How to Turn Off a Car Alarm

Hit the panic button to turn off your alarm. Try to lock and unlock your doors and open the drivers door and trunk. Look at the owner’s manual if it won’t stop.
Written by Jessica Barrett
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Click the panic button on your key fob or lock and unlock your driver's side door to turn off a car alarm quickly.
Car alarms can be pretty useful, especially when someone is trying to break into your car. But there’s nothing worse than a car alarm that goes off for seemingly no reason at all. And when you can’t get it to stop? Well, cue the embarrassment.
Thankfully, there are actually quite a few different ways to shut off a car alarm.
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1. Hit the car alarm panic button

Accidentally hitting the panic button might have been what started your car alarm system in the first place—and pressing it again will usually stop the alarm.
On your key fob, look for a color-coded red button with a symbol representing a horn or alarm.

2. Lock and unlock the doors using your key fob

If hitting the panic button doesn’t work, locking and then unlocking your doors might. Most car alarms will shut off when the car doors are unlocked by the keys or appropriate key fob.
If this doesn’t work, check whether the battery in your key fob needs replacing.

3. Use your key to open the driver’s door

Many factory-installed alarms can be disabled simply by bringing the key within a certain proximity of the vehicle. If being nearby isn’t sufficient, try inserting the key into the driver’s side door, locking the car, and then unlocking it. This may be enough to stop the noise.

4. Open your trunk using your key fob

Pressing another button on your fob can work, too. And since almost all key fobs have a button to open the trunk, that’s a great one to try.
Pressing the trunk button (or holding it, if that’s what your car requires) is often enough to make the alarm stop sounding.

5. Read the owner’s manual

Your owner’s manual has lots of valuable information about your car in it—and we’re betting you haven’t read it cover to cover! Flip to the section about the car alarm you’ll likely find some tips on how to turn it off.

6. Remove the alarm fuse

Sometimes, it might take a more technical solution to stop the car alarm. The first one you can try is removing the alarm fuse.
Use your trusty vehicle owner’s manual to try locating the fuse that powers your factory car alarm—it’s usually in the engine bay, but it may be in the cabin of the car. Many fuse boxes have a diagram on the underside of the fuse box cover, though for some it’s in the manual.
Identify the fuse that powers the car alarm and pull the fuse using needle-nose pliers or plastic tweezers specifically designed for removing car fuses. If you have the correct fuse, the alarm should stop immediately.
If the alarm doesn’t stop, it’s not the right fuse. You’ll need to remove and replace fuses until you find the one that stops the car alarm.
The alarm should not start up again when you reinstall the fuse. If it does, you’ll need to call a mechanic as your system likely needs repair.
Identifying and removing the car alarm fuse should stop the alarm. If the alarm starts up again when you reinstall the fuse, you’ll want to have a professional take a look at the system.
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7. Disconnect the car battery

By disconnecting the battery, you’ll reset all the electrical systems in your car.
Wearing eye protection and gloves, locate the battery—which is usually under the hood—and loosen the clamp on the negative terminal. It’s typically black and identified with a minus symbol.
Fully remove the negative cable from the battery, wait about a minute (though some vehicles may require more wait time), and then reconnect it. Once you reconnect the battery, that should shut off the alarm. If it doesn’t, you’ll want to call a mechanic to have the system repaired.
Finally, start your car to make sure everything is functioning properly and there aren’t any other issues.
Reset the electrical systems in the car by disconnecting and then reconnecting the battery. The alarm should stay off. If it doesn’t, you may need to have the system repaired.

Frequently asked questions

Do after-market car alarms turn off the same way as factory-installed ones?

Possibly. The above tips are all written with factory-installed car alarms in mind, but they may work with after-market alarms, too.
If you’ve tried everything and your alarm still won’t stop sounding, your best bet is to consult with a
mechanic
who can inspect the electrical system for issues.

Do car alarms stop on their own?

Yes, car alarms will eventually stop on their own. Usually, they will stop when the vehicle's battery runs out.
Some alarms are designed to stop after a certain amount of time, but most will keep going until the alarm is manually shut off or the battery dies. If the owner doesn't shut off their alarm manually, a car alarm could potentially go off for hours.
We've all accidentally set off our car alarm and while it can be embarrassing you can take comfort in knowing your car is secure not just with a working alarm but also by having the best
car insurance
. You can compare 50+ top insurers with the
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