Toyota Smart Key System: What Can It Do For You?

With the Toyota Smart Key System, the engine immobilizer will disable the engine when the properly coded Smart Key is not detected inside the vehicle, ensuring maximum security and deterrent from theft.

Besides allowing you to get into your car and start the engine, you may not know that the Toyota Smart Key System can also do a number of things simply by carrying the Smart Key on you.

Unlocking the door

With the Smart Key in your pocket or purse, simply grip the door handle like you would when you open the door and it will be unlocked.

smart key push to start- touch to lock

Use the smart key to lock all doors

When you are ready to leave, touch the lock sensor located on the upper side of the door handle to lock all the doors. Once this is executed, you will hear a beeping sound once and see the car lights flash once.

smart key push to start- unlock all doors

On most models, gripping the front passenger door handle will unlock all the doors.

This is also possible by holding the driver’s side door for around 2 seconds on some Toyota models. You will hear a beeping sound twice and the car lights flash twice to let you know that the doors are unlocked.

smart key push to start- press the lock key

If this isn’t working for your vehicle, you may still be able to program the Toyota Smart Key on your own to allow the unlocking of all the doors when the front door handles are gripped by bare hands. Here is how you do it:

  1. Press and hold the lock button
  2. Without letting go of the lock button, you must press and hold another button on the Smart Key for around five seconds: this is possible with the unlock button, back door release button, or panic button.
  3. Following step 1 again if you want to disable this feature and return to the Smart Key’s default setting.
smart key push to start- door lock settings on touch screen

You may also be able to change the Smart Key program via the vehicle’s touch screen under Vehicle Customization > Door Lock Settings > Select Doors To Unlock.

How To Open and Close All Windows

The Toyota Smart Key is capable of opening or closing all the windows as well as the sunroof to help you to cook down the interior of the vehicle before your trip. To do so, just hold the unlock button for five seconds.

This feature is not activated by default but can be activated by your nearest Toyota dealer if it is available for your vehicle.

Can I Lock The Smart Key Inside The Car?

The vehicle will sound an alarm and the doors will not lock if you leave your smart key inside the automobile, so you won’t have to worry about locking your smart key in the car.

Use the Smart Key To Find Your Car

The included panic button on the smart key can help you locate your vehicle, or in case you need to draw attention from your surroundings in case of emergency. Pressing the panic button for longer than a second, the horn will sound intermittently and the lights will flash. Simply press any button on the Smart Key to turn off the alarm.

smart key push to start- built-in manual key

How to Access the Vehicle If the Smart Key is Not Working

Normally after you are inside the vehicle and close the door, instructions on how to turn on the engine appear on the In-Dash Info Display.

If this isn’t happening, then your smart key may not be functioning properly or it may be out of battery and your vehicle will not start. But not to worry, there are still ways to get the vehicle started.

smart key push to start- built-in manual key

If you are unable to lock or unlock your doors, use the backup key that is built into the Smart Key fob to do so manually.

smart key push to start- manual start key detection

To start the vehicle manually:

  1. Hold down the brake pedal
  2. Hold the Smart Key fob closely in front of the Start-Stop engine switch (or the power switch).
  3. The indicator light on the switch will turn green and you will hear a buzzing sound.
  4. Press the engine switch within 10 seconds to start the engine.

If the battery is depleted on your Smart Key or if it isn’t functioning properly, contact your Toyota dealer to get a battery replacement or for a Smart Key inspection!

It should be noted that the sensor might not activate if the person is wearing gloves.

smart key push to start- power on mode

How To Access Audio System Without Starting The Engine

To listen to the audio system without starting the engine, you can do so in the Accessory Power Mode. To turn on this mode, simply press the Engine Start/Stop button once but WITHOUT holding the brake pad down.  When this mode is on, a reminder message will be displayed on the in-dash info display with instructions on how to start the engine.

How To Open or Close Windows Without starting the vehicle

While the vehicle is off and WITHOUT holding down the brake pad, press the Engine Start/Stop button twice. The In-Dash Info Display will confirm the power is on and you will be able to open and close the windows, as well as use the audio system.

How To Access Climate Control While The Engine Is Off

Same as the steps for opening and closing windows without starting the vehicle, here is what you do:

While the vehicle is off and WITHOUT holding down the brake pad, press the Engine Start/Stop button twice. The In-Dash Info Display will confirm the power is on.

While in this mode, you will have access to fan and air power, opening and closing the windows, as well as use the audio system.

Can I turn on the engine while in Idle Mode?

Anytime you would like to start the engine while either in any mode, just hold the brake down and press the Engine Start/Stop button once. The engine will start or if yours is a hybrid vehicle, a Ready indicator will be displayed in your dash area.

To turn off all power, leave your foot off the brake and press the Engine Start/Stop button one more time.

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