Why Doesn’t My Heat Turn On With Remote Start: Troubleshooting Guide

Why Doesn't My Heat Turn On With Remote Start: Troubleshooting Guide

Clicking your remote start fob on frigid winter mornings can be incredibly frustrating, only to get into an ice-cold car. Even though the engine is running, you soon realize the heat isn’t kicking on as expected when the remote starts.

This common complaint stems from certain safety restrictions built into most remote car starters that prevent full climate control activation when started remotely. This troubleshooting guide explains why your car’s heat doesn’t turn on after using your remote start. Armed with this helpful information.

You can take steps and adjust settings in compatible vehicles to successfully get heat functioning when using your handy remote start fob. Let’s explore the main culprits behind no cabin heating with remote start and get your car ready for those cold winter mornings ahead.

Typical Reasons Why Vehicle Heat Doesn’t Activate With Remote Start

Safety Limitation

  • Most remote starters turn off climate control systems to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning if the vehicle is in a garage. 
  • It only allows the blower and defrost when remotely started.

Battery Preservation

  • Having the heat immediately blast when the remote starts will put extra strain on the battery. Which could lead to premature draining. 

Improper Installation

  • If not appropriately configured, the remote start may fail to send the proper signal to trigger the climate control module and heater core valve activation when started remotely.

Climate Control Settings

  • If you had turned off the heat before exiting the vehicle, it will remain off when the remote starts.


Vehicle Design Restriction

  • Some makes, like GM, intentionally prevent heat from getting on active mode when vehicles are remotely active as a safety precaution.

User Error

  • Sometimes the remote start sequence isn’t on the correct path order, or the fob buttons are incorrectly draw signs, leading to no heat.

Potential Solutions For Getting Your Vehicle’s Heat To Turn On With The Remote Start

  • Leave your climate control on auto or a heat setting when exiting the vehicle instead of turning it off. Which allows activation when remotely started.
  • A professional installer can tweak the remote start module settings to permit climate control engagement when remotely started. Which overrides built-in safety limits.
  • If parked in an area where there is no much space around, briefly start the vehicle manually to get the engine and heater core on the warming up stage, then turn off the engine and remotely activate it.
  • An aftermarket auxiliary cabin heater with its power source can be in active mode by remote start to heat the vehicle interior safely when stationary.
  • Install new batteries to the key fob if it is drained out.
  • Ensure you follow the proper steps in the owner’s manual to perform remote start and engage all settings correctly.

Frequently Asked Questions About Why Doesn’t My Heat Turn On With Remote Start

Q: Is it normal for the heat not to work when I remote start my car?

A: Many remote start systems intentionally turn off heat/AC when remotely started as a safety precaution or to prevent battery drain.

Q: Can I override the heat limitation with an aftermarket remote starter?

A: You may be able to adjust module settings to permit heat activation when remotely started. 

Q: Why does the defroster work but not the heat with my remote start?

A: Defrosters draw less power, so they are permitted. Also, they circulate the engine’s residual warmth through the climate control system.

Q: Can I manually idle the car before the remote starts to warm it up?

A: Yes, idling manually first to generate some initial heat can help, as long as the vehicle is parked outside, not in an enclosed space.

Q: Is there a way to override the safety limit if parked in a garage?

A: No, you should never remotely start a vehicle in an enclosed space due to exhaust/ventilation safety concerns.

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