Remote Start Buying Guide

Getting out of the cold and into a vehicle that is even colder is not fun. Wouldn’t it be nice if your car was warm when you entered, or you never had to worry about scraping the frost off the windows again? No more shivering for 5 minutes until your car heats up.

The reverse could be said if you live in a warmer climate and dislike entering a hot car. Vehicles left in the sun for a brief period of time can become extremely hot, hotter than the outside temperature. Wouldn’t it be great if your car was a nice cool, comfortable temperature when you entered it? No more burning your legs on a hot seat or your hands on a hot steering wheel.

You may be thinking that it doesn’t seem like such a great idea to leave your vehicle running unattended, someone could hop in and drive away. When your vehicle has been started remotely, the vehicle cannot be driven without the key being inserted into the ignition or the key fob being present for those vehicles equipped with push to start. In addition, if a vehicle has been started remotely the second that the brake is depressed without the key in the ignition, or a fob being present, the engine will shut off. Because of this, a remotely started vehicle is safer than starting your vehicle and leaving the keys in the ignition.

If this sounds like something that you would like, then you should consider adding a remote starter to your current vehicle.

Woman Brushing Snow Off Of A Car

Things To Consider When Choosing A Remote Starter

Remote starting units are capable of doing more that just starting your vehicle. For the most part, any mechanical feature that is electronically controlled on your vehicle can be controlled by the remote start fob. From power windows and rear defroster to heated mirrors, they all can be activated remotely. Left your sunroof open in the rain? Hit the remote button and it closes.

Remote Range/Signal Strength: Range is a direct result of the unit’s signal strength: the stronger the signal, the further the range. It can be a little deceiving when a unit states that it has a range of 500 feet. When these measurements were established the unit was tested in the most pristine conditions; there were no buildings, windows, walls or RF interference. All of these obstacles will tax your unit’s signal range. Keep in mind that you will be starting your vehicle from inside restaurants, crowded parking garages, sporting events, hotels, busy streets, office buildings, and the list goes on, so that “500 feet” can really be reduced.

It is always better to opt for a more powerful signal. A remote starter is not much of a convenience if you can’t use it when you want to. The main objective is to make sure that your vehicle is running by the time that you arrive.

Car Stereo Installer

Installed by a professional: The majority of remote start manufacturers require their product to be installed by a professional. With professional installation you know that your vehicle’s warranty will still be valid and you will have the peace of mind that it was done correctly.

Our Alarm and Remote Start prices include Standard Installation at any of our Car Toys locations. Most vehicles 1998 and newer require a bypass or door lock module for an additional $69.99. Depending on vehicle make/model/year, additional parts and labor may be required to complete the installation. For details please contact your local Car Toys store.

What Options Do You Need in a Remote Start Device?

There are numerous options available on remote starters, but do you really need them all? Here are some of the most popular features:

2-way Remotes: From your remote you send a signal to your vehicle to start the engine, your vehicle then sends you a message that informs you that the engine has been started and is currently running. This option can be tied in to your alarm system as well. For example your vehicle can let you know if the alarm has been triggered.

Number of Auxiliaries: For each additional feature that you would like connected to your remote start unit you will need a corresponding auxiliary port. Most basic remote start systems come standard with 1 button to start the vehicle and 2 auxiliary connections. Be sure that the unit that you have selected can handle all of your needs.

Number of Key Fobs: A great deal of remote starters only contain 1 key fob. If you require 2 key fobs, be sure that the remote start system that you have chosen includes multiple fobs.

Engine RPM Sensing: The remote start device monitors the engine’s RPM to determine if the engine has started or if it has died. In the latter case it will attempt to restart the engine.*

Use Factory Key Fob: Some units have the ability to work with your existing key fob. For example, if you press the lock button 3 times the engine will start.

Engine Kill: An additional level of safety and security allowing you the ability to turn off the engine remotely.*

Keyless Entry: In the majority of cases, remote start units have a far superior range than OEM keyless entry systems. This option eliminates the need to carry 2 key fobs, one to unlock your vehicle and one to start it remotely.*

Vehicle Security: - Control your vehicle’s alarm without the need for multiple fobs.*

Heated Seats: Push a button to start your car, then push the corresponding auxiliary button to turn on your seat warmers.*

Rear Defrost: On most vehicles the rear defroster resets itself when the engine is shut off. In order to ensure that the rear defroster is turned on, the installer will interface with the rear defrost circuit. To enable rear defrost, just press the corresponding auxiliary once the vehicle has been started.*

Anti-Grind: This feature disrupts the starter when the remote start is in use, making it impossible to grind the starter (double start) if the key is over rotated.*

Vehicle Locator - Can’t find your car in a crowded parking lot? Simply push the auxiliary button and the horn honks.*

Smartphone Interface - This will let you start, control your car’s electronics, or locate your car via GPS. It can even generate a speed alert if the family vehicle is exceeding a specified speed.

Trunk Release - Open your trunk with the push of a button.

If you would like to upgrade your ride with the modern convenience of a Remote Starting unit then come on in to your local Car Toys and let one of our product professionals assist you in finding the right remote start that fits your needs.

*Please note additional fees may be added for the installation and hardware needed for this feature.