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Yeah, there is a security bypass that you can do with the TWICE on the 1999 models.

Your key recognition and the remote working are actually unrelated except that they run through the TWICE. That is, you can have no remote at all or batteries in it and key recognition should still work.

What type of key do you have? All-In-1? Or a transponder key with a banana remote?
 

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I guess you would call it a banana remote. it's in two pieces, the fob with three buttons and the key. I think the problem is with the TWICE because both key recognition and remote don't work.

The little key reader is a little funky. The pins that hold the cover part are sheared revealing a coil and circuit board (it was that way when I bought the car, used, a few months ago). First I thought it might be that, but then the remote didn't work either

If there is a security bypass it must have done it by itself. But frankly it would be fine with me to keep it that way because I'm happy with using the mechanical key system
 

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The security bypass allows you to start the car without the TWICE preventing the starter from cranking. While I've never actually tested the process, I don't think it affects key recognition. I don't know if bypassing it means that you still get the message and the car starts or you get no messages. It's done by grounding a pin on the TWICE. I can probably find the thread if you want to try it.

You might also have two problems. Note that the remote antenna is separate as is the logic for the most part. I'd probably replace the key antenna first and see if that solves the recognition issue. The remote could have its own separate problem.

If you want a key antenna for a reasonable price, let me know. I'm sure the one I used in my 9-3 is in my "parts for sale" bin and I can test before shipping. It there's a u-pull near you that's a good source - they are rarely defective.
 

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The security bypass allows you to start the car without the TWICE preventing the starter from cranking. While I've never actually tested the process, I don't think it affects key recognition. I don't know if bypassing it means that you still get the message and the car starts or you get no messages. It's done by grounding a pin on the TWICE. I can probably find the thread if you want to try it.

You might also have two problems. Note that the remote antenna is separate as is the logic for the most part. I'd probably replace the key antenna first and see if that solves the recognition issue. The remote could have its own separate problem.

If you want a key antenna for a reasonable price, let me know. I'm sure the one I used in my 9-3 is in my "parts for sale" bin and I can test before shipping. It there's a u-pull near you that's a good source - they are rarely defective.
 

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The fact that they both stopped working at the same time makes me think the problem is in the TWICE. I'm going to try to have a look at it, If I'm lucky I'll find a loose connection or something. But I would like to buy a key antenna from you anyway, as it would be great if it solves the problem, and the one I have is funky anyway.

Meanwhile, someone has asked me for help doing an errand with the car. I think it's worth giving it a try with the TWICE fuse out, don't you? (first I'll take a ride around the block)
 
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