Skokie mechanic says device can stop car thefts — here's how

As Kia and Hyundai thefts continue to spike, one local auto shop is looking for ways to deter thieves.

In the last two weeks, Sigler's Auto Center on Lincoln Avenue in Skokie has started installing RFID push-button kits for customers.

"It just upgrades the system so it recognizes that there is a key for the vehicle that it needs in order for the vehicle to start," said Noam Sigler with Sigler’s Auto Center.

The measure is another option for those looking to protect their vehicles.

It's essentially an upgrade to the way you start your car, and if thieves break in, it helps ensure they won't be going anywhere.

"All we do is take the push-to-start system and install it on the cars that don’t already have it," said Sigler.


Some of Sigler’s customers have recently had their Kias and Hyundais stolen.

Police say TikTok videos showing people how to hotwire some older models are driving a huge surge in car thefts.

"You could pop this ignition out and start it with a screwdriver, or a plier, or a USB cord," said Sigler.

Sigler says when customers have been able to recover their stolen cars, many of them must deal with thousands of dollars in damage.

The anti-theft device can be installed in any car with a key ignition that doesn’t already have a built-in RFID system.

"This used to be a regular keyed car with an ignition in it and we actually put the RFID kit right there. I can press it and try and start the car as many times as I want. The whole car is shut down, the computers, the car will not start. Now if I want to start the car, all I gotta do, hit that, beeps twice, hit the brake, and the car starts no problem," said Sigler.

The RFID push-button kits cost $500 with installation at Sigler’s Auto Center; however, any mechanic should be able to install a device like this.

Another, less expensive option is to purchase a steering wheel lock.