What is Keyless Entry and How does it Work

Over the years, security systems have evolved. With time locking mechanisms have seen some changes. Now there are more advanced locking mechanisms. One of those is the keyless entry system.
For someone that is wondering what keyless entry is, it is a form of lock that does not require a key to operate. The lock is operated by remote control or by using a keypad. It is most commonly known for use with car locks. That has however changed with more locking systems using this particular mode of operation. From door locks to padlocks, the system has proven to be very efficient.

Keyless entry can also be referred to as remote keyless system or remote central locking. When it comes to an automobile, the system can be used for the door locks as well as the ignition. With this particular system, there is no contact with the lock. A lock can be opened from a distance away. This means that if it’s a garage door, you wouldn’t have to leave your car to open it. This system usually involves a button which is pushed to allow for any number of functions.  The button is programmed to unlock/lock the car doors and to open the car trunk.

The functioning of keyless entry systems

Understanding the process it takes to operate a keyless entry helps a lot. When you know how a system works, handling it becomes easier.

The functioning of a keyless entry system requires transmission of radio waves. It is through the radio waves that coded signals are sent from the button to the receiver in the lock. There is a chip in the transmitter which creates the code. The receiver and the transmitter are tuned to the same frequency, usually 300 or 400 depending on where a car is made.

The code system on the fob of the remote has changed over the years. This is because the single code system that was used did not provide adequate security. With the single code system, a specific code was programmed into the transmitter and the receiver. When the code was sent from the transmitter, it would be recognized by the receiver and allow for a specific operation. That specific code could only work on the corresponding receiver. With the single code system however, it was possible to intercept the code that was being sent to a certain receiver. The intercepted code could then be retransmitted to the receiver and allow for unlocking and locking. This weakness is why the code system changed.

Keyless entry systems now use more complex codes to provide better security. The rolling code system makes it nearly impossible to interfere with the transmission. With a rolling or hopping code, there are over a trillion possible codes to use. Every time the button is pressed, a different code is used. The way this works is that the transmitter is equipped with a memory chip. This memory chip stores the codes and the receiver has the same codes stored too. When a button is pressed on the remote, it sends out the system codes. If the receiver recognizes those codes, then it allows the requested function. The codes in the transmitter are selected randomly. The pseudo-random number generator allows for this. When the code is picked by the transmitter, the receiver uses the same generator to pick a code. This allows for the receivers and the transmitter to be synchronized. There are also keyless systems for ignitions. It works by indentifying the codes that are transmitted and allowing for the ignition to start.

Another function that can be controlled with keyless systems is the opening of a car trunk. This is made possible through the hydraulic strut which allows the trunk springs to open when the button is pushed. In some car models, the trunk has to be closed manually once it’s opened. There are models now that allow for the use of a remote to both open and close the trunk.

Safety of keyless entry systems

One thing that you probably want to know is; is keyless entry safe.

Over the years, the these systems has gotten some major upgrades. This has provided for better security for locks. The use of rolling codes has made these systems more secure. The fact that a random system is used to pick which codes are to be transmitted has made it hard to crack into the system. There is no way of telling which code is coming next on the transmission. However, there is still some way to hack into the system, for someone determined enough. This is why there are encryptions included in the code system. A high level encryption has made for more secure keyless entry systems.

Another factor to consider is that manufacturers are using different systems when it comes to developing keyless entry. The number of bits used when it comes to the code system is also important – the more bits, the higher the number of possible codes. With this system, the possibility of one transmitter opening another car’s locks is nearly improbable. With a 40-bit code, there are so many possibilities. This means that trying to scan the codes would take ages so that is out of the question.

Why use keyless entry

Keyless entry systems provide better security especially for cars. The system is easy to operate. The remote is usually labeled with the button functions. All you have to do is press a particular button for a specific function. This is also convenient. It saves you the trouble of fumbling at your car door trying getting it open. It takes less time and less energy. Even if you have your hands full, you can still manage to get your car door open.

When it comes to keyless entry on garage doors, it saves you the trouble of manually opening the garage door. This is very convenient especially at night. One doesn’t need to get out of their car to get into the garage.

Do you still wonder what does keyless entry actually mean?

The short answer is a way to open a lock without the need for an actual key.

This can either be in the form of using a remote as mentioned in the previous sections or it can be in the form of using a keypad or a numbers pad. As is often the case with keyless doors for your home or with keyless padlocks.