There are a number of immobilization devices on the market that claim to prevent automotive theft. These work in a variety of ways, but are unable to provide the unbeaten security and reliability of the Ravelco Anti-Theft device. They often times take a high-tech approach that only introduces holes in security or worse, unreliable operation, leaving you stranded.

FLAT PLUG DEVICES – Effectiveness and reliability are major issues with flat-plug devices. Users have experienced significant problems with their cars not starting as the connector pins are very thin, and wear out quickly. These devices are all mounted below the dash. Car thieves can overcome these devices in seconds by using a jumper wire or even with an “old fashioned” hat pin, simply by sticking it through one wire and into the other. They typically have a maximum of six different combinations and most car dealers use the same combination on every vehicle they sell. These systems are cheap and take about 10 minutes to install, which enables dealers to install them on every vehicle in stock and try to sell their vehicles at a higher price.

THE CLUB – Widely advertised, this device is probably the best known anti-theft product on the market today. But as demonstrated on CBS’ American Journal (hyperlink to source?), a car thief using a hacksaw can cut through the vehicle’s steering wheel and remove The Club in just 22 seconds. The program also demonstrated how a thief can spray Freon into the locking mechanism of The Club, hit the now-frozen lock with a hammer, and shatter it like glass, enabling him to remove The Club. In addition, there is a device called the Club Buster, which will break The Club and AutoLock devices in 60 seconds. The Club Buster is intended for locksmiths, tow truck operators, and auto repossession professionals, but any thief can buy it over the Internet for about $93.

KEYPAD SYSTEMS – These systems connect to the starter wire under the dash. They can be defeated in seconds by locating the “brain box” of the keypad (which usually is wire-tied or taped to the steering column under the dash) and then touching the two contacts with a jumper wire.

REMOTE STARTER KILLS – Many car dealers promote this type of device because it is easy to install and the dealer can charge up to $499 for it. Customers might think that they are paying top dollar for top-of-the-line security, but this device is easy to defeat. It comes with a remote control and a special re-worked starter relay that replaces the factory starter relay in your vehicle’s power distribution box. The power distribution box is easy to access directly under the hood of your vehicle. All you have to do is to lift the cover of the box, pull out the relay, replace it with any factory relay (cost: $2) and you can drive away the vehicle. The remote control on this device can be scanned and bypassed with a scanner box in seconds.