How To Remote Start A Chevy Suburban

In recent years, all the major vehicle brands have become more concerned with making your ride as safe and convenient as possible. One of the more convenient features available may be the remote start. You may be wondering how to access this ability for your Chevy Suburban. We have thoroughly researched this topic and have found some answers for you.
There are currently three ways that you can access the remote start feature for your Chevrolet Suburban:
  • Remote start using the key fob
  • Chevrolet remote start app
  • Install an aftermarket remote start kit

Getting started remotely is easy! We'll break down each method for accessing the remote start function and what features come with the Chevy app. Keep reading as we discuss how to tell that you have the ability to remote start and how you can get it even if it didn't come factory installed on your vehicle.

Motor car Chevrolet Suburban in the city street, How To Remote Start A Chevy Suburban

Chevy Remote Start Instructions

Hand pressing the button on the remote to lock or unlock the car with the remote control.

Chevy came out with the remote start option on many models in 2003. By 2010 over 80 percent of the Suburbans had the feature factory installed. This feature will allow you to have your ride cool in the summer or warm in winter. The vehicle holds the same climate settings as when it was last turned off, including turning on heated seats.

Access Your Vehicle's Remote Settings

Before using the fob or an app to start your vehicle, you'll want to ensure that the remote start feature is enabled in your vehicle's infotainment menu. To access the remote options, go to your settings menu, then click on the vehicle menu.

From the vehicle menu, select the option that says "remote lock, unlock and start." Scroll to the remote start option and make sure it's enabled.

The following video showing how to enable remote window controls also shows how to navigate this menu. You can use this same menu to change other remote settings like the lock and unlock options.

Remote Start Using The Key Fob

Over the years, the remote start function has varied slightly. In 2021 the need to lock the doors first was removed. The new fob has the button located on the left side in the middle. Press the button twice to start the vehicle.

The engine will run 30  minutes and then turn off on its own if the correct key has not been detected in the ignition. Once inside the car, turn the key to the on position. If you press the brake, the engine may turn off in most models. To turn off the engine remotely before the 30 minutes pass, press and hold the remote start button.

How To Remote Start A 2020 Suburban

In the 2020 Suburban, if your fob has a circling arrow with no number, press the lock button and then press and hold the remote start button. You may need to press the lock button once and then the remote start button twice and hold on older key fobs. The parking lights will turn on to indicate the engine is running.

In 2020 and previous years' models, the engine will run for 15 minutes. There may be an option for the driver to extend the time. Consult your owner's manual for availability.

Chevrolet Remote Start App

OnStar has partnered with various manufacturers to bring a remote start option to Android and iPhone devices. To get started, download the myChevrolet app from the Apple Store or Google Play. Build your profile and add your vehicle by entering the vehicle information and VIN from outside of the window.

You'll need to pay a subscription to get a plan that includes the remote key fob from OnStar. The connected services, including the remote key fob, start at $24.99. The prices can and do change and the promotions that are offered, so be sure to check with Onstar and your dealer to see the current pricing.

Once subscribed, your vehicle's remote options will be available right from the app's home screen. Simply press the engine start icon to get your vehicle going.

Install An Aftermarket Remote Start Kit

If your Chevrolet did not come with a remote start option or the original one has stopped working, you may be able to install an aftermarket kit. Refer to any warranties or service plans you have before installing an aftermarket device, as doing so can void some agreements.

The manufacturers of this remote start kit recommend professional installation. It features two fobs and the wiring and receiver necessary to add the function to your vehicle.

Some vehicle models may need other parts that are not included. Consult the manufacturer or a professional accessories installer for specific recommendations for your situation.

Click here to see an example of a remote start kit on Amazon.

How Can I Tell If My Car Has Remote Start?

Emotional Chevrolet Thaoe at the sunrise. American Tipica SUV on the beach.

The easiest way to tell if your Chevy has the remote start option is to look at your key fob. The icon with the circling arrow indicates that a remote start is an option. If you purchased your car from a third party or private party and the keys do not include the original fob, you can look through the vehicle's settings on the infotainment.

Remote settings, if available, will also show on the vehicle screen under remote options. The owner's manual is another resource for seeing what your Suburban can do. If no owner's manual is in the vehicle, many manufacturers now make their owner's resources available online in an easy to access and searchable format.

What To Do If Your Suburban Won't Start Remotely

Motor car Chevrolet Suburban in the city street.

If you have tried to remote start your Chevrolet and it isn't working, you may need a new fob battery, it may need to be reprogrammed, or you may be too far from the vehicle. If the unlock and lock functions work, make sure the remote start feature is enabled in your vehicle's settings, as we discussed earlier.

For another perspective on what to do if your key fob stops working, read our article, "Car Key Fob Not Working, What Could Be Wrong and How to Fix It"

What To Do If The Fob Battery Is Dead

If you suspect your smart key has a dying or dead battery, you can still get into and start your Chevy Suburban. Open the fob case and use the emergency key to get into the vehicle.

Place the fob in the backup area or the pocket transmitter. This is usually in the front left cup holder, the front storage in the dash, or the middle console. Consult your owner's manual for the exact location. Once the fob is in place, your vehicle should start.

To get the remote start function to work again, you'll need to change the battery. If you have a 2020 or older Suburban fob, you should purchase a CR2032 replacement battery. 2021 and newer fobs now use the Cr2450 battery. Both are circular lithium cell batteries that can be purchased at any general merchandise store.

Click here to see these Cr2032 batteries on Amazon.

Click here to see these CR2450 batteries on Amazon.

How To Program A Chevrolet Fob

Your remote start may stop working due to the fob coming unpaired. This can happen for many reasons, such as interference or buttons being pressed too many times far from the vehicle.

To reprogram your Chevrolet key fob from 2020 or a previous year, you'll need a cut emergency key for the new fob. For the 2021 and newer, you'll need at least two other already working fobs.

Program A 2021 Key Fob

Place two working key fobs on the front seat passenger side. Place the fob that is not working in the left cup holder. Use the steering wheel's buttons to select "remote key relearn" from the menu. Press the start-stop button once the system indicates it is ready for the third key.  Test the key by using the lock and unlock functions.

For other models and years, consult your owner's manual for the location of your transmitter pocket in your vehicle and follow the instructions for removing and adding the key fob.

If you do not have the emergency key or working key fobs, you can contact a local locksmith or an authorized Chevrolet retailer to reprogram your key fob for you.

How Far Away Does The Remote Start Work?

Another reason your remote start feature is not working could be that you are simply too far away. Try moving closer or make sure that there is no radio or cell interference. Ideally, you should be within 500 to 1,000 feet of your car for the remote start option to work.

In Conclusion

 The eleventh generation Chevrolet Suburban

Now that you know how to remote start or add the remote start function to your Chevy Suburban, you'll be able to get on the road in comfort. Make sure your climate settings are at your preference the next time you turn off your Suburban, then use your remote start, and you'll open the door to the perfect temperature every time.

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