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Code Alarm CA6553

2-way car security and remote start system

1 Review | 2 questions - 4 answers

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Item # 220CA6553

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Our take on the Code Alarm CA6553

Code Alarm's CA6553 system gives you a remote engine starter, so you can always get into a warm, de-iced car in winter and a cool, air-conditioned car in summer. The CA6553 also gives you the security you want to protect your vehicle and its contents, and it will work with most diesel, hybrid, and fuel-injected vehicles with automatic transmissions.

We offer vehicle-specific interfaces that you'll need to complete your remote start installation. Please identify your vehicle as we review every order to make sure you've got everything you need.

Add a remote start and security system

Code Alarm's CA6553 system gives you a remote engine starter, so you can always get into a warm, de-iced car in winter and a cool, air-conditioned car in summer. The CA6553 also gives you the security you want to protect your vehicle and its contents, and it will work with most diesel, hybrid, and fuel-injected vehicles with automatic transmissions.

Great features, powerful protection

The CA6553 security system protects your car and its contents with an impact sensor and gives you the convenience of remote door locking. The dual-stage shock sensor has the siren chirp a warning with the first impact, then go off full blast if the intrusion continues. The system includes:

  • a dual-stage magnetic shock sensor that detects unauthorized tampering;
  • a powerful 125 dB weatherproof siren;
  • Real Panic Sound randomizes siren/horn warnings to attract more attention
  • one 2-way LCD remote control;
  • one 1-way 4-button remote control;
  • remote door lock and unlock;
  • a starter interrupt feature which shuts down ignition during unauthorized use;
  • 5 auxiliary channels;
  • DBI port for direct interface connection

2-way remote communicates with your car

 The system's 2-way remote boasts an LCD screen for instant feedback on the status of your car, even when it's out of sight. You and your vehicle will be on time every day, thanks to the system's 24-hour start timer mode, an alarm clock mode, and a parking meter countdown timer.

More features

Carjacking protection and automatic rearming provide some additional reassurance. The CA6553 will also unlock and lock your car, and pop open the trunk, if you want. It features an override switch for valet parking, while the "silent choice" feature allows you to arm and disarm your car alarm without disturbing your neighbor. You can expand your remote system even more by adding up to five optional actuators to the auxiliary outputs, to turn on seat heaters, the rear defroster, the dome light, and dash lights, for example. A car-finding feature will sound your horn at low volume so you can find your car quickly in a crowded parking lot, and a Real Panic Sound horn output is a big help in emergencies.

Important Note:
We offer an interface that can save you lots of time when you install a Code Alarm system in most vehicles. For a limited time, you can save $100 on the interface if purchased with this Code Alarm system. Chat or call us at 1-888-955-6000 to see if the interface will work with your vehicle.

Product Highlights:

  • remote start and security system
  • one 5-button 2-way LCD remote (range: up to 1500 feet)
  • one 4-button 1-way remote (range: up to 1500 feet)
  • works with fuel injected, diesel, and hybrid vehicles with automatic transmissions
  • remote door lock/unlock and trunk release
  • glass mount antenna with blue LED and valet switch
Security features
  • dual-stage impact sensor — chirps when the vehicle's bumped and sets off the alarm with further violations
  • 125 dB weatherproof siren
  • starter interrupt
  • anti-carjacking protection
  • silent arm and disarm
  • onboard relay for flashing parking lights
  • Panic Mode features Real Panic Sound randomized horn/siren warnings to attract more attention
Other features:
  • Progressive Car Finder
  • 24 Hour Time Start and Alarm Clock Modes
  • Parking Meter Countdown Timer
  • user programmable run time
  • five auxiliary outputs for adding functions
  • DBI port for vehicle interface connection
  • warranty: limited lifetime
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

very lacking of pictures to show what button they are mention in programing the remote

Charles L, Vicksburg, MS

What's in the Box:

  • CA-6553 control module
  • CATX-MLC 5-button 2-way LCD remote transmitter
  • CR2450 battery (3V) for LCD remote
  • CATX-MT 4-button 1-way remote transmitter (with 2 CR2016 batteries installed)
  • Key ring
  • 125dB Weatherproof siren with 12" power/ground wires
  • Glass-mount antenna with dual-sided adhesive pad (part # 41800281)
  • Dual-stage shock sensor (part # 47000230)
  • 2' 4-pin Shock Sensor harness (part # 41200220)
  • 2.5' 8-Pin Input Harness (part # 10314241)
  • 3' 4-Pin Main Harness with in-line 15A ATO fuse (part # 41201451)
  • 20" 6-Pin Starter Harness with in-line 20A and 30A ATO fuses (part # 41201101)
  • 3' 6-Pin Output harness (part # 10327141)
  • 3' 4-Pin Alternate Output Harness (part # 41201021)
  • 20" 4-pin Aux Output harness (part # 41201840)
  • 3' 3-Pin (2-wire) Lock Output Harness (part # 10314231)
  • SPDT Relay (for starter interrupt) with attached 18" 4-wire harness (part # 10244053)
  • 8' 5-Pin Antenna Ribbon Cable (part # 41201920)
  • Spring-loaded pin switch (with three hex nuts and an external-tooth lock washer)
  • Owner's Guide
  • Installation Guide
  • Limited Warranty/Consumer Registration Card
  • Product registration card
  • Maximum Insurance Discount Authorization card
  • Warning sticker
  • Code-Alarm window decal

Code Alarm CA6553 Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(1 Review)

CodeAlarm CA6553

Charles L from Vicksburg, MS on 9/20/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

very lacking of pictures to show what button they are mention in programing the remote

Pros: If I can figure out all the options I am sure it is an great system

Cons: cannot figure out the buttons they are talking about, and do not see on my remote all the items mention


Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Lines of Defense
Alarm Yes
Pager Warning LCD remote
Scan-resistant Remote Codes No
Battery Backup No
Trigger Methods
Glass Break Sensor Optional 220CAGBS
Accessory Pins 1
Current Sensing No
Arming Method Passive/Active
Included Remotes 2
Number of Remote Buttons 5-button + 4-button
Number of Remote Functions 10
Two-way Remote 1 Remote
Smartphone Integration Optional
Factory Security Integration Optional
Number of Cars 2
Hood/Trunk Release Yes
Remote Door Locks Yes
Remote Start Yes
Manual Transmission Compatible Yes
Valet Switch Yes
Manual Override Yes
Delayed Operations
Entrance No
Exit/Last Door Yes
Reset/Trigger No
Rearm/Disarm Yes
Number of Zones 4
Parts Warranty Limited Lifetime
Labor Warranty Limited Lifetime

Product Research

Alarm Features
Remote Start Features

Alarm Features

Overview: The Code-Alarm CA6553 is a part of the Professional Series line. It has a remote start for cooling down or warming up your vehicle before you drive (for automatic transmission vehicles only), a keyless entry system to remotely lock or unlock your doors, and a security system to protect your vehicle and its contents. It comes with two remotes.

Remotes: The CA6553 comes with one 2-way, 5-button remote transmitter (CATX-MLC) with a 1.5" LCD screen, and one 1-way, 4-button remote transmitter (CATX-MT). Both remotes operate at 433 MHz to give you excellent range (approximately 1000 feet). Additional remotes (up to a total of 4) can be programmed to operate the alarm/remote start. Details of the remotes include:

  • CATX-MLC 2-way LCD Remote: The illuminated LCD remote receives feedback from the alarm so you can check the status of your vehicle. Numerous icons indicate at a glance if the doors are locked or unlocked, the current alarm mode, and which triggers have set off the alarm. Additional convenience features include an alarm clock and a parking meter timer. The remote can also operate a second alarm system once the remote has "learned" all of the second system's codes. The LCD remote has 5 buttons for lock, unlock, vehicle locator/panic mode, remote start, and function. Requires one CR2450 battery (included).
  • CATX-MT 1-way Remote: The 1-way remote contains four buttons for lock, unlock, vehicle locator/panic mode, and remote start. Requires two CR2016 batteries (installed).

Glass-Mount Antenna: The included glass-mount antenna includes two LEDs and the valet switch built in. Typically, the antenna is mounted high on your windshield near the rear-view mirror, using the provided dual-sided adhesive pad. This location gives you optimal range for the remotes, high visibility for the status LEDs, and a convenient location for the valet switch/programming button.

Data Bus Interface (DBI) Port: The alarm's control module has a 4-pin Data Bus Interface (DBI) port, which allows you to plug in an optional FlashLogic Transponder/Door Lock/Remote Start Interface (item # 220FLCAN) directly into the system. These modules, compatible with many late model vehicles, can save considerable installation time by eliminating the need to find and splice various wires within the vehicle. Typical connections that are made with the interfaces include tachometer, brake, door locks, and ignition/starter.

Note: Even with the interface, there will be some required splicing into your vehicle's factory wiring.

125dB Siren: The CA6553 includes a siren which emits a single tone pattern at 125dB, which is equal to the threshold of pain in humans. Its compact size (2-3/4" footprint diameter, 3-3/8" horn diameter) gives you additional mounting flexibility. The weatherproof design keeps the siren operating flawlessly in the harsh, under hood environment.

Silent Choice: The Silent Choice feature allows you to control the arm/disarm chirps from the remote control. The system default is with Silent Choice enabled, which requires a second press of the "lock" button to activate an audible arming response from the vehicle.

Active/Passive Operation: The system can be programmed for passive or active arming and door locking. Active arming/locking requires the use of the remote to arm the system or to lock the doors. When programmed for passive operation, the doors lock and the system is armed automatically 1 minute after the last door is closed.

Delayed Arming: For vehicles with a delayed dome light, the system can be programmed to delay arming up to 60 seconds after the lock button is pressed. Once programmed, the system will learn the timing of the dome light delay and add 2 seconds before arming.

Door Locks/Trunk Release: The alarm can lock and unlock the vehicle's doors using the remotes. The alarm can be wired to work with positive or negative switching locks, reverse polarity, and positive or negative multiplexed door locks. In addition to unlocking and locking the doors, the system can also open the vehicle's trunk or hatch.

Note: When interfacing with any other type of factory door lock system besides negative switching locks, or when using aftermarket door lock actuators, two SPDT relays (such as 120E5000) will be needed. If your vehicle requires the use of a Data Integration module that controls your factory door locks, no extra parts besides the Data Integration module will be required.

Two-stage Door Unlock: The alarm's door lock function can be set to operate in two stages. The driver's door only is unlocked with one press of the unlock button. A second press of the button within 3 seconds will unlock the remaining doors.

Shock Sensor: The included dual-stage magnetic shock sensor will respond with a warning chirp when there is a light impact to the vehicle. Harder impacts will fully trigger the alarm. You can bypass the shock sensor for one arm cycle, and will default back to normal operation the next time the system is armed. The shock sensor's sensitivity can be adjusted if needed.

Starter Interrupt Output: When the alarm is triggered, the system will disable the vehicle by interrupting the circuit to the starter via a relay. As long as the system is in alarm mode, the vehicle's engine cannot be started, preventing a possible theft. The relay needed to install this feature is included with the alarm.

Personal Protection Alarm Mode: The alarm's Personal Protection or Panic Mode will activate an alert when you press and hold the panic button continually for three seconds. The transmitter's normal functions are suspended during panic mode, except to allow you to lock or unlock the doors. You can manually shut off the alarm with the transmitter, or the system will automatically stop after 30 seconds.

Real Panic Sound (RPS): During panic and alarm trigger modes, the horn and/or siren will sound in a randomized pattern. This draws more attention to the vehicle that alarms without this feature.

Hidden Alarm Function: The Hidden Alarm function allows you to arm the system with the siren and horn output silenced if the system is triggered. The LCD remote will still indicate if the alarm is triggered during the Hidden Alarm function.

Progressive Car Find: To assist you in locating your vehicle in a crowded parking lot, the Progressive Car Find feature will sound the alarm and/or honk the horn five times at low volume. If you have not located the vehicle, the system will repeat the action at increasingly higher volumes (low, medium, high) with each press of the button.

Carjack Mode: The CA6553 features a Carjack mode, which must be turned on in system programming. The Carjack mode provides a delayed and progressive alarm response, starting with siren chirping, to full alarm with flashing parking lights, to starter kill activation, rendering the vehicle disabled.

Parking Meter Countdown: The Parking Meter Countdown feature can help you keep track of the amount of time left on your parking meter. You can set the timer to one of six preset times, and the remote will alert you when the time has expired.

5 Auxiliary Outputs: The alarm features 5 auxiliary outputs to operate optional accessories such as power windows or sunroof, or a powered sliding door. These 500mA output is capable of driving relays, and can be programmed to operate in various timing configurations (i.e. push and hold, latched, latched until ignition on, etc.). You can access Aux 1 by pressing 2 buttons on the remote. For the additional Aux 2 through Aux 5 outputs, you will need to enter an Aux Mode, which will "shift" the transmitter functions from their standard operations to control the Aux outputs. Once you have entered Aux Mode, outputs Aux 2 through Aux 5 can be activated by pressing and holding one of the remote buttons for 3 seconds.

Remote Start Features

Operation: The Code-Alarm CA6553 can remotely start your vehicle using the remote transmitters. When activated, the system will sound, the parking lights will flash once, and the system will confirm that the vehicle is safe to start. If all safety parameters are correct, the vehicle will start within 5 seconds. Once started, the parking lights will turn on as a visual indication that the vehicle has started and is running. If the vehicle stalls or fails to start, the system will pause 5 seconds, then try two more times to start the vehicle. If the vehicle does not start after the third attempt, the starting process will be aborted. Before operating the vehicle, you will need to insert the key, turn to the On position, and depress the brake to disengage the starter procedure.

Note: The CA6553's remote start feature is for automatic transmissions only!

Single/Double Press: The system can be configured that the remote start is activated with either a single press of the transmitter button or with two presses of the button.

Special Vehicle Accommodations: The remote start can be configured to accommodate a variety of vehicle engine types. You can program the remote start for a gasoline engine, with no delay for the starter output wire, or program the unit for a diesel engine with a delay in the starter output wire of 10, 15, 20, or 40 seconds after the ignition has been powered up by the remote start. This delay is required in order for the diesel engine's glow plugs to become ready to start the engine. The system also features a special compatibility for a hybrid vehicle.

Quick Stop: This feature allows you to keep the engine running and the vehicle secure while you make a short stop, taking the keys with you.

Interval Starting: The CA6553 has the ability to start the vehicle every 2 or 3 hours over a 48-hour period. This is an especially useful feature in cold climates. You can select a two- or three-hour interval, as well as the run times in the programming setup. During this period, you can shut off the engine at any time using the remote transmitter.

Temperature Start Mode: The CA6553 Remote Start System has the ability to start the vehicle if the temperature drops below a preset temperature threshold. Once activated, the system will only start the vehicle one time based on the temperature setting, and will be cancelled if the vehicle is started with the key or remote started by the transmitter. The temperature is read by the alarm module, which is typically mounted below the dashboard. The vehicle's interior temperature will likely vary from the ambient temperature.

Daily Start Timer: The system has the ability to start your vehicle based on a 24-hour countdown timer. Once you have finished operating the vehicle for the day, a quick procedure must be followed to complete the timer process.

2 or 3 Hour Start Timer: The system has the ability to start your vehicle every 2 or 3 hours for a 48-hour period. This feature is especially useful in cold climates where the only means of keeping the engine and engine fluids warm is to periodically start the engine.

Extended Run Time: The system allows you to extend the time the vehicle will be running when under remote start. For example, if you have your vehicle set to run for 20 minutes and the time remaining in the current run cycle is 5 minutes, you can reset it to run another full 20 minutes.

Turbo Timer: If your vehicle has a turbo, the Turbo Timer option will keep the engine running for a period of time (1, 3, or 5 minutes) after you turn off the ignition key. This allows the vehicle's turbo to properly cool before the engine is shut off.

Tach Mode: The system can be programmed to determine how it will monitor the engine running during remote start. It can be set to one of the following options:

  • Tach: hard wired directly to the tach wire of the vehicle to monitor AC voltage.
  • Tachless (Crank Average / Voltage): determines crank time by averaging the last 8 times the vehicle was started with the key, then monitors the change in voltage after remote start.
  • Hybrid (Crank Average / No Voltage): determines crank time by averaging the last 8 times the vehicle was started with the key.
  • DBI Port: monitors the vehicle's tach rate through an interface module connected to the DBI port.

Smart Tachless Mode: This mode is only available if a tach signal has never been learned to the system, and when activated, will automatically change the Tach Mode feature in option programming to Tachless without the need to enter the feature programming mode.

Safety Features: For safety and security reasons, the system will shut down or prevent the remote starter from activating if any of the following occur:

  • The vehicle hood is open.
  • The brake pedal is pressed prior to turning the ignition key to the On position.
  • The engine is over-revved (tach checking only).
  • The valet mode is active.


Car Link: Car Link by Audiovox (ASCL1 or ASCL2) is a smartphone interface that allows you to start your vehicle, lock or unlock your doors, or pop the trunk from virtually anywhere. The Car Link's car finder feature can help you locate your car in a large garage or parking lot. The range of the Car Link system is virtually unlimited. As long as you are in an area where you can receive smartphone service, you can use Car Link.

Dual-Zone Microwave Sensor: The optional Code-Alarm Dual-Zone Microwave Sensor (MV3) detects movement through a protected area, such as someone trying to reach inside of your vehicle. It has two zones of detection--exterior and interior. When the exterior field is penetrated, the unit will cause the alarm system to emit a series of warn-away tones. When the interior zone is penetrated, the unit will cause the alarm system to go into full alert. The unit should be mounted near the center of the interior of the vehicle.

Universal Transponder Interface (UTI): The optional Universal Transponder Interface (220UTI) works with vehicles that use an "immobilizer" key system, allowing you to operate the alarm system without interfering with the vehicle's anti-theft features. The UTI works with vehicles that have a transponder or RF-based immobilizer, including the GM Passkey systems.

Digital Tilt Sensor: The optional Code-Alarm DUB1 digital tilt sensor (220DUB1) can detect when the angle of your vehicle changes and trigger the alarm to protect you from tow trucks and tire or wheel thieves. After you have parked your vehicle, the DUB1 has a digital self-leveling feature to determine the angle of your parked vehicle. If that angle changes due to the vehicle being jacked up or towed, it will trigger a full alarm in the security system.

Door Lock Actuators: Power door locks can be added to a vehicle with manual door locks with a Door Lock Actuator, enabling you to lock/unlock your doors with the CA6553's keyless entry feature. A Standard 2-wire Door Lock Actuator (220DA1) is available for normal manual door locks. For cable-driven door locking systems, a Motor Clutch-type Door Lock Actuator (220DA2) and a Cable Kit (220CLBK) will be needed. You will need an actuator for each door you want to control.

1-way Remote Transmitter: Up to 4 remote transmitters can be used with the CA6553 security system. Additional CATX-MT 1-way 4-button remotes (220CATXMT) can be purchased and programmed to operate your system.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Q & A

Customer Q&A

2 questions already asked

What does the middle side bottom with the letter "F" on it for? [ Riva  Aug 26, 2014 ]
How do you set the time? [ Riva  Aug 26, 2014 ]
Press the button with a round arrow on it twice. You should hear the horn honk and then it will start if you hooked it up correctly. [ MATHEW A  Jun 01, 2014 ]
For details on fit or installation please contact an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to pull up your vehicle and give you the details on if this will fit and what you will need for an installation in your vehicle. [ Krissy  Apr 21, 2014 ]  Staff