Anyone have experience with key finding devices?

My wife loses her keys a lot. I’ve seen Tile and similar devices in Amazon that beep or some such when you press a button on a transmitter or on your phone. Has anyone here used these things and do you have any recommendations?


I bought Mrs P some TrackR’s which I thought were probably better than tile on the basis they have replaceable batteries.

Firstly she was offended by the suggestion she loses things enough for it be a suitable gift (and even more huffy when my sons supported the idea).

Secondly we found the beeps it produced were not loud enough to be easily audible when looking for a TrackR around the house.

Thirdly the TrackR fell off her keyring at some point and we can’t find it.

So overall not one of my more successful gifts.

One of the problems is that if you have just lost something around your house, in Bluetooth range, it works reasonable well (although as mentioned the beeping could be louder, at least with TrackR). However, outside Bluetooth range you are relying on other TrackR users having the app running on their smartphone in public mode so that their app will communicate with your phone to let you know where the object is. And there just doesn’t appear to be a sufficient coverage of other TrackR users to give this feature the critical mass it needs.

So overall, 6/10, useful around the house.

Mine is called a Nail, and it is hammered into the wall right next to the front door. Whenever I can’t find my keys, I look on that nail, and sure enough,they magically appear.

I had an…odd experience. Many many years ago, back when I was married, I was just sitting around the house and heard some kind of odd noise. I asked the wife what it was and she said she hadn’t heard anything. A few seconds later, I heard it again and again she claimed she didn’t hear a thing. Few seconds later, there it was again. Turns out I was whistling or something and each time I whistled, it ‘whistled’ back at me. It was a b-day or x-mas gift or something for me and she had it hidden, but it was still responding as it was supposed to. For whatever reason (and I truly don’t remember) she never did give it to me, but clearly it worked just fine. No idea what brand it was, but I’m sure it was just off the shelf thing from Wal-Mart or something.

So, yeah, there’s all kinds of expensive devices, some have to be within range of your phone, some can even be within range of ANY phone that has the app and they all link together, but it might be worth exploring something that costs 5 or 10 bucks first. I’m sure there’s plenty on Amazon and you can check the reviews.

ETA, I know this doesn’t work for everyone, but as jtur alluded to, honestly, the best thing is just to get into some kind of habit. A habit so ingrained in you that it bothers you if your keys aren’t in ‘that spot’. So part of you that you’ll tear the house apart if you put your keys in your right pocket instead of your left pocket.

Of course, if your SO put’s their purse (and to this day, I’ll swear it was on purpose) on top of your keys every day, it might not help, but still, if you walk into the house, put your keys in ‘this spot’, they’ll always be there. Sounds silly, but if you’re not totally scatter brained, it really does work.

Yeah I think this would better be solved by good habits than technology. Just never put the keys down except in their designated spot. Where that designated spot is depends on your particular home and situation but consistency is key. Mine stay on the TV stand next to the entrance of my house. As soon as I walk in the door the keys go on the stand before I even take my shoes off. I am NEVER late for anything due to lost keys.

I’ve suggested to my wife that she should become OCD with her keys as I am with mine. I didn’t get very far with that.

A co-worker of mine bought one of those things back in the '80s. When you whistled, it was supposed to whistle back to help you find it. But as it turned out, everything set it off – the baby crying, the squeaky hinge on the cupboard door, a television laugh track – everything except him whistling. He brought it into the office, and it responded to everyone else’s whistle, just not to his.

My solution is to have multiple sets of keys. If you have 3 or 4 complete sets you will always be able to find one set. [Since the electronic ignition key for my car is too expensive I keep it inside the car inside the CD tray with a small chain on it–previously the ash tray. You can have manual,non-electronic duplicates to unlock the car doors made.]

This does not (in my experience) work with sunglasses. Because you may find yourself married to someone who does NOT put her sunglasses back in the same place every time, and will then “borrow” mine because I do, and therefore she knows where mine are.

The only solution is to move the place where I put my sunglasses so she can’t “find” them. The only drawback is that I can’t find them either. We must have three or four pairs stashed around the house, but nobody knows where.


In my experience, giving someone a device that they must keep up with in order to find a thing they commonly misplace just doesn’t work. The device is just as likely to go missing as the item it is supposed to track - unless perhaps you carry the locator device for her keys (and never leave her side).

I have tried this a few times in my life. I always end up with one and will stumble upon the others now and then.

Unless the trigger is a Bluetooth app or a specific sound, like a clap or whistle (which admittedly, as I noted five posts back, has its own problems).

But where would that Bluetooth app reside - her phone, right? My wife misplaces her phone as often as her keys. She is, as I suspect the OP’s wife is, one of those people who has a million things on her mind and lays down her stuff in random places without thinking about it. When she needs it, she can’t remember where she put it. It’s the exact opposite of “out of sight, out of mind”.

We use Tiles in our house.

The key locating device is our cell phones. And if my cell phone is with my keys, my husband’s cell phone will find both of them.

I can vouch for the XY Find It. Works well within it’s own operating parameters. The battery in my first one is still going strong more than 2 years after purchase. They go for about $20 on Amazon but I got mine for $8 at Fry’s.