You’re wearing your best clothes and dressed in the nines to see your date. Or you’re going to pick your mom at the airport on Thanksgiving. Such plans can come to an abrupt halt due to lost car keys.
Yes, losing your car keys is easier than you’d think. You can be very careful but still, lose the keys and only realize when you’re out by the car, in a hurry to get to wherever you need to be. You shouldn’t blame yourself, as this can happen to literally anyone.
It’s annoying, but everyone has lost the keys to their car at some point. Did you know that every year 20 million people in the US lose their car or home keys?
Five Most Common Causes of Lost Car Keys (And How to Avoid It)
Knowing how you can easily lose your car keys may help you be more careful in the future:
Bag or Backpack
Ladies and gentlemen (but mainly ladies), you can easily lose your car keys in your purse or bag. While they are technically not really lost, it’s just you can’t find them. This is more common than you think.
Working women and moms with their big tote bags filled with essentials, supplies, and other stuff can over time become a hot mess. If you’re not organized with it, you’ll lose something as small as keys easily.
Even men who carry duffels or backpacks can lose their car keys somewhere in a badly filled pocket.
Luckily enough, keys are retrievable if they are, in fact, in your purse or backpack. However, be prepared to get frustrated and spend time looking through all the stuff. Don’t be surprised if you find an old CD or a hairbrush you thought you had lost forever.
How to Avoid It?
Organization is key here (pun intended). First of all, choose a bag that has ample pockets and compartments to organize all your stuff properly. Also, make sure to clean the bag periodically and throw out all the trash and remove unnecessary stuff.
Buying clothes is fun, but your shopping spree can become a nightmare when you can’t find your keys in your pocket. A changing room in a clothing retailer is fairly commonplace to lose your keys.
Suppose you found a great pair of jeans to try on. You went into the changing room, took off your pants, and hung them from the rack. While you’re checking out if your exterior looks great in them, your keys fall out of the pocket.
The same thing could happen if you have your keys in the pocket of your shirt or jacket.
Some changing rooms have no shelves or ledges to place your stuff on, which is a recipe for disaster as you could lose your wallet or keys easily. Even if you put your keys out first, you may forget to pick them in the excitement of finding a good pair of pants or while taking a phone call.
How to Avoid it?
Well, make sure to empty your pockets out and place them somewhere you can see. If there’s no rack or shelf, place them on the floor or hand them to your shopping partner if you’re not shopping alone. Lastly, make it a habit to check your pockets before leaving the changing room.
In addition to changing rooms, you can also lose your keys at a cash counter. When you’re shopping or buying groceries, you put the keys on the counter to pay for your things. But when you leave the counter, you forget the keys there.
If you’re lucky and the person at the register notices them, they’ll alert you. However, if they don’t or you’re at a self-checkout register, you’re in for some surprise when you reach your car door. Again, this is one of those scenarios where you’ll likely recover your keys but will endure a mini anxiety episode.
How to Avoid it?
Always keep the keys in the pocket when shopping. Don’t hold them in your hands. That way, you won’t put them on the counter ever.
This is simply a nightmare, but it’s possible to drop the car keys into drainage, especially those big ones on the street.
Suppose you’ve parked the car on the street next to drainage and as you’re putting them in the pocket, you miss it and drop, and the keys go straight into the drain. Just the thought of that must have sent jitters down your spine.
Similarly, if you’re one of those people who attach their keys to a holder on their belt, you can drop the keys into a drain or on the street. The likelihood of recovering such lost car keys is very low.
How to Avoid it?
When you’re parking on the street or walking, make sure your keys are in the pocket. If you do drop them somehow, don’t waste time and call a locksmith or your car company to unlock the car.
Car ignition is another commonplace people leave their car keys in. These days with keyless cars, it’s not such a big issue. However, if you have a car that turns on with keys in the ignition, you could forget and leave them in.
If your car auto-locks after some time, you’ll need to call a locksmith to get into the car. And God forbid if you leave the car turned on and forget the keys in the ignition.
How to Avoid it?
Make sure to take out the keys as soon as you turn off the engine. Don’t turn it off and leave the keys in. Also, check when you’re closing the door whether you have the keys or not.
Lost car keys can make anyone anxious and frustrated. However, if you’re a little more careful, you can avoid these nightmares of scenarios. Also, make sure to have a locksmith’s number at hand who can help you get a replacement key or unlock your car if push comes to shove.