Vatskey.com is a website designed to sell OEM and aftermarket vats keys and secondary key for GM vehicles, and to educate and help owners of VATS equipped vehicles learn more about the GM vats system and how to determine what vats code your car uses. Thanks for stopping by!
General Motors VATS Keys
The VATS acronym stands for Vehicle Anti-Theft System, and is a security feature found on several different GM model vehicles from 1986 to 2005. The OEM acronym stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. The VATS system works by fitting a vats key with a resister pellet, and when the driver inserts the key blade inside the ignition lock, metal contacts inside the lock make contact with the resister pellet and the electronic VATS system reads the resistance. If the key is fitted with the correct resister pellet, with the correct resistance value or vats code for that particular car, then the car will start, if not, then the car is disabled.
There are 15 different vats codes, or VATS resistance values. If you have a working vats key, but don't know the vats code, then the resistance value can be determined by placing the leads of an ohm meter across the VATS key resister pellet and measuring the resistance. Once you have the resister pellets ohm value, you can determine the keys vats code by looking up the resistance value in a vats code chart. Click on the Help menu to take a look at a vats code chart and for more help in determining your cars vats code.
Some things to know about GM vats keys:
- There are only two types of vats keys: a 6-cut single sided vats key and a 10-cut double sided vats key. However, you can have different styles of keys within those two categories. For instance, on this page there are 3 different style 10-cut vats keys. One style has a very small head or key bow, and the other two have large heads with different logos.
- 6 cut single sided key means there are 6 cuts in the key made on one side (single) of the key blade. View the application list to see the different year and model GM cars that use a 6-cut vats key.
- 10 cut double sided key means there are 10 cuts made on both sides (double) of the key blade. View the application list to see the different year and model GM cars that use a 10-cut vats key.
- 10-cut double sided vats keys were not used in GM vehicles until 1995, so all VATS equipped GM vehicles before 1995 used a 6-cut single sided vats key.
- All vats keys have a resister pellet that protrudes out both sides of the key blade. Refering to a vats key as single sided or double sided is made in reference to the cuts, and has nothing to do with the vats key resister pellet.
- You must know the correct VATS code for your VATS equipped vehicle to buy the correct key. The VATS code for a VATS key cannot be configured, programmed or changed. Changing the ignition lock for a VATS equipped car does not change the VATS code. The VATS code for a particular car is determined by the electronics and not the ignition lock.
- 10 cut vats keys are only available in vats codes 2 through 15
- 6 cut vats keys are available in vats codes 1 through 15
- The #1 vats code for 6 cut vats keys was discontinued in 1988 or 1989. If you have a GM car manufactured after 1989, then it does not use a #1 vats code.
- Most 1990 and earlier GM vehicles that used a vats system used a D seondary key. For 1991 and later GM vehicles that used a 6 cut vats key almost always used a H secondary key.
- One way to double check that you ordered the right VATS code is to measure your working VATS key and then measure the new VATS key. The ohm value you measure on each key should be very close. If the values are way off then you most likely ordered the wrong VATS code. Visit the Help page if you need help measuring your VATS key.