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Auto Remote Starters: Your Beginner’s Guide

Auto remote starters can help make even the snowiest day a comfort on your commute.

Everything You Need to Know About Convenient Remote Car Starters

Do frigid mornings make you wish you could step into a warm car for your daily commute?

For many drivers, chilly winters mean shivering as you wait for the heater to kick in, or wasted time scraping ice off the windshield. Think about how much time is added to the morning commute just from waiting for things to heat up! But instead of going outside to start your car in the morning, what if you could just hit a button? Auto remote starters heat up the car and help melt the snow and ice on the windows. The only shiver you feel is a brief chill as you leave your cozy home and get into a cozy car!

Auto remote starters come with a variety of functions to suit your needs, making your car comfortable for when you’re ready to get in, whether it’s 30 below or 30 above. For help choosing the best remote car starter for you and your vehicle, we’ve put together this handy guide to cover everything from features to installation and operation. Let’s get started!

Short Range or Long Range?

Automatic car starters are wireless remotes, usually in the form of key fobs, that send signals to devices in vehicles via radio frequency transmission. The effective range of each transmitter is usually listed in their packaging or product info and generally falls between 500 and 5,000 feet. Chances are, 500 feet is plenty for most uses; after all, your home and driveway typically aren’t more than fifty feet apart at most, right?

If 5,000 feet feels like too much, consider that that’s effectively 1.5 kilometers. Now think of parking in an office lot in the dead of winter. Seems a bit more appealing doesn’t it? Now think of signal interference. A 500-foot range suddenly gets cut in half when you consider physical space and interference. If you’re only starting your car when it’s parked in front of your home, a 500-foot range is plenty.

Think about usage, though, and how frequently you sit around waiting for a vehicle to warm up. If your car is parked at a further distance with plenty of interference, such in an underground parking lot, the longer ranges are ideal.

Remote Features

Basic auto remote starters are useful for starting your vehicle from various distances. However, some remotes pack in extra features for added convenience. Aside from starting the engine, you can opt for remotes that also:

  • Lock and unlock doors;
  • Open the trunk;
  • Turn on the heat or air conditioning;
  • Turn on rear-window defrost;
  • Warm up the seats; and,
  • Monitor the security of your vehicle.

Some remotes also come with programming capabilities, so you can schedule to have your car turn on at specific times of the day. This helps in the winter when extremely cold temperatures put your car at risk of not starting and you’re not planning on going outside.

If you want to warm up your car overnight so it will start in the morning, a programmed timer on your remote starter can do that for you. These features can make your car more secure, easy to use, and comfortable, so you won’t have to freeze in winter, or overheat in summer when you first get in your car.


Part of the remote system installation includes installing a box on the car’s ignition switch to receive signals from your remote. However, you should leave this installation to the professionals! DIYing this installation could void warranties on your vehicle. Leave it to the professionals. They’re experienced with the complex wiring systems of cars, and there are many factors that could affect installation depending on your car make and model.

Here are just a few factors that may complicate installation if you don’t have experience with this work:

  • If you have an older car, unequipped for add-ons;
  • Your car is hybrid, European, and/or has a stick transmission; and,
  • Your car has a security system—alarms, theft-deterrent modules—that needs to be bypassed during installation.

A professionally-installed, high-quality remote starter system will ensure the remote starter: works effectively; will not void your car’s warranty; and will not risk causing damage or problems with your car during or after installation.

Bypass Modules

Since many modern vehicles have built-in security modules, most cars require a bypass module in order to use auto remote starters. Anti-theft modules normally require your unique physical car key to be inside the ignition for the car to start. However, a bypass module tricks the engine, so when you press a button on the remote to start the car, it works as though a key is in the ignition.

And even though your car will be running without supervision, you won’t have to worry about someone stealing it. The doors remain locked until you unlock them, and the engine shuts off if someone happens to get in and press the gas pedal without a key.

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Everything You Need to Know About Car Window Tints

Car window tints in Ottawa offer unmatched style and plenty of helpful benefits.

Options, Benefits, Tips, and Much More About Car Window Tinting in Ottawa

There’s something undeniably stylish about tinted windows on a car. Let’s face it, it’s just cool! But did you know that tinting also provides a few handy safety features? Beyond making it harder for would-be thieves to peek at what’s in the back seat, car window tints provide additional protection from UV rays. That’ll also help keep your car’s interior looking great, too!

What’s more, tinting helps keep the heat out in the summer, saving you from roasting on sunny days. And in the event of an accident, window tint films help hold glass together, saving you from shards of flying glass. That also makes it harder for a thief to smash a window in.

But the number of tinting materials and options on the market can make it a challenge to sort through. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you pick car window tinting in Ottawa!

So whether you want to improve your car’s appearance, safety, or both, consider these options for professional car window tinting in Ottawa to help you choose the right tinting for your vehicle.

Tinting Quality

First things first: when you’re buying from a reputable dealer, you’re getting consistent quality in terms of product, regardless of price point. There are, of course, some fantastic options at higher price points, but you’ll still get to enjoy a range of benefits at lower price points, too.

As a rule of thumb, you can expect serious longevity and aesthetics at the top of the price range. Lower-quality tinting still gets the job done, but might not last quite as long. They’ll still last a few years before they need a replacement, though. It’s a trade-off, and one you’ll have to consider when choosing a tint.

Drop by your local car components shop for an estimate on window tinting. This isn’t a job you want to DIY! We highly recommend getting the tint applied by an expert. While you can save a few dollars by handling application yourself, if you’re not experienced with window tinting you should definitely leave this job to the pros. Professional tinting is worth it for that sleek, clean, professional look for your car.

UV-Reflecting Tint Films

If you’re going to upgrade your car with window tinting, you might want to consider UV-reflecting film for added protection from the sun. UV protection can block up to 99% of UV rays, keeping your skin and your car interior safe.

Prolonged exposure to UV rays puts you at risk of sunburns and (as a worst-case scenario) skin cancer. These rays also heat up the car’s interior, making them uncomfortable in summer months. Constant sunlight might also affect interior materials, subtly lightening or darkening certain tones of fabric or dash material. Car interior materials may even show signs of cracking over time when exposed to direct UV rays. UV-safe window tinting can help preserve your car’s interior for longer, keeping it looking good and preserving resale value!

Window Tints and the Law

It’s important to familiarize yourself with your province’s window tinting laws for your type of vehicle before choosing tint shades. Professional car detailers know the extent of these laws and help you decide which shades are best for your car.

These laws are in place to ensure road safety. At no time should a driver’s view of the road, surrounding vehicles, cyclists, and pedestrians be obscured. So lighter window tinting is recommended for the driver’s side and rear windows. Also, police should be able to clearly see a driver’s face in case they are involved in an accident or a crime. A police officer may also notify drivers if they feel the car window tints are too dark.

Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation recently changed tinting laws for passenger vehicles manufactured on or after January 1, 2017. For these vehicles, both the windshield and front windows (to the right and left of the driver) must have a minimum 70% luminous light transmittance.

Choosing the Right Shade

The tint shade you choose depends provincial regulations and what you want out of your tinting. If you only care about safety, reduced heat, and protection from UV rays, then you can opt for a clear UV-reflecting tint film. But if you also want to enhance the look of your car with darker shades, the following tinting options are also available:

  • Light Tint—improves inward and outward visibility by reducing excessing light and glare;
  • Medium Tint—improves privacy and style while increasing heat rejection;
  • Dark or Limo Tint—for the most privacy and excellent heat rejection.

While a limo tint may be appealing, remember to consult with professional car experts about the provincial tinting regulations for your type of vehicle.


Once you’ve upgraded your car with window tinting, avoid opening and washing the tinted windows for at least three days after installation to ensure the tint film is fully dried. Any moisture exposed to the edges of the tint before it dries may go under the film and cause bubbles to form. You may, however, wash your car during this time since the tint film is only on the interior side of the windows. When you clean your windows, use a soft paper towel or cloth and an ammonia-free cleaner.

Aside from improving the look of your car, window tints can protect you and your vehicle from heat, sun damage, and hazardous broken glass. So if you’re interested in upgrading your car, consult with the experts in car window tinting in Ottawa for help choosing the right tint shades for you and your vehicle!

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Why You Should Tint Your Car Windows in Winter

Auto Tinting Improves Your Winter Driving Experience

Auto car window tinting can help for winterDuring Ottawa’s cold winter months, driving can be a chore. Before you can even leave your driveway, you must warm up your car, clear your windows of ice and snow, and shovel your driveway. And once you are on the road, you have to deal with poor road conditions and visibility.

But did you know tinting your car windows can help ease the stress of winter driving? It can also keep you warmer during those cold days on the road.

Here are just a few reasons why you should think about auto tinting for the winter:

More Insulation

Window tinting and films provide a layer of insulation on your windows that help keep the heat in during the cold winter months. This extra insulation means it will take less time to warm up your car!

By tinting your car windows, you can start driving sooner on those frigid mornings, and your car will heat up faster so you aren’t shivering while you’re driving. A warmer drive will make for a better start to your day!

Better Visibility

Winter is a horrible season for road visibility and driving conditions. From snow squalls to the glare from the sun reflecting off the snow, it can be hard to see the road. The sun’s glare is worse in the winter, since the snow reflects the sunlight directly into our field of vision.

With poor This poor visibility makes it even more dangerous to be on the road during icy winter conditions. Auto tinting reduces glare from the snow and from oncoming headlights, so you can drive safer, especially when the roads are at their worst.

Less Fade

Not only does auto tinting protect passengers in the car from UV rays, but it also prevents the colours inside your vehicle from fading. This protection maintains the condition of the interior of your vehicle, so it will look new for longer.

Whether it’s winter or summer, you probably don’t want your car’s interior to fade. Car window tinting protects the inside fabrics of your car from the sun’s harmful UV rays. If you ever decide to sell your vehicle, its good condition will help with the sale price.

Although winter is long and dreadful at times, you can improve your driving experience with auto tinting. Not only will your vehicle be warmer and maintain its interior appearance, but you’ll be able to stay warmer, see better, and drive safer in even the worst winter weather.

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Getting Your Vehicle Fall Ready

These car components in Ottawa can make your commute comfortable and safe.Top Car Components for the Fall Season

Leaves are changing, and it’s time to start bundling up with a sweater. Cooler temperatures are here to stay as fall weather settles in, and no doubt Ottawa residents are already looking beyond the changing leaves to the coming winter. There’s a lot to prepare for, so it’s best to start early—you never know when frost or a cold snap will hit, after all. One way to get ourselves ready is by making sure our cars are ready too. In order to get our vehicles tuned up for the oncoming cooler seasons, Ottawa car owners should consider adding some new car components.

Auto Remote Starter

If you do not already have an auto remote starter, there is no better time to install one. Auto car starters are considered a luxury by some Canadians, but the fact of the matter is they offer unparalleled convenience. You can start and warm up your car before you even leave your home. Say goodbye to chilly commutes and embrace this modern convenience!

HID Headlights

Ottawa residents know all too well that they often have to head out early to beat the traffic to get to work. As the days get shorter, this often means driving to work before the sun is up and heading home as it’s going down. Adding HID headlights this fall can help you illuminate dark streets, making your commute easier and safer. HID headlights emit light that is similar to daylight, improving visibility and diminishing the effect bright lights in a dark night have on the vision of other drivers. There are many options to choose from to suit your needs and the make and model of your vehicle, letting you rest easy knowing you’re safer on the roads.

Car Audio & Stereo

Okay, we’ll admit it—this is a bit of a luxury feature for this list! Really, upgrading your car’s audio system or stereo can be done at any time of the year, but why not treat yourself to this during the fall? After all, who doesn’t enjoy a nice countryside drive on a fall day? On a more practical level, modern car audio stereos often provide benefits such as Bluetooth phone connectivity and hands-free calling, letting you take calls safely without having to fiddle with one hand on the wheel and the other on your phone.

We rely on our vehicles to get us around on a regular basis, so getting your car ready for the fall can help ease the transition between seasons and get you ready for the really cold months. Try adding these car components to make your ride more comfortable in the coming cooler weather.

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Steering Clear Of Common Auto Starter Mistakes

Avoid these common mistakes when installing auto starters in vehicles.Things to Avoid Before And After Buying An Auto Starter

As with most things, when it comes to automatic car starters, there is a good side and a bad side. While having an auto starter is great, and provides that little bit of extra luxury we all crave, there are a few things you should be aware of as a consumer to avoid disappointment, damage, and difficulty.

When auto starters are either installed improperly or are manufactured at a low quality, they can cause severe, warranty voiding damage to your vehicle. Going beyond issues with functionality and not getting the most out of your auto-starter (for example, purchasing an auto starter with poor range or a limited feature set), there are more serious mistakes that are commonly made but can easily be avoided by being aware when purchasing an auto starter.

Buying Cheap

To put it simply, you get what you pay for. Check the reputation of the manufacturer or product before purchasing at a discount online or opting for a deal at a department store. Auto starters are a delicate but intricate component that require durable parts in order to last. An auto starter is nestled amongst many different parts of your vehicle, so if you purchase a cheaply made auto starter and it breaks due to poor quality, it can spark a domino effect that will affect those surrounding parts.

DIY Disaster

Most issues that arise with an auto starter occur post-purchase. One of the biggest mistakes you can make when buying an auto starter is installing it yourself. Many bargain auto starters claim that the installation is quick and easy – it’s not. Though it might look easy when the pros do it, that’s because they have the expertise and experience the job requires. As mentioned above, the auto starter is placed among many other car components. All it takes is one slip of the hand to cause costly damage, simply because of unfamiliarity with the process. Why not avoid that whole mess, and go to a professional

Buying Here, Installing There

Mistakes also happen when you take a cheaper auto starter and bring it for installation by a professional. While you may have saved a few bucks with a bargain, good luck finding a mechanic that will actually install the part. Professional auto shops will not install auto starters if it is not one of their own, or at least a well-known, reliable brand. These technicians will not risk damage to their company’s reputation or your safety by installing a poorly made or unreliable part. This forces many bargain buyers into the hands of non-professional mechanics that are more likely to make mistakes, therefore causing damage to the vehicle and voiding warranties.

When it comes down to it, low-quality auto starters installed improperly are the main cause of error. If you want to avoid these mistakes and purchase a well-functioning, warranty safe auto starter, you have to invest. Trusting the professionals is the only 100% error-free method of adding an auto car starter to your vehicle.

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Essential Car Components For All Drivers

These car components for Ottawa drivers should be at the top of your maintenance list.Reliable Components Are A Must For All Drivers, No Matter The Season

Not everyone is a car expert, so it’s totally understandable if you don’t know which components of your vehicle are the most important to look out for. Check out this list we’ve put together of the top 5 most important car components Ottawa drivers need to rely on, so that when it comes to buying or maintaining a vehicle, you’ll know exactly where to start.

1. The Battery

It’s no secret that cars need electricity to run, and the current that flows when you turn your key is all thanks to the battery. And if you think it’s not an essential car component in Ottawa, just try starting your car in some of that thirty-below weather this winter.

2. The Brakes

Once your vehicle is running, you’re going to want to be able to stop. Brakes are a car component that need to be maintained quite regularly, because if there’s one thing you never want to sacrifice, it’s your ability to slow down or bring your car to a stop.

3. The Steering

In order to control where your car goes between starting and stopping, you’ll need to be able to steer. The steering column is an especially important car component for Ottawa drivers, since it allows you to manage slipping and sliding and protects you in the event of an accident.

4. The Tires

If there’s one car component that’s always worth the money, it’s good tires. They provide traction on the road surface in rough weather, maintain steady pressure so your vehicle operates at peak efficiency, and rotate evenly so your ride is comfortable. This is a car component that you need to pay extra attention to, since you’ll need a second set for those frosty winter months.

5. The Transmission

To be able to drive fast on highways and slow on city streets, your vehicle needs to be able to switch gears – enter the transmission. This is a component you’ll want to keep well-maintained for the life of your car because without it, your car won’t perform.

Although there are many other car components to consider, these are five of the most essential parts to replace or maintain to ensure your vehicle stays on the road and you stay safe. Always be sure to consult a local auto shop if you notice anything out of the ordinary with your car.

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