Will a remote starter void the factory warranty of my vehicle?
Absolutely not! Not only will a remote starter NOT void your new vehicle's warranty, it is actually illegal for the dealership to tell you that!
What is an "antitheft bypass", and why do I need one?
Starting in the late 90s (and in some cases even earlier) automobile manufacturers began installing antitheft systems into vehicles in an attempt to make them more difficult to steal. There are many different types of antitheft systems, but by far the most common is what is known as a Transponder system. It works like this: Inside the head of your key there is a small computer chip. Positioned around the barrel of your ignition is a small antenna loop that picks up the signal from the computer chip inside of your key. This signal is then sent to the vehicle's computer which then allows the vehicle to start. However, if that signal is not present, the vehicle thinks it is being stolen and it locks itself down. In order to install a remote starter on vehicles with a transponder antitheft system, we must in some way replicate that signal coming from the key. This is where the antitheft bypass comes in. When the remote starter is activated, the antitheft bypass sends its own signal to the vehicle's computer, which then allows the vehicle to start. The antitheft system itself is still fully intact, and would lock down your vehicle if a thief were in fact trying to steal it. Additonally, the signals coming from the antitheft bypass are encrypted by the computer, meaning that having this device in your vehicle does not in any way increase the risk of your car being stolen.
Additionally, on some newer vehicles the antitheft bypass module plays an even larger role. The electrical systems of new vehicles are becoming increasingly complex. Many of them now employ a databus system to operate and control nearly all of the vehicle's functions, including the power locks, heated seats, tachometer sensing, and much more. The antitheft bypass module allows the main remote starter module to communicate with these databus systems of the vehicle, allowing the remote starter to do things such as lock and unlock the doors, monitor the engine's RPMs, and even turn the heated seats and/or defroster on if the vehicle temperature is below a set point.
Why would I want keyless entry on my remote starter, my vehicle already has it!
There are actually quite a few reasons why upgrading to keyless entry makes sense. First off, the units that we install that include keyless entry have significantly more range than the units that do not, allowing you to start your vehicle from much farther away. Also, having one transmitter that controls all of your vehicle's functions is much more convenient, as opposed to having one transmitter to start the car, and a seperate transmitter to lock and unlock the doors.
The best reason for upgrading your remote starter to include keyless entry is this - on most new vehicles, the factory keyless entry transmitter does not function while the vehicle is running. Before you had a remote starter installed this was likely never a problem because if the vehicle was running you were in it, driving. However, once you install a remote starter a new scenario comes into play. You press the button to start your vehicle, and now that it is running, your factory keyless entry does not function. Obviously, there are still things you can do to gain access to the vehicle such as using the key in the door, or stopping the vehicle with the remote starter transmiter and then using the factory keyless to unlock the door. From a convenience standpoint however this is definitely not ideal. Having a transmitter that will lock and unlock your doors regardless of whether your vehicle is running is definitely a nice feature to have.
How exactly does 2 way confirmation work?
With all of our remote starters, once you remote start the vehicle the parking lights come on and stay on for the duration of the runtime. This is your visual indication to know that the vehicle is running. However, if you cannot see the vehicle then you do not have any way of knowing for certain if your vehicle has in fact started. This is where 2 way confirmation comes in. With a 2 way transmitter, after your vehicle has been remote started, it sends a signal back to your transmitter confirming that it started successfully. The transmitter then displays this information in various ways depending on the model. Some units have small LEDs that indicate if the vehicle is running and how much runtime is remaining. Our top of the line units have a small LCD screen that confirms vehicle startup, gives you an exact countdown timer telling you when your vehicle will shut off, and will even give you additional info such as the interior temperature of the vehicle and the battery voltage.
How long does it take to install a remote starter?
There is no exact answer to this question as each vehicle is unique. However, the average length of installation time is around 3 hours. Things such as antitheft bypasses, manual transmissions, proximity keys, or slobbering dogs in the back seat can increase the amount of time the installation takes.
I want to be able to start my vehicle from X location, will it work?
All of our units tell you how many feet of range they have, however it needs to be noted that these numbers are under ideal circumstances. Things such as trees, houses, vehicles, and especially large metal buildings between you and your car will cut down on your remote starter's range. The only way to know for certain is to try it, and our advice is to always get a unit that has more range than you think you need. It is always better to have too much than not enough. Upgrading to a unit that operates on FM frequencies will also help increase the range of your remote starter. The entry level units that we install operate on AM frequencies (just like AM radio) and are much more likely to be affected by metal objects between you and your vehicle.
I have a vehicle with a manual transmission, can you install a remote starter on it? And if so, how does that work?
Yes, a remote starter can be safely installed on a manual transmission vehicle. The operation process is lightly more involved but is easily adjusted to. Each time you get out of your vehicle you need to "arm" the remote starter if you want to be able to use that feature. The arming sequence guarantees that the transmission is in neutral and thus the vehicle can be safely started. If any doors are opened after this process, the remote starter is no longer "armed", and will not start the car, because of the fact that the gearshift lever could have been moved from the neutral position. As an extra layer of precaution, a sensor can be installed that detects vehicle movement and disengages the remote starter if the vehicle moves 3 inches or more. This is paticularly useful in convertibles, where the gearshift could be moved without the doors being opened.
I have a hybrid, can you install a remote starter on it?
Yes, absolutely. We have installed remote starters on many hybrids and they function perfectly.
My friend told me that a remote starter is bad for your vehicle, is that true?
No, remote starters are not bad for your vehicle. If anything, they are actually better for your vehicle because they allow the engine to get to a proper operating temperature before the vehicle is driven. Unfortunatley there are too many stories that go something along the lines of "Well my uncle's friend who used to be a mechanic said he would try to install this unit I bought at (insert cheapo retailer here), but after he tried to install it the unit didn't work right, and on top of that he screwed up my car." Big suprise.
Mixing poor quality parts with sub-par installations is always a rescipe for disaster. The remote starters that we install are designed with new vehicle's complex electrical systems in mind. We have years of experience installing remote starters along with advanced computer programs and wiring schematics that give us the detailed information we need to complete a reliable, trouble free installtaion.