HelloCustomer, I'm Chris, a current Ford Lincoln Mercury employee.
Thanks for visiting Just Answer. I will do my very best to help you resolve your concerns
On a ford vehicle the only way to program the keys is by using a IDS or NGS scan tool. This vehicle will have to be towed to a dealer or independant shop which can program keys. There is not a at home method or bypass for a theft system.
An alternate programming method is possible and is intended to keep a customer from being stranded, and who has no access to a service shop equipped with diagnostic tools. This interactive procedure takes approximately 45 minutes to complete. The elongated time is necessary to maintain the high level of theft protection provided by the system. When initializing the system using this procedure, it must be followed precisely or the system will abort and the procedure will need to be started over.
The alternate programming method operates as follows:
This is the case on older vehicles. This is not the case on a 98 model. The 98 was the first year for the programmed key in the explorer. I have tried this above procedure on this model and was also unsuccessfuel. Give this a try. Remove the negative battery cable for 5 minutes then lock and unlock the door and than insert the kay and try it again. If it fails then a scan tool is going to be needed.