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Stopping Obnoxious Keyless Entry, BEEPs and Chirps

Annual car inspections should require that the keyless entry and alarm system is set for silent entry/exit. We have too much noise pollution without thoughtless car owners cars beeping or chirping every time they lock or unlock.

Why are these noise makers even a manufacturer supplied option? This would make a great class-action suit against all of the manufacturers on behalf of sleep deprived citizens.

My car can be set to silent entry, and I suspect most others can too. With silent entry, you can actually hear the solenoids engage, but with the beeps and chirps, all you know is that the noise maker was activated (at least temporarily).


Being a city dweller, I am used to the noise of these things, which really pale in comparison to the sounds of sirens form police and other emergency vehicles, garbage trucks, snow plows, drunk frat boys, cars and motorcycles with custom exhaust systems, etc. The more I think about it, the more I realize how little I care about my neighbor’s keyless entry system.

If you are so sensitive to noise that the noise of a keyless entry system wakes you from your sleep, perhaps it is time to move to a quieter location. Most of us have much louder annoyances to deal with. If your neighbor’s keyless entry system is the loudest noise in your neighborhood, consider yourself lucky.

I agree with the OP that most vehicles can have their keyless entry systems set to only flash the lights, rather than beeping the horn or sounding an electronic chirp for confirmation.

However, getting those thoughtless car owners to simply play with their remote key fobs for a few moments in order to permanently silence those noises also requires that they open their glove compartment, take out the Owner’s Manual, and actually read at least a few paragraphs in this booklet that is written on an 8th grade reading level. Surely that is too much to ask!

All sarcasm aside, we are constantly bombarded on this site with questions that could easily be answered if the car owner would simply utilize the booklet(s) provided by the vehicle’s manufacturer.

These questions range from the usual, “How often should I change my oil?”, to “How do I lower the third row seats in my Conquistador Extremo 5000 SUV?”, to “Do I really need to replace all 4 tires at the same time on my AWD vehicle?” to “When should I change the timing belt on my 15 year old car?”, to…and this one is my absolute favorite…“This little warning message keeps popping up on my dashboard that says ‘low oil pressure–stop engine immediately’ What should I do?”.

If these people can’t be bothered to learn things that materially affect the operation of their vehicle, I don’t think that it is realistic to expect that they will have any interest in lowering the level of noise pollution in their neighborhood.

Is this level of unnecessary ignorance good? No.
Is this whole situation sad? Yup!

I think that you have to accept that a HUGE percentage of the population is of the, “All I know is that I put gas in it and it goes” school of thought.

While I empathize with you, I have to point out that you are fighting a losing battle, unfortunately.

My FORD is silent by default,if you want a confirmation chirp you must press again,so,perhaps these people have by choice set their car to chirp on the first push of the button.

I have my car set for silent lock an unlock. It blinks the corner marker lights but does not beep or sound the horn. I don’t know why we need all this extra noise, and I can’t count the number of times I’ve been startled walking past a car as it beeps or sounds the horn to lock or unlock.

Obnoxious, indeed.

Thanks for the input, so far. There should be a special place in Hell for the makers of all of these beep, honk, chirp-chirp, keyless entry systems, right next to the place that I am sure is already there for the designers of car alarms.

What do you readers think of having the keyless entry made a state inspection item to ensure that they are set to the silent mode?

What do you think of a class action against the manufacturers for the stress they cause with all of this extra, noise pollution?

Do any of you know anyone who leaps on the hood of their car and announces through a bull horn, “Yo! I just locked my car, ya’ll!”?

If so, plesae submit a photo to Car Talk!

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While this situation can be annoying, I seriously doubt that any state is going to enact legislation to put this item on the agenda for state motor vehicle inspections. With all of the major fiscal and social issues facing state legislators nowadays, this is not likely to be viewed as a priority.

As to a Class Action lawsuit, why not contact a large law firm regarding this issue? Once the laughter from the law firm personnel dies down, you may decide to make other issues your priority.

As I stated previously, you are likely fighting a losing battle.


There is at least one good reason for leaving the audible sound activated. Some people use it to find their car in a crowded parking lot when they have forgotten where they parked.

This “special place in hell” statement tells me this is just a pet peeve and you really should put in proper perspective. If there is a special place in hell for such a minor misdeed as this, I think we will all end up in hell for all of the slightly annoying things we do that happen to be somebody else’s pet peeve.

The problem is that you need to say the serenity prayer a few times and get a grip:

God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.


I don’t mind the quiet beeps or chirps that some cars give. It when the car actually honks the horn to tell you that you just locked your car that’s annoying. Even more annoying is when you try to turn off that feature through the instructions in the manual, and nothing changes.

On my compass, I was able to program the car through the key fob to unluck all doors on one press of the button, plus another feature, just the way the manual said. But turning that honk off, no dice. I cringed every time I come home late at night.

Does anybody think the car alarm craze has died down? I seem to think so,you don’t hear so many any more. I have a friend who is a installer and he says business is just as good as ever. Pehaps better tech. means less false alarms.

When you come home late at night, why not lock the car with the power lock control button instead of the key fob? Won’t the alarm automatically turn itself on without honking the horn if you do this?

I have never heard of one of these whooping honking and beeping alarms actually going off due to an actual break-in. I recall one instance while shopping in Fall River, Mass. when a late model Ford was being towed from the parking lot, with the horn/alarm blazing away. I was the only one who stopped to take a look. Nobody cared if the car was being stolen, or legitimately towed. They just were glad that the damned noise maker was being taken away.

As for the keyless entry nonsense, if you live in an isolated area, or just are accustomed to a cacophony of noise, you are likely too far gone to even notice, anyway. However, if you are someone, like heath care providers, firemen and policemen who work at all hours of the night, and who live in densely populated condos or apartments, all of those beeps, honks and chirp-chirps can severely disrupt your REM sleep.

You don’t want that EMT who comes to rescue you to be way off his game due to being awakened every fifteen minutes by his eight hundred neighbors who all chirp and beep their way in an out of cars all throughout what should be his sleep cycle.

This is no “pet peeve” as one cynic tried to categorize the problem. There has been significant amounts of research on the effects of repetitive urban noise, including these alarms`and keyless entry systems. Noise pollution does real harm and can lead to increased aggression and physical illness.

As for joining a class action against the manufacturers of these noise makers: In a country where every town has hundreds of hungry lawyers, it will be a snap to find a substantial firm willing to take this on as a public service project.

As for manufacturers, they can sit on their hands or try to obfuscate the issue, but the public is already demanding action be taken. Either the EPA, USDOT, OSHA or the Consumer Product Safety Commission will weigh-in on this. Manufacturers can look forward to lots of lawsuits, fines and increased regulation; or they can take preemptive action and make these systems, silent entry and exit. They can also make the car security system dial your cell phone or send you a text; there is no need to honk, beep or chirp, since most citizens will assume the noise to be yet another false alarm. The auto alarm makers are facing a classic, “Boy who cried wolf” problem. Their crappy systems have emanated so many false alarms, nobody even considers the noise to be an actual break-in, anymore.

The Auto Industry (what is left of it, anyway) does not want to pull another Corvair, on this issue. The only response is to, just face the problem and fix it.

My Marine DI would call that a quitter’s prayer. Do you work for GM?

Well, yes. But that would require me remembering to do so before walking away from the car and habitually reaching for the fob…

I sincerely wish you good luck in your quest for justice on this issue.
Now, I will return to Don Quixote, which you have inspired me to read again.


Man, you are strung way too tight if you think that prayer is about quitting. It is about being wise and knowing when to say when. I see the message is lost on you, so I will leave it at that.

Thank you for painting a more complete portrait of yourself. I see you are not used to taking “no” for an answer. However, no, I don’t work for GM. Thanks for asking.

They make devices that create “white noise,” which create a steady, unvarying, unobtrusive sound, like the sound of rain, used to mask unwanted sounds. These devices are great for light sleeping urban dwellers. Perhaps using one could help you. You could also look into soundproofing technology.

My late uncle was a police officer who worked night shifts. Soundproofing his bed room and using a white noise machine helped him get all the deep REM sleep he needed.

So you are a retired Marine? Thanks for serving. Maybe the lingering effects of your training are part of the problem. Perhaps some VA counseling can help you adjust to civilian life.

There are solutions available to people who have issues with noise, but many of those solutions require you to take responsibility for resolving them. You can keep blaming other people for your problems, but I think it would be wise to seek other solutions in the meantime.

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Don’t worry. There are Millions of citizens who are not impotent, like VDC. The rest of us will carry this fight to our local legislatures and to Congress to get noise control included in future legislation.

Noise pollution does real damage. We owe it to our future generations to leave them with a better, more healthy environment.

Take the time to write about this and related noise pollution issues to your elected representatives.

it will be a snap to find a substantial firm willing to take this on as a public service project.

Can’t wait to hear back which top notch firm you convinced to take this on pro-bono.

And good luck in your 10 man march on Washington.

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I have a good one for you. My neighbor’s son likes to find the keys, hit the panic button and hide the keys. He loves to watch his parents scramble to shut the car up.

I cannot believe some of these replies! Having wasted my time reading the manual of my wife’s car, to find there is no mention of the alarm system! … On this ridiculous car (Renault Logan) I discovered that there is even an alarm that will sound if you travel over 120 km/h (something like 75 mph), not that you find any road good enough to do that, in Colombia! :open_mouth:
But nothing to turn off the alarm’s change of state LOUD beeps.

In Australia I have a Mercedes Benz, which always has only flashed lights to indicate locking or unlocking the doors, but in Colombia, I initially thought it was just those horrible Chevrolet things that continually annoy people throughout the night with their alarm sounds, and the all too frequent accidental tripping of the alarm itself. (The same in Mexico City, too. I think Latin Americans just love noise! Maybe “whitey” is really from Mexico, as he thinks it is completely trivial to be concerned about obnoxious noises?)

So, here it is in the middle of the night, I’m trying to find a solution, so I open the glove box to read the manual, which had no relevant information at all, and on closing it, the bloody alarm goes off! (And by “off”, I don’t mean turns off, I mean it sounds, …). The alarm turns on even when you are in the car, and I didn’t want to wake everyone by unlocking the car to deactivate the alarm, again. … Oh, and yes, we moved to a relatively quiet place, in the country, on a mountain, but that only makes the sounding of stupid car alarms even worse!
At least we have spectacular and beautiful views, but for serenity I will go back to the Australian countryside.

Anyway, does anyone have any information about how to ‘really’ shut these blasted unlock and lock beeps?