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lexpert
lexpert, Lexus Master tech
Category: Lexus
Satisfied Customers: 2100
Experience:  Master Certified with lexus, 8 years experience with Lexus
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My valet key will turn in the ignition but won't start the

Customer Question

My valet key will turn in the ignition but won't start the car. Can you help?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Lexus
Expert:  Skyvisions replied 1 year ago.

Can you post a picture of the valet key and your normal key? When you insert the valet key into the ignition lock cylinder does the little red security indicator light stop blinking?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
red light goes out when valet inserted. Pictures to follow. Only have a valet key.
Expert:  Skyvisions replied 1 year ago.

OK

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Skyvisions replied 1 year ago.

Do you have any of the key to try? They key that you have in the illustration is an immobilizer key you can tell by the dimple and the shank just past the end of the head of the key. If the light is going out that means the transponder ECU is recognizing the key code but does not explain why will not start the car unless there's something else going on.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't have another key. This is the only one. It was working fine. This morning it worked so I could get to work. But after its been running for a while. When you get back in to start it up it won't start when you turn the key.
Expert:  Skyvisions replied 1 year ago.

Just to clarify the little red security light is going out the engine is cranking over but it will not start up correct? Do you have a code reader to check for malfunction clothes that might be set in the engine control computer? It may have nothing to do with the key itself there may be something else going on keeping it from starting.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
security light is going out when key is in the ignition. Key turns all the way through the all four positions and when you rotate key from ON to RUN nothing happens. No ticking as if it were a bad starter. The battery is brand new.
No code reader.
Expert:  Skyvisions replied 1 year ago.

Okay this then rules out anything with the immobilizer the immobilizer will not cause the starter to not engage. If it was an issue with the immobilizing system it would crank over but would not start up. Do you have any way to check for voltage to the starter i.e. do you have a voltmeter or simple 12 V test light? At this point are you just looking for general ideas as to what could be going on? Do you have somebody handy that can turn the key to the start position while you put your head under the hood of the vehicle to listen to a particular relay?