The main purpose of a car alarm is to prevent the theft of your personal belongings within the vehicle and to prevent the theft of the vehicle itself. That said, not all car alarms are the same. Some are triggered by different actions and have different features. OEM car alarms tend to have basic features compared to aftermarket systems.
A basic car alarm is made up of many components, but the most important parts you should keep in mind are the sensors, the siren, and the control unit. An aftermarket car alarm is wired into your vehicle by a professional installer who connects the door, shock, and any other sensors you need to the control unit. The control module is what sends the signal to the siren to alert you (and the neighborhood) that someone is tampering with your car.
There are three main components of a car alarm: The control unit or ‘brain’, the siren and the remote/fob/telematics for controlling the functions. There are a multitude of accessories available to customize the alarm for your needs. These are all outlined below.
It’s important to note that car alarms will not completely eliminate theft and intrusion. However, by installing a security system with additional sensors and features such as 2-way remote alerts, you can significantly deter intruders from messing with your vehicle.
The car alarm brain is essentially a computer that receives and sends commands, and is the main component in an aftermarket alarm system. The brain gets its power from the ignition harness or the battery but can also be protected with a battery backup for extra security. All of the components in the system are connected to the brain; and the brain monitors all of them constantly while in an armed state.
An aftermarket siren provides a significantly louder noise than an OEM car horn. This will bring more attention and lessen the chance of a thief sticking around while the siren is going off.
Remotes and key fobs are used to send lock, unlock, and trunk release commands to your vehicle. A 2-way remote or fob can receive confirmations back from the brain confirming commands or alerting you of possible theft in progress. You may also monitor and control your vehicle by using your phone if you have a telematics module such as DroneMobile.
The tilt/shock sensor detects impact and vehicle tilt. The shock sensor will be triggered when there is an impact on your vehicle. The tilt sensor will trigger the alarm if your vehicle is being towed or jacked up. This is a feature that is generally not available with OEM alarms and is available with all Compustar security systems.
An interior LED light will let people know that you have an aftermarket security system. Car thieves are not as likely to attempt theft of your vehicle if they know you have a security system installed.
Door trigger sensing will trigger the alarm if the doors of your vehicle are opened when the security system is armed. Door trigger sensing is not just limited to driver and passenger doors; it can also be used to detect trunk/hatch entry as well as hood entry.