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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-12-2003, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Remote Car Starters

I had been thinking about getting a remote car starter for my parents at Christmastime, but was told by someone that they are not good for cars. Wears something out (can't remember what); or something. Is that true? Or do they not hurt your car?

Also - would you be better off just getting a Manufacturer remote car starter installed by a dealer ($300+ when I checked for my parents' Grand Marquis); or are the "discount" ones you see at Circuit City, Target, Sam's Club alright?

When I do get my 6, I'll probably want a car starter. And since Mazda doesn't offer them when configuring the car, I need to know what my best option would be (or whether to even do it). I'm in Michigan, so coming out to a warmed-up, heated car in 10-degree weather would be nice. :)


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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-15-2003, 11:52 PM
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Reading Topic: Remote Car Starters

Coming from Alaska I know exactly what you mean when wanting to come out into a warmed car.

I've found that adding an Autostart will VOID your warranty so it's best to understand that from the start.

An autostart system doesn't wear out the car any more than running outside in the freezing cold and starting the car yourself would. The car is running so it will wear some.

There are a number of really good systems from a wide variety of companies. I'm partial to one from Viper that has good range, and tons of other features that I rarely use but it has a great FOB with a display of the various functions of the car and is a repacement to Mazda's own FOB for unlocking/locking and trunk release. It has other options for alarm upgrades, etc.

If you do decide you're willing to accept the risk, look at the quality of the installer and the sytem you're installing. (Read as: don't buy it at Walmart and have your cousin Ernie install it.) Get as many details as you can, ask for references, whatever.

Also, it's a good sign that if the company has been installing stereos, car alarms, autostarts and have been with the same suppliers and in the same location for a while that they are reasonably reputable.

Don't hesitate to ask around to other friends or people who've had them installed--if they don't have any complaints you won't hear much but if they got a bad deal or nothing but problems you may have to ask the name of the place and avoid any additional eye contact so that they'll shut-up about it.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-16-2003, 08:39 AM
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Replying to Topic 'Remote Car Starters'

Many cars today (the 6 included) have "Immobilizers". There is a small coded chip built into the top of in the key. If the proper key is not in the ignition the car will not start.

The factory systems have a way to bypass this. I doubt that the non-factory systems will work on these type of cars.

A side point.

A couple of weeks ago I saw on the news that somewhere (US state/local??) they passed a law that made it illegal to have your car running if you are not at the car. They figure it will cut down on car thiefs. :sarc
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-16-2003, 09:25 AM
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Reading Topic: Remote Car Starters

Funny you say that, Jay. I put my Supra up for sale back in early September and I had one guy look at the car later in the month who told me he thought it was illegal to have your car running without you in it in the state of Maryland. He brought this up when he saw I had a turbo timer installed. I had never heard that before.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-16-2003, 09:38 AM
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Reading Topic: Remote Car Starters

LBJay, that's a good point to know about the warranty. On a new car, always go factory if possible - let them be responsible.

If you can't go factory, then go with a reputable (and large) installer. Most of them will offer a lifetime warranty on installation, and if it's a major corporation, you have a chain to follow if there is a problem.

Don't get me wrong, I like the small mom-and-pop shops - alot. But unless you have a good track record, solid referrals, or an existing rapport, I would not risk having them do such a procedure on a new car (or any car, for that matter).

Any time I've had someone install something in my car (which isn't often, I usually do most of the work myself); I talk to the installer or bay manager extensively. If I like them, I'll let them do it. If I talk to someone that I like, I will request (i.e. demand) that they are the ones to work on my car.

Continue to keep us (or at least me) updated. I was seriously considering a remote starter as well.

Oh, and keep in mind that you shouldn't let your car idle for more than about 20 minutes without revving (i.e. driving).
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-16-2003, 09:40 AM
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Reading Topic: Remote Car Starters

So to digress a bit, I remember hearing of a system for a remote starter for a manual transmission. The system involved a laser to determine if the car was in neutral. If the car wasn't in neutral, the car wouldn't start. I haven't heard anything of this system in years. Has anyone else ever heard of this?
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-16-2003, 06:06 PM
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Replying to Topic 'Remote Car Starters'

QUOTE
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Originally posted by LBJay


* * * * * * Many cars today (the 6 included) have "Immobilizers". There is a small coded chip built into the top of in the key. If the proper key is not in the ignition the car will not start. *

The factory systems have a way to bypass this. I doubt that the non-factory systems will work on these type of cars.

A side point. *

A couple of weeks ago I saw on the news that somewhere (US state/local??) they passed a law that made it illegal to have your car running if you are not at the car. They figure it will cut down on car thiefs. :sarc[/b]
It is illegal here in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Cops will ticket for it if they see it.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-16-2003, 08:20 PM
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Reading Topic: Remote Car Starters

Oh yeah, I meant to comment on that, too. Over here in Jersey you can be ticketed for "unattended vehicle" or something like that if you leave your car running while you're not present.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-17-2003, 07:41 PM
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Replying to Topic 'Remote Car Starters'

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Originally posted by applejax


* * * * * * Oh yeah, I meant to comment on that, too. *Over here in Jersey you can be ticketed for "unattended vehicle" or something like that if you leave your car running while you're not present.[/b]
Yes, it is true here also... Florida Statutes prohibit leaving your vehicle unattended and running. $47.00 reminder.

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 02-17-2003, 09:33 PM
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Reading Topic: Remote Car Starters

Simpleman;

Please read the signatures sticky in the lounge.
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