do it upon request.

Lily&Me 01-17-2019 06:34 AM

Thanks for that, IB, and I am going to be sure to have a spare to my spare.

No MB dealership near me, but hopefully what the locksmith cuts will work just fine.


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