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Auto Theft Prevention/Chrysler Alarm


QUESTION: I have a 2001 Chrysler Sebring and wondering why the alarm goes off every time one of the doors gets opened and wont stop until its reached the time limit. I've had this car for about 6 months and nothing like this has happened until recently. Just wondering how to reset the alarm system?

ANSWER: Hello,
Many people that have alarm issues and believe they are factory installed. From my 30 years of dealing with these issues have only to have been true less than 10% of the time.

If this is optional factory alarm in your vehicle, there is no reset the owner can do and they would be reliant on a dealer with a DRB III scan tool.

The last Chrysler that I dealt with purported factory alarm issues was last month. Guy swore up and down that it was a factory unit. His remote transmitter quit working and the horn, not an aftermarket siren kept going off. The headlights flash just like the factory style and not like aftermarket that when triggered the parking lights would flash, the headlights flashed.

He tested the battery in the remote transmitter. He then bought a new factory remote transmitter from the dealer for $100. (No returns). He tried programming it. Could not get it to program.

He then contacted me.
He would actually argue with me when I Tod him I did not believe this was a factory installed unit.I advised him to go under the dash and find the alarm module. He did and found that the unit and found that the alarm module was not that of a  Chrysler product, but some off brand garbage.

This was not factory installed, but dealer installed. He looked up the brand name off the module and found that parts were no longer available for it.
It took me over 2 hours to walk him through removing it from the vehicle and so by the time he was done, it cost him $350.00 (the remote transmitter he could not take back and my fee) to get the vehicle back on the road.

There is so much of this dealer installed junk out there leading people to believe the vehicle is equipped with a factory alarm. Worse yet, it doesn't matter if factory installed or dealer installed, most of the vehicles older than 2010, parts are no longer available!

The first thing you would have to establish is: are we dealing with a factory or after market alarm to answer your question. The transmitter should have the Chrysler symbol on the back of te case or DEI, or something. Snap a picture of the front of the transmitter and the back of the transmitter and send it to me.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: know for sure its a factory. nothing has been added to the car for an after market alarm.


OK, you have confused me. When you approach the vehicle, you press the button on the key fob and doors unlock correct?
Yet, when you open the unlocked door, the horn sounds and headlights flash correct until the end of the cycle. Correct?
Then the engine starts and you drive away?
Then after you lock the door with the fob and go back to the car, the same thing plays out?

Did you try this on another door instead of the driver's door?
In other words, unlock with key fob and open passenger door to find no problem?

The reason for the questions is because I am trying to eliminate a faulty door jamb pin switch.
Sometimes these switches fail that control the dome light when the door is opened.
Other than that though, I am afraid you would need to take to a dealer for diagnostics. I quit working on factory alarms for dealers under warranty. No one could decipher the diagnostic flow charts, much less get parts for the factoryvsystems because of the different vendors the car maker used.

Chrysler were less troublesome, because the factory DRB III scanner could diagnose problems easier with more accuracy. There is still the parts issue on a 14 year old vehicle.
Try my suggestion and get back with me. It might be a simple fix.


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Rob Painter, ASE, CFL, CFEI


My background in auto theft is extensive. I have been directly involved in the repair of over 10,000 theft recovered vehicles. I also do insurance investigation as to how a vehicle was last operated. My clients are insurance companies and attorneys. Was featured in the A & E auto theft documentary "Stealing Wheels" July 26, 2000. Has consulted with Daimler Chrysler steering column engineers to make their steering columns harder to defeat. Holds patent # 6,039,140 for 8 different variations to protect air bags from theft.


ROB PAINTER, ASE, CFL, CFEI Forensic Vehicle Component Analyst Diplomate, Board Certified Forensic Examiner ASE Certified Auto, Collision, Med/Hvy/Duty Truck Technician Certified Forensic Locksmith Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator Certified Vehicle Fire Investigator Certified Forensic Auto Theft Examiner Certified Auto Theft and Fraud Expert P.O. Box 190 Big Bend, WI 53103 Phone (414) 698-9696 Fax (262) 662-1352 As per federal court rules of evidence (702) (Daubert) my testimony has qualified me as: Auto Theft and Fraud Expert Forensic Vehicle Analyst Fire Origin and Cause Expert In the trial transcript of Holiday vs Progressive Insurance Company (March 12, 2002?Eugene, Oregon) with Holiday being my client-named ?the expert for experts.? BUSINESS EXPERIENCE Founder of the ?Forensic Institute of Auto Theft Analysis? (January 2002). This is the training school that will set the standards in determining the last operation of a reported stolen vehicle-burned or unburned. Much of my testing and procedures have been accepted as the guide for the forensic community. 1986 opened Auto Recovery Specialists Inc., providing exclusive repair of theft recovered and vandalized vehicles. The initial concept of the business was to return vehicles to their original shape before the theft, vandalism or fire. In 1987 bought the rights to the theft deterrent known as the ?Chicago Collar?. Duties include complete component replacement: dash, stereo system, interior, locks and coding, rebuilding steering columns, repairing and installing vehicle security system components (factory and after market), engine components, body repair, glass replacement, repair and service of air conditioning components, brake and suspension repair, and replacement, wiring harnesses etc. to return vehicle to pre-theft condition Complete reconstruction. During the past 17 years directly involved in the repair of over 10,000 theft-recovered and fire damaged Personally examined and rebuilt thousands of steering columns on both import and domestic vehicles Internationally acknowledged as expert in auto theft including court, consulting with insurance companies, attorneys and law enforcement. Consultant on steering columns, locks, stereo systems and vehicle security for Special Investigation Units for many large insurance carriers during the past eight years. Consulting services include but not limited to: How a vehicle was last operated (with or without keys in burned or unburned vehicles), Origin and Cause of vehicle fires, and vehicle defects. Provides services as a consultant and researcher to attorneys and insurance companies, and private industry throughout the US in cases related to vehicles. Has worked with crime prevention officers throughout the US establishing training programs designed to protect the public from becoming victims of auto theft. PATENT: 3/21/00 issued patent# 6,039,140 for 8 different variations of airbag anti-theft devices. PUBLICATIONS Currently authors articles and test reports on an ongoing basis for SIUs and the forensic/vehicle fire industry. Published author: (1,297 slide training course) Auto Theft/ Fraud Training Course) ?The Modern Forensic Approach to Auto Theft Investigation.? (January, 2001) Author: ?Variables to Be Considered In Vehicle Fire Investigation after Suppression.? (Insurance publication-November 2001) Author: ?Ford Magnesium Steering Columns and the Results to Ignition Components after a Fire?. Article for peer review from the fire and forensic community. (November 2001) Author: ?The Truth About GM VATS.? (Article) (November 2001) Author: ?The Truth About GM PASSLOCK TM? (Article) (November 2001) Author:? Auto Theft Investigation: Hollywood vs. Reality? (Article) (February 2001) For the John Cooke Fraud Report. Published author: (Manual) ?Forensic Vehicle Fire/ Arson and Auto Theft Investigation? (October 2000) Published author: (Article) ?Petty Claims? for the John Cooke Fraud Report (October, 1998) Published author (Manual) ?AUTO THEFT: LET THE TRUTH BE KNOWN!? (1998) (Previously distributed by Barnes & Nobel) Co-authored the investigation manual, ?Surreptitious Entry & Auto Theft & Burn & the Investigator.? (1999) Authored test questions on the subject of steering columns and vehicle security for CFL designation to be given by the International Association of Investigative Locksmiths. January, 2000 Published author: (Manual) ?Saginaw Steering Columns-What Has Not Been Told? Training manual for fire investigators. (March 2000) Published (Article) ?Beyond The Lock? (May 2000) Published Author: (Article) Fraud Defense Network-August, 2000 Edition-?Melting Steering Column Tests.? Published author: (Test Report) ?Burned Toyota Steering Column Testing to Determine How Last Operated?. Tool marks and procedures. (December 1999) Currently at the FBI Crime Lab in Washington DC and the US Army Crime Lab in Atlanta, GA for peer review. ACCOMPLISHMENTS Defeated the ?unstealable? Ford Securilock transponder system for a court case 10/10/00. They said it could not be done! Primary designer of a state of the art ?bait? car for a police department to catch car thieves. Worked with The National Highway Safety Transportation Administration and discovered a potential fire hazard on a vehicle and determined origin and cause of under hood fires on this type of vehicle. Featured as ?Auto Theft Expert? in the A & E auto theft documentary ?Stealing Wheels? that aired July 26, 2000. Contacted by Sears and Edelman Marketing to be a national spokesman for an anti theft device for vehicles. (November 1999) Invited to provide evaluation and consulting to steering column engineers at Daimler Chrysler Corporation in Auburn Hills, MI (10/19/99-10/22/99). The purpose of this project was to demonstrate how steering column locking mechanisms could be defeated without the use of a key and how to reinforce the columns against theft. Court Qualified as an Auto Theft Expert and my videos of defeating columns were also accepted by a Cleveland, Ohio Court in October 1999 as a valid piece of evidence. Contacted by Disney Touchstone Pictures for technical assistance in making the movie ?Gone in 60 Seconds? (March 1999) CONSULTANT FOR FOLLOWING ORGANIZATIONS ? Former contributor for The Insurance News Network (Auto theft and prevention) includes heading a forum for the public on how to protect their vehicles for 3+ years. ? Former editor and consultant for the public on matters involving auto theft and prevention 2000-2001 on the web at ? The Insurance Career Center (Auto theft and fraud). ? National Association of Investigative Specialists (Auto theft and fraud) ? Expert Find (Auto theft and fraud} TECHNICAL EXPERIENCE ? ASE (National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence) Certified in Auto: brakes, steering and suspension, engine repair, manual drive train and axles, air conditioning. Med/Heavy duty truck: gasoline engine repair, electrical/electronic components. Collision: elec.....

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