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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all!

I've read through a bunch of different threads on here (Sticky 'flip' thread, somebody replacing their key, mentions of CRV keys, etc...) and haven't found a definitive answer as to whether or not someone has tried what I'm going to try.

I'm looking to get a Ridgeline all-in-one key to replace my Key+Fob for my 2005 Element. I understand that the immobilizers are different (2006's and later have a rolling code while 2005's and earlier have a fixed code) so I plan on taking the RFID 'pill' from a spare key and put it into the Ridgeline key to make it work. The dealer will only have to cut the key.

My only question is about using the remote portion (lock/unlock/panic) of the Ridgeline key with my Element. Will it work?

I'm unsure if the 'FCC ID' code is used to specify which immobilizer chip is inside, or if it specifies the compatiblity for the remote's lock/unlock/panic functionality.

Has anybody used the Ridgeline key with a 2005 or earlier Element?

If I go through with this, I'll take pictures and do a step-by-step.

Thanks in advance!

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18 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·

I received the 2 Ridgeline keys from today.

First thing I did was make sure that the remotes would work with my '05 Element. After following the instructions at the bottom of this post, they both worked great (as I was expecting based on other member's replies).

Next step: disassemble my spare E keys to remove the RFID chip and transplant it to the Ridgeline keys so that the ignition disabler works properly.

(I used a count of '3' for each step and it worked on the first try. I programmed my stock Element remote and 2 Ridgeline keys)

Have all remotes for the vehicle on hand.
Make sure all the doors and rear hatch/trunk are closed during programming.
Only need to use 1 remote to get into program mode but all remotes must be programmed during the same session.
Each step must be completed within 5 seconds.
1. Sit in the car with all doors/trunk tightly closed
2. Turn the key to the ON position, marked by “II” on the ignition bezel so the dash lights come on, then within 5 seconds press the “Lock” button on the remote for 1 second or so and release the button.
3. Turn the key to the OFF position, marked by “I” on the ignition bezel – dash lights go off.
4. Repeat steps 2 & 3 three more times (A total of 4 times) – each step must be done within 5 seconds of the previous step.
5. Upon the 4th turning of the key to “ON”, press the lock button on one remote, the locks will make a cycling sound (clunk), locks will NOT lock or unlock at this point, they will just make a noise. The system is now in programming mode. Do not turn key off.
6. Within 5 seconds of entering programming mode and within 5 seconds of each other, press the lock button ON EACH remote you are programming, for a second or so and release. This step needs to be completed within 10 seconds. Each time a remote button is pushed, the locks should cycle. Up to 3 remotes can be programmed.
7. Turn ignition completely off and remove the key. Step out of car and close door. The remotes should be programmed and should work. If you have a trunk/hatch release, the button for this feature needs to be held for a few seconds before the trunk/hatch will “pop”.

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18 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Here are step-by-step photos on transplanting an immobilizer chip from an already-programmed key into the Ridgeline key. This will let you avoid the programming fee and all you'll need to do is get the key cut.

Removing the Immobilizer Chip from an Already-Programmed Key

1) Use a hammer and small chisel to remove one half of the existing key's casing. (This step was borrowed from a post in another thread here)

* If your key is marked with an 'RW', place the chisel on that side of the key. If it isn't, tap lightly. One side of the key has no obstructions all the way to the keyring 'hole' while the other side has some plastic inside that will get in the way. If you encounter that plastic, flip the key and chisel the other side.

2) Chisel the case off all the way to the keyring 'hole'

3) Use 2 pairs of pliers to remove the key blade and chip holder from the key case

4) Remove the immobilizer chip from the plastic housing. You don't need to pry; just flip the key and tap it on the counter.


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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Transplanting the Immobilizer Chip to the Ridgeline Key

1) Use a small screwdriver to remove the screw on the Ridgeline key

2) Open the case. The section next to the keyring 'hole' may stick a little but there is no glue; it will just pop open.

3) Locate the existing immobilizer chip. It is in a little compartment near the key blade. Remove the little cover on it using a small flathead screwdriver. Then, pry out the chip. This step may require a little force as it is glued in there.

You can see on my first Ridgeline key, I used quite a bit of force because there was a lot of glue on it. On the second Ridgeline key, it just popped out.

4) Put the immobilizer chip that you removed from your existing key into the compartment. It actually fits perfectly without modification.

5) Dab a *little* glue (I used Crazy Glue) on top of the chip to hold it in place.

6) If you didn't mangle the compartment too much, you can put the little cover back on it.

7) Reassemble the key

8 ) Go get it cut at a locksmith or local Honda dealer. Be sure to tell them that you DO NOT NEED TO GET IT PROGRAMMED!!! JUST CUT!!! This will save you from $40 - $120 depending on how much the dealer charges for programming.

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
good stuff. now how do I do this for a 2006 E? You mention the code is rolling. So what do I do?
I know on the 2006+ Elements they changed immobilizer units. I'm not sure if they use the same immobilizer units in the 2006+ Ridgeline though.

If they do, you should be able to have your Honda dealer program the Ridgeline key for your car. That costs money though. Some dealers have charged over $100 just to program the newer chip.

You can always transplant your existing key's already-programmed immobilizer chip to the Ridgeline key and avoid the programming cost. That should always work regardless of the year of vehicle (unless somebody else has been told differently).
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