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Old 08-13-07, 03:16 PM   #1
Digital Gee
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OT Mini Rant: Automobile Remote Controls

Wow was I in for a shock today. The loop on the remote control for my car that goes around the key ring broke, and now the remote control is separated from the keys. I was on another errand and stopped by the auto dealer to pick up a replacement. Hoped it would be ten dollars or less, but steeled myself for a more likely $20.

The dealer could order a new unit for me for $200! AND they could program the new chip for just $98. Altogether, with tax, over $300 for a remote control for my car.

Needless to say, I took my broken (but functional) remote back with me. I shall be looking for Plan B.
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Old 08-13-07, 03:24 PM   #2
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Wow was I in for a shock today. The loop on the remote control for my car that goes around the key ring broke, and now the remote control is separated from the keys. I was on another errand and stopped by the auto dealer to pick up a replacement. Hoped it would be ten dollars or less, but steeled myself for a more likely $20.

The dealer could order a new unit for me for $200! AND they could program the new chip for just $98. Altogether, with tax, over $300 for a remote control for my car.

Needless to say, I took my broken (but functional) remote back with me. I shall be looking for Plan B.
Duct tape

http://www.ducttapeguys.com/index.html
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Old 08-13-07, 03:25 PM   #3
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Car repairs or anything remotely associated with cars is expensive. The speedometer on my old van didn't work correctly so I had it checked out when I took it in for another problem. They called to tell me it would be $750 to fix it. I told him I could pay a lot of speeding tickets with $750 and to leave it alone
It only cost me one speeding ticket before I traded it in on my current van.
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Old 08-13-07, 03:30 PM   #4
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The loop for mine broke too. I just carry them separately now. It only operates the alarm (my van has manual locks) and if I forget it I just don't set the alarm.
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Old 08-13-07, 04:11 PM   #5
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Superglue?
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Old 08-13-07, 04:57 PM   #6
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Both of my drivers are '97's. I don't got no stinkin' remote control for them. Keys work just fine.
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Old 08-13-07, 05:48 PM   #7
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Both of my drivers are '97's. I don't got no stinkin' remote control for them. Keys work just fine.
So did buggy whips, but you gave those up, right?
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Old 08-13-07, 06:28 PM   #8
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Yup. My second favorite saying: "It ain't broke. It just lacks duct tape."
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Old 08-13-07, 06:56 PM   #9
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Wonder if you couldn't rig something with those self adhesive patches for wall hangings, etc. that are permanent and hold like bondo. A good hardware store might have advice.

As I read this, I realize how off the wall it sounds. But sometimes.......
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Old 08-13-07, 07:12 PM   #10
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Time to join us over in Living Car Free!
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Old 08-13-07, 07:56 PM   #11
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But I would have to buy a new car in order to get a remote control.

Seems a bit over the top to me?

Only time I've ever used a car remote control was last year when I rented a car. Didn't like it because I hate carrying around thick things (anything thicker than a comb, a quarter, or a key is "thick" in my book) in my pockets. I don't like carrying any more than about 3 standard keys.
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Old 08-13-07, 07:56 PM   #12
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My '97 Escort wagon has remote keyless entry but only for the driver's door and the rear lid. Kept the MSRP low, I guess. Dunno. Bought it used.
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Old 08-13-07, 08:15 PM   #13
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So did buggy whips, but you gave those up, right?
But all one has to do is to stick a key into the hole on the door and give it a little twist. It isn't very hard to do.
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Old 08-13-07, 08:16 PM   #14
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But all one has to do is to stick a key into the hole on the door and give it a little twist. It isn't very hard to do.
So how do you change channels on your TV these days?
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Old 08-13-07, 08:20 PM   #15
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So how do you change channels on your TV these days?
Not a good analogy. You still have to walk up to your car to get in to use it. No energy is saved, except for the little twist. If the car remote control was going to save me 50-100 actions every day, then I might be interested in it.
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Old 08-14-07, 05:38 AM   #16
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So wonderful to see DG and TB spatting.

I find remote entry to be like power windows.....or maybe clipless pedals.....once you get used to them, you will never want to go back. A lot of cars, like my Mini, now have the remote built into the key. But I always use the key on my Kryptonite bike lock...now that my Bic pen cap no longer works.
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Old 08-14-07, 05:52 AM   #17
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So wonderful to see DG and TB spatting.

I find remote entry to be like power windows.....or maybe clipless pedals.....once you get used to them, you will never want to go back. A lot of cars, like my Mini, now have the remote built into the key. But I always use the key on my Kryptonite bike lock...now that my Bic pen cap no longer works.
I love my remote entry. It operates the sliding doors on the van and this is a big help when I'm loaded down with groceries or other items. It's much easier to push a button to open those doors instead of fumbling with a key. There are some modern conveniences I'm just not willing to give up
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Old 08-14-07, 06:01 AM   #18
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Not a good analogy. You still have to walk up to your car to get in to use it. No energy is saved, except for the little twist. If the car remote control was going to save me 50-100 actions every day, then I might be interested in it.
I consider a remote that also turns on the interior lights a safety feature for my wife. Instead of fumbling for the right key in the dark at night, and trying to find the keyhole, the car's driver's door is unlocked with interior lights on and ready to quickly get in and leave.
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Old 08-14-07, 06:03 AM   #19
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Wow was I in for a shock today. The loop on the remote control for my car that goes around the key ring broke, and now the remote control is separated from the keys. I was on another errand and stopped by the auto dealer to pick up a replacement. Hoped it would be ten dollars or less, but steeled myself for a more likely $20.

The dealer could order a new unit for me for $200! AND they could program the new chip for just $98. Altogether, with tax, over $300 for a remote control for my car.

Needless to say, I took my broken (but functional) remote back with me. I shall be looking for Plan B.
Go to a good locksmith and ask. SOmetimes they have old/used ones that can be reprogrammed, or a junk yard.

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Old 08-14-07, 06:32 AM   #20
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I love my remote entry. It operates the sliding doors on the van and this is a big help when I'm loaded down with groceries or other items. It's much easier to push a button to open those doors instead of fumbling with a key. There are some modern conveniences I'm just not willing to give up
My minivan is 16 years old and has 210,000 miles on it. I doubt that it would have made it this far if it had all those gizmos. Now , to totally contradict my position (and get this thread on topic), my old 10-speed, which is now my city bike, is close to 30 years old and I can do all the maintenance on it. My Cannondale, which I love, has 27 speeds, brifters, clipless pedals, and I am afraid to do anything more than oil the chain and put air in the tires. I doubt that I will be riding it in 25 years (will trade it in on a wheelchair).
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Old 08-14-07, 09:41 AM   #21
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This is one benefit of being a mechanic. I can score a new key fob for about 40bucks. This is for a G.M. car, can't help with Toyotas. My truck has 300,000 miles on it, btw, and still cruises the freeway fine. A car will last as long as you are willing to fix it. I know, it's not cost effective for most people to keep dumping money into an old bucket, and I actually am considering a new car myself.
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Old 08-14-07, 09:53 AM   #22
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If you think the remote costs, wait untill the one of the wiring harnesses in the car goes bad, or a power window, or the antilock brake system, or the anti-freeze eats the head gaskets or........this rant brought to you by General Motors who claim to lead the world in as received new car quality.
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Old 08-14-07, 10:04 AM   #23
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Geez. I'm guessing many of you aren't in love with manual transmissions either - the only way to enjoy driving!
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Old 08-14-07, 10:36 AM   #24
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Geez. I'm guessing many of you aren't in love with manual transmissions either - the only way to enjoy driving!
Sometimes when I drive an automatic I find myself stomping my left foot on an imaginary clutch pedal.
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Old 08-14-07, 11:05 AM   #25
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Look on ebay - you should be able to find one for $30 or so, along with instructions on programming - the dealer is getting $95 for 30 seconds of work. Find another source!

As for their usefulness, I'd put them in the category of nice to have but hardly indespensable - certainly below Tivo, for example, or clipless pedals
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