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Here are three questions for our participants:


1)Do you install remote starts?


2)Have you ever installed remote starts?


3)What do you think are the pros and cons?



What prompts this thread is that we have a negative opinion due to the problems we have saw out of remote starts with security systems. However, at this time of year I have 2-3 inquiries daily about these. There is a automotive electronics store 6 blocks from us that installs these.


Remote car starters are great accessories, however they must be installed correctly. The problem with a professional repair shop installing them is you would have to cut your labor rate by at least half, and then only charge for a portion of the time required to install one correctly. But when the electronics stores are paying their slam-it-in guy minimum rage they can sell a remote car starter installed for far less than you can. And since few if any customers are willing to pay you for your expertise, ability and care when they can get what appears to be the same thing for less, it's not a competitive market to enter. You and I know the difference between scotch lock connections and proper electrical connections. We understand the importance of testing a circuit to verify it's operation prior to clipping a scotch lock onto it but that takes time. We understand the critical importance of wire size and current carrying capacity, especially in today's modern vehicle where engineers are cutting weight and costs anywhere they can. And scotch locks cut wire strands internally of the insulation. You and I understand the importance and difference between these installation techniques, but the customer only sees your cost of $500.00 and the chain electronics store costs $350.00. And we all know that everything is the same except for the price.


I will install them, but I am not competitive on costs, so I install only one or maybe two a year. Good luck.

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trusedmechanic pretty much said what I was going to say.


But I'll add this on top of it:

I used to install them, but as in many aftermarket components the big issue is how well they are enginereed. Which means "how long is it going to last". A few times I've had someone come back years later and tell me the unit isn't working correctly and ask me to repair it. Of course, there isn't any repair, there isn't any diagnostics with these things... you're on your own.


Needless to say the customer usually isn't happy. AND there isn't much I can do about it. Especially if the company that was making the parts went out of business six months after I purchased the thing for the customer.


So anymore, I have the customer go find it... I'll install it at MY price and then let them deal with its failures. Not me.


Usually they'll go right for the cheapO place to have it installed. (that's fine with me)



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  • 4 weeks later...

i hate going to do a SES light and see a bundle of wires with piggy back connecters, from some quick/cheap starter install. if i were installing a starter i would use either a specific harness that is pre-spliced for the starter, or splice in and solder/heat shrink everything.

it looks better, creates a better connection. and is much safer than piggy backing wires with a cheat 3 cent plastic connecter.


we have a large number of starter installers here. some of them do it nice, others do it like poo. they all charge about the same for a install. i guess some are more concerned with $$$, others would rather do a great job and keep the customer happy.

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