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1985 Eldorado, 2008 STS
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29 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited by Moderator)
I purchased my 2008 STS used a couple of years ago and only received key fob #1 with the car.

Not a big deal, I bought an authentic OEM GM #2 FOB for $110 online. I tried the "5 key turns in 5 seconds" but saw "READY TO ADD FOB #3" and aborted the procedure. I then learned (correct me if wrong) that a Tech2 is required to replace a FOB, so if I wanted my new #2 FOB to be treated as driver #2 (remote start, memory settings, etc.) I would need to have a dealership do it. I didn't want to add it as #3 because I wasn't sure if it could be changed later.

I went to the dealership on Wednesday, had the car serviced, asked the service adviser if everything went smoothly (was told yes), gave payment of $62.50, and before driving off decided to test the newly programmed key.

No remote start... The taillights lit up but it didn't start. Then I tried saving entry/exit settings, no luck. The new key isn't recognized as either driver 1 or 2 in the console.

I go back in after fiddling for 20 minutes and tell the Service Adviser that I don't believe it's working properly. He comes out and tries to remedy the situation. He spent at least 30 minutes in my car trying to figure it out. He comes out and tells me that it's funny the key isn't being recognized and that remote start isn't working. He calls the service technician who went home for the day and when he gets off the phone says the service tech thinks there's a module broken in my car or something because it should work.

I told the Service Adviser that it sounds like the key was added as FOB #3 or something because this would explain why there are no memory settings and no remote start. The Service Adviser tells me that there is no FOB#3, there are only 2 FOBS for my car... Huh :confused:

When I got home I decided to try the "5 key turns in 5 seconds" and was greeted with "READY TO ADD FOB #4". I just drove 80 miles and paid $62.50 for something I could've done at home for free in a few minutes! :banghead:

I have another appointment scheduled for tomorrow mid-afternoon and I'm scared that these guys really don't know what they're doing. I wanted to come in today (Thursday) but the Service Adviser said the tech would be in training that day. That doesn't sound comforting at all... Anyway I'm afraid that once programmed as FOB#3, the key is not be able to be reprogrammed as #2, is this true or false?

If the FOB is able to be reprogrammed as #2, is there something I can tell the service adviser/tech when I go in to steer them in the right direction?

Sorry if that was a bit ranty, I'm just peeved... I expected Cadillac dealership staff to have accurate knowledge of the cars that they sell and provide service for...
 

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08 STS-4 N* 1SG, 08 DTS Luxury II, 04 Bonneville GXP N*
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3,210 Posts
The dealership has the ability to clear all the fobs and start clean. Perhaps when the technician finishes his training he'll know how to do this! Take all your fobs in with you and ask them to reference the procedure in Service Information (GM's technical reference for their technicians). If they can't seem to figure this out tell them the technician needs to call their Technical Assistance Center (GM's support for their technicians) so that the blatantly obvious can be explained to him. My dealership did this for me with ZERO problem and guess what? They aren't even a Cadillac dealer!

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There is no problem with the module(s) in your car. The fault is with the interface sitting in the seat between your vehicle and the scan tool.
 

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1985 Eldorado, 2008 STS
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29 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Well that makes me feel a lot better. Thank you very much for the Technical Assistance Center tip!

I'll report back on how things go tomorrow. Thanks again!
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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68,458 Posts
Check your owner's manual. I believe that fobs are added/programmed by the dealer; additional keys (up to 10) are set by the owner.

Multiple personalized fobs work sort of like this: You use a fob to open the car. The car thinks (depending on fob #) "Here he/she comes !". You get in and stick a key into the ignition - any key for that car - and the car thinks "Here he/she is !" and sets the personalizations for the fob last used to unlock the car.

You can verify this if you use one fob, your wife uses another.............. You use HERS to unlock the car, get in and stick YOUR key into the ignition. The car should squish you into the dashboard.

EDIT: Just learned that this antique concept is out the window with the new "STS" - what about "DTS".
 

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08 STS-4 N* 1SG, 08 DTS Luxury II, 04 Bonneville GXP N*
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Check your owner's manual. I believe that fobs are added/programmed by the dealer; additional keys (up to 10) are set by the owner.
2005+ Are different. These cars support a total maximum of 4 fobs. Those programmed as #1 or #2 can perform all functions, including remote start and personalization functions. #3 and #4 are only for vehicle access and starting but do not support any sort of personalization or remote start.

Owners with a US programmed car are able to add/set all fobs using a procedure in the owner's manual but Canadian vehicles must be taken to the dealership due to different regulations. There has been the odd vehicle in the US (perhaps originally a Canadian car) where the owner has not been able to reprogram all the fobs.

These cars do not have an ignition key.
 

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2006 STS4 V8 1SG & 2007 STS V8 1SE
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8,178 Posts
I've posted on this several times and there is a thread on it linked in the 'Sticky' at the top of the page. The 'trick' is to start the process with all known fobs out of range of the car (say 30 feet). Then it will prompt "Ready for Fob #1'.

DD is completely right. Canadian law is different, but a member found a way around that, too. It involved a partner holding the matched fob 30 feet away performing the lock & unlock using the fob rather than the mechanical key! I don't remember ALL the details, but that member (if their post is to be believed) out-foxed the designers.

We shouldn't be surprised. Whatever limits one intellect can devise, another can overcome!
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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These cars do not have an ignition key.
Good to know - one more nail in the coffin - So in our quest to "make it better" we also "make it more prone to failure". Good, solid thinking - is this one of the models with an afterthought door key folded into the fob ?
 

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08 STS-4 N* 1SG, 08 DTS Luxury II, 04 Bonneville GXP N*
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Yes, there's a key hidden in the fob for driver door access. Turning the lock five times in succession is also part of the procedure to start the fob learning process. Oh, and I suppose the key is for glove box and trunk pass-through access as well.

As for the DTS, if I'm not mistaken, they still use an ignition key.
 

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2018 Camaro 2SS/NPP/F55/AQJ, Sold: 2015 Camaro, 2006 STS (EXP) 1997 Seville STS (EXP)
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447 Posts
..."smart key", "keyless go" ...or whatever it is called... ;)
...the "hidden key in the fob"-design (stock) is only for mid 2007 - 2011 models...on the early ones (2005 - mid 2007) -from factory- it isn't hidden...different/simple fob design...and they got a conventional door key (yes, it's just an "emergency" door opener...and as said before...for glove box/valet, trunk pass-through and the -mainly- domestic fob programming procedure)
...btw...export STS's must be taken to the dealership, too...if the...or a new fob needs to be "programmed"/"learned"...
 

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1985 Eldorado, 2008 STS
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29 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Just to update since I forgot last week: I drove back to the dealership and they did the job right this time. Took at least an hour though so I assume they did the erase + 45 minute key-learning.

I also bought the physical key on eBay for $10 but didn't want to bother with the dealership for this. I took it to an OSH but they said they would only etch the keys they sell... Okay fine. I took it to a nearby locksmith and had it done within a few minutes. They charged me a whopping $2, which was impressively cheap. All set now.

Thanks everyone!
 

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08 STS-4 N* 1SG, 08 DTS Luxury II, 04 Bonneville GXP N*
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3,210 Posts
Good to hear that it has been resolved. They should not have needed to follow the long procedure with their tools, but who knows. My bet is they had a little reading to do and perhaps a little trial and error. These are a bit of a PITA.
 
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