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Is Remote Start Bad For Your Engine?

Is Remote Start Bad For Your Car

Before knowing whether or not your remote car start is bad for your engine, it is imperative to know what a remote starter is and how it works. A remote starter is a radio-controlled device installed in a car by the factory, or potentially an aftermarket installer, designed to preheat or cool off the vehicle before you begin driving the car.

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Once you have activated the remote start by pushing a button on a special key chain remote, you can enjoy the comfort of starting your vehicle automatically for a predetermined amount of time, helping it to warm up during cold mornings. 


Utilizing remote start can help the comfort of your drive and help on those winter days, but is it worth the potential risks? Let’s first discuss some myths and misconceptions that drivers and mechanics have about the effect of using remote start in your vehicle.

Remote Start Misconceptions 


Various issues can occur when you use the remote start in your vehicle – and numerous myths can be disproved. Cars driven on the roads have tens of thousands of remote starters, with clients sometimes loving and sometimes hating the technology. Let’s check out the top remote start myths that can make you wonder, “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • Remote Starters Do Not Work With Warranties

First, the initial myth is that remote starters somehow disregard warranties – this misconception is not true. Actually, companies have to work with car dealerships that will allow those businesses to contract and install remote starters on their new vehicles. 


If a person gets a poorly engineered system and a poor installation that is not working correctly, it can cause damage, and the warranty might not be correct. The damage may not happen with some companies, however, because they might sell more reliable products. The remote starter warranty can help you answer the question of “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • Remote Start Harms Your Drivetrain

Secondly, another myth directly relates to what we are talking about – a myth that your engine’s remote start is bad. The reality is that remote starting your engine can be beneficial for your car and good for your engine.


 When it is very cold outside, or you live in cold climates, the oil in your engine actually becomes thicker and more viscous than after it heats up. Allowing you to warm up and preheat before driving it any distance can help enhance your drivetrain and make it last longer. Keeping your drivetrain working at a high-performing level can help you find the answer to “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • The Remote Start Range Is Not Very Good

Thirdly, you might not know how much distance the remote start can cover or how much range to leave. Some people might think that they do not need lots of range for their car starter because they park near their window in their house. This thought process usually originates from the fact that someone has a new remote starter. Understanding this technology’s effectiveness can help you answer the question of “is remote start bad for your engine?”


The reality is that once you go out to warm a vehicle with your remote starter, you won’t forget it. Once you never have to scrape the ice off of your windows, you will really enjoy the remote start and the luxury it provides. If you get a long-range system that provides a remote start from a longer distance, you can start it from numerous places. The long-range distance can enhance the convenience and counteract any possibility that a remote start is bad for your engine

  • You Can Install the Remote Start On Your Own!

Next, another myth for the car start is that remote starters are easy and simple to install, and you can do it yourself in no time at all. Many dealerships and car manufacturers are used to hearing this, and they might not give the owners the proper information. Modern electrical systems can be very complex, and installing a remote starter is a tedious task. 


Technicians need to know how to interface with various wiring systems, which is not easy for owners to do. The difficulty of installing the remote starter may deter some users because they wonder if they are “remote start bad for your engine?” We will help answer all of your questions here! 

  • Remote Start Does Not Work With All Transmission Types

Furthermore, you can get a remote start even if you have a manual transmission in your vehicle. Many people might not think that you can get a remote start with this type of car, but owners will be happily surprised. The versatility of the remote start means that you can answer the question of “is remote start bad for your engine?”

Positives of Using Remote Start


Everyone with a remote start can agree that possibly the greatest advantage of having a remote car start system is the convenience and the added comfort it adds. Whatever the weather might be of your vehicle, you can start your car and have it warmed up and ready to go as soon as you get in the vehicle, leading to a lower war- up period and enhanced comfort during cold weather.

  • Provides Comfort In Winter Months

Now, with the technology of the remote car start, you can have all of this without having to leave the warm temperature inside. Furthermore, a second advantage of using a remote car starter is the ability to see the 2-way remote if your car is running or not. Keeping your car warm is a huge benefit in the occurrence that your engine vehicle stalls, and you can quickly restart it, preventing answering the question of “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • Keep Your Car Running While Locked

Another huge advantage and pro of using the remote start in your car are that your car can stay running while it is locked, which can be a huge safety feature and enhance comfort while still keeping your car and its valuables secure. This can be a good deal if you want to warm your car while you go back inside the house or office.

  • Beneficial for Keeping Children or Pets in the Car

Likewise, if you leave your pet or your child in the car while you run into the store or back into the house since you forgot something, you can keep the car running and keep the temperature correct while still keeping your pet or your kid safe inside. Keeping your car secure and your children safe can be a huge pro when deciding whether “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • Makes Trips to the Store Easy

Lastly, a remote start for your vehicle is a good choice in those situations when you have your hands full – literally. Suppose you are carrying things, and you do not have an extra hand to carry keys to fumble around and unlock the door. In that case, the ability to start the car with the push of a button and unlock the car with just a button can help you increase the efficiency of using your car. 

Negatives of Using Remote Start


Although there are many benefits, there are also many disadvantages to your car’s remote start, like the remote car starting ruining your engine. 

  • Cost of Remote Start

The biggest con of using the remote car start is the cost. Depending on what kind of vehicle you have, like the make, model, and year, the price of the starter could be hundreds of dollars on the electronic device itself and the high installation cost of the remote car start. 

  • Another Device to Store

Furthermore, suppose you have another remote car like the FOB or keyless entry device for your specific type of car that came with the specific doors. In that case, this is another device that you need to fit in your pocket, your purse, or keep on your key ring and keep organized. If you find that you have trouble keeping things organized, this can help you answer, “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • Reduced Fuel Efficiency

In addition, another disadvantage to using a remote car start for your engine is that you could be wasting fuel if you continuously run your car in the cold water to heat it up before you begin to drive your vehicle. 


While most people might not think about how much gasoline they are wasting while heating their car on the cold winter mornings, you will be wasting a lot more gas while heating your car than if you did not use a remote car start for your vehicle. Using a remote start can reduce your fuel economy and cause you to wonder, “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • Wear and Tear On Your Engine

Another possible co for using a remote car start is what we are focusing on – the remoteless car starts running your engine. If you are worried or concerned about the potential wear and tear and damage on your engine, then a remote starter could be something to avoid. Frequently heating your car before running your vehicle and cooling your vehicle before driving can place some added stress on your car’s engine. 


Consistently using remote start can shorten the engine’s lifespan and can be especially poor in hot and warm summer months. In this situation and this environmental condition, the engine relies on the radiator fans to cool the engine, instead of the air going through the entire engine coolant system while driving down the roads. The engine’s breakdown efficiently answers the question of “is remote start bad for your engine?”

  • More Difficult for Use With Manual Transmission

Further, drivers should consider or those looking to get remote car starters the type of vehicle you have – like the make, model, and year. While most types of cars in the modern world are automatic transmission, there are some manual transmission cars still worldwide. Getting a remote starter to work on a manual transmission is impossible, but it is more difficult to get set up and use. 

  • Negative Environmental Effects

Lastly, suppose you are concerned about the potential environmental impacts that can come about from your car running needlessly and the fuels pushed into the environment and the air by the pollutant coming from your exhaust. In that case, you should be aware of the extra pollution that your vehicle will be putting on while your engine is running idle. 

Remote Start Replacement Cost


The average price for a remote starter installation cost comes to around $188 in total. The average price at your local mechanic for parts and labor will run between $199 and $699 depending on the type of vehicle you have. If you would rather take your car to a chain store, Midas runs between $189 and $640, while Mr. Tire charges between $199 and $749 for the remote start replacement. 


If you think you have the knowledge to do the replacement yourself, the price of just the parts will cost between $119 and $499 at Walmart, and between $109 and $899 on Amazon depending on the type of vehicle you own. 


To give you an idea of how much you may spend on the remote starter installation, twe have included some sampel costs based on popular vehicles. The least expensive cars are the Ford F-Series, the Chevrolet Silverado, Ford Focus, Nissan Altima, and the Ford Fusion. All of these cars range between $193 and $355, with the labor between $85 and $146 and the parts between $108 and $209. 


The most expensive choices in terms of remote start replacement is the Toyota Cars – the Toyota Camry and the Toyota Corolla, both averaging between $262 and $427 for the fix. 


As you can see, there are many positives and negatives to using remote start with your vehicle. Although it can add some comfort during cold winter months, you have to take into account the negative side effects on your engine and fuel economy that come with running your car for too long. These undesired consequences of using remote start can help answer the question of “is remote start bad for your engine?”


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