The Best Car Alarms For 2020

Best Value

Viper 5906V

Best Overall

Compustar CS7900-AS

Budget Pick

Avital 3100LX

Your car is your road trip companion. It is considered as one of the valuable assets that help you make multiple memories.

Considering the importance of your car, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that every modern vehicle needs a premium and robust car alarm for the best security.

Not only does it protect your vehicle, but it keeps your important documents and stuff in the trunk safe. Nowadays, car alarms come equipped with advanced functions like remote unlocking.

Of course, a car alarm is too small to save your car from thieves. But, it does ensure the safety of your vehicle by allowing the vehicle owner to track their car.

Even if it is stolen, there is a good chance the thief will not be able to get away with it. This modern security device can help protect your vehicle anywhere.

Whether you have a brand-new car or a traditional model, make sure you install a high-quality car alarm to ensure your vehicle’s protection.

What Is A Car Alarm?

A car alarm is a modern security gadget that improves your car security. The latest models come equipped with a built-in car alarm. However, that might not be enough to catch a thief or a random person that steals stuff from your vehicle. So, it makes sense for the vehicle owner to upgrade the security level by installing an advanced and quality car alarm.

First things first, car alarms do not keep thieves from stealing stuff from your vehicle, neither can it protect your car from getting stolen. However, people will think twice before touching the stuff inside your car since the alarm will initiate the siren and the light. So, it only takes a few seconds for the alarm to activate and draw the attention of people. Another benefit of a car alarm is the built-in GPS system. This makes it easier for the vehicle owner to know the exact location of the vehicle.

You can manage and track your car on your mobile. Additionally, insurance premiums for cars with upgraded security systems are lower than those with no security features. Let’s discuss the 10 most popular and pocket-friendly car alarms for your vehicle.

1. Viper 5706V Two-Way Remote Car Alarm

Like its sibling Viper 5906V, this unit features a two-way remote that enhances the security features of your vehicle by performing dual functions. It sends and receives the car signals. The unit comes equipped with a 5-button transmitter that enables car owners to access the 24 seamless features of the alarm. The alarm of the unit is quite reliable and secure. You can turn the alarm into silent mode if you are parking your vehicle in a noise-restricted area. This will block the sound and only send a notification to the owner in the case of an emergency or security breach.

Design-wise, the lightweight and compact remote looks sleek and smooth. It is extremely portable and can be used to open/close the car door and arm/disarm the alarm. There is a clear display that shows the current temperature inside the vehicle, allowing you to turn the AC on and get your car ready for a drive. The display only shows the essential icons, keeping the screen clear and visible. You could select the Active Temp Check option to check the temperature instead of the time. Viper 5706V Two-Way Remote Car Alarm produces revenger siren tones if someone attempts to breach the security and break into your car.

All in all, Viper 5706V Two-Way Remote Car Alarm is a good option for those who are ready to pay a little extra for some added security features.

Features

  • 5-button control system
  • Two-way remote control
  • Silent-mode siren
  • Compact and sleek design
  • Liquid-crystal display
  • Covers up to 1 mile

The Pros

  • Drains minimal battery
  • LCD display
  • Easy access to the 24 functions
  • Advanced security features

The Cons

  • Installation is quite complicated. You might need to get it done by a professional.
  • Very expensive

2. Easyguard EC002-NS PKE Car Alarm Unit

As long as you have a car with 12V output, rest assured that EasyGuard EC002-NS PKE Car Alarm Unit will fit seamlessly into your vehicle. Designed specifically for high-security features, the unit comes equipped with a silent siren. It is a great feature for those who want to catch the thief without scaring them away with the loud siren noise. The installation is not simple and you may probably need to take your vehicle and EasyGuard EC002-NS PKE Car Alarm Unit to a professional for a smoother installation. However, the keyless operation makes it one of the reliable options for car owners who want a hassle-free installation process.

You could switch the alarm from silent mode to the audible mode easily. This anti-carjack car alarm features the panic mode, which automates the door locking. The best part about the device is the keyless entry that makes it super simple for the car owner to lock and unlock the vehicle’s door.  The USP of the brand is its encrypted transmitter. It encrypts the signals that are transferred between the alarm and the remote, making it impossible for the hacker to decode the signal and break into the car.

Features

  • The passive keyless entry system
  • Encrypted transmitter for an additional layer of car security
  • Silent-mode available
  • Easy to switch from silent to audible mode
  • Password entry
  • Easy door lock and unlock mechanism
  • Advanced car alarm

The Pros

  • Covers decent range
  • Facilitates smooth entry
  • Offers added security with encrypted transmitter
  • Reliable
  • Panic alarm feature

The Cons

  • Installation is difficult

3. Viper 350 Plus 310V One-Way Remote Car Alarm

Another decent car alarm that guarantees the best security features for modern cars is Viper 350 Plus 310V One-way Remote Car Alarm. The panic mode and anti-carjacking functions make it quite a reliable option for those looking for a cost-effective and advanced alarm unit. The 4-button remote can be used for different purposes, which also include GPS tracking. You could start the vehicle and open the car doors using a remote.

Viper has been around in this industry for quite a few years. The company is famous for launching some of the high-tech and cost-effective car alarms that operate on the remote. Viper 350 Plus 310V One-way Remote Car Alarm is one such effective and reliable alarm that offers great security features.

GPS tracking allows vehicle owners to track the vehicle and monitor its movement round the clock. Even if someone steals your car and drives it out of the town, rest assured you will be able to track it down easily. However, it is a one-way remote. Secondly, its siren produces a loud noise and there is no silent mode. This means you cannot switch from the audible mode to siren in the noise-prohibited parking areas. Now, due to the one-way remote and lack of silent mode, this unit is available at an affordable price.

Features

  • One-way remote control
  • 4 button remote
  • GPS tracking system
  • Wireless unit
  • Panic mode
  • Anti-carjacking function
  • LED screen and blue display that notifies you in the case of a security breach
  • Revenger siren tone

The Pros

  • Clear display
  • Remote control
  • Tracks movement of the car
  • Additional security
  • Dual-zone shock sensors

The Cons

  • One-way remote  only
  • No silent mode

4. Crimestopper SP502 Two-Way LCD Paging Car Alarm

With a range as high as 3500 feet, Crimestopper SP502 Two-way LCD Paging Car Alarm features a 2-way remote control. However, the exact range the remote offers depend on the environment around the parking area. The anti-carjacking feature makes it one of the reliable car alarms. Should someone try to break into your vehicle, the sirens activate automatically and produce a heavy noise. One of the best qualities of Crimestopper SP502 Two-way LCD Paging Car Alarm is that it is capable of detecting the false alarms and the actual effort of a thief trying to get into the vehicle.

The light vibrations do not set off the alarm, which is quite convenient for the vehicle owner. The advanced transmitter of this model is versatile. You can configure it for another car (i.e. if you have two cars). Given that one vehicle features RS4-G4 system, Crimestopper SP502 Two-way LCD Paging Car Alarm remote can be used to control both alarms.

The add-ons include an external antenna, which is used to extend the range of the transmitter. Vehicle owners can manage the alarm and the car doors from as far as 3500 feet. Price-wise, the remote is quite affordable for its high-tech features and amazing add-ons. It also has a GPS tracking capacity and smartphone integration features. You could simply connect the unit to your device and monitor your car 24/7. The only issue with this model is its poor remote battery.

Features

  • GPS tracking
  • Mobile integration
  • Two-way remote
  • 3500 feet range
  • Anti-carjacking features
  • Advanced  transmitter

The Pros

  • Compatible with two cars
  • Covers a great distance
  • Easy door lock and unlock mechanism
  • Identify false alarms
  • LCD display

The Cons

  • Remote’s battery drains quickly

5. Prestige APS997Z 2-Way Remote Start Car Alarm

Prestige APS997Z 2-way Remote Start Car Alarm is a five-button remote that features an antenna design and an LED light. It allows keyless entry. The battery lasts for as long as 24 hours and can be recharged with the USB port. You could check the inner temperature of the vehicle from the remote. It features a panic mode.

We highly recommend this unit for car owners who are looking for a pocket-friendly and convenient remote and car alarm for their vehicle. It offers the best possible protection from thieves. The sirens are included in the package and they generate a decent sound when the alarm is activated.

Features

  • 5 buttons transmitter
  • Two-way remote
  • LED flashlight
  • Panic mode
  • Antenna design

The Pros

  • Good battery life
  • Versatile
  • Universal compatibility
  • Easy to access features

The Cons

  • No cons that we know of

6. CarBest L218 Three Channel One-Way Car Alarm

An ideal alarm for your vehicle not only notifies you when someone tries to break into your car or drive your vehicle, but it enables the owner to lock and unlock car doors from a distance. One such advanced and multi-functional car alarm is CarBest L218 Three Channel One-way Remote Unit. It is specially designed for budget-conscious buyers. You could arm and disarm the alarm using the remote. It also has a false alarm detection feature. This means some random vibrations won’t set off the alarm.

The package comes with a shock sensor, a siren, the main control unit, the Led flash, 2 remotes, a pair of wires, and an installation guide. CarBest L32 Three Channel One-way Car Alarm is one of the high-quality one-way remote units. Being recognized as a reliable system, this unit offers multi-level security. The model is compatible with different vehicles. Made of plastic, this one-way remote has a range of 100 meters.

Features

  • One-way remote
  • 2 remote controls
  • Plastic
  • Multi-level security
  • Versatile

The Pros

  • Universal compatibility
  • High-quality remote
  • LED light
  • Reliable

The Cons

  • It has a one-way remote

7. Viper 5906V Color Remote Car Security Alarm

The bright colored display enables viewers to view and read in the dim light. This 5-button and 2-way remote allows you to handle your car’s alarm quite effortlessly. Needless to say, you can lock/unlock the car’s doors, arm/disarm the alarm, get several notifications, and enjoy multi-level security features. The remote features powerful, lithium-ion, long-lasting batteries that are easily rechargeable.

Just like other units by Viper, Viper 5906V Color Remote Car Security Alarm features an advanced display that shows multiple icons. You can detect the current temperature inside the car and adjust it according to the weather and your comfort. You can turn on the silent mode if you intend to catch the thief or plan on parking your vehicle in a noise-restricted area. Not only is the display bright and clearly visible, but it features a minimal-icon-display feature that shows only the important icons.

It offers a range up to one mile, which means you can control the alarm and car functions from a good distance. The compact and slim remotes are easy to carry around. One interesting part about this model is its antenna feature. Basically, it is an upgraded feature in this Viper variant.

Features

  • 2-way remote
  • Antenna design
  • Compact and sleek
  • Bright and clear display
  • Remote range up to 1 mile
  • Lithium-ion battery

The Pros

  • Minimum icon display
  • Multi-level security
  • Versatile
  • Reliable
  • Cover a good range
  • Silent mode available
  • Audible alarm

The Cons

  • The unit is very expensive
  • Installation is difficult. You may need to hire a professional to get the unit installed properly in your car.

8. Wsdcam Wireless Vibration Alarm

The 110 dB loud siren of Wsdcam Wireless Vibration Alarm makes it a perfect option for cars, bikes, and motorcycles. It could open and close all sorts of vehicle windows seamlessly. This high-security device is capable of identifying thieves. This wireless unit sets off as soon as the alarm detects something unusual happening inside your vehicle. However, the only part we did not like about Wsdcam Wireless Vibration Alarm is its range. It covers only 25 meters, which means you could only use the remote to control your vehicle if you are at a 25 meters distance from your car.

You need AAA batteries to run the alarm, while 12 voltage and 27 A batteries are required for the remote. The unit features four basic modes that include arm, disarm, doorbell, and panic. It consumes a minimal amount of battery and notifies as soon as the battery is running low. You could also adjust the sensitivity levels using the remote keys. Each button is clearly visible and convenient to press. Make sure that you cover the alarm with some plastic bag or water-proof material to protect it from rain, snow, UV rays, and other weather elements i.e. if you are installing it on your bike.

Features

  • Wireless alarm
  • 110 dB loud
  • Adjustable sensitivity
  • Low battery consumption
  • Easy to install and operate
  • Remote control with 4 buttons for different modes
  • Doorbell mode and panic mode available

The Pros

  • Easy to operate
  • Quick and simple installation process
  • Customized
  • Compatible with different vehicles, including bikes
  • Accessible buttons

The Cons

  • It only covers a range up to 25 meters
  • The material is not weather and water resistance. Make sure you cover it before installation

9. Compustar CS7900-AS Two-Way Remote

Compustar CS7900-AS Two-Way Remote features an amazing range of 3000 feet, which means you can control your car from a distance of 3000 feet. The package features a siren, LCD remote, LED, and a shock sensor. You will get a confirmation for each command through the display. The 2-way remote is capable of receiving and sending signals. The high-end security features make it capable of detecting all types of intrusions.

Not only does it send you the notification, but the 2-way LCD remote keeps the vehicle owner up-to-date about what’s happening to the car.  The 105dB sound is sufficient for the people around the parking area to catch the thief. In fact, the sound produced from the alarm is strong enough to scare the intruder away from your vehicle. The remote features alarm alerts and LCD confirmation. Compustar CS7900-AS Two-Way Remote comes with an additional 1-way remote. Considering its features and high-end security options, the price seems quite reasonable.

All in all, Compustar CS7900-AS Two-Way Remote is a decent option for those looking for a car alarm that offers multi-level security and interesting features. Install it on your car right away and enjoy the unlimited perks.

Features

  • 105 dB siren sound
  • Strong security sensors
  • 2-way remote
  • Covers range up to 3000 feet
  • Keyless entry
  • Drone mobile-ready alarm
  • LCD confirmation

The Pros

  • Offers a good range
  • High-end security features
  • Easy to install
  • Universal compatibility
  • Versatile

The Cons

  • The package does not involve a harness. You will have to invest extra to get a locking harness.

10. Avital 3100LX Three-Channel Keyless Entry Alarm

Enjoy a quick and seamless car entry with this keyless car entry remote. Avital 3100LX three-channel Keyless Entry Alarm is highly recommended for car owners who have purchased a brand-new vehicle and can’t risk its security. The unit comes equipped with a LED indicator. However, the remote batteries operate only on two AAA batteries. This wireless car alarm features several security features including but not limited to 3-button transmitter and dome light supervision.

Overall, Avital 3100LX three-channel Keyless Entry Alarm is a good pick. But, before you make a purchase, make sure that it doesn’t come with a siren. So, you are going to have to purchase a siren separately. Additionally, it is a one-way car security alarm, which means it might not help you offer the best security.

Features

  • Three-channel security
  • Keyless entry
  • 3 button transmitter
  • Dome light supervision
  • LED status indicator

The Pros

  • Reliable
  • Offers good security
  • Helps you track your vehicle
  • Easy to install
  • Reasonably priced

The Cons

  • One-way remote
  • Sirens are to be purchased separately

Factors To Consider When Buying Car Alarms

There is no denying a car alarm system is one of the best security investments. With plenty of car alarm units available on the market, you will need to consider a few factors to choose the best model for your car. Obviously, security should be your main concern. But, there are a few other things you may want to consider when picking the best car alarm system for your vehicle. Let’s take a look:

Installation

Installation doesn’t have to be that challenging, but some wired units can take hours for accurate installation. If that’s the case, you will need to know the electrical system of your vehicle to connect the alarm’s wires properly.

It is best to get help from a mechanic or professional to install the unit on your car. If you are trying to follow the DIY installation steps, then make sure you read the instructions properly and attempt DIY installation only if you are familiar with your vehicle’s electrical system. We recommend you choose an easy-to-install DIY unit.

Shock Sensors

Another factor to consider when investing in the car alarm is its shock sensors. Remember that the quality of the shock sensors can vary from alarm to alarm. The quality of the unit determines the sensitivity and effectiveness of the alarm. You should choose a system that activates the alarm as soon as it detects someone trying to steal your stuff from the vehicle. Basically, the only possible way to get access to the car trunk is by breaking the glass window. If someone does that, the shock sensors initiate the alarm.

Likewise, you need an alarm that can produce a sound up to 100 decibels when activated. This will help you grab the attention of people around the parking lot.

Mobile Compatibility

As the technology is growing at a rapid pace, manufacturers are focusing on designing car alarms that could be integrated with your smartphones. An alarm that’s connected with your mobile makes it convenient for the vehicle owner to monitor their car from their mobile. You only need to install a mobile app to control your vehicle from any location.

The mobile-compatible alarm turns your smartphone into a car remote. In fact, some alarms come with added security features that notify the users through mail or a text message in the case of a security breach.

Now, the most interesting and useful security feature is the GPS-tracking option. Some units enable users to track the movement of their car if it is stolen. So, even if the car alarm fails to protect your vehicle from thieves, it will keep you updated with the current location of your vehicle. The only drawback is that the GPS-tracking functionality can cost you a few additional bucks. Make sure that you invest in a mobile-compatible car alarm for the best security.

Price

The standard price of a car alarm is around $50 to $200. Customization, smartphone compatibility, and other smart features could add to the price. A quality alarm system is available for a hundred dollars.  However, you could opt for a $200 alarm that comes with added security and technical features (for example, encrypted transmission).

Two-way Remote

Car alarms are available in two types – one-way remote and two-way remote. If you want to upgrade the security of your car, then you need to invest in the latter. The one-way remote is only capable of locking and unlocking the vehicle’s doors. Such alarms can take signals only. We highly recommend a two-way remote for those who need a high-quality alarm that could take and give signals. These alarms will help you lock and unlock the door & turn on and turn off your alarm. Additionally, it also sends a signal to your remote.

Two-way remote features a display that enables vehicle owners to get an instant notification if the car’s AC and the engine is on. Some two-way remote units are customizable. You could invest in a model that can display advanced security notifications.

Range

Some companies claim to offer a car alarm with a range up to a mile. But, distance should not be the factor to determine the range of a car, after all, you are not going to unlock the door from a distance as long as one mile. You should rather focus on the signal of the alarm. So, even if the alarm’s range doesn’t cover a good distance but offers a responsive signal, then that’s a good option for you.

Encrypted Transmission

The era when thieves would use a crowbar to break into your vehicle is long gone. In today’s digitally-advanced world, there are many tech-savvy thieves that use some advanced technical tricks to get access to the trunk of your car without breaking anything. It has become important for car owners to protect their vehicles and stuff from smart thieves who know multiple ways to break into the car without making it obvious. Encrypted Transmission is one such technology that offers security against digital tricks.

When you use a remote to send signals to the alarm, only the alarm unit can decode the message. No other device could decode this signal, except for the alarm unit. This makes it nearly impossible for a thief to use any hacking tool to read the signals sent between the alarm and the remote. So, no equipment or high-tech device can imitate these signals to switch on/off the alarm. The alarms can detect authentic and fake signals.

Different Types Of Car Alarms

Sure, a high-tech and premium car alarm can scare the thieves away. But, the overall security of your vehicle also depends on where you park your vehicle. There is no use of the siren when you park a car in an area with no traffic. Nobody is going to listen to the alarm sound. This encourages the thief to break into the system. Car alarms are available in different types. If you park your vehicle in a less-crowded area, then we would recommend the two-way remote as it offers the best security.

Silent

A silent alarm is a perfect option for car owners who need to park their vehicles around the noise restricted place. If the alarm detects a thief trying to break into your vehicle or drive it away, then you will be instantly notified either via your mobile or a fob. As the name implies, the alarm does not produce a noise, which means there is no way for a thief to know that the alarm is triggered. Hence, it makes it easier for you to catch them.

Remote Start

One quality of a remote start is that it enables vehicle owners to keep their vehicle warmed up in winters. Likewise, you can use the remote control to turn the AC on in summers to cool your car. The remote control allows you to manage your car from a distance. Whether you want to disarm the alarm or set off the AC, you could do it in one click. If you need to control your alarm with the remote, then you are going to need a two-way remote, which sends and receives signals.

Passive

A passive alarm activates as soon as you turn off the engine and lock the vehicle’s door. If you are looking for a hands-off car alarm that doesn’t need to be activated manually, then a passive car alarm could be a perfect fit.

Active

Unlike passive alarms, active alarms operate on remote only. You can only activate and deactivate the alarm using the remote. So, even if you lock your car doors or turn the engine off, the alarm will not be activated unless you switch it on manually with the remote.

Bottom Line

So, these were the tips you must consider when investing in a car alarm. The above-mentioned alarms offer different security functions. It all comes down to your specific preference and the budget. We have mentioned affordable and high-end options. Consider the features listed above and choose the option that fits your requirements.

FAQs

  1. Do I need to hire a mechanic to get the alarm installed on my car?

    As long as you are familiar with the electrical system of your car, you do not need to hire a professional to install a car alarm. You may also need to have the knowledge of using a wrench for a quick and smooth installation. Some units feature a detailed installation guide. This guides you throughout the installation. But, if you are not comfortable doing it on your own or you simply do not understand the electrical units of a car, then we recommend you get the alarm installed by a professional.

  2. Does the car alarm consume a significant amount of car battery?

    Car alarms do drain the battery. However, the answer to how much battery this small security unit drains can vary by the alarm. If the unit is extremely sophisticated and offers high-end security features, then it may drain a lot of battery. In fact, some users complain about the car battery being drained in a few hours due to the car alarm. Overall, you can expect an alarm to drain your car battery at an average rate of thirty percent a month.

  3. Can car alarms turn off automatically?

    Again, the answer varies by unit. Some models are designed in a way that they last for as long as 4 hours after being activated, while other models turn off automatically within 2-3 minutes. However, car alarms do not turn off automatically. You will have to switch them off manually (using the remote). The only time when the alarm disconnects automatically is when your car battery is dead and can no longer power the alarm.

  4. Is there some alternative to a car alarm?

    Yes, an immobilizer could be an ideal alternative. The only problem is that a car immobilizer is not a full-proof security option (just like the car alarm). Since thieves are using technology to break into the car by hacking the alarm signals, an immobilizer might not be a great fit for your vehicle. You should rather stick to the encrypted transmission to ensure 100% protection.

  5. When does the car alarm activate?

    When your car gets hit by something heavy or it experiences a significant force, then the alarm will be triggered. It will start to produce noise. Likewise, the alarm will be activated if someone tries to break into the vehicle. As soon as someone opens the door or breaks the window, the siren will activate. If the alarm is integrated with your smartphone, then you will get a notification as soon as the alarm activates.

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Chris Jacobs

Sports cars have always been Chris's passion since he was a little kid. He was very excited to turn 16 years old so that he could drive his mother's old van. Many years later, he's still a passionate car geek and totally in love with his Tesla Model 3.