All Collections
Access Control
For Users
Why is my physical keycard not granting access?
Why is my physical keycard not granting access?

If your physical key has stopped granting access to your property, a number of factors may be at play.

Michael Maxsenti avatar
Written by Michael Maxsenti
Updated over a week ago

Do you have a physical credential, such as a keycard or key fob, that is no longer granting you access to your property? If so, some of the following factors may be at play.

  • Are you using your correct physical key? This one may seem like a no brainer, but you might be surprised by how often keycard mix-ups occur. If you have multiple physical keys that you use to access different properties (i.e. one keycard for your apartment complex, and a second keycard for your office at work), then you'll want to be sure that you're using the correct key at the correct property. 

  • Have you tried to punch a hole in your physical key? Some physical keys can be punched in order to make the keys more easily totable, however, keys must be punched in the proper place to ensure that the keys data circuitry is not damaged. If a keycard's circuitry is damaged, this may render the card unusable. 

  • Are you holding your physical key to the correct area of the reader? Some physical keycards project a stronger signal than others. That being said, keys with weaker signals may need to be held more closely to a reader. Some keys may need to physically touch the reader, or be held in the center of a reader in order to be sensed. If you barely graze your key across the reader surface, or hold your key to a corner of the reader, it might not always be recognizable.

  • Has your key been bent, exposed to extreme heat, or exposed to strong magnets? While typically pretty sturdy, a physical keycards data circuity can be damaged or corrupted if the card is not properly handled. Avoid bending or smashing your physical keys, leaving them where they can be exposed to extreme temperatures, and keep them away from magnetized items. While rare, certain types of keycards can be corrupted if they are exposed to very strong magnets for a prolonged period of time.

  • Do you carry your physical key in your wallet? If you carry your key in your wallet, especially alongside other physical keys, and you fail to remove your keycard when badging in at your property (i.e. holding your wallet up to the reader with your key inside), this can create access issues. A card reader is a very sensitive piece of technology, but if you have multiple cards in your wallet, there's a possibility that the reader might be scanning another card in your wallet. We recommend removing your keycard from your wallet when using it to badge in at your property.

  • Has the correct credential number been uploaded to your property access control system? This is something you likely will not be able to check on your own, but if none of the above scenarios applies to your keycard, there's a possibility that your key number was improperly uploaded to your property access control system. It's a simple mistake, and fortunately an easy one to fix! Double check your keycard number with one of your office and community administrators.

  • Has your keycard been added to your property access control system under the correct format? This is another scenario that will need to be investigated by one of your property administrators. There's a possibility that your property utilizes a mixed bag of physical keys with different bit rates and formats. If this is the case, your system administrators will need to be sure that they are adding your physical key to your access control system under the correct format. If they have added you key under an incorrect format, it will not work on any of your property readers.

  • Has your physical key been revoked by a system administrator? If one of your system administrators has revoked your key, then it will not work on any of your property doors or gates. If you suspect that this might be the case, you will need to reach out to your office or community administrator directly to see about having your access re-instated.

If none of the above scenarios apply to your physical key and you are still not able to reliably gain access to your property, please contact Genea Support for further assistance at

Did this answer your question?