Many vehicle owners consider adding an advanced car alarm to their vehicle only after a break-in or theft incident—which represents a tremendous opportunity to preemptively protect your vehicle and its contents from theft or damage.
Whatever your need for car security, a plethora of options from the billion-dollar car security industry are at your disposal—and thankfully, today’s car security products are offering more advanced features and products at more compelling prices than ever.
Whatever your need for added car security, there’s a product that’s just right for your vehicle, your lifestyle, and your budget. From simple immobilizers that prevent your vehicle from being hotwired and driven off, to motion-detecting, Smartphone-linked smart alarms, the options are nearly limitless.
Thing is, they can be daunting, too.
Below, we’ll help you sort through the multitude of car security products designed to add protection to whatever you drive, regardless of its age or value. If you want to learn more, use the table of contents to navigate, but we’ll start out with the list of best car security systems first.
Table of contents
1. Editor's Pick: Omega K9 Mundial Car Alarm
This advanced, full-function car alarm system is highly rated by shoppers, comes from a reputable brand, and features an array of must-have features for powerful protection. The K9 Mundial is an easy-to-install alarm system that comes complete with stylish remotes, a potent siren, and plenty of customizability.
Included are two remotes, a dual-zone shock sensor, and a variety of auxiliary inputs that support additional add-on sensors if the user desires. Users can even set the volume of the alarm horn, and the confirmation chirps that sound when they lock and unlock their doors.
Anti-carjacking provisions add further protection in high-risk areas, and the shock sensor can trigger the alarm if your vehicle is struck or bumped. An add-on proximity sensor is available to sound a warning chirp if someone stays in close proximity to your armed car for an extended period of time, too.
Owner reviews reveal that the range of the remotes, and the audible range of the siren, are both top notch. Just consider professional installation, as this is a full-function car alarm that requires plenty of wiring and calibration.
2. Easyguard EC002-NS Passive Keyless Car Alarm
Easyguard’s EC002-NS alarm kit affordably combines high-end features with traditional car alarm protection for the power-user. This do-it-all car alarm not only provides added security, but also incorporates push-button engine start, remote engine start, and trunk release capability from the remote keyfob, by means of a trunk release solenoid add-on kit.
A keypad can be used to require a password be entered before starting the engine, for an extra layer of security. There’s a shock sensor included as well, which triggers the alarm if the vehicle is struck or bumped.
Owner enjoy report great performance and features at a compelling price, but also reveal the need for professional installation—this system is fairly complex, and should only be installed and calibrated by an expert.
3. Linxup OBD GPS Tracker
If you’re not a fan of car alarms but want some extra peace of mind and protection for your car or truck, why not consider a GPS tracker? The Linxup OBD GPS tracker is affordable, installs in seconds, and links to a Smartphone app so you’ll always be able to pinpoint your vehicle’s location with up-to-the-minute accuracy.
Though this tracker won’t protect your vehicle from break ins, it can help you assist authorities in locating your vehicle’s whereabouts if it’s ever stolen. Simply plug the module into your vehicle’s On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) port, link it to your smartphone, and you’re set.
This is a discreet, silent, easy-to-install and non-invasive way to add some security with high-end tracking capability that can help authorities in locating your vehicle if it’s stolen—though a monthly subscription is required. Some owners of high-end cars report that they use this product in conjunction with a traditional car alarm for added peace of mind.
4. AUTOLOVER Smart RFID Engine Immobilizer
This simple, discreet and easy-to-install security system from Autolover adds powerful protection against vehicle theft via an immobilizer powered by Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. Simply, the Smart RFID Engine Immobilizer acts like a gatekeeper to your vehicle’s ignition system: once installed, your engine won’t start until the system sees an invisible radio frequency, transmitted from a small close-range transponder pod that’s designed to attach to your keychain. On its own, this clever product can prevent your vehicle from being hotwired by thieves, or stolen by hackers using keyfob-scanning technology.
It can also be added to an existing alarm system for an extra layer of protection. Owners can set the Smart RFID Engine Immobilizer up to use with, or without, their factory-provided ignition key, too. Some owners have chosen to do away with their traditional key altogether, using the Smart RFID Engine Immobilizer as their sole means of starting their car.
The AUTOLOVER Smart RFID Engine Immobilizer won’t deter break-ins, but it is an easy and affordable way to make your vehicle more difficult to steal—which means car thieves will likely move to an easier target.
5. ZENTO Security Tire Clamp
This highly visible theft deterrent tells would-be car thieves, in no uncertain terms, that your ride is staying where it is. Larger tire clamp options are available, but this solution is highly portable and compact, for easy storage in your trunk or back-seat. Totally mechanical, this product simply requires users to adjust the clamp to the size of their wheel, and lock it into place. A keyed lock secures the device, which renders the vehicle undrivable until it’s removed. Ideal for use in remote or high-risk areas, this tire clamp is cheap and simple, and is a great way to make car thieves look for a simpler target. It installs in seconds, is simple to use, and requires no wiring or batteries.
A long list of positive owner reviews reinforces the value in this effective theft deterrent — but make sure it’s compatible with the rim and tire size of your vehicle before purchasing.
6. Omega MYCAR LINKR-LT1
Connect the LINKR LT-1 to your vehicle, install the app on your Smartphone, and unlock a world of connected-car possibilities. Once set up, the system allows you to start or stop the engine, work the door locks and receive vehicle status updates, right from your Android or iPhone.
Not sure if you’ve locked the doors? Just check the app on your phone. Stolen vehicle tracking is also possible, and the system can send alerts to your phone instantly if your car alarm is triggered. Notably, since the system communicates over a cellular network, there’s no range limitation common with systems using remote keyfobs. Many owners love the system’s security features, though the remote start functionality is arguably the LINKR LT-1’s most favorited feature.
Assess your needs before you buy, noting that some functionalities require additional hardware, which is sold separately. Further, as the LINKR LT-1 relies on cellular networks to communicate, service fees apply.
7. Hosmart Driveway Alarm
If you’re interested in protecting your vehicle without adding electronics or hardware, the Hosmart Driveway Alarm is worthy of your consideration. Highly affordable, totally wireless and easily installed, this device silently triggers an alarm if motion is detected in a pre-set area of your property when its armed. The sensor is mounted in a location where it monitors activity in your driveway, and the receiver stays inside your house. Once armed, the system will sound an alarm if someone walks into your driveway, or near your vehicle while its parked outside.
Owner reviews praise the ease of use and effectiveness, and some owners use the long transmission range to be alerted of the arrival of guests while they’re out in the yard, or to be alerted of unwanted traffic near a pool or equipment shed. Multiple sensors can be linked to one receiver, and some owners even use this alarm to protect their dock and boat at the cottage.
How to Protect Your Vehicle
Which System Is Best? Car security comes in many shapes and forms, giving shoppers plenty to consider. Do you need a full-function alarm with motion detectors, shock sensors, and GPS tracking? Do you want a car alarm that can send alerts to your Smartphone? Do you prefer a simple and discreet immobilizer that simply prevents your engine from starting? Whatever the case, do your homework first: car security systems typically feature numerous functionalities that build on one another—with complexity and cost added each step of the way.
Read product reviews, talk to experts, and watch online videos to help track down the system and functionalities important to you. Proper research and studying of expert and owner reviews will help you zero in on the perfect product for your needs.
Is Complicated Better? Shock sensors. Perimeter zone monitoring. GPS tracking. Car alarm systems are now smarter and more fully featured than ever — especially if you opt for a high-end product. Just remember that added complexity often means added cost, especially if you opt for a high-quality brand (advisable). Also note that certain supplemental sensor-driven functionalities like perimeter detection and glass-breakage sensors can increase the likelihood of a false alarm triggering your alarm accidentally. Finally, remember that false alarms from complex systems are typically less likely when said system is installed and calibrated by an experienced professional.
Check the Costs: Many car security systems feature wireless communication abilities that enable sending of alerts to your Smartphone if the alarm is triggered, or allow drivers to check in on their vehicle remotely, whenever they like. In some cases, these advanced systems require a subscription and may drive up your cellular data bill. Do your research and know the costs, if any, ahead of time.
The Smash and Grab: Thieves are inherently lazy, and the smash and grab is often a crime of opportunity. If you leave a valuable item in your vehicle in plain sight, you’re practically inviting thieves to smash a window and take it. Even if there’s a visible theft deterrent and a subsequent alarm activation, smashing a window, stealing an item, and running off only takes a few seconds. Often, the thief and your belongings are long gone before anyone notices your car alarm. Translation? Sometimes, concealing your valuables from view is the best theft deterrent going.
GPS Tracking: If you’re after a cheap and simple security solution, consider turning an old smartphone into a hidden GPS tracker, which you can leave in your ride to track its location at all times. You’ll need an old Smartphone you’re not using, one of several GPS tracker applications, and a long USB cable to power the phone. Once set up, you can hide the old phone in your vehicle, leave it powered on and plugged into a power source, and forget about it. If your car is ever stolen, you can track its whereabouts remotely from virtually any internet-connected device. Data charges may apply.
Professional Install Advised: Many car alarm systems require modification, additions, and alteration to existing factory wiring. For this sort of alarm system, professional installation is strongly advised. In addition to ensuring all wiring connections are properly routed, hidden, safe, and free from wear and corrosion, some alarm system sensors require an initial calibration by a professional, to help ensure effectiveness and mitigate the likelihood of false alarms. In general, the cost of a professional install is well worth the added peace of mind provided.
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