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Some remote starters have a range of 1.6 km.Joanne Elves/The Globe and Mail

Remote car starters

Available at: Major auto supply retailers

Price: $400 and up for remote starter and installation

When it’s cold outside and you can see a think layer of ice on the windshield, wouldn’t it be nice to stand at the window, push a button on the keychain, warm up the engine and let the defroster soften that ice?

Remote starters for automobiles come with a variety of features. Decide what you need before laying down at least $400 to have one installed by the pros.

Some fobs have a range of 1.6 kilometres, but do you really need that? If you are inside a brick building, it may take that extra transmitter range to fight the interference.

Do you want to know when the vehicle has started? A two-way system notifies you when the motor starts or stops.

Watch for fobs that will marry with your keyless entry.

If you would rather start the vehicle from your smartphone, some higher-end remote devices come with a free app to download that will also let you control the door locks, the alarm and trunk release.

My advice is to let the professionals selling the units do the installation.

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