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Old 11-13-2021, 05:00 PM   #1
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Default Vehicle Antitheft Devices and Protection Ability

This facebook Roadtrek posting got me thinking again about my Class B antitheft systems. They were talking about the Ravelco Anti Theft Device.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/252621115223541/

https://www.ravelco.com

I have a Viper security alarm: just noise, no disable function. I also have a steering wheel lock but I forget to use it most times. I did install JimmiJammer door lock guards.

https://jimmijammer.com/Product,%20JJ.htm

Various discussions indicate car alarms and wheel locks don't really do much other than prevent the most basic of vehicle thieves.

I have thought about battery disablers like this.

https://www.amazon.com/Wireless-Disc.../dp/B01IVNE9MC

Or upgrading my Viper to a vehicle disable system.

So what do you use?
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Old 11-13-2021, 05:05 PM   #2
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This facebook Roadtrek posting got me thinking again about my Class B antitheft systems. They were talking about the Ravelco Anti Theft Device.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/252621115223541/

https://www.ravelco.com

I have a Viper security alarm: just noise, no disable function. I also have a steering wheel lock but I forget to use it most times. I did install JimmiJammer door lock guards.

https://jimmijammer.com/Product,%20JJ.htm

Various discussions indicate car alarms and wheel locks don't really do much other than prevent the most basic of vehicle thieves.

I have thought about battery disablers like this.

https://www.amazon.com/Wireless-Disc.../dp/B01IVNE9MC

Or upgrading my Viper to a vehicle disable system.

So what do you use?

We have Jimmyjammers and also a very well hidden cutout switch



As you mention alarms and wheel locks don't stop much stuff these days.



In many cities, the newer cars with better security and high value seem to be getting more likely to be hijacked so they get the keys with it.


The Ravelco would certainly be my choice of a good installed system.
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Old 11-13-2021, 05:20 PM   #3
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What do these disabling-alarms do that the OEM standard-equipment disablers don't? My impression is that it is extremely difficult to start a modern vehicle without the key. Am I wrong?

In all my years on the Sprinter list, I do not recall ANY reports of an actual vehicle theft. Stolen exhaust components are another matter.

I am more worried about smash-and-grab thefts of vehicle contents. Not too much you can do about that beyond making noise and giving the impression of continuous camera coverage.
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Old 11-13-2021, 05:50 PM   #4
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What do these disabling-alarms do that the OEM standard-equipment disablers don't? My impression is that it is extremely difficult to start a modern vehicle without the key. Am I wrong?

In all my years on the Sprinter list, I do not recall ANY reports of an actual vehicle theft. Stolen exhaust components are another matter.

I am more worried about smash-and-grab thefts of vehicle contents. Not too much you can do about that beyond making noise and giving the impression of continuous camera coverage.
My biggest concern is someone driving off with the vehicle. Can't do much about smash and grab. If stolen and totaled my biggest hassles are 1. Replacing with a like vehicle (used, new ones too expensive) in as good a mechanical shape as mine, 2. having to redo all the custom mods that I have spent hundreds of hours doing.

I have a 2006 Roadtrek 210 built on the Chevy Express. Not sure how "modern" the OEM standard-equipment disabler is on this vehicle.
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Old 11-13-2021, 06:07 PM   #5
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My biggest concern is someone driving off with the vehicle. Can't do much about smash and grab. If stolen and totaled my biggest hassles are 1. Replacing with a like vehicle (used, new ones too expensive) in as good a mechanical shape as mine, 2. having to redo all the custom mods that I have spent hundreds of hours doing.

I have a 2006 Roadtrek 210 built on the Chevy Express. Not sure how "modern" the OEM standard-equipment disabler is on this vehicle.

I think the 2006 used a key with a resistor in it, like my 96 Buick, called Passkey. They do work OK until they get old and won't start. The Buick has a module under the dash and a fuse pump relay controlled separately from the PCM but thieves know of both and can diasble in a short time, I think. I think they also only a few different resistor values so that makes it easier.



Our 2007 Chevy has no security on it at all from the factory, and not even a locking column, I think.
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Old 11-13-2021, 06:12 PM   #6
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I think the 2006 used a key with a resistor in it, like my 96 Buick, called Passkey. They do work OK until they get old and won't start. The Buick has a module under the dash and a fuse pump relay controlled separately from the PCM but thieves know of both and can diasble in a short time, I think. I think they also only a few different resistor values so that makes it easier.

Our 2007 Chevy has no security on it at all from the factory, and not even a locking column, I think.
I had heard of the Passkey system but have never needed to research it. Glad you mentioned it as this article shows how to disable or reset it if you have a problem. It doesn't look like a very secure system if it can be reset this easy.

https://itstillruns.com/disable-gm-p...m-7640587.html
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Old 11-13-2021, 07:08 PM   #7
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Our 2007 Chevy has no security on it at all from the factory, and not even a locking column, I think.

should have a locking column. if not, then there is likely a broken spring under the cover for the locking pin
( just went through this with my gmc sierra)




the way to discourage theft is to make if difficult, time consuming



park smart. use a steering lock, make it obvious


interesting story on modern tech defeat methods:


https://www.thestar.com/news/investi...ddle-east.html


my teacher at auto school was a non smoker and had an ignition disable using the cigarette lighter as a switch- the motor would crank but never start with the lighter pushed in






mike
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Old 11-13-2021, 09:18 PM   #8
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should have a locking column. if not, then there is likely a broken spring under the cover for the locking pin
( just went through this with my gmc sierra)

the way to discourage theft is to make if difficult, time consuming

park smart. use a steering lock, make it obvious

interesting story on modern tech defeat methods:

https://www.thestar.com/news/investi...ddle-east.html

my teacher at auto school was a non smoker and had an ignition disable using the cigarette lighter as a switch- the motor would crank but never start with the lighter pushed in

mike

I just went and checked and the column does not lock, and I don't remember that it ever did, and we got it new, but it had been on the lot 15 months.


The manuals say it should have "Passlock" which I think is the resistor keys but when I turn the key to on, I don't get even a flash of the "security" display in the dashboard like you would from the the other GM vehicles I have seen and it also has no visible resistor like my old Buick has on it's key.


Anybody else with a 2007 190 that could confirm any of this?
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Old 11-14-2021, 11:36 PM   #9
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I believe the column lock has not been required by Fed. regulation on 3/4 ton and heaver vehicles. Same for EPA gas milage estimates for these vehicles. I've had 3 in the past 20 years; none had the lock. Possible explanation for mkguitar's post in that the columns are made basically the same for the various vans (1500-3500) but only have all the necessary internal parts for the lock in the 1500s.

Chevy went from the Passlock system in 2007 to the PASS-Key III+ in 2008 on these vans. The latter has some sort of electronics in the key. Don't know about the former. Here is the description in the 2008 manual:

PASS-Key® III+ uses a radio frequency transponder in the key that matches a decoder in your vehicle.

PASS-Key® III+ Operation
Your vehicle is equipped with the PASS-Key® III+ (Personalized Automotive Security System) theft-deterrent system. PASS-Key® III+ is a passive theft deterrent system.
The system is automatically armed when the key is removed from the ignition.
You do not have to manually arm or disarm the system.
The security light will come on if there is a problem with arming or disarming the theft-deterrent system.
When the PASS-Key® III+ system senses that someone is using the wrong key, it shuts down the vehicle’s starter and fuel systems. The starter will not work and fuel will stop being delivered to the engine. Anyone using a trial-and-error method to start the vehicle will be discouraged because of the high number of electrical key codes.
If the engine does not start and the security message comes on, the key may have a damaged transponder. Turn the ignition off and try again.

If the engine still does not start, and the key appears to be undamaged, try another ignition key. At this time, you may also want to check the instrument panel PASS KEY fuse. If the engine still does not start with the other key, your vehicle needs service. If your vehicle does start, the first key may be faulty. See your dealer/retailer or a locksmith who can service the PASS-Key® III+ to have a new key made. See Fuses and Circuit Breakers on page 5-109.

It is possible for the PASS-Key® III+ decoder to learn the transponder value of a new or replacement key. Up to 10 keys may be programmed for the vehicle. This procedure is for learning additional keys only. If all the currently programmed keys are lost or do not operate, you must see your dealer/retailer or a locksmith who can service PASS-Key® III+ to have keys made and programmed to the system.
See your dealer/retailer or a locksmith who can service PASS-Key® III+ to get a new key blank that is cut exactly as the ignition key that operates the system.
To program the new key:
1. Verify the new key has + stamped on it.
2. Insert the original, already programmed key into the ignition lock cylinder and start the engine. If the engine will not start, see your dealer/retailer
for service.
3. After the engine has started, turn the key to LOCK/OFF and remove the key.
4. Insert the key to be programmed and turn it to ON/RUN within 10 seconds of removing the previous key.
The security message will turn off once the key has been programmed. It may not be apparent that
the security message went on due to how quickly the key is programmed.
5. Repeat Steps 1 through 4 if additional keys are to be programmed.
If you lose or damage a PASS-Key® III+ key, see your dealer/retailer or a locksmith who can service PASS-Key® III+ to have a new key made.
Do not leave the key or device that disarms or deactivates the theft deterrent system in the vehicle.

The 2007 manual is vague on how Passlock works.
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Old 11-15-2021, 05:37 AM   #10
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I have the Jimmie jammer lock protection with their steel buttons over the key entry port.

I have a fuel pump disable switch run by an RF proximity switch. Wave the key ring fob by a hidden sensor and the fuel pump can turn on if the engine is started within the next fifteen seconds. In a car jack situation I would turn off the engine give the guy the keys and run like hell.

With these theft prevention systems you need to plan what to do when things go south and you lose your keys, key fob doesn’t work or electric door locks won’t work.

Worst case for me was when I installed an Ultraguard POS engine monitor. It never worked correctly. When leaving the RV for an extended time I didn’t know that it was in a current draining mode. On return the engine battery was dead and remote locks would not work.

I had covered for all of that by having a remote with key in a side compartment with a small screw driver to pop the key entry cover off. I could then manually unlock the doors. Adding shore power to the coach activated the Echo charger 15 amp battery charger and by morning we were good to go.

Bottom line is plan for worst case. I do have a hidden key to get into the side compartment to get to the door key but I didn’t need that.

The RF switch has a manual work around in the onboard safe.

A theft prevention system is more likely to cause you problems than any thief.
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Old 11-15-2021, 11:55 AM   #11
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I have the Jimmie jammer lock protection with their steel buttons over the key entry port.

I have a fuel pump disable switch run by an RF proximity switch. Wave the key ring fob by a hidden sensor and the fuel pump can turn on if the engine is started within the next fifteen seconds. In a car jack situation I would turn off the engine give the guy the keys and run like hell.

With these theft prevention systems you need to plan what to do when things go south and you lose your keys, key fob doesn’t work or electric door locks won’t work.

Worst case for me was when I installed an Ultraguard POS engine monitor. It never worked correctly. When leaving the RV for an extended time I didn’t know that it was in a current draining mode. On return the engine battery was dead and remote locks would not work.

I had covered for all of that by having a remote with key in a side compartment with a small screw driver to pop the key entry cover off. I could then manually unlock the doors. Adding shore power to the coach activated the Echo charger 15 amp battery charger and by morning we were good to go.

Bottom line is plan for worst case. I do have a hidden key to get into the side compartment to get to the door key but I didn’t need that.

The RF switch has a manual work around in the onboard safe.

A theft prevention system is more likely to cause you problems than any thief.

Interesting fuel pump cutout, I hadn't heard of that before. I don't think I would get one because of possibility of failure compared to a switch, but still kink of slick. The goal of the switch is to find a place that is very hard to find so it takes someone more time to find than they are willing to risk. I put in the fuel pump switch before we had a safe, so if I were doing it all again, I think I might have drilled a hole in the bottom of the safe and put the switch inside it.



What kind of engine monitor did that? I know the Scangauge that we have will do it, but only after the battery has been disconnected and reconnected. It goes in to "connecting" mode forever, which sucks a lot of power over time, unless I turn on the key until it connects and then turn it back off. All good after that. Same happens if Scangauge is unplugged and plugged back in later like when you use a scanner or programmer on the van.


Totally agree that the cures of security can be worse than the disease a lot of the time. I have just recently programmed out the Passlock key system in my 96 Buick Roadmaster because too many people where posting that they were getting failures in them and getting stranded.
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Old 11-15-2021, 01:34 PM   #12
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My error, it was Ultragauge. The software was buggy like those $40 dashcams. I just couldn’t get it to work like it should. It just wouldn’t program properly and I finally realized it wasn’t me. Acted like the buttons were intermittent.

Better than scan gauge if it worked but it didn’t. I have scan gauge now.

RF switch no longer sold. I keep expecting it to fail but after 11 years still going.
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Old 11-23-2021, 03:33 PM   #13
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Totally agree that the cures of security can be worse than the disease a lot of the time. I have just recently programmed out the Passlock key system in my 96 Buick Roadmaster because too many people where posting that they were getting failures in them and getting stranded.
The security light just came on in my 2003 Express. Drove to a Chevy dealer before turning the engine off. The engine restarted but I stayed there (closed) for a few hours researching the problem on the net before continuing on.

Light on steady while driving means the system has disabled itself. Light blinking means the engine won’t start. I was able to erase it but it came back on. That tells me I’m in the market for a new $1000 BCM.

One way to disable the system is a NewRockies module at $300. What procedure did you use?
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:01 PM   #14
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The security light just came on in my 2003 Express. Drove to a Chevy dealer before turning the engine off. The engine restarted but I stayed there (closed) for a few hours researching the problem on the net before continuing on.

Light on steady while driving means the system has disabled itself. Light blinking means the engine won’t start. I was able to erase it but it came back on. That tells me I’m in the market for a new $1000 BCM.

One way to disable the system is a NewRockies module at $300. What procedure did you use?

I have a programming tuner, so I could just go in on the laptop and make a modification to the program and then flash the computers. It still has one part that I need to address that you can't disable that way, and that is fuel pump lock relay that I need to find and bypass so if the relay fails it won't lock out the pump. I will do that this winter.


I think you have a version of the same system as the Buick in 2003, but I will have to check. Do you have the key with resistor in it? Usually called some form of Passkey or such.
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:11 PM   #15
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I have a programming tuner, so I could just go in on the laptop and make a modification to the program and then flash the computers. It still has one part that I need to address that you can't disable that way, and that is fuel pump lock relay that I need to find and bypass so if the relay fails it won't lock out the pump. I will do that this winter.


I think you have a version of the same system as the Buick in 2003, but I will have to check. Do you have the key with resistor in it? Usually called some form of Passkey or such.

The New Rockies unit is the one that is used for vehicles like the Buick also and has pretty favorable reviews. These systems are extremely prone to failures as they age, most often the VATS module that is probably in the dash by steering column and also the fuel pump relay. I think the BCM sends the relay the activate signal so also could be that.


The New Rockies takes care of all the failure spots by getting rid of them, but of course you have to be OK to not have the security system.


It is also possible that a high performance shop could program most of it out but it would likely be about the same cost as the New Rockies unit without installation cost.
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:16 PM   #16
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The New Rockies unit is the one that is used for vehicles like the Buick also and has pretty favorable reviews. These systems are extremely prone to failures as they age, most often the VATS module that is probably in the dash by steering column and also the fuel pump relay. I think the BCM sends the relay the activate signal so also could be that.


The New Rockies takes care of all the failure spots by getting rid of them, but of course you have to be OK to not have the security system.


It is also possible that a high performance shop could program most of it out but it would likely be about the same cost as the New Rockies unit without installation cost.
Can you give a little primer and link for the Rockies unit. I am not familiar with these at all.
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:26 PM   #17
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The New Rockies unit is the one that is used for vehicles like the Buick also and has pretty favorable reviews. These systems are extremely prone to failures as they age, most often the VATS module that is probably in the dash by steering column and also the fuel pump relay. I think the BCM sends the relay the activate signal so also could be that.


The New Rockies takes care of all the failure spots by getting rid of them, but of course you have to be OK to not have the security system.


It is also possible that a high performance shop could program most of it out but it would likely be about the same cost as the New Rockies unit without installation cost.
No resistor key.

https://newrockies.com/passlock-bypass-2/
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:30 PM   #18
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Can you give a little primer and link for the Rockies unit. I am not familiar with these at all.

Here is a link to the New Rockies unit.


https://newrockies.com/


They claim easy DIY installation but I have no first hand knowledge of how much work it is.


It may just be a plug in module to replace the VATS module under the dash and also may contain a way to bypass the fuel pump cutoff if there is one.


I don't see a link on their site for install instructions or how it treats the fuel pump relay, though, so I would confirm those items. It does say one hour to install.
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:46 PM   #19
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Here is a link to the New Rockies unit.


https://newrockies.com/


They claim easy DIY installation but I have no first hand knowledge of how much work it is.


It may just be a plug in module to replace the VATS module under the dash and also may contain a way to bypass the fuel pump cutoff if there is one.


I don't see a link on their site for install instructions or how it treats the fuel pump relay, though, so I would confirm those items. It does say one hour to install.
Here is the link to the install on 2003-2007 Express.

https://support.newrockies.com/hc/en...Express-Savana

Requires some wire connections. I have a Viper security system that I think is tied into the BCM wires, so not sure how or if the Rockies unit would work.
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Old 11-23-2021, 04:55 PM   #20
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Here is the link to the install on 2003-2007 Express.

https://support.newrockies.com/hc/en...Express-Savana

Requires some wire connections. I have a Viper security system that I think is tied into the BCM wires, so not sure how or if the Rockies unit would work.
There is no way I would crimp connect such an install. Solder only. Looks like an afternoon project to me. Will try to get it sent along my route. At the moment I am still moving.

I have already bought one $1000 BCM. Don’t want to do a second.
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