MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG) — A recent rash of car thefts in Memphis has many local drivers looking for ways to keep their rides safe.
Eric Dooley, with 901 Sounds automotive services, said more and more people are turning to kill switches for their vehicles, adding that they install about five or six a week.
“You got burglars stealing things out of your car, people trying to steal the car itself, people want to have some kind of protection,” he said.
Dooley said a basic kill switch ranges from $250 to $350 installed, and an alarm system can cost as little as $450 installed.
“What a kill switch does is, once you put your key in the ignition, it’s not going to start the vehicle,” he said. “There is a button hidden somewhere. Sometimes people hook it up to turning your blinkers on, you know, and then you can start the vehicle but the thieves won’t know that.”
The kill switch can be placed on the steering column, windshield wiper, or anyplace inside the car, unbeknownst to the thief. The other end connects to the engine. Another type of kill switch has a magnetic component.
Dooley showed News 2’s sister station, WREG, how it works on any vehicle — including a vintage 1936 Ford.
“When you can park your vehicle at, you know, restaurants or the movies and can go in and enjoy yourself and you don’t have to worry about your vehicle being stolen. You’ve got protections, peace of mind,” Dooley said.
While many vehicles come with alarms installed already, some people choose these after-market alarms as an “extra” security feature.