Remote Start Mn is sales and installation of automotive security and remote start systems. Preferred Five Star Dealer of the worlds best Remote Start system, VIPER. MECP Certified with over 21 years in the industry we offer lifetime warranty on all of our installations. Remote start MN is an authorized dealer of Viper, Clifford, Python and Avital products.
This a guide to help you with the task of selecting the right Remote Start System and the right shop or installer to complete the installation of that system. This guide is not intended to be biased towards any particular shop, manufacturer or installer and its sole purpose is to answer a few questions you may have and to educate you for your future purchase.

This guide is written by a 21 year professional in the remote start industry that is highly respected by by many shops, dealerships, product manufactures, sales reps and installers.
The advice, opinions and educational content in this guide is based on experience and industry standards with contributions from industry leaders and professionals.

What is a Remote Start System?

A remote start system is a complicated remote controlled electronic device that mimics the normal actions needed to start your vehicle. A remote Start System is not a simple bolt on device and should be installed by a professional with proven experience and technical training for aftermarket 12 Volt vehicle electronics installation. Remote Start Systems are installed inside the vehicle usually under the driver or passenger side of the dash in a location that can not be seen unless you are under the dash looking for the unit. Wires from the Remote start System are tapped into specific wires in your vehicle and either read the status of a vehicle function or complete actions that the vehicle will react to. Most newer vehicles are computer controlled which means that functions such as starting, lock, unlock, lights etc are controlled by a onboard vehicle computer and a important part of your remote start system called a "Bypass Module". A Bypass Module is responsible for "talking" to the vehicle computer in a data language and providing codes and reading information to complete the actions needed to disarm/arm your factory security system, start your vehicle, control your door locks etc. Remote Start systems are easy to operate, very dependable and should last forever when installed correctly.

Operating a Remote Start System

To remote start your vehicle after you've had a unit installed simply press the button on your key fob that starts the vehicle. Your parking lights will light up letting you know that the command to start has been received by the vehicle. Shortly after the parking lights have light up your vehicle ignition will turn on and very soon after your vehicle will start. Once your vehicle has been remotely started it will remain running under remote control command for a pre-determined period of time or until you have entered the vehicle and complete the "takeover process". Once you've successfully completed the takeover process the remote start will shut off, the vehicle will remain running and you are free to drive the vehicle like it was started by your key. The vehicle takeover process most commonly used is to enter the vehicle while the vehicle is running under remote control command and insert your ignition key into the ignition cylinder turning the key to the "run" position and then placing your foot on the break pedal but there are other takeover procedures available depending on your vehicle or key type. Push start vehicles typically use a takeover process that is as simple entering the vehicle with the factory key fob and pressing the break pedal. Whatever the takeover process is for your vehicle your installer or sales person should explain it to you and give you a demonstration before letting you leave. If the takeover process is not completed correctly or if someone attempts to drive the vehicle without the key the vehicle will shut down when the brake is pressed to put the vehicle into gear.

Your Vehicle Warranty

Under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Improvement Act, a vehicle manufacturer may not make its vehicle warranty conditional on the use of any brand of security system unless the manufacturer provides the same system free of charge or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has specifically published that only the vehicle manufacturer’s product may be used. To challenge a false claim, ask the car dealership to put it in writing, or request the vehicle manufacturer’s remote start system free of charge. If you are charged for the security system, or they refuse to give you a written statement, there may be a violation of Federal law.

This is the actual language of the act:

No warrantor of a consumer product may condition his written or implied warranty of such product on the consumer’s using, in connection with such product, any article or service (other than article or service provided without charge under the terms of the warranty) which is identified by brand, trade, or corporate name; except that the prohibition of this sub-section may be waived by the Commission if:
the warrantor satisfies the Commission that the warranted product will function properly only if the article or service so identified is used in connection with the warranted product, and the Commission finds that such a waiver is in the public interest.

The district courts of the United States shall have jurisdiction of any action brought by the Attorney General (in his capacity as such), or by the Commission by any of its attorneys designated by it for such purpose, to restrain (A) any warrantor from making a deceptive warranty with respect to a consumer product, or (B) any person from failing to comply with any requirement imposed on such person or pursuant to this chapter or from violating any prohibition contained in this chapter.

Installation Methods and Things to Look For

The installation is the most important part of a remote start system and is most commonly the difference between a great experience and a total nightmare. The methods used by installers for making wire connections in your vehicle include but are not limited to soldering, poke and wrap, T-taps, butt connectors and T-harnesses. T-taps are not a good way for connecting high current wires and small gauge wires often times come loose. T-tap installations should be avoided and are considered amongst most industry professionals and product manufacturers to be the weakest link in the chain. Butt connectors are another bad solution for connecting wires in a remote start and again are not suitable for high current wires and prove difficult to make a solid connection on small gauge wires. A butt connector is installed by cutting your vehicle wire in half and attaching one end of the butt connector to one side of the wire and the other side of the butt connector to the other side of the wire and if one of the two connections fails you are now left with a vehicle wire cut in half. The poke and wrap method is about the closest thing to soldering that you can get but it occasionally has its problems. The poke and wrap method is completed by first stripping a small portion of the vehicle wire and then poking a hole into the center of the wire and running the new wire that is going to be connected through the hole where it is wrapped around the vehicle wire and finally taped up to prevent shorts. The only problem with a poke and wrap connection is that under the tape you'll find a metal on metal connection that has not been treated to prevent corrosion or oxidation and both of those things can eventually lead to resistance or no connection at all. Soldering is similar to the poke and wrap method but before taping up the un-treated wires heat is applied and solder is melted and infused to the connection preventing the possibility of corrosion, oxidation, a loose connection or any of the other methods weak points.  Soldering is recommended by most industry professionals and product manufacturers and that fact is actually printed in most installation manuals. Last but not least would be a T-harness connection which is a pre made connection inside of a factory fit connector. A T-harness is the safest most reliable connection available because not only are the connections made the exact way that the factory made them but there is no guess work from an installer who is trying to find certain wires that they need to normally tap into. Ask your installer or sales person how wires will be connected into your vehicle. The MECP (Mobile Electronics Certified Professional) certification is an important certification designed to ensure that products are being installed by trained professionals and you should make sure you're installer has been certified by the MECP before ever getting a remote start installed. You can have the best system available with a terrible installation and you'll only have the worst system as a result and likewise you can take an entry level system and have the unit installed by a professional and you'll have a great system that lasts forever.

Choosing the Right Remote Start System is Easy

Choosing the right system for you and your vehicle usually comes down to a couple of factors. Range is probably the most important deciding factor because if you can not operate the system from the distance you need then the system is pretty much worthless. Most manufacturers, shops, sales people and installers tend to over exaggerate the distance that the unit will work from and there are no real standards to let you know what the real operating distance will be because everyone operates their system in different situations and there are many outside influences which can reduce the transmitting or receiving capability of a remote controlled device such as obstacles like buildings or radio interference and for this reason most manufacturers state that the unit has "up to" so many feet of range and we always recommend getting more than what you think you need. The next most important deciding factor would be features as remote start systems can have a wide variety of additional options and functions such as the ability to control the rear defrost, two-way communication which lets you know the status of your vehicle right on the remote, cold temperature starting etc. Features are outlined in detail below and should be considered if you're looking to get the most from your purchase. Remote size, style and feel is also an important factor to consider and if you have a ignition key that has the keyless entry built right into it you may only want to get a remote that has one small simple button to start the vehicle therefore reducing the bulk of your keychain and preventing the purchase of redundant features. Some vehicles can only have a specific remote start system installed and not all remote start systems will work for those vehicles. If you're vehicle requires specific parts or a specific remote start system your sales person or installer should let you know what your options are at the time that you are getting your quote.

EBay and Amazon Purchases

Purchasing a remote start system without installation from an online retailer such as eBay or Amazon could void the manufacturers warranty as most manufacturers do not allow retailers to sell their products in these uncontrolled environments and will void the warranty when they find out where the product was purchased. You're warranty is dependant on the place of purchase and the installer who installed your equipment. You will pay a little more money when purchasing your product from a local authorized dealer rather than a large online retailer but you will get a lot more for your money such as local warranty service, the ability to talk to your sales person or installer during regular business hours, a one on one relationship with the people who can help you when you need the help and much more. Go to the product manufacturers website and see if you're purchasing from an authorized dealer as most manufacturers have a dealer locator. An important fact is that when a manufacture finds out that a retailer is selling their product in the way that they don't want it sold or in a way that hurts their retailers that are following the rules the manufacturers generally strips the retailer of their authorized dealer status therefore getting warranty repair or replacement even directly from that retailer becomes very difficult. Just to stress my point about purchasing from a local authorized dealer again ask where you will be when you've purchased an expensive remote start system from eBay or Amazon and you've had the unit installed from a installer who is not certified when something goes wrong in the future . Who's going to service the installation? who's going to warranty the product?

Now That's a Real Sweet Deal

If you are thinking about buying your remote start system from a deal website such as Living Social, Groupon or Amazon local there's a couple of things that you should consider first. I have had the opportunity to participate in large scale sales launched from these deal websites and I have also had the opportunity to talk with several shop owners in the area who have launched these deals and the thing that everyone who has launched these type of sales all have in common is that they are degrading the quality of workmanship and providing the lowest quality product that they can purchase because they are getting paid about 1/8th the amount of money that a regular sale would bring them. A lot of these deals make no mention of the actual features that you will be getting and because they are getting such a low price for the remote start and basic installation they are going to charge absolutely top dollar for the bypass module or any additional parts or labor involved with the installation of this basic product. Another thing that these deal websites do is make no mention of the actual brand or model number of product that you will be receiving which is really scary because this means that the product that is being used in your vehicle may not be available in the future therefore warranty becomes impossible to obtain. How the deal website works is that they find a shop that is in need of some extra money then they negotiate with the shop to get you a deal that is a minimal of 50% off its FULL RETAIL price. If a remote start system normally costs $300.00 including installation before the bypass module or additional parts or labor that is needed then they will list the product for sale at $150.00 then the deal website will split the $150.00 with the shop at a usual rate of 50/50 which means that the shop is now seeing $75.00 for that sale minus the credit card charges that the deal website is going to charge for making the sale. After purchasing of the equipment and paying an installer to put it in your vehicle the shop may actually be paying out money rather than making money which makes it impossible to stay in business. In Minneapolis there has been four shops that have closed after launching deals like this in 2013 alone with those numbers sure to rise in 2014. The reason why the deal is so enticing to shop owners is that the deal website is going to pay a large check to the shop about 20 days after the start of the sale and I wouldn't be surprised to see a shop owner collect that initial check and then never complete the installations that were sold in the near future. Deal websites are great and they were designed to bring repeat customers but the remote start industry is not well suited for this sales model because the average person buying a remote start system will only purchase a new unit every five years.

Here's a list of common features please keep in mind that a lot of these features can be combined or when you purchase one of these features you actually get others at the same time. Your sales person or installer should be able to tell you what features you're getting if you ask.

Feature Explanation of the feature
2-Way Remote A 2-way remote lets you know the status of your vehicle and can tell you if the vehicle is running under remote control command or if a command has been received. Some 2-way remotes can report other vehicle functions such as cabin temperature, if the vehicle is locked or unlocked, if the security system is armed or dis-armed, how long the vehicle will run for before shutting down or many other functions. Some 2-way remotes have a LCD screen which tells you what's going on via an on screen display and some 2-way remotes operate by LED lights and or sound. The major advantage of a 2-way remote is that you do not need to look at the vehicle to find out if it is running.
Smart Phone Control Smart Phone control allows your smart phone to control your remote start system over a cellular network and provides unlimited range. Control your vehicle from thousands of miles away if desired. Usually all features can be operated via the smart phone such as lock, unlock, trunk release, remote start etc. This feature does require a service plan that usually costs about $5.00 per month but it is well worth the money if you have a use for this feature.
Keyless Entry Keyless Entry is the ability to lock or unlock your vehicle by remote control. Most vehicle come with this feature factory installed and it is becoming less important to have included with a remote start system even though most remote start systems come with this feature as a standard feature and probably always will.
Parking Light Confirmation This feature lets you know that commands have been received such as lock or unlock or start and also this feature has the ability to inform you of certain conditions such as vehicle running or a reason why the vehicle would not start or was shut down. This is a very standard feature and is usually included in any remote start system.
Anti-Grind Anti-Grind stops the starter from re-engaging and making a "grinding" noise if during the takeover process the user happens to bring the key to the start position instead of stopping in the run position. It's a good idea to get anti-grind if there are more than one persons driving the vehicle because if you're not driving the vehicle on a regular basis its hard to get use to the take over process and grinding of the starter is not good for it. Starter anti-grind is not included with most remote start systems unless you purchase it as an additional option.
Starter-Kill Starter-Kill is an added security feature that disables the vehicle starter when you arm your alarm or lock your doors by remote. Most vehicles have a Starter Kill feature factory installed but even when a vehicle comes from the factory with a starter-kill sometimes it is nice to have the additional security.
Alarm Features Alarm Features usually consist of entry way protection and some form of impact sensor. Other sensors can be added to an alarm system such as field disturbance sensors which sense movement outside and inside of the vehicle or tilt sensors which sense if a vehicle is being jacked up or lifted. Once a security system is armed the system is protecting the vehicle and if someone activates a sensor or opens a door or other protected entry such as hood or trunk the alarm siren or vehicle horn will sound to frighten a would be thief into panic and hopefully leaving the vehicle quickly to not get caught.
Car Finder This feature lets you honk the vehicle horn by remote and is very helpful to find your vehicle in large crowded parking lots. Often times this feature is combined with a panic feature that allows you to sound the horn in the event of an emergency.
Defrost Activation This feature allows you to activate your rear defrost when the vehicle has been remote started and is probably one of the most useful features that you could ever add to a remote start system.
Temperature Starting This useful feature can activate your remote start automatically if the temperature drops to a certain degrees and is useful in situations where you may be leaving the vehicle for a extended period of time and you're worried about coming back to it having a dead battery. As useful as this feature is i would recommend using low voltage starting over this option any day because then your vehicle is only starting if the battery is in real danger of going dead.
Low Voltage Starting On some models this feature can be activated to monitor the vehicles battery voltage and if the voltage drops to a dangerous level that could leave you stranded the vehicle is started and run for a period of time to re-charge the battery. This feature is especially useful when leaving the vehicle for extended periods of time in extremely low temperatures.
RFID Entry This is the new way of doing keyless entry. When you walk away from your vehicle the doors automatically lock and when you walk up to your vehicle the doors automatically unlock. This is a great way to lock or unlock your vehicle if you have stuff in your hands.
Call (612) 735-6186
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We offer Installations at 9053 Flying Cloud Drive. Eden Prairie MN 55347 (Upper Area next to TGK Automotive). Installation by appointment only.

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