1996 Lexus ES 300: DIY Key Fob Battery
June 01, 2012
The 1996 Lexus ES 300 has a small button on the head of the key that can lock and unlock doors (The button is at the 4 o'clock position if you're looking at the photo above). The signal range isn't very far, but it's better than having to manually unlock the doors. When we first purchased the vehicle, the battery on both our key fobs was dead. And for a while, we were unlocking our doors in a manner unbefitting of a luxury car.
My colleague, Phil Reed, purchased the necessary batteries at Radio Shack for $5.99 a piece. Phil replaced the first battery and I did the spare key. That's about the limit of my DIY skills. The process went as follows:
I started out by removing a tiny screw on the back of the key fob with a Phillips screwdriver. The plastic cover needed a little coaxing from a flathead screwdriver, but it came off relatively easy. I used that same flathead to pop out the old battery and then put in the new one. I screwed the cover back on and was done in about 20 minutes.
I pressed the unlock button to test it. The Lexus made an electronic beep when the doors locked and unlocked. The volume can be adjusted by a small knob on the lower left dash board.
Ron Montoya, Consumer Advice Editor @ 137,792 miles