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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How to help keep from getting your car stolen.
-By Nyceguy17 [email protected]

After a bit of time spent reposessing cars, as well as having experience in automotive electronics, I have had run ins with car theft before myself. This is a tutorial to help you TRY to keep your car from getting stolen.

FIRST: The basic tips everyone should know by now.

Never leave your car running unattended.
Never leave your keys in the car or ignition.
Always roll up your windows and lock the car, even if it is in front of your home.
Never leave valuables in plain view, even if your car is locked this is the number one reason cars are broken into. Put them in the trunk out of sight.
Always park in busy, well-lighted areas.
Install a mechanical device that locks to the steering wheel, column, or brake to prevent the wheel from being turned more than a few degrees. Commonly called clubs, collars or J-bars, these devices can act as a deterrent if installed properly.
Always leave just the ignition key with the attendant, if you park in a commercial garage or lot. Make sure no identifying information is attached. Do the same when you take your car for repairs.
Carry your registration and insurance card with you. Don't leave personal identification documents or credit cards in your vehicle.
Copy your license plate and vehicle identification (VIN) numbers on a card and keep them with your driver's license. If your vehicle is stolen, police will need this information promptly.

Even if you don't have a garage or gate, pull in as far as you can.

Reason: Although not as effective as putting your car in the garage, the driveway can also serve as a deterrent. As does parking a second -- not as appealing --car behind the "top 10" vehicle. Again, motion detectors, gates, dogs and alarms serve as early detection systems and deterrents. In addition, the alarm on a car in the driveway is also less likely to be accidentally tripped by traffic or passersby. So if you hear it, you *know* something is wrong.

It is important to realize that car thieves aren't after *your* car. They could care less who it belongs to. They are usually more interested in getting a particular make and model. And anyone's will do. If one is too difficult to get, they can always get another, just down the road.

Install an car alarm -- especially if it's in an apartment parking lot (or on the street) .
Large apartment complex parking lots are literally supermarkets for car thieves.

Reason: They drive through and find the cars they are looking for. Often, while stealing one car, they will spot another model they want and come back for it later. Why go shopping elsewhere? This is especially true if there is no security guard who patrols the premises.

An auto alarm won't stop thieves, but it might alert someone. The witness who looks out the window sees someone jump into a car and another car speeds away before the first car's alarm cuts off, realizes that something is seriously wrong. He, or she, might even go so far as to wake up the rent-a-cop who is supposed to be patrolling the grounds. If your neighbors know it is your car, and he/she sees someone else jumping in and speeding away, a knock on your door lessens the time before the police are notified. Thereby increasing the chances of recovery.

Whether or not an alarm does any good to deter a car thief might be a debatable issue. What is not debatable is the fact that it can lower your comprehensive insurance rates.

Better yet, get a Lojack/Onstar type of service.
The only debate about this is whether or not to label your car with the sign.

Reason: Automobile security / tracking devices are good for fast car recovery. By using a GPS based system the computer can locate your stolen car anytime and anywhere.

The debate is label it or not. The argument for labeling it is that it will deter many would-be thieves. The argument against it is that many automobile thieves know how to disable these units -- especially if you have a specialty vehicle that would attract a professional. A professional car thief keeps up on the technology and knows how to circumvent it. By not labeling your window, the auto thief won't know beforehand that he has to disable the system.

They also can be used to track the thieves to the "chop shop." So don't be surprised if the police ask you to participate in a sting operation by leaving your car in the "cooling off spot" (that's the place where it was parked by the thief until it goes off the "hot sheet") If there is a major automobile stealing ring operating in the area, waiting for the car thief to return and then following him to the "chop shop" is one way for police to break it up -- if informants haven't been panning out.

This, too, is a good way to lower your insurance rates.



Now for the good stuff

The igniton wires are nearly the same in all cars. They are larger gauge wires and are usually red, yellow, purple, and black. Red is 12v when the key is turning, yellow is always 12v, Purple is the actual ign. wire and black is ground. These wires always go up the steering column at about 4 or 5 o'clock on the column. One good measure is to sheath and move these wires around a bit. On my civic, I have wireloom, zip ties, pounds of electrical tape, and a hard plastic tube around them. The same goes for my alarm wires. The object here is to SLOW DOWN the theif. In most rural areas, the theifs are not "professionals,' they are just scummy individuals. So make them spend alot of time in your car. Alot of theives will not stay in your car if it takes too long to even get to the wires.

Choose any alarm, most of them are made by the same people and do the same thing. 90% of all alarms are installed under the drivers side dash, most just hung there or wire tied in. This is common knowledge to your average car theif. All my wires are extended and I have my alarm module mounted wayyyy up under the dash, about right below the surface of the dash near the top. I also have a back-up battery attached to it, just in case they get the power cut to my alarm. These are usually available from the alarm manufacturer, or you can make one.

LED's are your friend. Usually, an alarm comes with one and it is small. Make sure to put it in a highly visible place. The dash or center console is not a great idea. Most factory alarms have their LED's there, and theives will think yours is just a factory alarm and therefore an easy target. I have had mine mounted in the top of the door panel. Just drill a tiny little hole, stick the led (without the bulky plastic cover) into the hole and hot-glue it in place.

Removable steering wheels are a good idea, but not feasible for everyone. No aftermarket wheels come with an airbag, and most cars won't pass inspection without it. But if you can do it, I would.

A Hidden fuel cut switch is also a great idea. You can make one yourself at home easily.
Just take one of the wires coming off your fuel pump (under the rear seat on most hondas) and interrupt it with a switch in line. Hide the switch where it cannot be seen and flip it off when you park the car. I can do a more detailed write up on this if need be.

Another good trick is to wire a momentary switch to your igniton wire so that you have to press a button as you start the car.


Lastly, even if your car has a coded key, or other PATS system (passive anti theft), a tow truck and an evildoer will still get at you no matter what you have. When parking, try to park where it would be difficult to tow your car. With the S2k, I park Nose in REALLY close to the median. There is no tow hook on the back so it would take more work to haul the car off.



Hopefully you will have learned something from this, I will be updating it peridoically as I learn more about some of the new stuff coming out soon. Feel free to PM me or e-mail me with further questions.
[email protected]


This tutorial is an intellectual property of Nyceguy17 and is not authorized to be posted anywhere except SuperHonda.com and anywhere else I see fit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
BlueBallz said:
Well, I bought it new, and lojack was a dealer option. I was
just wondering if it's good for life, or what? OnStar's
definately the best; are there any aftermarket setups
like this available, anyone?
EDIT: Nevermind, I just checked that link: $69.00 every
two years to test it :eek! Holy Christ. It's been over ten
years, so I guess I'll have to scrape up the cash :(.

If you have the equipment in you car, you can visit a lojack installer to have it activated, but i'm sure it will cost you, just not sure how much. They are going to offer something akin to onstar here in the near future, but I personally doubt it seeing as how it is such a complez and integrated system.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
scottigee said:
Sweet writeup Nyceguy17
I'd like a detailed writeup on fuel cutoff switches and momentary switches. My concern is that breaking an ignition or fuel pump wire to install a switch would confuse the ECU and my existing alarm system.
If you have one installed I'd like to hear about it.

I might be wrong here, but if you interrupt the power wire to the fuel pump when the car is not running, it will not send any type of signal thru the wire thaty goes to the ecu from the fuel tank area. I will try to do a write up later when I am not sick as a dogg! :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
scottigee said:
So are you saying people should bring those stickers with them and put them on the cars they park next to?
:lol

Sticker reads: That car is WAY faster than a Crown Vic>>>

Sticker I have seen here in town: "Eqiupped with Lo-Jack, but I bet that one isn't ->"
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
ck98vteC said:
How effective is Hondas immobilzer key like on my car and newer Hondas from preventing hot wiring? In other words, no key no start?

Very. Most thieves will try to tow cars like S2K's or CL's tho.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
scottigee said:
I've also heard that another tactic with the imobilizer is for the theif to bring his own computer that doesn't look for any key, plug that in and then hotwire it...
I dont know how feasible that is but it sounds like it could work.

It will work on the earlier versions of immobilizer, like the DC2 Integra's. But newer immobilizers have ignitons matched to the ECU, so they can't JUST plug and run. But, of course, there is always a way around anything. They just started carrying Lo-jack for motorcycles, but that's kinda retarded. There isn't a lot of places on a bike to hide the transponder.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
i97supratti said:
I want to wire a 2nd battery into the trunk. I want it to power my system AND my alarm. If thieves cut the battery in the front, they will be in for a surprise as i will have a shop wire the alarm to the battery in the trunk (unless its easy and i can do it myself). Do i jus run the positive wire (0 gauge) from the front battery to the trunk, and ground the battery in the trunk to the chassis? I would prolly need a H/O alternator right? Then i will connect the alarm to it, and also my system will be connected with a Batcap, then a distro block capacitor, then to the amps itself. Does this sound like a good idea?

You need to go to summitracing.com and get a battery box. Use this link > Summit Battery Boxes You want the trunk battery to be protected and free from the ability to break in your trunk. you will want to connect your positive lead up front to the rear using 8ga or bigger wire. Make sure you use a good grommet when passing the wire thru the firewall so as not to have the metal rub thru the rubber on the wire and kill you car. Your best bet would be to hide the second wire, or even the attachment point for your + terminals. You can ground the battery in the trunk, just make sure you have RAW metal to ground it against, no paint, primer, or carpet in the way. Use a rather large blade fuse within 12 inches of the connection of the + wire up front. Also fuse the power wire for the alarm. A high output alternator would not be a neccessity since you will use a batcap.

If I were you, I would forego the entire idea in the pursuit of a cheaper alternative. Get the batcap that replaces the main battery in your car and that will suffice for ANY amount of stereo equipment you might add. And wiring the alarm in to a second battery would actually be less effective than getting an alarm like a viper that lets you buy a backup battery. The backup battery is small and can be hidden up under your dash. It works just as well and is cheaper. This is my reccommendation. Let me know if you have any other questions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
i97supratti said:
Well I heard the backup batteries need to be changed often, and how hard are they to change if i locate them high up in my dash?
I do not want them to be easily accessible for thieves.
If they are installed correctly, they last at least 2 years (to my experience). If/When you needed to change one, it just plugs into a harness on the alarm with a plastic clip.

i97supratti said:
And a yellow top battery with a batcap and a capacitor with a built-in distro block would not need a h/o alternator for a 3000 watt system?

i97supratti said:
Would one batcap really power a whole 4000 watt system w/o any dimming at all?
People find it hard to beleive that a Batcap is so powerful. A 1 Farad cap is enough for 800-1000 watts of power. 1 batcap is equal to 100 1 farad capacitors. A conventional battery, has a positive and negative terminal. The chemical reaction within creates a flow of electrons, causing an electronic device (in this case an amplifier) to work. The stiffening capacitor is similar to a battery in that it stores a charge. The fundamental difference is it cannot create electrons. It can only store and supply (discharge) them upon demand. The advantage with a capacitor is that it discharges in one twenty thousandth of a second, unlike a battery that does SO in one second. The battery therefore cannot discharge fast enough to effectively
supply the amplifier and this is the reason for "power sags."

i97supratti said:
And what is this revealco that i heard about that makes it so the car cannot start until you plug in something attached to ur key chain?
Everyone I know of who has one, has lost the key. That, and all it does is make your ignition wires that much easier to access for a hot wire.
 
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