Remote Starters - Product and Installation

Discussion in 'Modifications And Maintenance' started by JuStaWRX, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. JuStaWRX
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    JuStaWRX Well-Known Member

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    I am very interested in getting a remote starter on my 2014 CVT Forester XT Premium. I have been reading on a variety of reviews that leave it pretty much a 50/50 on the Subaru brand remote starter.

    Benefits that I have heard, are that it works with the existing key fob (no need for extra clutter), is fairly simple to install, and can be done on your own leaving the fob to be swipped at a dealership for activation.

    The cons I have heard are that it is unreliable, has issues with locking/unlocking and not having notification if the vehicle actually does start or not. Also it is unclear to me if there is a need to restart the car after entering the vehicle.

    When it comes to aftermarket, I would love to have a product that product that functions along with a phone app (again, to avoid extra clutter), has decent distance/reliability, and a notification as to if the vehicle starts or not would be a plus.

    Here are my questions:
    What do you have for a remote starter? What are it's pros and cons?

    What else do I need to know about remote starters? Any strong recommendations for or against any brand/model in particular?

    Ideally I am looking both for my vehicle and for my wife's ('12 Rogue).

    I apologize if this is a little vague... Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Curry
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    Curry Well-Known Member

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    You run the risk of damaging the stock harnesses. See this quote from one of the top Subaru Parts guys in the state!

     
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  3. JuStaWRX
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    JuStaWRX Well-Known Member

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    Thanks @Curry ! Is this from a thread I missed? Apologies if this is a duplicate.
     
  4. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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  5. Curry
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    Curry Well-Known Member

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  6. TMF
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    TMF Well-Known Member

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    Don't let one person's advice deter you. I have a remote start system in my 12 Legacy and my fiance has a remote start system in her 11 outback...we've both had them for over a year, and not a single issue with either [knocking on wood].

    There was a very good discussion on remote starters and good vendors in MN over on MNautox...see here: http://www.mnautox.com/forums/showt...tions-amp-installation&highlight=remote+start

    As for my experience? I would DEFINITELY recommend a 2-way system (they normally have longer ranges also). I can start my car from inside and know that it started. My fiance? Not so much. "Push and Pray" if you will. Hold that button and pray that when you get out to your car, that your car is nice and toasty.

    My legacy has an "AstroStart" brand system (was already installed when I bought it), and I can't remember the brand of my fiance's (hers was installed at Best Buy). One issue with hers, is that it doesn't seem to crank long enough sometimes: cold weather, plus an old battery...doesn't always turn over right away. Hers tries 3 times I believe, but if it doesn't start in those 3 tries, it doesn't start.

    On my 2-way system, I get 3 confirmations. First, is a beep right away after I hold the button, indicating that the signal made it to the car. I get a second beep indicating it attempted to start. And a third beep indicating that it actually started. Much better than just holding a button and praying!

    Cons? I hardly ever actually start the car with the key now...which means I'll burn through batteries in my remote starter fob faster. Oh well.

    Other notes...some of the OEM remote starters have nice features...for example, if it is cold outside, it will automatically turn on your heat (on high), defrost, and seat heaters. When hot outside, I believe it turns on the A/C. I know GM vehicles' OEM systems do this, not sure about Subaru. So I remember to turn on my heat on high and turn on my seat heater before turning off/exiting the car...can't turn on the rear defrost/wiper de-icer though.

    Some aftermarket systems have a variety of auxiliary inputs and you can program it to do the above functions and more. Mine has the ability I think, but they aren't wired/set up, nor do I have the desire to figure it out. And if you pay someone to install it and include special functions, they better know what the hell they are doing. Side note, @J.Rex has installed a system in his car and he knows a thing or two about wiring.

    Anyway, I definitely recommend a remote start system for hot or cold climates. Now if only I had a stupid garage door opener, I wouldn't have to run outside at all to start my car when I'm at home!
     
  7. skubi1
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    skubi1 Well-Known Member

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    i'm not sure if it's the same on subaru's, but when i was researching remote starts on my fiancee's 12 fusion, there were some aftermarket remotes that offered app-based remote starts, but they also ran a monthly service charge.
     
  8. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    CAUTION: Old Thread Bump

    Just when you think you might be leaving this place, something keeps you from it. My step-daughter bought a used 2013 Outback Limited, and of course did so without consulting me for any advice (independent kids...). It does not have a remote start and I thought I would have one installed as a gift (will not be a surprise obviously). My first inclination is to go with OEM. However the two cars we own have OEM starters and both do not have two-way communication which basically sucks. Why automakers do not incorporate this feature is beyond me. We had an Astrostart on our '02 Outback which was passed on to said step-daughter and it was pretty much flawless other than a remote that was not the most robust of construction (two broken antennas).

    After reading the install instructions for the Subaru accessory, it is not a DIY project. If I decide to go aftermarket, I will probably go back to Dealer Automotive Services in Hopkins as I have had good luck with them in the past. OEM, I will probably go to Bloomington Subaru for convenience of location.

    I would appreciate any feedback you guys might offer on this topic, especially for this generation and model of Subaru. Thanks.
     
  9. Squiggly
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    Squiggly Squiggly

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    The factory remote starters still stink unfortunately. Aftermarket will get you far better capability and range. We install Compustar products through our dealership and will always stand behind our work if it causes future issues.

    Mike
     
  10. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. I will take that into consideration. Off to Compustar's website.
     
  11. Squiggly
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    Squiggly Squiggly

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  12. curly2k3
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    curly2k3 Well-Known Member

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    is that with the MNSubaru discount? ;)
     
  13. Squiggly
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    Squiggly Squiggly

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    It probably is if you went through the parts department but I can't make any promises since it's aftermarket.

    Mike
     
  14. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info. Nice you also offer a loaner.

    Do you know if all of the techs do this install or are there a couple of them that specialize in it considering the complexity and attention to detail needed for an aftermarket install?
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2019
  15. Squiggly
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    Squiggly Squiggly

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    We actually outsource the install to a shop that specializes in this work. I know we've used DAS in the past, and maybe still do but I feel like we switched.

    Mike
     
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  16. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    The Ford dealer did the same thing when we had an OEM remote start kit installed in my mother-in-law's 2010 Escape. With the complexity of these things I can understand that. Thanks again for the insight.
     

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