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Toyota Sienna Remote Start: The Full Rundown

in Ownership
Silver Sienna

2012 Toyota Sienna by Kevauto — CC BY-SA 4.0

One of the great technology improvements to hit the auto industry in the last 10 years or so has been the availability of remote start on vehicles. While not every vehicle has remote start, more and more do each year and it is incredibly common as a standard feature. The Sienna’s remote start system to is similar to other makes and models, but what makes it different?.

The Basics: What Is Remote Start?

A remote start system is essentially an electronic key fob that you can easily clip to your key ring and as the name would suggest, starts your vehicle remotely. Remote starters can mimic the engine starting process that occurs when you signal a remote start.

The Sienna’s remote start does this without the need of placing and turning a physical key in the ignition. When the control module is hooked into your ignition switch and other starter mechanisms, this is conceivable. After the system has been installed, you may use the buttons to transmit signals to the control module.

Once your remote start control module is fitted, it uses unique radio frequencies to communicate with your specific vehicle and transmitter. These signals instruct the control module to start the engine, lock, unlock, at the basic level. The control module receiver and the remote transmitter are the two main components of the Sienna’s remote start system leaving everything at the control of a few point and clicks.


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The Benefits of Using the Sienna’s Remote Start System

Convenience at your fingertips

For more than one reason, remote start is all about convenience. Whether you want to modify the temperature of the cabin, want to give your engine a head start, or you just want to signal to the other passengers that it’s time to go, remote start can take care of it all. While some may value different types of convenience that is offers, being able to start car without having to leave your house or the grocery store checkout line are usually the first that come to mind. There are several other benefits that remote start systems create:

Resale value

A remote-start system may boost the resale value of the Sienna, especially when factoring in the use of the Toyota app that gives driver’s multiple ways to use the system. Factoring in the geography of where you live, having unpredictable weather could make it a necessity.


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While not necessarily something that comes to mind, remote start allows the Sienna to be managed virtually keeping it more safe and secure from theft. Of course this isn’t a sure thing, but vehicles with remote capabilities can typically be more secured from traditional key fobs.

Warm the cabin, engine, and motor oil

Probably the most common benefit that Sienna remote start offers is the ability to control the temperature. This can help defrost the windows and loosen up the ice and snow, warm the cabin itself, and warm up the engine to prevent winter stalling. This is great for keeping up routine maintenance and preventing multiple trips to the mechanic.

On the flip side, it’s also a great tool to cool it off for those hot summer days (especially if you go with a darker exterior and interior color). It might not get it down to your ideal air conditioning temperature, but getting a head start on the cooling system it will make the first few minutes a lot more comfortable.

Sienna’s Remote Start Specifics

Toyota introduced the Entune system in 2011 as a way to improve connecting applications and data services to your vehicle. To better connect with consumers’ knowledge of Entune, the center audio display stack is now represented by a simpler line-up that contains four major multimedia systems.

A full moving map, Integrated Navigation, and Entune App Suite are included in vehicles equipped with the EntuneTM Premium Audio and EntuneTM Premium JBL Audio systems. Adding in the capabilities from the Toyota App, and the Sienna’s remote capabilities are at the top of the minivan category. Being able to control everything from the key fob is one thing, but being able to also control it from your smart phone and watch take it to the next level.

Toyota is at the forefront of a technological revolution that is increasing what is possible for personal mobility as automobiles become more linked. With Toyota’s third-generation EntuneTM telematics platform, these advancements are more than just a fantasy of the future. EntuneTM 3.0, which debuted on the 2018 Camry, adds more features, functions, and connections. While there are many other makes and models that have remote start systems, the improvements to the mobile app make the Sienna extra consumer friendly for convenience and practicality.


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