Car Alarms: specifications, types
Modern alarms are divided into types depending on which vehicles they are designed for.
— Automotive. Alarms designed for use in cars. They provide protection in two main areas: from unauthorized entry into the cabin and from unauthorized engine start. Specific features in each of these areas, of course, may be different.
— Motorcycle. Alarms designed for use on motorcycles. For obvious reasons, the main direction of protection, unlike car alarms, is protection against unauthorized engine start and/or movement. Usually, they are equipped with a shock/vibration sensor, a siren (see "Delivery set"), they may also have other features, such as blocking a stolen car(see "Functions")
Communication format of an alarm installed in a car with a key fob or other device used for control.
— One- way communication. With this type of connection, the user can only send commands from the key fob to the alarm system — opening and closing the car, turning off a triggered alarm, etc. Communication in the opposite direction through the key fob is not available, the sound and light signals of the car itself are responsible for the notification — a horn, a siren, flashing headlights, etc. Single-sided models are inexpensive and available, but are not well suited for situations where the car is out of sight / hearing — for example, when storing a car in a parking lot far from home or in a garage.
— Two -way communication. Models that allow communication in both directions — both the transmission of commands from the key fob to the alarm, and the sending of various notifications from the alarm to the key fob. In addition, this communication channel can be supplemented with a GSM module (see below). Anyway, two-way communication provides many advantages and additional features compared to one-way communication. For example, at a later time, you can turn off the siren so as not to disturb others, and at the same time, you are guaranteed to receive alarm signals; when the siren is turned on, duplicating the alarm signal on the key fob allows you to unambiguously determine what your car is “scr...eaming”; etc. The main disadvantage of bilateral models is the higher cost.
— Keyless. This category includes all models of car alarms that do not involve the use of key fobs at all. One of the most popular options in such devices is control from a mobile phone, via a GSM module; such communication is generally similar to two-way communication (see above), it is described in more detail in the paragraph “GSM-module”. In addition, labels can be used (see "Functions"), as well as buttons directly on the ignition key; the first option assumes one-way communication (also see above), and the second can work both in one and in both directions. The specific combination of these communication methods in different models is made different, and it is on this combination that the features of controlling the “signaling” largely depend.
The presence of a GSM mobile communication module in the alarm design.
Such equipment gives the alarm the ability to send notifications and various data (for example, about the location of the car) to the user's mobile phone and receive commands from this phone via the cellular network. GSM modules, by definition, provide two-way communication, however they can be found in both "pure two-way" and keyless alarms (see "Type of communication"). The main advantage of GSM over direct communication over a radio channel (through a key fob) is its practically unlimited range: the car can be at least on the opposite side of the globe, the main thing is that it stays in the GSM coverage area. In addition, such a signal cannot be scanned. On the other hand, the use of mobile communications is associated with additional costs — payment for data transfer services, and when the funds on the account are exhausted, this function may become useless. In addition, in close proximity to the car, a key fob or other device with a direct connection is more convenient than a mobile phone: it takes a certain time for commands to pass through the cellular network, while the alarm responds instantly to the key fob. Therefore, this function is used mainly as an auxiliary one, supplementing the main control tool (key fob, label, etc.).
The way of working through GSM networks can be different: some alarm models use voice...communication (usually with control of tone signals from the phone buttons), others work through special mobile applications. The first option is less convenient, but very versatile: it allows you to work from any mobile device, even the simplest one. The second method provides more advanced features, but requires a smartphone with a suitable operating system.
4G/LTE support means the fourth generation mobile communication module, which provides Internet connection at speeds up to 100 Mbps. The high speed of data exchange allows the car alarm to quickly send data to the security server served by the user.
The presence of a GPS satellite navigation module in the alarm design.
By itself, such a module is only responsible for determining the current geographical coordinates of the alarm (and, accordingly, the car in which it is installed), but the further use of such data depends on the alarm model and the capabilities that it provides. GPS data can be used, in particular, for classic navigation (via the on-board computer, advanced radio, etc.), as well as for searching for a stolen car (in beacon mode).
Independent security zones
The number of independent security zones provided in the alarm system.
Each independent zone has its own set of sensors — for example, one zone can cover the doors, the second — the boot, the third — the hood, etc. This, in particular, makes it possible to determine in which place an attempt was made to penetrate, a blow occurred, etc., and to give an appropriate signal — up to showing a specific place of operation on the display of the key fob with two-way communication (see "Type of communication"). In addition, separate activation / deactivation or a time difference can be provided for individual security zones. For example, upon auto-arming (see "Security and Protection"), the alarm for the doors can be activated immediately, and for the boot — for some time later, which will make it possible to calmly pick up things from there.
The simplest modern car alarms have 1 – 2 security zones, in advanced models this number can exceed a dozen (which, in particular, allows you to provide your own security zone for each individual door).
Security and protection
— Quiet security mode. This mode assumes the complete absence of sound signals in the event of an alarm. In models with one-way communication (see "Type of communication"), the warning is usually carried out by light signals (flashing headlights), with two-way notification sent to the key fob or other device. Anyway, the silent mode can be very useful when extra noise is undesirable — for example, at night, when a siren could disturb people around.
— Silent setting / disarming. The ability to silently turn on and off the security mode, when the alarm reports a change in the operating mode only by light signals or notifications on the key fob (or other control device). This function will be very useful if you need to keep quiet (for example, at late hours of the day or early in the morning), or if you do not want to give others (including possible intruders) unnecessary signals about the state of the machine.
— Automatic arming. Possibility of automatic arming of the alarm system. Usually, this happens after the ignition is turned off and all doors are closed. The meaning of this function consists of two main points. Firstly, it reduces the likelihood of forgetting to turn on the armed mode and leaving the car unprotected. Secondly, automatic arming eliminates the need to once again give signals from the key fob and makes it difficult for intruders trying to read...the signal using a scanner.
— Arming delay. The ability to delay the automatic arming of the car (see above) for some time — usually within a few minutes. This feature will be especially useful if, after getting out of the car, it often becomes necessary to return to it — for example, to pick up some things.
— Security with the engine running. The ability to arm the alarm when the car engine is running. This feature can be very useful if you need to go away, leaving the car unattended, and it is undesirable to turn off the engine — for example, if it is turned on to warm up before an urgent trip.
— Security of the perimeter. Perimeter protection provides protection against illegal entry into the car: an alarm system with this function is able to respond to door openings, and in the case of using additional limit switches (see “Supplied Contents”), also to opening the hood and/or boot. In this case, the signal can be triggered not only when opening directly, but also when trying to open.
— Blocking a stolen car (Anti-Hi-Jack). The ability to block the engine or control in case of theft or forceful seizure of the car. The specific implementation of this function may be different. For example, some alarm models provide protection against robbery: if the driver's door is opened with the ignition on, the timer starts, and if after a while the driver does not turn off the Anti-Hi-Jack (by pressing a hidden button, entering a code, or in another way that is not available intruder), the system blocks the car. In other models, the activation of this function can be carried out remotely — for example, by a signal from a mobile phone. Also, blocking can be accompanied by other actions of the system — for example, turning on a siren or locking doors to detain an intruder.
— Disarming in two stages (AV). When using this function, to completely disarm the car, you need to send a command from the control device twice: the first command unlocks only the driver's door, and the rest open only when the button is pressed a second time. In this way, protection is provided against thieves — “purse holders” and other intruders who can enter the car through doors that are not controlled by the driver.
— Service mode (Valet). A special mode of operation in which all signals and warnings are turned off, however (in some models) the ability to control car locks through the alarm remains. This function is convenient when using the services of service stations, car washes and other services, when completely “legal” effects on the car can be perceived by the alarm system as signs of intrusion and cause false alarms. When the system is in Valet mode, the driver does not have to leave the control key fob to the service centre personnel, which minimizes the possibility of signal scanning.
— Management of a regular key fob. The ability to control alarm functions using a standard key or vehicle key fob.
Modern cars and other vehicles are equipped with more and more complex electronic systems, and to control these systems, a regular key or key fob is often used. The same key/trinket can be used to control the car alarm. Of course, the specific functionality of such models can be different, it's ok to clarify it separately. The same applies to the compatibility of the signaling with a specific key or key fob — different manufacturers may use different communication standards, and it will not hurt to clarify the support of this standard by the selected "signaling" separately.
The main advantages of this function are, first of all, that it reduces the number of key fobs used to control the functions of t...he car, and at the same time allows you to use all the "chips" of standard key fobs / keys that were originally provided by the manufacturer. In addition, branded key fobs and keys are purely subjectively liked by many drivers due to the presence of symbols of a particular car brand.
— Management of windows. Possibility to control the windows of the car through the car alarm. Thanks to this function, the driver can raise and lower the windows of the car remotely, from a key fob or other control device. This feature can be useful, for example, if the car is already closed, but the windows are not fully raised: instead of disarming the car and getting to the power window control buttons, you can simply give a command from the key fob.
— Management of the opening of the boot. The ability to control the opening of the boot of the car through a car alarm, from a key fob or other control device. This function, usually, allows you to open and close the boot without disarming the doors (and other areas of the car) and without entering the passenger compartment. This is more convenient, and sometimes even safer, than working with the boot in the usual way.
— Locking doors when driving. Possibility of automatic locking of car doors at the beginning of the movement. This feature reduces the risk of a car being seized by force when intruders get into the passenger compartment by simply opening unlocked doors — for example, while stopping at a traffic light. Of course, the central lock can be closed from the driver's seat and manually; however, you can forget about it, while automatic closing works without driver intervention.
— Panic mode. The presence of the "Panic" mode in the alarm system allows the driver to manually turn on the alarm — with a siren, light signals, engine blocking, etc. This feature can be useful if the driver sees suspicious people at his car — in order to frighten off potential hijackers — as well as in other situations when you need to draw the attention of others to the car. In addition, in the absence of the "Search for a car" function (see below), a short-term activation of the "Panic" mode can play its role.
— Function "Polite backlight". Alarms with the function of "polite lighting" are able to control the interior lighting, providing the driver and passengers with additional comfort. For example, when the doors are opened, the lighting can turn on, facilitating placement and orientation in the cabin, and when you start moving and close the doors with the ignition off, it can go out. Turning the light on and off is often done smoothly, avoiding abrupt transitions and making it easier for the eyes to get used to it.
— "Take me home" feature. With this function, the alarm can control the headlights so that they (when the engine is turned off) do not turn off immediately, but after some time after pressing the switch and closing the door. Thus, you can use car headlights to illuminate at night — for example, if you need to walk from the car to the entrance in a dark courtyard on uneven asphalt. The time for turning off the “seeing off” headlights is most often about half a minute — this, usually, is quite enough for the purposes described.
— Function "Search vehicle". This function consists in the fact that, at the command from the key fob, the alarm system gives several short signals (light or sound, and in silent security mode — only light), signaling the driver about the location of the car or motorcycle. This can be useful, for example, in a large parking lot of a hypermarket or an entertainment complex, where the vehicle can get lost among other cars, and searching for it “manually” (especially if you need to carry purchases or roll a cart at this time) can be quite tedious.
— Hands Free function (label). This function allows the driver to control the alarm without using the key fob. A special tag is responsible for managing the operating mode, which the driver needs to carry with him, and a sensor system that responds to the approach and distance of the tag. Thus, when a person with a tag moves away from the car at a certain distance, the alarm is automatically armed, and, having noticed the appearance of a tag within the range of the sensors, it is removed. This format of work allows the driver to keep his hands free and not be distracted by the key fob; in addition, communication between the system and the tag is minimal, making scanning nearly impossible.
— Autostart on the voltage of the onboard network. Possibility of using an alarm to automatically start the engine in case of a significant drop in battery voltage. This situation may arise, in particular, when the car is idle for a long time, especially in cold weather. A dead battery is not only fraught with problems when starting a car: car alarms are often powered from it, so when the charge is exhausted, the car can be left unguarded. To avoid this, this possibility is provided: having fixed a voltage drop close to critical, the alarm starts the engine for a while, recharging the battery from the auto generator and preventing the described troubles. It should be noted that the use of this function is associated with certain restrictions and precautions; for more details about them, see above, in the paragraph “Autostart by temperature”.
— Function "call the driver". This feature allows a person at or inside the car to signal a call to the driver's key fob. Note that the call button is most often installed in the cabin, based on passengers; however, an external location may also be provided, allowing the driver to be called even with the car closed. In the latter case, the installation location of the call sensor is usually marked with a sticker with the appropriate inscription, for example, “Knock three times to call the driver”; and the call method is chosen in such a way that the alarm system can clearly distinguish it from an attempted opening or accidental impact on the car. However, this feature is only found on models with two-way communication (see "Communication Type"). In this case, we are talking about a separate call signal, and not about a general alarm signal, which allows the driver to more accurately assess the situation (and saves his nerves). “Calling the driver” can come in handy, for example, in a situation where the passenger remaining in the car felt unwell, or if the car had to be put in such a way that it blocks the exit of other vehicles. In the latter case, conscientious drivers leave a note with a mobile phone number on the glass, but with this function, you can do without a note — the main thing is that the range of the key fob is enough.
— Bluetooth Smart. This function allows the user to use a smartphone with a special application as a key fob to access the car. At the same time, in accordance with the name, communication is carried out via Bluetooth, due to which such authentication works even in the absence of mobile communication (for example, in an underground garage). The convenience of such alarm control is obvious: you do not need to carry an additional item (keychain or tag) with you, and the probability of forgetting your smartphone somewhere is much lower than the probability of not taking the same keychain with you. At the same time, the probability of interception of the control signal, according to the manufacturers, is practically zero. And in some models, owner authentication and disarming can be carried out completely automatically when the smartphone approaches a certain distance. Other functions (such as transmission of diagnostic data) can also be implemented via Bluetooth Smart, depending on the model. The main disadvantage is that Bluetooth Smart alarms are very expensive. In addition, this technology is far from compatible with every smartphone, this point needs to be specified separately.
— Diagnostics of malfunctions. The ability to use alarms to diagnose various failures and malfunctions. In different models, the implementation and capabilities of this function may be different. Most often, this function involves at least self-diagnosis: the alarm “interrogates” the sensors with service signals and, if one of them fails, notifies the user about this. However, more extensive possibilities may also be provided — such as obtaining data from the car's own sensors (for example, about a decrease or complete disappearance of battery voltage). This not only allows you to monitor the technical condition of the car, but also provides additional security — for example, a decrease in the level of gasoline in the tank may be a sign that it is being drained.
Features for automatic start and shutdown of the engine, provided in the alarm. In some cases, using automation is much easier, more convenient, and even more reliable than starting and stopping the engine manually.
— Autostart by timer. Alarms with this function are able to automatically start the car engine at a certain time set by the driver. This feature allows, in particular, to provide additional comfort and save time on warming up: since the owner does not need to be in the car to start the engine, he can come later, get into an already warmed up car and drive right away.
— Autostart by temperature. The ability to use an alarm to automatically start the engine for warming up — in the event that its temperature drops below certain values. This function is intended for the cold season, when the machine has to stand outdoors for a long time (for example, all night). Starting a cold, and even more “frozen” engine is associated with a number of problems: the oil becomes thicker, and the battery can “sit down” and produce a weaker current than expected. To avoid such problems, some car alarms are equipped with an auto start function based on temperature: when the engine temperature drops below a certain level, the system automatically starts it to warm up. This ensures that the temperature is maintained sufficient for a comfortable start of the engine at any time. On the other hand, fuel is s...pent on regular warming up of the engine, and in enclosed spaces and other places where exhaust gases are undesirable (and even dangerous), this function is poorly applicable. Thus, most alarms with this feature have limitations related to fuel economy — for example, starting less than a certain number of times during one idle time, or the maximum engine warm-up time.
— According to the voltage of the on-board network. Automatic start of the car engine in the event of a voltage drop on the on-board network (in fact, the car battery) to a certain level. By using this function, you can avoid a decrease in battery charge and related troubles — including not only starting “with a pusher” or “lighting up”, but also completely turning off the alarm (if it does not have an autonomous power supply). Of course, the operation of autorun requires additional fuel costs, but usually such alarms have a number of restrictions aimed at minimizing such costs. But when parking a car in a closed room, this function should be used with caution — it requires good ventilation, otherwise the periodic engine start will lead to the accumulation of exhaust gases.
— Turbo timer mode. Possibility of operation of the alarm as a shutdown timer for an engine equipped with a turbocharging system. During driving, the turbocharger can reach high temperatures, and the oil circulation necessary for effective cooling is ensured by the operation of the engine. If you immediately turn off the car after driving, the heated compressor will actually lose the main cooling system, which can lead to damage and even failure. Therefore, the rules for operating turbocharged engines prescribe, after stopping, to allow the engine to idle for a while to cool the turbocharging system. However, the driver does not always have time to wait for the compressor to cool down. The turbo timer "simplifies life" for drivers of turbocharged cars: it keeps the engine running for some time after the ignition key is removed, after which it automatically turns off the engine. This eliminates the need to wait without removing the key from the ignition and manually control the idling time.
— Webasto support. Car alarm support for Webasto equipment, more precisely, the proprietary W-bus protocol. Webasto is known primarily as a manufacturer of starting heaters for cars, however, in addition to this, the company produces many other components, mainly for “climatic” purposes — air conditioners, sunroofs, etc. Accordingly, Webasto support allows you to connect an alarm to equipment under the W-bus and control this equipment through it. Note that W-bus controllers are also available separately, but it is usually easier and more reliable to buy a compatible signaling right away. — Support of the signaling of the Start/Stop function. This function is mainly intended to give the driver the ability to start the engine without using a key, simply by pressing a special button. At the same time, some models are designed for installation in a car where such a button was originally provided, and we are only talking about compatibility with a keyless start system; others are equipped with their own button and can even be installed in cars that were initially started only with a key.
In addition, models with the "Start / Stop" function can have the function of remote engine start on command from the key fob. This can be useful, for example, to save time on warming up the car before driving in cold weather: you can start the engine without leaving your home, and then get into an already warm car.
— Automatic transmission support. Signaling compatibility with automatic transmissions.
Such systems are structurally more complex than traditional mechanical boxes, they are closely related to the electronics and controls of the car. Therefore, for the correct operation of the autorun functions on a car with automatic transmission, it is necessary that this type of transmission is initially supported by the alarm system. If the “signaling” covers only locks and other functions that are not actually related to the engine, this feature is not mandatory.
— Support for diesel engines. This feature is indicated for car alarms that have a specialized mode for starting diesel engines. One of the differences between such engines and gasoline engines is that they use the so-called. glow plugs. For normal operation of the diesel engine, it is necessary that such candles warm up to operating temperature; heating starts immediately when the ignition is switched on, but it takes time. These moments are taken into account in the "diesel" mode: the alarm first turns on the ignition, and gives the start command only after the candle warm-up indicator goes out.
The maximum distance at which the ability to control the alarm from the standard key fob remains. In other words, this is the greatest distance from which the driver can give the system a control signal. This parameter should be distinguished from the reception range (see below): due to their small size, transmitters in key fobs are made relatively low-power, and the control range from the key fob inevitably turns out to be less than the signal reception range on the key fob (if the latter is provided at all in this model).
When choosing by this parameter, note that the control range is indicated for perfect conditions — that is, line of sight with a minimum of interference. The actual “range” of the key fob will inevitably be less, especially in the face of an abundance of obstacles. At the same time, modern car alarms most often have quite impressive range indicators. Thus, a distance of less than 500 m is considered rather small in this sense; 500 – 750 m is the average value, 750 – 1000 m is above average, and in some models a range of more than 1 km is claimed.
The maximum range at which a regular key fob in a two-way system (see "Type of communication") can receive signals from the central signaling unit. In other words, this is the greatest distance at which the driver can receive notifications from the alarm in the car on the key fob.
When choosing according to this indicator, note that the control range is indicated for perfect conditions — that is, line of sight with a minimum of interference. The actual "range" of the system will inevitably be less, especially in the face of an abundance of obstacles. At the same time, the main signaling units can be equipped with fairly powerful transmitters that can effectively “reach” key fobs over long distances. Thus, the claimed receiving range usually turns out to be on average twice the control range (see above), and even in relatively simple models it can exceed 1 km.
The display is one of the most convenient ways to display various notifications; it can work with almost any kind of visual information that is relevant for modern car alarms. Simply put, the display can show both numbers (for example, data from the autorun timer, see "Functions"), and text (for example, the inscription "Call"), and graphic data (such as a car diagram showing the status of each zone protection). Thanks to this, key fobs with screens are well suited for even the most versatile and advanced alarm systems; However such versatility also affects the price.
Note that this feature is found only in models with a two-way type of communication (see above) — it simply does not make sense to equip a one-sided key fob with a display.
Availability of alarm protection from scanning ; if the characteristics specify the type of such protection, it is also given in this clause.
Scanning is used by attackers to intercept the control signal from the key fob; by forging such a signal, the hijacker can safely open the car. Accordingly, this protection is aimed at preventing such hacks. And its main types nowadays are dynamic code and dialog code, here are the features of each of these methods:
— Dynamic code. The general principle of dynamic coding is that each time you press the button to turn on or turn off the alarm, the key fob gives a new, unique signal. Most often, the Keelog algorithm is used for this; it assumes that the signal from the key fob contains data on the serial number of the device, the number of clicks and the secret code that the central unit also “knows” (this code is written at the factory and is unique for each alarm). Based on the serial number, the system performs general identification of the key fob, the click counter confirms that the signal has not been sent before, and the secret code acts as an encryption key. Thus, even if an attacker intercepts and copies the signal from the key fob, this signal will be outdated and, accordingly, useless; and it is impossible to decipher this signal and reproduce the desired version without a secret code.
The main advantage of...systems with dynamic coding is simplicity and, accordingly, low cost. However, this method in itself is less perfect than the dialog code, it provides a lower degree of protection against interception and hacking — with the help of the so-called dynamic code grabber with a jammer, an attacker can still intercept the control code under certain conditions and open the machine. However this procedure is quite complicated and does not give a guarantee; so in general, dynamic code is a good option for inexpensive cars that are not particularly attractive to professional crackers. But for maximum protection, it is still better to use dialogue systems.
— Dialogue code. Protection operating on the principle of “friend or foe” recognition: before giving a control signal, the key fob and the central unit exchange service data, identifying each other and making sure that the signal comes from the rightful owner. This is done in the following way. When you press a button on the key fob, it sends a connection request with data about its serial number. The central unit checks the serial number and, if the result of the check is positive, sends a randomly generated number to the key fob. The keyfob processes this number according to a certain algorithm and sends the result (together with a request for action) to the central unit, which performs calculations according to the same algorithm; if the results agree, the defense gives the go-ahead to execute the command. The algorithm used for calculations is unique in each individual signaling, and so-called hash algorithms are used to encrypt the transmitted data. Due to this, the dialogue code is almost impossible to crack: for this, the attacker must intercept 3 data packets (request, riddle, guess) and decrypt 2 of them, while without knowing the key (embedded in the alarm itself and inaccessible without physical access to the device), such a decryption nowadays is inaccessible even to the most powerful computers.
Dialogue systems are naturally somewhat more expensive than dynamic ones, but this is more than offset by a high degree of security.
This function is completely similar to the vibration signal used in modern mobile phones. Its purpose is to give signals in conditions in which sound notifications are undesirable or ineffective. As an example of such conditions, in particular, lectures and other events where it is supposed to turn off the sound, or noisy environments (concert halls, clubs, etc.), where the vibration of the key fob in your pocket is felt better than the squeak of its dynamics, can be cited.
Battery and fuel charge indication
Possibility to display data on the key fob about the level of charge of the battery(ACB) and the amount of fuel in the car tank.
For obvious reasons, this function is found only in models with the possibility of two-way communication (see "Type of communication"). It greatly facilitates monitoring the state of the car: checking the energy and fuel reserves on the key fob is much easier, more convenient, and sometimes safer than going to the car for this, starting the engine and getting acquainted with the data on the dashboard. And in some cases, such an opportunity can even warn of an intrusion (for example, if someone tries to drain the gas from the tank, having managed not to trigger the alarm). At the same time, we note that for the normal operation of this function, the car itself must have certain equipment; therefore, before buying a "signal" with this function, it's ok to make sure that it can work normally on your car.
Number of tags (keyless)
The number of tags provided in the delivery set of keyless alarms (see "Type of connection"). See "Functions — Hands Free Function (Tag) " for more information on tags and their purpose. And the presence of several tags in the kit allows you to provide access to the car to several people at the same time — for example, if the driver and passenger need to go about their own business, and it is not known who will return to the car earlier, you can give the passenger a second tag. In addition, a spare can be useful in case of loss or damage to the main tag.
Most modern keyless alarms with the appropriate capabilities are equipped with two or more tags. This is considered to be the best option given that the actual need to distribute additional tags is infrequent, but a margin is highly desirable anyway.
Contents of delivery
The delivery set includes, in addition to the main alarm unit, it can also include additional elements, including a CAN bus, a LIN bus, a blocking unit, an immobilizer, a limit switch, a volume sensor, an interior temperature sensor, an inclination sensor, a movement sensor, a boot opening relay, siren. More details about them:
— CAN bus. The ability to connect the alarm to the car's electronic CAN bus. Many modern car models are equipped with such a tyre (and their number is constantly increasing); it allows you to receive information from the car's own built-in sensors about the status of its various parts, from the opening of the doors and boot to the position of the gear knob and the readings of the speedometer and tachometer. To date, connecting a car alarm to the CAN bus is the most convenient option, because. does not require intervention in the standard wiring of the car and greatly simplifies the process. Note that the module itself can be either built-in (in such cases, the CAN connection is standard) or external. In the absence of a CAN module in the kit, usually, it can be purchased separately, but t...his is more difficult and troublesome than immediately acquiring a CAN-compatible signaling.
— LIN bus. The alarm can be connected to the vehicle's LIN bus. Integration with the LIN machine interface allows the security system to control and interact with some of the car's original functional systems. This can be an engine preheating system, a climate control system, etc. The LIN (Local Interconnect Network) interface combines the peripheral and secondary functional systems of the car, but it is impossible to control the operation of the engine or transmission through it. The main systems of the car are controlled via the CAN (Controller Area Network) interface.
— Lock block. Availability of the block of blocking of the engine in a complete set of delivery of the alarm system. Such a module, when triggered, blocks the engine or another element of the car (for example, the starter), preventing the attacker from leaving the car. Activation can occur by triggering an alarm or by pressing the "Anti-Hi-Jack" button (see "Security and Protection"). There are two main types of blocking block — with normally closed contacts (NC) and normally open (NO). In the first case, the blocking relay is de-energized in the normal state, and when the alarm is triggered, it becomes energized and opens the circuit. This option is convenient in that if the alarm fails, the machine will not be blocked, but the reliability of the NC from the point of view of safety is somewhat lower than that of HP. In turn, the blocker with normally open contacts is switched on if the voltage on the control relay is lost. Disabling such a system is somewhat more difficult (especially if the control is carried out via the CAN bus), however, in the event of a failure in the auto or alarm electronics, the car remains stationary. Some alarms provide universal blocking blocks that allow the owner to choose the format of operation — NO or NC — at his discretion.
— Immobilizer. Immobilizers are electronic devices designed to prevent the movement of a car in the event of illegal entry into it. Immobilizers can have different designs and areas of influence: for example, some open the starter or ignition circuit, others turn off the fuel injection controller, others send a control signal via the CAN bus (see CAN module), putting the entire system into an “inoperative” state. The immobilizer can be disabled by the driver using a key, tag, secret button, code, etc. Such devices, in fact, insure the main alarm in case of its failure or hacking: even if an attacker manages to get into the car, he will not be able to steal the vehicle. This is the difference between immobilizers and the blocking systems described above — they can work even when the alarm is "silent". Note that immobilizers are distinguished by a high degree of secrecy. So, a well-installed module is carefully hidden from prying eyes, its operation is often disguised as a malfunction (for example, a dead battery is simulated), and some models do not work immediately, but some time after the start of movement. The latter increases the likelihood that the attacker will be in a stalled car in the open and hide without trying to complete the theft. Immobilizers are installed in many cars as standard equipment, directly at the factory, however, the degree of safety of such equipment is low, and many motorists prefer to supplement it with non-standard devices. Of course, in the absence of an immobilizer, you can buy it separately, but this is more troublesome than buying a ready-made kit.
— Antenna module. The presence in the delivery set of the signaling of a separate block containing an active antenna. Such a unit greatly enhances the range of the transmitter, allowing you to receive notifications from two-way alarms (see "Type of communication") at a distance of 1 km or even more. Also, a driver call button or sensor is often installed on the antenna module (see "Functions").
— Limit switch. The presence of a limit switch (one or more) in the car alarm delivery set. The most popular application of limit switches is as sensors that monitor the opening of doors, boot, hood, gas tank cap, etc.: in the closed position, the door or lid presses the switch, and when opened, it releases it, to which the alarm reacts. Note that many modern cars are equipped with their own limit switches — for example, in the doors; they are normally responsible for turning on the lighting in the cabin, but alarms can also be connected to such switches. At the same time, firstly, attackers usually know the location of standard "limit switches" and can block them without any problems, and secondly, there are car models without such switches. Having separate limit switches, you can install them at your discretion, including in non-standard and most unexpected places for the hijacker.
— Volume sensor. The presence of a volume sensor in the delivery set of car alarms. Such a sensor works on the principle of a sonar: it periodically emits an ultrasonic signal and analyzes its reflection, thus “observing” objects in the cabin, and when the situation changes, it gives an alarm. In this way, protection is provided against "silent" penetration into the car — for example, with cutting glass, to which shock sensors and limit switches do not respond: the volume sensor will detect an intruder not noticed by other systems. There are also external sensors that monitor the situation around the car; when triggered, they do not turn on the main alarm, but give a relatively quiet signal, designed mainly to warn a person who has approached close that the car is on an alarm. The ability to connect such sensors is available in many modern car alarms, however, sensors are rarely included in the delivery set. So if you want to immediately get a system with such a function, without buying additional equipment, you should choose among the models that are initially supplied with volume sensors.
— Temperature sensor in the cabin. The presence of a sensor that monitors the temperature in the cabin, in the alarm package. This feature provides additional information to the driver, allowing him to assess the conditions in the cabin directly from the alarm key fob, without opening the car or approaching it, and take action if necessary — for example, leave the house a few minutes earlier to warm up the interior for a comfortable ride. In addition, the temperature sensor can also serve as an intrusion warning: for example, in cold weather, opening doors or windows leads to a sharp decrease in the temperature in the cabin, which can be noticed even if the intruders were able to open the car without triggering an alarm.
— Tilt sensor. As the name implies, the tilt sensor detects changes in the slope of the car body. Thus, for example, the system "takes care" that the wheels are not removed from the car. After all, to do this, you need to slightly raise the body. If a car thief decides to do this, then the tilt sensor will instantly detect manipulations with the body and immediately raise the alarm. The tilt sensor is one of the main sensors in many security systems for cars and motorcycles. Such a sensor can be found both in low-cost car alarms and premium security systems.
— The displacement sensor captures any mobility of the car: the car drives on its own, it is moved by a loader or in tow, it shifts from impact or rolls back due to a weak hand brake, etc. Having fixed the fact of the car’s mobility, the sensor activates the alarm. Often used in conjunction with a tilt sensor.
— Boot opening relay. The presence of a boot opening relay in the car alarm delivery set. If the car has an electric boot drive, you can connect it to this relay and control the opening / closing of the boot through the alarm key fob — this is much more convenient than pressing the button in the cabin every time.
— Relay with block. The presence of a relay with a block in the car alarm delivery set. This relay is used to connect additional external equipment to the alarm system — for example, a limit switch under the gas tank cap; the block also serves to attach the relay to the body of the car.
— Siren. The presence of a siren in the car alarm delivery set. The siren in this case is a sound warning unit that provides for the supply of characteristic sound signals. Note that such a unit is not always included in the delivery set, and if it is not available, you either have to buy the siren separately or connect the alarm to the horn. So if you want to immediately buy an alarm with your own sound signal, you should clarify the configuration of the selected model.
The number of response levels provided for in the design of the shock / vibration sensor, which is equipped with a car alarm.
— 1 level. The simplest shock / vibration sensors that have one level of operation: when the intensity of the impact exceeds a certain threshold, an alarm is activated. This option is inexpensive, but the sensor requires very careful calibration: if the sensitivity is too high, it will even respond to passing traffic nearby, if it is too low, it may not work at the right time.
— 2 levels. A fairly advanced and at the same time relatively inexpensive option, providing two levels. With a relatively weak shock / vibration, a warning signal is turned on — it can be intended not only for the driver, but also for others, notifying them that the car is on an alarm and a stronger impact will trigger an alarm. And already a strong impact turns on the main signal. Such sensors are very popular today due to the combination of convenience, practicality and affordability.
— 3 levels. The most high-quality type of shock / vibration sensors used in modern car alarms. Three levels of operation allow even more accurate than when using two levels to determine the specifics of the external impact on the car. However such functionality is not cheap, which is why three-level sensors are found mainly in premium-level models.
Autonomous power supply
The alarm has its own independent power source. It is worth noting that the format and power of such power supply may be different. So, in some models it is the main one, in others it plays the role of a fallback and turns on when disconnected from the on-board network; some alarms, when self-powered, are capable of generating a full-fledged alarm, others can only send a warning to the owner's key fob. However, anyway, this function makes the system independent of the car's on-board network — thus, the alarm remains operational even if the battery is dead or other problems in the on-board network, and turning it off is much more difficult. However the driver is required to monitor the condition of the batteries / accumulators, periodically changing or recharging them — but there are also models that are recharged automatically from the same on-board network.
The presence of non-volatile memory in the design of car alarms. The term "non-volatile" means that such a memory retains the content written to it even when the power is turned off. Thus, alarms with this function are able to save the specified settings even if the power is turned off. This allows, for example, leaving the car in the garage with the battery terminal removed, without fear that the settings will “fly off” in the alarm system (such as data on the arming delay, see “Security and Protection”).
The current normally consumed by the car alarm. This indicator primarily affects the operating time from its own battery (see " Autonomous power ") or a car battery: the more high consumption the system, the faster it will exhaust the resource of such a power supply. However, the power consumption of even the most advanced modern car alarms is very low, which does not create problems even with long-term operation from built-in batteries, not to mention powerful and capacious car batteries. Therefore, this parameter is more of a reference than of practical significance.
Note that in this paragraph, manufacturers usually indicate the current in the armed mode — that is, when the system is "watchful" and ready to respond to sensor triggers, but no signals are turned on. When you turn on the siren, light alerts, etc. the current consumption can increase noticeably, but these situations are usually short-lived and have little effect on overall power consumption.
The number of additional channels provided for in the design of the car alarm. Each individual signaling channel is used to connect and control certain equipment. The main channels of the system are considered to be those that initially have a certain “specialization”: for example, one channel controls the siren, the second controls the headlights, the third controls the engine start, the fourth controls the boot opening, etc. However, in addition to them, additional channels can be provided that do not have specialization and are used for very diverse purposes, at the choice of the owner — for example, to control the heating of the passenger compartment or the rear window. The number of such channels in modern car alarms can reach eight; you should pay attention to this parameter if you want to connect equipment to the system that is not provided for by specialized channels.
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