A Beginners Guide to Choosing Car Anti-Theft Systems

Currently, car theft is among the top crimes that occur. A common misconception among people is that car theft is prevalent in third world countries where criminals steal them to make ends meet. The reality is entirely different with statistics showing robbery is more common in developed countries where there is a higher percentage of cars, and the black market is thriving.

There is no guarantee that your car is fully secure but you can increase your odds by applying good anti-theft systems because they provide more protection and may lower your insurance rates as an added advantage. However, choosing the best anti-theft devices is not an easy task as the market is flooded with many options. The most viable solution is to clearly understand how each device works and if it’s ideal for your car make and model.

Here is a guide to help you choose the best anti-theft device for your automobile:

Try A Mechanical Immobilizer

These devices are designed to prevent or restrict the access or movement of the vehicle. They are easily affordable, and their appearance is highly visual which deters thieves. They include:

  • Steering wheel locks – This is one of the common options taken by car owners as its easy to install. This device function is to lock the steering until the owner unlocks it. If you’re not sure what steering wheel lock to use, consult professional automotive locksmiths who can recommend the best quality.
  • Hood locks – This device locks the hoods and prevents car thieves from stealing your battery or other parts.
  • Tire lock – As the name suggests, the device is attached to the tires and makes it difficult to move the vehicle unless it’s removed. Mostly used by police officers.

Invest in a Car Alarm

Car alarms are popular anti-theft devices that get activated when a thief tries to steal your car. You are bound to get a beeping sound when certain activities take place such as attempting to enter the vehicle without a key or in case a window is broken. Some of the car sensors are very sensitive such that they will beep when something falls on them accidentally or when someone touches it.

It’s advisable that you park your car in a nearby place so that you get notified when the alarm beeps. Most of the car alarms come inbuilt in vehicles. However, one can choose to have it installed separately. Most models come with alarm stickers already displayed to help keep away thieves and to enable you to say you have a car security system activated proudly.

Consider an Electronic Immobilizer

Nearly every vehicle model today has this device which is installed on the car key and thus prevents a vehicle from starting without the presence of a key. It also locks down the fuel system and the engine will not start.

Most car thieves will avoid your vehicle if you have an electronic immobilizer in place. Once you input the key, the car will start because built-in transponder in the key will send signals to the anti-theft system, which will automatically start the car.

Install A Kill Switch

Once a kill switch is installed, it temporarily stops the electronic system of your car like the engine, and a series of actions have to be taken to unlock the car. As compared to the other anti-theft devices, kill switches are a bit more complicated to install and often come with a detailed manual.

First, before installing a kill switch in your car, ensure that the car warranty allows it. Keep the switch hidden, probably under the seat or dashboard so that it becomes difficult for a thief to spot it.


With the current increase in car theft, having the best security device for your car is inevitable. Each device comes with its pros and cons, so it’s up to you to study them keenly and come up with the best combination that suits you.

Tom Brown
Tom Brown is an automotive market enthusiast living in the United States. He holds a diverse background in automotive marketing and enjoys utilizing that to produce insights into the inner workings of the industry.