Warming up my car with voice commands

Confession: This is pretty lazy, but I like to do things because I can rather than because I absolutely need it.

Disclaimer: It's probably not foolproof and does present some level of danger - feel free to tell me how dumb I am. I can take it as long as you can take my retorts. I'm also not going to provide all the details behind how I did it so no one can blame me if they pass out (or die) from CO poisoning. In fact, my feelings won't be hurt if the mods just delete this thread altogether.

I live in the northern suburbs of Chicago and have always wanted a way to warm up my ICE car with a single command. With a combination of the following, I finally got it done!

  • Compustar Remote Start System
  • Drone X1 add-on to the Compustar
  • Home Assistant (w/ drone_mobile custom component)
  • Node-Red (all my automations are done here)
  • Zooz ZEN17
  • SmartThings MultiSensor (for tilt detection)
  • Google Assistant
  • Hubitat (obviously)

The process is shown in the video below ("Ok Google" was cropped off for obvious reasons):

There ARE checkpoints in the flow to make sure that the garage door is open prior to starting the engine as well as parallel processes in place to make sure that engine does not continue to run if the garage door closes unexpectedly.

If someone were motivated enough, I'm sure the drone_mobile API (unpublished) could be added as a custom app in Hubitat and everything could be self contained there. However, I already have all the stuff above so I don't mind adding to it.


neat - way safer than just a stock service... my car has an app that is Alexa enabled and I can tell her to start the car but it doesn't care or know where it's parked!

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I would still be paranoid as fark about that.

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Yeah, this one's probably not for the faint of heart.

That said, I'm always open to improving and adding additional fail-safes if necessary. I've tried to think of all scenarios, but I'm only one man...

I wonder if adding a shop heater to the garage might not be more economical? Would heat the garage, and both cars. I suspect that the electricity cost would be less than the fuel costs, but one would need to do some calculations to confirm that…

It would likely be a safer option…. :blush:


We don't use that car as often so it sits for at least a few days in between uses. Remote starting it allows the fluids to circulate which can't be accomplished with a shop heater. The car idles for 15 minutes max (configured on the remote starter) so the gas use is pretty negligible compared to having to heat the whole garage constantly during the winter (especially given the infrequent use of the car). On top of that, the garage is not insulated so it would be like burning money to keep it warm... in which case, I'd STILL have to keep the garage door open. :slight_smile:

I can also warm up the Telsa with a voice command, but that doesn't require the same garage door management the ICE does.

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I was thinking more to have an automation that would blast some heat only when needed, but I agree that it wouldn’t help move the fluids around in your ICE vehicle. So much easier to heat up an electric car! :blush:


I just automated remote start of my wife's car. I used a Fingerbot and the extra remote start fob. My webCoRE piston is triggered manually with a double-tap button press, then it opens the blind so you can see what's happening, opens the garage door all the way, and starts the car. A local variable gets reset when the door goes back down (presence changing to away or manually). I get notified if the door stays open for a half after a remote start so I can put it back down if necessary.

I haven't added a scheduled start (yet). If time is 6:15am AND temp is below 40 degrees AND wife is scheduled to work in the office... For now I like having human eyes on the process.

I can check if the door is open before starting the car, but I don't have a way to know if the car is running other than a human looking at it, so this too is not foolproof. Our garage is detached, so the worse that's going to happen is that the car runs for 12 minutes in a closed garage before automatically shutting off. That's not ideal or at all desirable, but there's also no risk of poisoning a living space, so :person_shrugging:.

Next up: Adding a virtual switch trigger to enable Google Assistant. Maybe.

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