Remote Car Starter Buying Guide

Performance Plus has been installing Remote Car Starters for 26 years . This experience has taught us what is important in a quality remote starter installation. With the cold season upon us, we thought it would be a good time to post our Top 10 List (in no particular order):

1. Warranty

The actual remote starter brain should be warrantied for as long as you own the car. Many quality companies offer this. If they do not, it is a possible sign of inferior equipment. But watch out most small shops do not warranty their work or problems down the road, ask if there will be a service or labor charge if it breaks 5 years from now.

 Performance Plus will never charge to repair your remote start as long as you own your car.

2. Transmitter Range

You want to make sure that the remote start that you are buying will allow you to start/stop/lock/unlock, etc from a long distance. Many people say that they just park their car right outside of their house and do not need a long rang transmitter. Just keep in mind the trips to the movies, the mall, the amusement park, etc. You will want to use your remote start then also and you will not be parked as close as at home. Our transmitters offer the best range up to 3 miles! And remember that walls can reduce range significantly so more is always better.

4. Manufacturer

Make sure that the manufacturer is a company that specializes in remote car starters. There are many companies out there that simply throw a label on a product and call it their own. You want to avoid that. It is our experience that these companies provide little if any support for their products and many will not be in business next year. Stick with the experts.

5. New Car Warranty 

Do not let your car dealer tell you that an aftermarket remote car starter will void your warranty . If that equipment or associated installation causes damage to the vehicle, the dealer does not have to warranty the job. This is more of a reason to go to a specialist shop that sell good remote starters and installs them professionally.

6. Do it Yourself?

Unless you are a certified automotive service technician with experience in remote car starter installation, DO NOT attempt to install your own remote starter. I know… The one you saw at WalMart comes with an instructional video. That video will teach you enough to make you dangerous. Trust us! The instructional video may have worked in the early 1990′s, but today’s cars are very sophisticated. Save yourself a ton of expense and headache and have it installed by someone who does this for a living and can be responsible for the job. This brings us to number 7.

7. Buy it Here / Install it There?

Do not buy your remote starter on eBay (or WalMart or Amazon, etc) and expect to find a quality, reputable shop that will install it for you. Few if any will install a remote start purchased elsewhere. During remote starter season, the good shops are busy enough trying to keep up with their own work. If you find a shop that will install someone else’s remote starter, they are likely not very busy. Do you want to trust your vehicle to that guy? There is another very important reason not to buy a remote starter at one place and have it installed at another. Let’s say something goes wrong. A remote starter is an electronic product and can fail. The guy that puts it in will blame the product and the manufacturer will say that it was installed wrong. Guess who is stuck in the middle with no recourse. When you have the shop that you buy a remote starter from install it, you have one place to go in the event of a failure. There cannot be any finger pointing.

8. Go to a Specialist

Look for a specialty shop. Not to bash any of the Big Box stores, but they have a much higher turnover rate with installers than a specialty shop. These are people that likely have less experience than a long term employee at a specialty shop. It is our experience that many installer “cut their teeth” at a chain store and, once they have more experience, move on to a specialist . Many specialists (not all though) will solder all of their connections. We feel that this is very important. Crimp connectors can save up to an hour of installation time, but when dealing with the vehicle’s electrical system, we want a rock solid connection. The only way to get that is by soldering the wires together.

9. Will a remote starter from a specialty shop cost more than from a chain store?

Sometimes yes. But put that into perspective. Even if the job cost $100 more from a specialist, that difference is less than 1/10 of 1% of what you probably paid for your car. Why take the risk. Not to mention, when you deal with a specialist, you can talk to the installer, salesman and usually the owner. There is definitely value in that.

10. More than Just a Remote Starter Command start from your smart phone

Make sure that you review all of the convenience features that can be added to your remote starter with your salesperson before the installation! Most higher quality remote starters will allow a ton of cool features to be added or controlled from the remote. Anything from heated seats to keyless entry and rear defrost can be integrated with most better systems. It is A LOT cheaper to have this done at the time of installation. If you want to add it later, you may be paying for several hours of additional labor. 

The Bottom Line In summary, the cheapest price does not always save you money! When selecting a shop to have a remote starter put in, ask a lot of questions:

How long have they been in business?

How much experience do their technicians have?

Do they have shop grade scan tools and Mitchell or Alldata computer subscriptions to aid with troubleshooting?

How do they handle warranty issues? labour and parts?

You get the idea. The better shops will clearly rise to the top. They might cost a little more up front, but that extra expense will pay dividends in quality and piece of mind. I am sure that you will find that Performance Plus is one of the best remote car starter installation shops in Saskatoon.


2 Way Remotes – The Ultimate in Convenience

YOU HAVE TO GET A 2 WAY REMOTE STARTER!!!!  Well, you don’t have to…. But you should!

Remote starters are probably one of the best additions that you can make to your car. You press that button and ABRACADABRA! The car starts. But how do you know it is started? If you can see it, that’s great… the parking lights will be on and you may see some exhaust… the car’s running!

But what if you are parked around the corner or in a distant lot at work? 2 Way to the rescue!  Performance Plus offers remote controls that actually get a signal back from the car!  The remote starter unit sends a message to the remote to let it know a variety of information.   Is it started or stopped? Locked or unlocked? Interior temperature, vehicle battery voltage, and more…all of that in the palm of your hand.

2 Way costs a little more, but trust me… It’s worth it! 

Check out our CompuStar 2-way Remote Starters!


Prices are all in Canadian funds

© Copyright 2011, All Rights Reserved, Performance Plus Distributors All prices are in $CDN Currency

Please Note
With the fluctuations in the Canadian dollar, actual pricing may vary. For this reason, many departments are not listed until pricing is updated. Please call the store for up to date pricing and availability on the thousands of parts we have availability. while we do our best to bring the store to current market values. With over a quarter million dollars in inventory, we will do our best to take care of everyone in as timely fashion as possible. We sincerely appreciate your continued support and patience!

416 22nd Street West, Saskatoon, SK S7M 0R4, Canada

Toll free 1-800-943-3003 or locally at 1-306-249-3003
Fax us at: 1-306-249-2403