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Just an FYI, related to stolen vehicles, and key fobs

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Nate The Surveyor
Posts: 10385
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Topic starter

Of course, if you are like me, and all your vehicles are over 20 yrs old, you are probably not at risk... but that gear inside may be. So, just as an FYI, and to stop even one theft, here is a video about FOB's.

Some people "Make a living" with this sort of scam.



Posted : December 30, 2020 4:46 pm
FL/GA, StLSurveyor, FL/GA and 3 people reacted
Posts: 2461
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Good stuff there. Thanks

Posted : December 30, 2020 6:21 pm
holy cow
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This is what can happen to vehicles overnight when thieves are serious about stealing catalytic converters.  This happened a couple of days ago immediately adjacent to a US highway that runs from Texas to Canada.

Posted : December 30, 2020 6:32 pm

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holy cow
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Neglected to mention those two upside down vehicles were upright when the thieves arrived.

Posted : December 30, 2020 8:19 pm
paden cash
Posts: 11104
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OK guys, listen up here.  I have not yet put one on my new Cherokee but my Wrangler and my 2011 Chevy PU both have a very low-tech home-installed kill switch.  Let me explain:

Remember when the headlight dimmer switch was a button on the floor board?  With a drill motor, some 12 ga. solid copper wire and a little noggin time you too can install a discreet kill switch.  Simply run the hot from the starter solenoid through the dimmer switch.  I like to place the dimmer switch under the floor mat material so it doesn't show.

Just make sure the switch (most are SPDT) 'floats' and doesn't internally ground any of the circuits. 

Works great.  The starter won't even whimper until you mash the button.  Never had one stolen yet.  I have had the guy at the tire shop call and tell me my truck won't start.  I quickly squared him away.  The only thing we could figure was that he unknowingly mashed on the switch when he got in the truck. 

FYI - AutoZone PN is UDS418. 

Posted : December 30, 2020 8:40 pm
FL/GA, StLSurveyor, Jitterboogie and 6 people reacted
Andy Bruner
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@paden-cash If you remember the old movie "Thunder Road" he had a literal "kill switch" on his bootlegger's car.


Posted : December 31, 2020 5:41 am

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holy cow
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Bought a very used Chevrolet Chevette from a friend back in 1986.  Had such a device installed for starting it.  What would happen is that during hot weather or after long drives if you shut it off, say at a gas station, then went to start it again in only  a few minutes it would not start due to some overriding electronics issue.  Turning the key did absolutely nothing.  Adding the magic button took care of that problem.

Posted : December 31, 2020 6:39 am
Posts: 619
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Talk about great timing. Yesterday we bought my wife our first vehicle new enough to have a keyless FOB. Although her purse is supposedly RFID protected, she is buying two of these pouches right now. There are other ways I would prefer to deal with thieves, but in most places, they would be legally frowned upon.

Thank you.

Posted : December 31, 2020 9:39 am
Posts: 669
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Our Honda Element had its catalytic converter stolen twice this year. For various reasons, it was parked on the street. We now park it inside a fence. My Honda Fit so far as escaped vandalism but it's much lower to the ground. 

The whole area around here was getting hit. California--almost no garages or usable attics (in my area) so overflow is in the garage and many families have too many cars for the garage.

Someone even had one stolen in a grocery store parking lot. There has been two or three arrests, thankfully. 

Posted : December 31, 2020 2:04 pm

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Mike Marks
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A serious  misstatement in this video is that the RKE fob is "always" transmitting its signal.  That would kill the fob battery in a matter of days.  Rather it's intermittently "listening" for the car's unique interrogation transmission which uses very little fob battery and then "wakes up" to transmit the proper response.

In most new cars you can reversibly "dumb down" an RKE fob with a sequence of keypresses so it doesn't respond to a ping from the car transmitter unless you actually press a fob key, or do the same through your car screen settings page.  Honda(?) actually had a button on the steering column you could press to shut down your key fob and force you to use a physical key next time you unlock your car.  It's worth your time to read your new car manual to understand your options.

This video is alarmist.  Yes, thieves can stealthily use the retransmit dodge to drive your car away if your RKE fob is active, but it's no more likely than a simple flatbed steal where they drag your car onto a truck. I know folks who suffered daylight CAT thefts in public parking lots where a thief pulled up and SawsAlled the CAT using an inverter in less than a minute as shown on surveillance cameras. 

So what's the solution?  Own old ugly cars that are in tip-top shape mechanically but do not attract thieves.

Posted : December 31, 2020 2:13 pm
Posts: 7080
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We don’t have a catalytic converter theft problem in Florida, they just steal the whole vehicle. 😎 

Posted : December 31, 2020 2:15 pm