Car alarm explanation article with information on how car alarms are triggered
and reset. These electronic devices are designed to prevent burglary of the car
and warn the owner if a theft attempt is being made. Usually a car alarm will output
a high pitched sound when the system is triggered by vibration, close or open of
trigger switches, sensing of small and fast change in battery voltage. Modern car
alarms also monitor sensors like infrared, microwave, ultrasound or tilting of the
vehicle in case of unauthorized towing. Some cars have alarm systems which send
out SOS signals in case of breakdown or theft. Alarm systems are also incorporated
with navigation systems to increase the security of the car, if the car is stolen,
it can be traced by an embedded navigation system. This functionality can also be
used to locate lost cars in large parking lots by giving out a chirping sound.
Many times a car alarm can give out a false alarm when it feels vibrations of
thunder or a passing truck. Sensors need to be adjusted properly otherwise it can
trigger the device even when a person accidentally touches the automobile. There
is an increase in the crimes related to theft of vehicles. For people who want security
for their cars and want to avoid false alarms you can have a police tracking system
installed, many newer cars have this tracking capability built in to the operation
of the help/navigation system, like On Star.
These systems come with an additional cost which is to be paid on a regular basis.
Most alarm systems utilize a remote controller (key fob); this way a user can disable
the alarm from a distance. The remote control feature is very convenient if the
system is triggered by a false alarm. Key fob's can integrate a variety of functions,
controllers that have the LCD option which can project the image of the part of
the vehicle that is under threat by a thief is one example.
When a car alarm becomes unresponsive disconnect the battery to allow the system
to "reboot" this will reset the alarm protocol and help the alarm to start working
again. Also, if the alarm will not deactivate try locking the car, then using the
ignition key unlock the drivers door to reset the alarm system.
Keep the car battery in good working order, if a battery is aged it can
have a sudden voltage drop which will cause a false alarm.
Written by Ken Lavacot Co-Founder and CEO of 2CarPros.com 35 years in the automotive repair field, ASE Master Technician, Advanced Electrical and Mechanical Theory.
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Article first published 2009-08-07 (Updated 2014-12-31)