can cold weather affect keyless entry

Can cold weather affect keyless entry? The popularity of keyless entry systems has skyrocketed because of the nature of this cutting-edge security innovation.

The thing is that a keyless entry system relies on a variety of technologies. And just like everything else, extreme weather can interfere with their performance.

So, can door lock sticks in cold weather? Will extremely cold weather affect keyless entry in any way? Let’s find out!

Yes, frigid weather can affect keyless entry, making it difficult to use the touchscreen or keep the battery running long enough. 

Understanding More about Keyless Entry

more about keyless entry

Keyless entry systems are increasingly used in various sectors but are extremely popular in:

  • Automobiles
  • Private residences
  • Business establishments

They eliminate the need for physical keys and let you rely on electronic fobs or mobile applications instead. 

An Example to Consider

The Model 3 from Tesla employs a mobile app as its primary key and marks the beginning of a total shift toward digital access.

This shift improves use while increasing safety, as many modern keyless systems include strong encryption and multiple authentication methods.

Fact: The market for automotive keyless entry systems is projected to reach $2.33 billion by 2026, with a CAGR of 13.32%. 

How Keyless Entry Works

how does keyless entry works

The advanced mechanics of keyless entry systems have revolutionized access control, redefining the meaning of locks and keys in the process.

Here is a bit more about the technologies used in keyless entry: 

RFID or Radio Frequency Identification

It is the main technology used for keyless entry systems.

Within a keychain or smartphone is a little electronic tag that may exchange data with a sensor through radio waves. This frictionless connection allows for safe remote access. 

Magical Encryption

magical encryption of keyless entry system

Keyless systems use strong encryption techniques to prevent unwanted entry.

Communication between the key fob/smartphone and the access control unit is encrypted using advanced techniques such as AES (Advanced Encryption Standard)

Close-Range Spellcasting

The popular keyless entry systems now utilize proximity sensors to increase user satisfaction.

Direct human intervention is no longer needed as the sensor automatically unlocks the door or car as you approach.

An Important Consideration

important considerations in keyless entry system

Extreme weather can directly impact the performance of keyless entry systems, but it ultimately depends on their types.

Here are some common types to consider:

Types of Keyless Entry SystemsDescription
Keypad entry systemsTo enter these systems, you must enter a numerical code using a keypad.
Remote keyless entryRKE lets you lock and open your doors from a distance using a handheld remote control.
Smart card entryTo access, you need to tap or swipe a smart card.  
Biometric entryBiometric systems verify users by analyzing some aspect of their physical appearance, such as their fingerprints, retinas, or faces.
Smartphone app entryUsers connect their mobile devices to the entrance system through Bluetooth or Wi-Fi and use an app to gain access.
Fact: Hilton's Digital Key has made the whole system popular, allowing guests to bypass the front desk totally by using their smartphones. 

Can Cold Weather Affect Keyless Entry?

cold weather affect keyless entry

To say that keyless entry devices have revolutionized how we interact with our environments would be an understatement.

However, beneath their flawless exterior is a weakness that is exacerbated in cold temperatures.

The complex technology that powers these systems can incur substantial interruptions and issues when exposed to subzero temperatures.

Electronics are extremely sensitive to changes in temperature.

Here is a bit more about how weather affects the keyless entry: 

Temperature-Induced Battery Drain

Batteries play a crucial role in the fascinating realm of keyless entry systems. They are the essential power source that keeps these cutting-edge wonders operating flawlessly.

These dynamic energy powerhouses are crucial in transmitting signals and activating sensors. Together, they trigger electrons and help you enjoy unmatched security. 

The Role of Low Temperatures

low temperatures role

However, as the frigid weather sets in, a surprising challenge arises – batteries draining caused by low temperatures.

The freezing temperatures can drain these batteries, causing them to deplete faster than their typical consistent rate. 

An Important Consideration

The internal resistance of the battery has the potential to rise in cold weather.

The additional resistance can generate heat within the board, resulting in power wastage and reduced battery output voltage stability.

Fact: In cold weather, batteries need more current to generate the same power, which results in batteries draining faster.  

Reduced Signal Strength

reduced signal strength in cold weather

When you dig deeper into the details related to the keyless entry systems, you will realize how important those “electronic signals” truly are.

But, as the cold air wraps around, a subtle yet meaningful change occurs. The chilling air has a mysterious power to weaken and limit electronic signals.

This disrupts the seamless connection between our reliable key fobs or smartphones and the diligent access control units. 

How Weather Affects Electronic Signals?

Digital circuits follow specific timing regulations to ensure that signals are properly synchronized.

Reducing the temperature can significantly impact and potentially lead to a race condition.

This can result in delayed responses or, in more severe cases, a ghostly silence as the signal vanishes into the icy void. 

Frozen Components

frozen components impacting keyless entry systems

Those extremely low temperatures can directly impact keyless entry systems by freezing specific components.

As the mercury drops, the moisture trapped in these electronic havens can turn into a frosty foe.

When the moisture freezes, it goes through an expansion, turning into a powerful force that can cause chaos for the delicate internal circuitry of the system.

This can lead to various issues, including:

  • Small glitches.
  • Serious malfunctions.
  • Completely disabled the entry system.

An Important Consideration

It all comes to life when the sun’s warmth shatters the icy spell and thaws the frozen adversary.

These components can regain functionality and restore the keyless entry system’s rightful operational splendor. 

Fingerprint Scanning Issues

scanning issues on fingerprints

Low temperatures can also hamper the touchscreen performance of your keyless entry system.

As users venture into these digital realms, their fingertips encounter a hesitant response, like a dance partner momentarily out of sync.

The previously seamless flow of commands now stumbles. You may have to use the scanner multiple times before the system finally registers your data and allows you to enter the property.

That is why unlocking a door or starting an engine becomes a mind-boggling enigma in extremely cold weather. 

Issues You May Face with Keyless Entry in Cold Weather

Does cold weather affect key fobs? Well, it certainly can.

Considering how cold weather affects keyless entry, it is easy to guess what issues you will witness in real life while using these systems. For instance: 

Residential Access Disruptions

residential access disruptions with keyless entries

Researchers have found that electronic door locks, such as keyless entry systems, will likely face difficulties functioning in cold weather conditions.

The research brought attention to cases of delayed response times and temporary malfunctions. This could result in homeowners being unable to access their homes or at risk of security breaches. 

Hospitality Sector Woes

Even though the hospitality industry has embraced keyless entry systems to improve guest experiences, it is still susceptible to disruptions caused by cold weather.

There have been cases where guests faced challenges when using smartphone apps to enter their rooms because the cold weather affected signal strength and touch sensitivity. 

Aerospace Concerns

aerospace concerns on cold weather

Keyless entry technology in the aviation industry is not immune to the effects of cold weather.

Keyless entry systems are commonly used in aircraft maintenance to ensure the security of sensitive areas.

The functionality of these systems can be compromised by chilly weather, which raises concerns about the security of aircraft and restricted zones.

Fact: If the device's enclosure is well insulated, the battery or chips heating could potentially trigger a self-protective mechanism for the entire device. 

Tips for Preventing Keyless Entry Problems in Cold Weather

Although keyless entry systems may face difficulties in cold weather, both manufacturers and users can implement strategies to minimize these issues and maintain reliable performance. 

Keep Your Batteries in Top Shape

batteries must be in top shape

Make it a habit to regularly check and swap out the batteries in your key fob or smartphone, especially as winter approaches.

It is a good idea to have extra batteries in case your device unexpectedly runs out of power. 

Keep it Cool

To shield your key fobs and smartphones from cold temperatures, opt for protective cases that offer insulation and protection.

This can aid in preserving battery efficiency and safeguarding delicate components. 

Follow Expert Suggestions

 Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and recommendations when using keyless entry systems during cold temperatures.

Certain systems might incorporate specialized instructions or functionalities to enhance performance in cold weather. 

Have a Backup Strategy

backup strategy for accessing keyless entries

It is always a good idea to have a backup plan in case there are any disruptions with the keyless entry system.

This might entail having a classic mechanical key on hand or ensuring another way to access the entry.

Fact: It's crucial to keep in mind that many display manufacturers provide models designed for extreme temperatures, ranging from -40°C to +80 or more. 


Can cold weather affect keyless entry? Turns out, it surely can. The impact usually depends on how low the temperatures are.

Still, there may be some disruptions caused by cold weather. Mostly, you will notice a quick battery drain or a compromised signal strength.

Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to keep using your keyless entry effectively, even in cold weather.