Clifford SmartStart

Start, control or locate your vehicle from virtually anywhere with your smartphone and compatible Clifford 2-way ready systems.

SmartStart for Cars

Frequently Asked Questions

Clifford SmartStart is the only vehicle security and remote start system that works with your smartphone. Clifford SmartStart is brought to you by Clifford, the leader in vehicle security and remote start systems. With SmartStart, you can use your smartphone to pre-warm your car’s cabin in the winter, pre-cool it in the summer, lock and unlock your doors, arm and disarm your vehicle’s security system, open your trunk, and even find your car in a parking lot, all using your smartphone.
Clifford SmartStart is a clever solution that combines the functionality of your vehicle’s key fob with your cell phone. Now you can control your vehicle’s locks, security system, remote start system, and trunk release with your cell phone. Anyone who’s used a remote car starter before knows that range is critically important to maximizing the value of your remote starter – and range doesn’t get any better than with a Clifford SmartStart. If your phone has sufficient signal and your vehicle also has sufficient signal……YOU’RE ALL SET!
Let’s face it; your vehicle can be pretty uncomfortable in extreme weather. In fact, getting into a frozen or overheated car can be downright painful. With remote start, you can start your car from the comfort of your home to make sure it is the right temperature before you get inside. The SmartStart remote start system provides virtually unlimited range so you can rest assured your remote start system is activated no matter how far away you are from your vehicle.
If you already have a compatible Clifford system in your vehicle, just add a Clifford SmartStart Pro module. For those that may not have an existing remote starter in their vehicle, we recommend installing a Clifford SmartStart Pro module with a Clifford digital security/remote start system such as DS4.
  • A complete Clifford SmartStart system, or, if you already have a compatible remote start system, you need the add-on Clifford SmartStart module.
  • A compatible smart phone (not included with the Clifford SmartStart system).
  • Clifford SmartStart application for your smartphone
Clifford SmartStart Pro modules use 4G LTE technology with superior nationwide coverage, much faster response, and additional features when combined with a Clifford digital security or remote start system. Upgrading now ensures future compatibility with new features and eliminates the risk of coverage problems. With these new modules you can expect to use them for many years without needing to upgrade again.
Yes, if you wish to continue to access your installed system with unlimited range via the Clifford SmartStart app. Earlier models are no longer able to connect due to carrier cell network shutdowns (2G, 3G etc.).
We always recommend using the current version of the Clifford SmartStart app for the best experience and access to the latest features.
For current upgrade packages and offers, please select the “Special Offer” link next to your existing older SmartStart module on the mysmartstart web site, or via the app (click Menu/Account/Manage Account).
No. You can continue to use your existing cellular service.
Your existing SmartStart module used an older, appropriate cellular connectivity based on when it was manufactured and the requirements for vehicle telematics hardware and features at that time. Since then, most of those older networks have been shut down by the carriers or access to them has been removed for other reasons. In order to keep your vehicle connected with Clifford SmartStart, the installed module needs to be 4G LTE currently, as is the case with Clifford SmartStart Pro.
Absolutely. Clifford SmartStart Pro 4G LTE modules connect seamlessly across North America: in the US, Canada, and Mexico.
With Clifford SmartStart, there is no such thing as "too far away." Clifford SmartStart works over a cellular network or over Wi-Fi, giving you virtually unlimited range anywhere in the U.S. As long as your vehicle is in range of a cellular signal and your phone has a cellular or Wi-Fi signal, SmartStart will work.
Your Clifford SmartStart is an “always-on” connected device that communicates over a cellular network. Just like a cell phone, your SmartStart requires a service plan from a cellular provider to communicate over the network.
Yes. Users can be added by downloading the app on another smartphone and entering the Username and Password for the account. Once the app is installed on the new smartphone, you can access all cars already set up on the account. You can also add users with their own logins (email addresses) and assign vehicles specifically to them, via the mysmartstart web site
Yes. Multiple vehicles can be installed to your account. A separate Clifford system will have to be installed in each vehicle, but after that you can control any of your vehicles with any smartphone you’ve authorized.
Currently, Clifford SmartStart Pro is available in North America (USA, Canada, Mexico) as well as many countries worldwide. For use outside North America, a specific 4G LTE module is required (DSM550i). Please consult with the Clifford or Directed distributor in your country for details on products, pricing, and service plan options.
Clifford SmartStart is available only through authorized retailers that offer professional installation. Professional installation is required.
Remote start means being able to start your vehicle from a distance using a remote control, or in the case of Clifford SmartStart, your smartphone. This allows you to have the vehicle warmed up in cold weather or cooled down in hot weather, before you get in to drive it. This may seem like a luxury but in extreme climates it is virtually a necessity as well as a safety factor.
Yes. Our systems keep the vehicle locked securely while it is remote started, and it still requires a key to actually drive the car. If anyone gets in the car and tries to drive it without the key, the car just shuts off.
Directed is continuously improving Clifford SmartStart. That means we are already working on compatibility with other smart phones. Please refer to for the current list of compatible smart phones. We also have lots of other products that don’t require an smartphone to start your car. See for more information about Clifford remote start and security systems.
Some internet service providers will mark our email as SPAM or JUNK. Please check these folders if you do not receive your email within a few minutes. If the activation email is not there, it is possible that the installer did not complete the activation process or the wrong email address was entered. Please bring the vehicle back to the original installer to have the process completed or the email address corrected.
Even if the DSM550 is not plugged into a compatible system that can lock or unlock your vehicle or remote start it, it will still provide numerous GPS features. We recommend however that you integrate it with one of our many compatible systems to enable the complete Clifford SmartStart feature set. Please visit for a list of features covered by the service plan selection you choose
No. We provide a 72 hour (3 day) grace period following the installation of your SmartStart system which provides you with free access to GPS and car control features (*specific vehicle features may be determined by the type of system your SmartStart Pro module is connected with).

At any time in those first 3 days, you just visit mysmartstart where you can opt into a free 30 day GPS trial, also at no cost. Just opt into the trial, and select the plan you want to convert to at the end of the trial. You will not be charged until a few days prior to the end of the 30 day trial plan, and you can change your selected “Next” plan or cancel that plan selection at any time prior to your card being charged.