Question about 1999 Suzuki Vitara

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Electrical Trouble after losing the original keys

Replaced the keys with a key cut to the original specification. Tried both Chipped versions and unchipped.

The Ignition light comes on and the starter motor operates turning the engine over. It will not start, so suspect that a immobiliser is present.

I have a spark on the leads, so suspect the petrol pump is isolated.

Which relay operates the petrol pump so I can give it a supply and get the car running.

Or am i barking up the wrong tree?

Your help would be v much appreciated. Dev n Jan. North Devon England.

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  • Dev n Jan Jun 01, 2008

    I have had the key Programmed to the car. There is still no inclination to fire. Dev n Jan



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You need to have the car programmed to recognize the signal from the new keys. If not your ignition will not fire, matter of fact nothing will happen except your instrument guages will display. This is an anti theft feature built into most all modern cars. Some lock smiths will have the equipment to do this. You will have to call around to find one that has the ability to reprogram for new keys, that is if you have cut the correct "chipped key" for your car. If not you will have to go through a dealership.

Posted on Mar 14, 2009

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The key itself is unique to that serial no, so no duplicates will work .Contact the dealership with the key no. (imprinted on the key )for a key with immobiliser.
i hope this solves your problem.

Posted on May 31, 2008


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Hi Fred,
There could be a number of reasons for this.

As I do not have much detail and do not know your knowledge of cars, I will explain the basic principle at work here and hopefully that might give you a clue as to what the problem might be:

In all modern cars the key fob (plastic part of the key) has a coded electronic chip moulded inside. There is a sensor just under the steering column cover, usually right next to the ignition switch. This sensor activates whenever a key is turned in the ignition switch and the sensor reads code stored in the chip in the key fob.

When all is good, the engine will start as expected as the keys code will have been programmed into the cars engine management control system and the key is recognised as a matching/authorised key. No match, the engine won't start - a very good safety feature.

Some reasons why this may give the fault you are experiencing:
  • You bought a replacement key from the Dodge Dealer, but the new key has either not been programmed into the cars engine management system or the programming was not successful
  • You bought a non-chipped key from a non-dealer and had it cut from the original, but were not aware of the need for a chipped key and the need to have the new key programmed into the management system. A non-chipped key will not work, ever unless the management system is compromised
  • There may be a fault with the sensor
  • Very unusual, but the chip in the key may have been damaged
Do you have an original spare key to try?

Hope this sheds some light on your problem :)

Ian Reid

Oct 28, 2017 | Dodge Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

Engine turns but does not start, seems like no spark to cylinders.

Your chipped key is not making a good connection to your factory installed anti-theft device. Lightly grease both sides of car key with electric bulb grease and work it into key ignition. Over time the key wears down, contacts in ignition switch become worn and corroded. Grease makes better contact...chipped key is able to send signal to factory anti-theft device which unlocks all systems required to start you engine. Make sure the key you are using is a chipped key for your car; not a un-chipped cut key from the key cutting machine. It will work on locks, but only a chipped key for your car will deactivate your anti-thief and you get power to your engine and systems to get it started.

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Why not try a used ECM? and get the key from the same vehicle if it is chipped.If yours and it are chipped,cut a non chipped key for your ignition.and once the used (known good working unit) ecm is installed ,use the nonchipped key in your ignition while holding the ecm key next to your ignition switch to start the vehicle.Once started run it and see if the same codes come up.If all is OK tape the chipped key under the plastic at the ignition lock and use non chipped keys now and pass the smog.

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