Do you ever wonder how well auto alarms work to prevent theft? When you hear a vehicle alarm wailing at 125 decibels, do you immediately pick up the phone to call the police, or do you think of throwing a sofa at the offending car like in the old Snickers commercial? In a survey, less than 1% of respondents claimed they would call the police if they heard a car alarm, perhaps because auto alarms are infamous for going off at the worst possible times. According to statistics, you are more likely to flee to the couch.
Worse news for vehicle alarms: according to a different study, false signals are generated by everything from rumbling vehicles to doors opening too closely to system malfunction.
Car alarms are theft deterrents, and they have succeeded in their goal if they dissuade potential thieves. False alarms and a lack of bystander response do not always mean they are useless, though. 99 percent of activated alarms may be false if thieves don’t bother with notified vehicles in the first place.
How effective are car alarms?
If you believe the car salesman trying to persuade you to buy a car alarm for your new car, they are the only thing standing between your vehicle and the friendly neighborhood chop shop. But do they really function?
The former car thief Steve Fuller was questioned by ABC News. When asked about the effectiveness of auto alarms, Fuller responded, “Good alarms with motion sensors, inquisitive neighbours, and security cameras also inhibit vehicle thieves, who will simply relocate to other sites where they can avoid those exact things.”
On the other side, Carlock asserts that 80% of car thieves can disable a car alarm in under a minute. Therefore, while a loud alarm can deter inexperienced thieves and joyriders, a true professional is unlikely to be prevented. It’s also important to note that comprehensive, current research on the benefits of automobile alarms is sadly lacking.
How Can Your Car Be Safer?
Car alarms may not be worth the effort, but data points to the effectiveness of immobilisers and vehicle recovery systems over loud sirens. These systems include OnStar and LoJack.
Esurance provides the following additional automobile safety advice:
- Lock your doors at all times.
- Remove your keys from the ignition: Leaving your car unlocked is like posting a “Steal Me!” sign on it. The same holds true for leaving your car running.
- Parking in areas with enough lighting makes you and your vehicle safer. Lights make it easier for auto thieves to be seen and recognized, thus they are less likely to target a car parked under strong lighting.
- Close the sunroof and all other windows: By leaving them unlocked, even just a crack, you invite reak-ins.
- Don’t leave valuables in your car. Shopping bags, baggage, laptop accessories, GPS devices, and smartphones all attract thieves. All packages and other valuables should be kept in the trunk if you have to leave your car.
- When purchasing a vehicle, look for models with intelligent keys, which have unique computer chips that cannot be copied or modified. A driver needs only that key, and only that key, to turn the ignition.
If you don’t already have comprehensive coverage on your insurance, you should think about getting it. If your car is stolen, comprehensive coverage could cover the cost.
Not to mention, the outcomes differ by industry and, of course, from insured vehicle to insured car, but it appears that the majority of auto insurance companies believe in the value of car alarms—at least enough to offer discounts to drivers who have them. Some carriers include car alarm savings with all anti-theft devices, but depending on where you live and what sort of car you drive, anti-theft devices can save you anywhere from 5 to 25%. You should weigh the cost of the system against any potential insurance savings because car alarms can range in price from $100 to $1000. Get the best security system for your car only from TrueGether, the best eBay alternative.