Do You Need A Remote Car Starter?

by Don Elliott on November 3, 2011

There are a number of questions you should ask yourself before purchasing a remote car starter. Do you live in a cold climate or leave your car outside at night? Will your car start easily and stay running? These are just a couple of the important questions that you need to answer before you shell out hundreds of dollars for a remote car starter.

Remote Car Starter Functions

The remote car starter function is relatively simple. A module is installed in an out of the way area with easy access for connection to the ignition, power, starter, brake, and tachometer wires. Pressing a button on a key fob transmits a radio signal to the module. The module takes over the function of the key, telling the ignition to turn on the car.

The key fob radio signal is coded. This makes the signal unique, just like your car key. However, any auto locksmith will tell you that there are only so many unique key combinations that can be cut into a key blank. The same applies to the remote car starters, but don’t worry. A remote car starter doesn’t make it any easier for a talented car thief to steal your car.

Remote starters are improving with each new generation. Factory installed remote car starters are fully integrated into the cars electrical system. Aftermarket remote starters are often packaged with added features like keyless entry systems, security alarms, or rearview cameras. Smart phone apps and the 2-way LED car running confirmation are recent upgrades to the basic remote car starter device.

But do you really need a remote car starter? Let’s take a look.

Pros:

  • Turn on your car from inside the house. If you remembered to leave on the heater and defroster, your car will be toasty warm when you are ready to leave. In the summertime, leave on the air conditioning and it will work in reverse.
  • If you remembered to lock the car at night, it will remain locked and secure even though it appears to be running unattended in your driveway.
  • The 2-way communicator will confirm that the car is running. Otherwise, the car may have stalled, which  will cause a potential list of problems.

Cons:

  • Added cost and an extra fob on your key ring.
  • Installation taps into wiring that might otherwise be left alone. Installing a remote starter is not for an amateur mechanic. Too many things can go wrong that can keep the car from running correctly, if at all.
  • It is hard to buy just a remote car starter. Added features can drive the cost up to $500 or more, even when professional installation is included.

Your own personal situation and climate situation will definitely have an impact on your decision to purchase a remote car starter. It is a great modern convenience, but one you can still manage without having.

Google+ Comments

Previous post:

Next post: