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Vivint Car Guard: The OBD-II Scanner You Need

Jan 23, 2020|

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a car is stolen in the United States every 40 seconds. Not only that, but it takes a savvy thief less than a minute to get into a car–even if it's locked.

For most of us, our cars are valuable and necessary parts of our daily lives. So how can we protect them from theft?

Vivint Car Guard to the rescue. Car Guard helps protect your vehicle with the same platform you rely on to keep your home safe–but that's just the beginning.

Take a look at how Car Guard helps you stay in the know when it comes to everything you need to know about your car.

How Vivint Car Guard works

Vivint Car Guard is an app-based service that monitors and helps you protect your vehicle that can do the following:

  • alerts you when your vehicle is bumped or moved
  • informs you when you’re low on fuel or in need of routine maintenance
  • provides information on your driving
  • diagnoses mechanical issues

So how exactly does it work?

Vivint Car Guard is a small device that plugs directly into your car’s OBD-II (Onboard Diagnostic II) port. All cars manufactured after 1996 have this port, which is usually located on the driver’s side of the vehicle under the dash. Car Guard scans your car’s internal computer for Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs), which help you diagnose potential mechanical issues if your check engine light goes on.

Vivint Car Guard also features a GPS system, which helps provide additional features such as vehicle tracking and location.

vivint car guard installation
Keep reading to learn how to protect your car with Vivint Car Guard.

Benefits of Vivint Car Guard

So what does the Vivint Car Guard do exactly? Take a look at some of the benefits it provides you, your family, and your car:

  • Control with the same app as your Vivint. If you already have a Vivint security system, your car and your vehicle are protected on the same platform and controlled by the same app—so you don’t have to switch back and forth between apps to check on your car or your security cameras, for example.
  • Install it yourself in minutes. Some people love to tinker with their cars. Others prefer to leave the mechanical stuff to the pros. Whichever group you fall into, you’ll appreciate how simple it is to install Vivint Car Guard. You don’t need to make an appointment with a mechanic or drop your car off for an entire day to get it installed—you can do it yourself in minutes (more on that later).
  • Receive alerts. When it comes to your car, timely information—whether someone's tampering with your car or the check engine light comes on—is crucial. With Car Guard, you'll receive alerts on your Vivint app that tell you things like whether your car is being moved, you're low on gas, or even if Car Guard itself is unplugged from the vehicle.
  • Know where your vehicle is at all times. Car Guard is equipped with a GPS tracker that helps you know where your car is at any given time. This provides peace of mind to worried parents or spouses as well as necessary information to emergency personnel if your car is in an accident or you become lost.
  • Stay up to date on maintenance. Most people have hectic schedules, and between work, running errands, and shuttling kids to and from their various activities, it can be difficult to remember routine maintenance on your car. However, when it comes to vehicles, taking the time to do this maintenance can save you time and money down the road by helping prevent more serious issues.
  • Integration with your Vivint. One of the most unique things about Car Guard is its ability to extend the benefits of your smart home's security features. In this way, it acts as a car security app. If your vehicle is tampered with while in your garage or driveway, Car Guard will activate your home's lighting or begin recording of your home's surveillance cameras. You can also use Car Guard to turn off your lights, lock your smart locks, and arm your security system as you leave your home.

With the many benefits Car Guard provides, it's a must-have for anyone who wants to ensure their car is safe and access important information, like location and driving statistics, from one single app.

What our OBD-II scanner tells you

Have you ever wanted to find out how fast on average your newly licensed teen driver is going? Now you can know these things and more, thanks to Vivint Car Guard.

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Vivint Car Guard provides a variety of information about your car, including:

Trip details and statistics

Car Guard can provide you with information about your vehicle’s trip details and statistics. This includes:

  • How far the car was driven in a trip
  • Average speed of trip
  • Date and time the trip was started
  • Driving habits, like rapid acceleration or harsh braking

The information provided by your Car Guard can help you in a wide variety of day-to-day situations, such as helping you calculate your mileage for business expenses. It’s also helpful for tracking you or a family member’s driving habits. For example, if you have a teen driver, you can ensure they are leaving for school on time or see what time they got to a friend’s house.

It can also be a good way to examine driving habits. If you notice a pattern of slamming on the brakes or flooring the gas pedal, you can make goals to drive less aggressively in order to save wear and tear on your car and improve your gas mileage.

Car location

Car Guard can also provide you with important information about where your vehicle is at any given time. Using the map located within the app, you can pinpoint your car’s location. This can help you determine if your car was towed or even provide valuable information to authorities if your car is stolen.

For parents of teen drivers, this feature is particularly helpful. Most parents have worried whether or not their teens made it home from or arrived at a specific location safely. With Car Guard, you can see for yourself where your teen’s car is at any given moment.


If you’ve ever had the check engine light come on in your car, you know the panic it can cause. Will it be an expensive fix, or is it just a loose wire somewhere? Like the acronym implies, an OBD-II scanner also provides on-board diagnostics. While a car code reader or OBD-II scanner won’t provide you with the same level of detail as a mechanic, it can give you a good idea of what might be wrong with a specific diagnostic code provided. From there, your mechanic can help diagnose the problem further.

Car Guard’s diagnostic tool also helps you monitor the health of your car. You’ll receive reminders on the app when routine maintenance is due as well as alerts that inform you of potential mechanical problems.

vivint car guard
Receive up-to-date diagnostic information about your car with Vivint Car Guard.

How to install your Vivint Car Guard OBD-II scanner

One of the benefits of Vivint Car Guard is that you can easily install it yourself. Since all cars after 1996 are required to be OBD-II compliant, if your car is a 1996 model or newer, the Vivint Car Guard can be installed. Here's how:

  1. Open the Vivint app and tap the Car Guard icon at the bottom. (If it isn’t at the bottom of the screen, you can find it in the left hand menu.)
  2. Follow the prompt in the app to install the SIM card into your Car Guard device. (Watch this video to see how it’s done.) Tap Next once you've installed the SIM card.
  3. Tap Scan Device to scan the 15-digit IMEI code on the back of your Car Guard device. You will need to allow the Vivint app to have access to your phone's camera. (If your camera has issues scanning the code, tap the manual option at the bottom of the screen and enter the code in the text field, then tap Submit Code.)
  4. Once the IMEI code has been entered, the app will register your Car Guard device.
  5. Tap Continue and follow the prompts to physically install your Car Guard device into your car. Click here to watch how it’s done.
  6. While the device is connecting, you can customize your vehicle’s profile on your Vivint app.
  7. After Card Guard connects, you'll need to allow the app to use your phone's location services to set your home address and use the geo-fence feature.
  8. Next, you'll have the option to allow and customize notifications as well as set user permissions.
  9. After you've selected the notifications and user permissions you want, the Car Guard setup is complete. You can also edit these later in Settings.

You can find detailed instructions here, including step-by-step screenshots on the app. If you have questions while installing the Vivint Car Guard, you can also contact our Smart Home Specialists for additional help.

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Home is everything, so protect it. In this free guide you’ll find the information you need to create a safer, more secure home with the added convenience and comfort that come with smart automation.

Protect your car with Vivint Car Guard

Your car is a big investment—one you depend on every day—so it makes sense that you want to protect it. With Vivint Car Guard, you can extend the benefits of your Vivint system to protect your car, too—including the priceless peace of mind.

Contact a Vivint Pro today at 800.646.1469 to find out how to start protecting your vehicle with Vivint Car Guard.

Get a free quote today.

A Vivint Smart Home Pro will contact you within 24 hours. Or skip the form and call now: 844.481.8630.

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*Offer Details

Qualifying system purchase requires minimum $599.99 expenditure on equipment after all discounts have been applied, professional installation, and execution of Vivint monitoring services agreement. Click here for monthly service plan prices. DIY system purchases and reactivations of previously-installed systems not eligible for offer. Offer not available in all states or provinces. Equipment purchase may be financed separately subject to an agreement with one of Vivint's third-party financing partners. Monthly $1.48 cellular network maintenance fee applies. Taxes and local permit fees may apply.

Third-Party Financing Options Available

Financing eligibility and terms subject to credit approval by one of Vivint's third-party financing partners. Qualified customers may finance equipment purchase at 0% APR for up to 60 months. Month-to-month service agreement available when equipment is purchased upfront.

Vivint Systems & Services

System supports up to six cameras subject to sufficient WiFi speeds. Without a Vivint services plan, product and system functionality is limited (including loss of remote connectivity). Speak to a Vivint representative at the phone number in this offer for complete equipment, services, and package details, including pricing and financing details. Products and services in Louisiana provided by Vivint Louisiana Commercial Certificate #58280. See Vivint license numbers here.