Remote car starter preventing car from starting (apparently)
January 25, 2016 5:20 AM   Subscribe

Remote car starter (Viper 4205V) installed in August 2015 in a 2011 Honda CR-V. Has worked for months, worked yesterday (while cleaning off from the January blizzard here in NJ). Details within.

This morning, using the remote starter fob, car did not start, flashes all the lights, interior and exterior. Went out to the car and tried using the brake pedal (normally that puts it back to manual) but no luck. As soon as foot comes off brake it goes back to flashing. No horn and no grinding of starter. Owners manual says there is a shut off switch, but can't find it under the dash area, wouldn't have a clue where under the hood it might be.

Called AAA but since our car is at home we are bottom of the list after a blizzard weekend (I understand). Called place that installed remote starter, not open until 10 AM EST (and I wonder if today they might have issues).

I wonder if our battery has chosen today to almost die, in which case maybe this is the remote starter's way of saying your battery is too low.

Or, the remote starter itself may have just partially failed and this is the symptom

I realize this is a tough problem. I also wonder if AAA will really be able to help (other than jump starting and seeing if that helps) or towing to dealer (who did not install remote starter).

Thoughts welcome. I realize this may not be solvable on-line.
posted by forthright to Travel & Transportation (2 answers total)
Best answer: I have no experience with remote starters, but that sort of behaviour (flashing lights, no starter motor) sounds like battery issues. Especially after the blizzard. How old is the battery? If it's the original 2011 one, then now is right about time for it to fail (battery lifespans being about 4 years on average).
First port of call is trying a jump start, which you can easily do with jumper cables and another car (or one of those portable jump-start battery things), and then driving around for 30 mins or so to try and recharge the battery. You don't necessarily need the AAA for that.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 7:11 AM on January 25, 2016

Response by poster: EndsOfInvention has got it. AAA said battery was dead (from the health standpoint, not the level of charge). They installed a new one and car starts and runs fine now.

I think I was just distracted/confused by all the flashing and clicking. I guess (?) that behavior is either a low-battery signal from the vehicle computer, or from the Viper remote starter.

Now I will know for the next time and (thanks to Google) so will others who do a search.

posted by forthright at 6:42 PM on January 25, 2016 [1 favorite]

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