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No honk car lock
August 9, 2012 6:14 AM   Subscribe

Is there a way to deactivate the horn honk when locking a car with the key remote? Or some other trick to lock a VW Jetta without having the horn honk?

I have a rental VW Jetta. If you lock the doors with the key fob, the horn honks for one short honk. If you use the actual key to lock the car door itself, the horn honks. The lock button on the inside of the door does not work when the door is open. As far as I can figure out there is no way to lock the car without honking the horn. This seems nutty to me, and super annoying. What am I missing? I don't have much experience with recent vintage cars, so I'm hoping it's something obvious, although my attempt to google this does not give much hope - various discussions of reprogramming the VGA (?!).
posted by yarrow to Travel & Transportation (26 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
My '09 Chevy truck has buttons on the steering wheel where you can program that. Maybe VW does the same?
posted by jara1953 at 6:22 AM on August 9, 2012


Looks like you might be able to go through a menu if there's a screen menu thing on the dash:
You can disable it. Only take about 5 seconds. Go into the convenience menu on your dash and check the box that says (ATA Confirm). I am pretty sure that is what it says (I don't feel like going out to look). But it is the only box you can check on. And your done. I found this out by mistake as I was playing with stuff.
http://www.vwforum.com/forums/f100/disabling-horn-when-locking-42460/#post328412

As for this: The lock button on the inside of the door does not work when the door is open.

Does it simply not toggle at all when the door is open, or does it pop back to the unlocked position when you close the door? I used to have a Mazda in which you had to flip the toggle (I guess it's a rocker properly named) and hold the handle up (it was a handle that winged up) while you closed the door to override the auto-unlock feature.
posted by tilde at 6:22 AM on August 9, 2012


The Jettas with the convince package (the trip computer and other settings in the display between the tach and speedometer). I can't remember the exact menu item but it is there somewhere. If there isn't that package it can be turned off by the dealer.
posted by birdherder at 6:33 AM on August 9, 2012


The lock button on the inside of the door does not work when the door is open.

That's a feature. It prevents you from accidentally locking your keys in the car.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:42 AM on August 9, 2012


There's no dash display - just a radio. When you hit the lock button with the door open nothing happens at all. I tried various versions of holding up door handles and no dice.

I understand that the idea is to not lock your keys in your car and get a confirmation that the car actually locked, but it seems insane that I am forced to irritate everyone around me (and scare myself - I jump every time I hear it) just to lock this stupid car.
posted by yarrow at 6:47 AM on August 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


If this is a long term rental take it back and get another car. Since you have a stock jetta and not the owner you don have the option of having the dealer turn it off for you.

However the car you trade it for will also have a chirp that you might not like. And you might not be able to turn off.

You do get used to the chirp eventually.
posted by birdherder at 6:56 AM on August 9, 2012


A Google search suggests that you need access to the diagnostic system to make this change. Probably not feasible for a rental, sorry.
posted by stopgap at 6:57 AM on August 9, 2012


Single horn honks don't really scare people anymore. My Toyotas have a slightly less obnoxious chirp, but I've had cars that honked the horn. I kinda avoided hitting the button at the exact moment a 3 year old was walking right by the grille (unless I was having a bad day), but other than that, no one even notices.
posted by randomkeystrike at 7:01 AM on August 9, 2012


...but it seems insane that I am forced to irritate everyone around me (and scare myself - I jump every time I hear it) just to lock this stupid car.

How loud is it? The horn-honk-when-locked on my VW Golf is a meek little "meep", and not the full-volume HONK of the horns.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:38 AM on August 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


I haven't had a car made in the last 10-15 years that didn't honk, beep or chirp when you lock the door. It means the alarm is armed. Yes, as stopgap said, you can change it if you get a VAG-COM cable+software (or find a person or shop near you who will do it), but you shouldn't be messing with that kind of thing on a rental.
posted by primethyme at 7:44 AM on August 9, 2012


As someone who hates horns and thinks they're 99.9% used inappropriately I'd probably just pop the hood and disconnect the horn. It's just a quick-connect clip and easy to disconnect and reconnect before you return it. I'd ask the rental company to get you a different car before I'd jerk around with reprogramming.
posted by phearlez at 7:47 AM on August 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


...but it seems insane that I am forced to irritate everyone around me (and scare myself - I jump every time I hear it) just to lock this stupid car.

This is something that cars with keyless entry do and have done for years. It's super common and shouldn't irritate most people. My wife's car only does it after you hit the lock button twice and THAT irritates me.

It likely has the same computer, and therefore the same custom-ability options that the convenience package has, you'd just need a VW service tech to access them. Since it's a rental, just live with it.

If you get a different car from the rental company and it has keyless entry, it will do the same thing.
posted by VTX at 7:51 AM on August 9, 2012


My wife's car only does it after you hit the lock button twice and THAT irritates me.

That's because the first press of the button locks the car and the second activates the alarm.

The honk of the horn is not for locking the door, it's to notify you that the alarm has been activated.
posted by kindall at 8:01 AM on August 9, 2012


Single horn honks don't really scare people anymore.

And who made you our spokesperson? Not "scare" (as they've never been frightening) but these noises are just as irritating as they've been since their inception.
posted by Rash at 8:28 AM on August 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


No, the alarm is active any time that the doors are locked (with the remote or with the door switch). From the owner's manual:
Lock button
To lock the doors and the liftgate, press the lock button and the hazard warning lights will flash once. To confirm that all doors and the liftgate have been locked, press the lock button again within 5 seconds. If they are closed and locked, the horn will sound.
My own experience confirms this. If I hit the lock button once with the windows open and then open the car from the inside, the alarm goes off. It's just so I have to press the button twice to know that the car is locked without having to look at it. /derail

With the VW, try this experiment. Turn the car off, take the keys out of the ignition, open the door, press the lock button, then close the door. In some cars, the doors will lock after 5-10 seconds to give you a window to think, "Oh shit I just locked my keys in the car!" And quick open the door and grab them.

If it has the owner's manual in the glove box, it might have more details about the way the lock system works. If not, give us the year (you can find it at the 10th digit of the VIN number if it isn't anywhere else) and we can take a look at it online (unless you have access to a computer and can find it yourself).
posted by VTX at 8:28 AM on August 9, 2012


I'm surprised at the number of responses saying that all cars do this and that no one cares.

I've had two cars that did not do it that were both made in the past 10 years (Nissan Sentra and Honda Accord). They beep if you push the lock button twice, but if you only push it once they are smart enough just to flash their lights and stay quiet.

Meanwhile, my husband's Subaru Outback does do this, and it's incredibly annoying. It's loud, and people sleep at night but you still have to lock the stupid car even when you're in a densely populated area and getting in at 2am.

I've got no answers to the question but I can confirm that this is not a universal feature and that it is genuinely annoying and poorly thought out.
posted by treehorn+bunny at 8:30 AM on August 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


I am woken up six nights out of seven by cars doing this outside our bedroom windows. It is utter insanity that this is the norm.
posted by Lizzle at 8:48 AM on August 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Single horn honks don't really scare people anymore.


You and I seem to know a different planet of people. Quite annoying in close quarter living areas.

We have one car that chirps on lock when keyed remotely (annnnoying) that I lock manually.

The other double honks if I click the remote lock twice (not at all if once or for manual lock). I made sure of that when I test drove it (the first thing I tested, actually, because it drives me NUTS). I'm pretty sure I can simply disable it if needed, but there are at least six identical cars (color, make, model, year) in my parking lot (unassigned spots) and at the gym (we really should start a basketball team or bowling league), so the double honk is a good echo locator.
posted by tilde at 9:05 AM on August 9, 2012


[VTX] My wife's car only does it after you hit the lock button twice and THAT irritates me.

[Kindall] That's because the first press of the button locks the car and the second activates the alarm. The honk of the horn is not for locking the door, it's to notify you that the alarm has been activated.


My 2008 Honda Civic locks silently when you press the remote button once, and beeps and relocks if you press it a second time (within like 15 seconds). Neither has anything to do with the anti-theft system. (Just noting what you say isn't true across the board.)

To Yarrow -- I've been annoyed as well by the more aggressive beeping in rental car remote locks over the years. I've decided that rental companies consider it a bonus to announce to possible nearly thieves the fact your car is locked and that presumably an anti-theft system is on, regardless of how annoying it is to the renter.

Only once with a Mitsubishi (I'm pretty sure the make), years ago, did I find instructions in the owner's manual in the glove compartment for how to turn off the beeping-on-remote-lock option. If you can track down the owner's manual for your rental model, maybe it would have instructions. (If it's not in the glove compartment, maybe in the spare tire well in the trunk?)
posted by aught at 9:11 AM on August 9, 2012


My '98 BMW did this. There was an amusing series of key turns and door openings/closings that would deactivate it. Check the user manual?
posted by seanmpuckett at 9:15 AM on August 9, 2012


Thanks, all! I'll see if I can track down the manual and see if there's anything helpful in there. And I'll see if maybe it locks after a lag when I push the button. It's at least helpful to hear that there's not an obvious trick a more car-savvy person would already know. And it's good to know I'm perhaps irritating somewhat fewer people than I thought.

Now that I think of it I've had this issue with zipcars too but that's a shorter time span so I never quite dug into the issue. Are there car brands that reliably give you the option to lock them silently, so if I do have a choice I know what to seek out or avoid?
posted by yarrow at 10:22 AM on August 9, 2012


The Jetta only honks if all doors are closed. My horn did not honk upon locking up for weeks once when the trunk was not closed completely.
posted by slidell at 11:34 AM on August 9, 2012


My Toyota Matrix doesn't honk when being locked, via its remote. (I wouldn't have bought it, if it did.)
posted by Rash at 11:40 AM on August 9, 2012


The Jetta only honks if all doors are closed. My horn did not honk upon locking up for weeks once when the trunk was not closed completely.

This is true of our Jetta as well. Might be a good way to defeat this w/o removing function of the horn - there'll be a sensor on the trunk door used for this. Likely you can just pull that wire off and the car will think the trunk is open all the time. Might mean a light stays lit on the console but if it removes your honking annoyance perhaps that's worth it to you?
posted by phearlez at 1:01 PM on August 9, 2012


I think most modern cars have a way to disable this. Either via the vehicle diagnostics (It's really not that hard to find someone w/ an OBD II scanner/reader, that can make the change.), or there is a sort of "konami code" unique to your car.

If you can't find the solution in the car's manual (It was in the manual for my car.), then internet forums for enthusiasts of your particular car are often a wealth of information.

My new car required me to sit in the driver's seat, insert, remove and re-insert the key 6 or more times in 10 seconds while holding down the unlock button, and then open and close the driver door. Kinda goofy, but my alarm now arms/disarms silently.
posted by zen_spider at 2:06 PM on August 9, 2012


The car and I have parted ways and I never solved this (nor ever got my hands on a copy of the manual). The trunk trick was promising - it's true that it would lock without honking if the trunk was open, but then upon closure of the trunk, it would dutifully honk. I wasn't comfortable tinkering with wires so I didn't try phearlez's suggestion to try to get around the trunk sensor.

Happy to be back in the world of the carless.
posted by yarrow at 1:58 PM on August 13, 2012


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