Imagine if 10 minutes before you need to leave, you get to sit inside of a cooled down car when it is over 100 degrees out! Remote car starters have certainly become a popular convenience in the 21st century. Most new cars these days come with a remote car starter from the manufacturer.
Some use remote car starters to avoid the hassle of waiting in the cars for it to warm up on cold mornings. Others want to avoid the damage that can be incurred by running a car engine and letting it idle.
The convenience of remote starters is not limited to any one place or time of day – they can be used both at home and at work. Some like to have their car warm up before their drive home from work. Others may have remote car starters so that they don’t have to run out into the cold every morning just so they can get into a warm vehicle.
Remote starters are not just for the winter. They are also useful for those who live in exceptionally hot regions, where it might be too hot for one to sit in the car without first cooling down the interior – especially with leather seats!
Unless your car came with a remote car starter, a qualified technician (or your, if qualified) can install a remote car starter in your car. If you are buying a car new, check with your dealer as either they can install one for you or it may come with one directly pre-installed from the manufacturer.
What does remote car starters do
Remote car starters are typically powered by an on-board battery that allows user to start their vehicle from a distance. Some remote car starters also provide other features such as engine running capability in valet mode, which allows you to keep the engine running while you briefly step away from your car.
What to consider when buying a remote car starter
Remote starters can be expensive, so it is important to know what you need before purchasing one.
There are many things to consider when buying one. For example, if you don’t have an automatic car, you will need to make sure that the remote starter is compatible with your vehicle. If you live in a cold climate, you need to make sure that the remote starter is designed for winter conditions and supports battery power during low temperatures. Make sure that it has good range and won’t drain your battery in a day or two.
Some remote car starters come with a car security/alarm option. This just means that the system also has an option to alert you if someone triggers the car alarm. The car alarm can be triggered if for instance if someone opens your car without turning off the car alarm system. This would work similar to a house alarm.
Difference between 1-way and 2-way remote car starters
If you are looking for a inexpensive remote car start, then a 1-way system is your best option. If, however, you may be looking for a few more bells and whistles than a 2-way system will be your best friend. Some may argue that a 2-way is a requirement!
A 1-way remote start system is what you would imagine it would be. A 1-way remote car starter system, the signal only goes one way. In other words, if you are within range and there are no issues with your car, then when you use your remote to start the car, your car will start a few seconds after it receives the signal.
A 2-way system, simply means that the the signal goes both ways. In other words, your remote will send a signal to your car, and then your car will send a signal back to your remote. This means, when you send the signal to car, once your car has official started, you will receive a signal back. Your remote will have some indicator that will show whether your car started successfully or not. As you can imagine, this can be very helpful. If you are not within line of sight of your car, you will know whether your car started or not.
Check out our article explaining the difference between 1 way vs. 2 way remote starters.
Remote car starter options
Remote car starters with car security
Viper 5706V – Car security with remote car starter (2-way)
The Viper 5706 is certainly one of the higher-end remote car systems. The Viper 5706 comes with the following features:
- LC3 remote that comes with a LCD display that provides you with various alerts regarding your car.
- LC3 remote is a 2-way responder
- Comes with an additional 1-way responder
- Signal range: 1 mile
- Remote start functionality
- Keyless entry into your car
- Ability to open trunk
- Signal encryption technology
- Viper 5706 is SmartStart compatible (which allows you to control the system using an app on your phone). SmartStart is a separate feature that comes with a monthly subscription fee.
- Vehicle dome light control
- Failsafe starter kill – a feature designed to prevent hot-wiring of vehicle
View the Viper 5706 owner guide here.
Compustar CS7900-AS – Remote starter system with car security (2-way)
The Compustar CS7900-AS is an alternative 2-way remote car starter system with car security. The CS7900-AS comes with the following features:
- Remote start
- One 2-way responder with LCD confirmation and 2-way alarm alerts
- One 1-way responder
- Keyless entry into your car
- Diesel-engine safe
- Signal range: 3000 feet
- Shock/impact sensors around your car (as part of the security system)
Budget friendly remote car starters
Avital 4103LX – Remote car starter stystem (1 way)
The Avital 4103LX is an entry level remote car starter system that does the job, but does not provide the signal range you may want or need. The Avital 4103LX comes with the following features:
- Two 1-way remotes
- Signal range: Up to 1000 feet
- Panic mode that will honk horn and flash headlights
- Valet mode (allows the car to continue running after you remove the key)
- Keyless entry
Viper 4105V – Remote car starter system (1 way)
The Viper 4105V is more of an entry level remote car starter system. The Viper 4105V comes with the following features:
- Two 4 button 1-way responders.
- Signal range: Up to 1,320 feet
- Keyless entry
- SmartStart compatible system
- Signal encryption
Remote car starters are a convenient way to start a car, so long as the person using the remote for the starter is within range. They allow you to start your vehicle without having to walk outside in the cold or brutal hot weather.
Remote car starters are certainly worth the investment, as you can warm up your car when it is freezing out. Or, you cool down your car when it is brutally hot out!
David is an avid car enthusiast. Whether it is classic muscle cars or electric vehicles, David loves everything about cars. Over the years David has bought and sold many cars, as a consumer, and take an active interest in car repair. Outside of cars, David loves to regularly bike to stay active!