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Adding remote start to 2010 Outback

My wife recently told me she'd like to get remote start for her Outback. And even though this winter hasn't been particularly cold so far here in Mass., I think most years get cold enough to justify it. So I've made a few calls and I'd like to get some feedback.

I have a friend who's had a few remote starters (between his and his wife's cars) and he pointed out two potential issues:
A) Some don't play nice with the alarm or keyless entry. For one, he had to unlock the doors before starting the engine (or if he started the engine first, he had to stop the engine to unlock the doors).
B) Some of them required sacrificing a key, which got locked up inside the remote starter box under the hood. This really bothered him.

I talked to two local independent shops and the local Subaru dealer. The dealer actually told me that they use a local shop for remote starters and gave me their name and number so I could ask questions.

Here's what I've found so far. All of these have lifetime warranty on the starter and the labor but a 1-year warranty on the remotes. These are all 1-way systems with ranges from 800-1200'.

Local shop #1
They sell Avital remotes and steered me toward the 4103 (http://avital.com/Products/Product.aspx?path=Remote Start System&id=5004) remote start with keyless entry. They said this does not work with the Subaru alarm, so you end up using the Avital remote for starting and keyless entry/locking, and not using the Subaru alarm at all. They said if the alarm is armed when you remote start the engine then the alarm will sound. They said most people seem comfortable enough with the door locks and needing to insert the real key in the column before you can shift out of park. This system does not require sacrificing a key and they want $295 for it installed.

Local shop #2
They sell Arctic Start and Encore remotes and initially pointed me to a 1-button Arctic but after getting into it about the alarm and keyless redirected me toward the Encore E2 (http://www.encoreautomotivesystems.com/Encore_Automotive_Systems/Model_E2.html)- . He said you use the Encore remote for remote start and keyless entry/locking, but that it does work with the Subaru alarm. I didn't capture the exact details but he said they use an iDatalink box to make it all work together. It doesn't require sacrificing a key and they want $380 installed.

Local shop #3 (referred by Subaru dealer)
They sell Audiovoxx starters and recommended the Pursuit PRO9056C (http://adventproducts.com/remotestartsystems/?sku=PRO9056C). It plays nicely with the Subaru alarm and keyless entry/locking, but the Pursuit remote just does remote starting, and you continue to use the Subaru key/remote for keyless entry. It sounds contrary to what the guy at shop #1 told me, but I know shop #3 installs in Subarus regularly, so I'm inclined to think they know how to make it work. Their system, however, requires you to give up a key. It can be the valet key, and I think I'm ok with that. They're asking $300 installed.

So my questions to the group are these:
1. Did I miss asking about anything important?
2. Do you have any experience with the brands/models of remote starters that would be useful to me?

I'm inclined to go with #3, but if anyone knows of any gotchas I'd be very interested in hearing them.

Thanks much.

-cb

Comments

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,499
    The need to give up a key depends on how the system interfaces with the car. For those that do not need a key but also don't "play nicely" with the Subaru security likely overrides that system when activated. The key has a chip inside that must be within a certain range of the ignition, or else the car deactivates and cannot be started. So, you permanently attach the key to the car in a location within range of the ignition sensor and it works fine, but you've also disabled that security feature. In other words, if you had a non-chipped key cut, you could use it in place of the standard (chipped) ignition keys.

    I don't have an auto start (never have), but they're wildly popular here in Fairbanks, Alaska. I suspect I may be one of the only people in the area to have neither auto start nor cell phone. :P

    Two-way auto start systems are the most popular here, because those units will confirm when the car starts or alert you when it has failed to do so. Some will also alert you when the car has, or is about to, time out (generally twenty minutes after starting). You can also get them with temperature triggers (start when engine block at or below X temperature) and there are models that will interface with cell phone "apps." Viper is a common one that I see, but I don't know how they interface.
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