Tazer/Smart Stop Start Showdown

  1. WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    JL by Zautomotive and Smart Start/Stop ESS disabler showdown


    I recently saw where Steve of Smart Stop/Start released a version of his ESS disabler for the Wrangler JL so I figured I would do a side by side comparison of the install and operation of both units, now please keep in mind that the Tazer JL, Mini and Lite all do a lot more than the Smart Stop/Start does but this is only a comparison of the ESS ( Electronic Start/Stop ) portion on the Tazer to the Smart Stop/Start.

    The Tazer JL retails for $329, the JL Mini goes for the same $329 and the Lite goes for $219 but it’s a limited version but can be upgraded to the full version for an additional $125, they all come with a 90 warranty but a 2-year extended warranty can be purchased for $20 more

    https://zautomotive.com/product-category/tazer/

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    The Smart Stop/Start currently at time of this review retails for $129.95 and has a 3-year replacement/repair warranty included along with free shipping.


    https://www.smartstopstart.com/

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    The electronic start/stop function is now part of a lot of vehicles these days and on most vehicles can easily be bypassed but this bypassing is usually temporary and a button or similar action has to be used each and every time and this is the case with the JL, now one can remove hood switches, disconnect a battery voltage wires etc.... but honestly who wants to do that and then have to look at it or hear annoying messages that something is wrong.


    We all can fully appreciate the purpose of this design but it should be our choice and we should not have to perform a particular function each and every time to turn off this feature so let’s fast forward to the Smart Stop/Start and other options like the Tazer.


    The Wrangler JL utilizes a SGW ( security gateway module ) that is right after the OBDII port, it’s not necessary to know what the purpose of this gateway is for but this gateway must be accessed to utilize either one of these products


    Here is the SGW port which I have already unplugged the two gateway connectors from, you can remove the access panel right below the steering wheel to get a better visual of the gateway and I initially would recommend it so you can see what you are doing and after that since you will know where it’s at and how the connectors work will be easier for removal
    /install the next time you need to do it and since I mentioned removal let’s briefly talk about that, the connectors have to be squeezed from the back and there is one that is wider than the other one but they both come out the same way, care must be taken when removing these as there are lots of wires that go into each connector so if you have large hands it may be helpful to have some help in removing these connectors, but once either fully removing both or partially removing them in the case of the Smart Stop/Start it is highly recommended that these connectors be put back to there factory state and either piece of hardware be removed prior to any Dealer Service, doing so will avoid any possible conflict of warranty coverage.

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    So with all of that said let’s begin with the install of the Smart Stop/Start module, prior to installing the Smart Stop/Start the smaller connector only needs to be removed from the SGW module then you take the smaller connector that you just unplugged and plug it into the same type of connector that is on the Smart Stop/Start module and then plug the other connector that is on the other end of the Smart Stop/Start back into the SGW module then you use the included Velcro tape to stick it close to the SGW module and then affix the Smart Stop/Start to it as it has the matching Velcro already attached to it and once that is done installation is complete, now how simple is that, as you can see from the picture of my JL I mounted the module right next to the SGW module and if needed can easily be removed by just disconnecting the smaller connector from the SGW module and then unplugging the original cable from the Stop/Start module and plugging that back into the factory SGW module and you are done


    You only need to remove the smaller connector as indicated in red from the SGW module to install the Smart Stop/Start


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    After completing this super easy install, literally 5 mins all you do is start your jl and choose the position of the Stop/Start function and for me that’s off and this genius little module that has a minimal footprint remembers what position you choose and each time you start your JL it defaults to that position.


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    After installing I took it for a short ride and played with it doing several Stop/Starts and it performed flawlessly and worked every time, I will spend the next week or so with this in my JL but just from my short trip I’m pretty sure this unit will be staying as it does one simple thing and does it perfectly and like I said the install is so simple, basically pull one connector and connect it to the start/ stop then plug the other end back into the SGW module and your done with the exception of either tucking the module under your dash or using the included Velcro which I did and that option presents a much cleaner install.


    Now let’s start on the install and operation of that same ESS function with the Tazer Jl which is what I have, the mini and lite would basically be the same as you have to bypass the SGW module completely with all Tazer products.


    The first step is to remove both connectors from the SGW module behind your dash, similar to the Smart Stop/Start but both connectors have to be removed, once removed you plug both connectors into the included SGW bypass module or the more compact Tazer that this module is built into as pictured then tuck it out of the way.

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    Gateway bypass module plugged in

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    After that’s done depending on which Tazer you have you will plug the main unit into the OBDII port and or proceed to the “Marrying” step, the following steps are what set the Smart Stop/Start and Tazer apart from one another as the Tazer has to be married to the JL for it to function and this is for utilizing a combination of features that are controlled off the steering wheel using a series of buttons, it’s actually very easy to do and once married choices of what the Tazer can do are accessible thru the EVIC display but I’m not going to go into all of that as I’m only comparing the ESS function.

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    Once all connections are made and the Tazer is married it will display “unmarry” and then you can access the live features of the Tazer and set ESS to off and once set do a full reboot of the system using the menu and once complete ESS with automatically turn off every time the JL is started.


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    ESS set to off

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    If you choose to use the ESS function with the Tazer you simply push the button on the dash to engage it at your next stop but here’s where the Tazer is different than the Smart Stop/Start, once your vehicle stops and ESS engages and once you start moving again the Tazer will automatically reset the ESS to off again as it does not remember your last setting.


    So above is my simple review of two great products and you can’t go wrong with either one but if you are looking for one simple solution to controlling the ESS function and only that function at this point in time I will have to say the Smart Stop/Start wins hands down as the install is so very simple and there is no process of “marrying” the product to your vehicle as it’s

    basically a plug and play piece of hardware and couple that with the cost and it’s a winner, but if you are looking for a more rich feature product that can control so much more the Tazer is an excellent product but there are those out there that are perfectly happy with there JL with the small exception of the ESS feature and for those I say get the Smart Stop/Start and don’t look back it seems like a solid product that has an excellent warranty and is priced very reasonable.
     
    mazeppa, TroyBoy, HoundDude and 3 others like this.
  2. Rhinebeck01

    Rhinebeck01 Well-Known Member

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    @WranglerMan Nice write up!

    Most forum member's have read lots and lots in regard to the Tazer JL. Many to include myself, talk way way to much lets say, about the terrific, the multi-featured, Tazer JL...

    BUT .......In the shadows, lost in all the talk about the Tazer JL, has been the terrific little "One Trick Pony" so to speak, the SmartStopStart.... The little one trick pony, that oh so many JL owner's could benefit by, if they only knew about ....and had one installed on their 2018/2019 3.6 or 2.0 JL.

    Yes, the SmartStopStart is designed to do just one thing and that is to disable ESS. Reality is, many/most JL owner's would like just this one thing...(ESS) .... disabled.

    FCA really should have the JL set-up in a way, that mimics exactly what the SmartStopStart does.

    ---
    Anyway, since Dec. 19, 2018, when I installed the SmartStopStart, I have put 4,750 miles on my JL. Yes, a lot of miles in 25 or so days.

    Not once during, those 4,750 miles has the SmartStopStart, not done exactly what it is supposed to do. 8-)

    What a terrific little gadget the unit is. It works flawlessly. Never stumbles. It remembers exactly what your last choice was ...as in ESS Off or ESS On.

    @SmartStopStart.com .... you have a terrific product!

    I'm the type that quickly points out ... condemns a product offering that has shortcomings, does not live up to the manufacturer's claims, does not live up to the hype...

    Well, I can speak no evil about the SmartStopStart.. It is a pleasure to have installed on my 2018 JL Rubicon.

    By the way, as I mentioned earlier, the SmartStopStart plays very well, lets say, with both the 2018 and 2019 3.6 and 2.0 JL.

    If you want to read more from fellow JL owner's in regard to the SmartStopStart go here:
    https://www.jlwranglerforums.com/forum/forums/smartstopstart.115/

    IF you want to ask questions, etc. reach out to Steve at Smart StopStart. Steve is a pleasure to deal with and is quick to respond to questions:
    Email: [email protected]
    Phone: 571-215-6085

    Want to buy a SmartStopStart, go here to order:
    https://www.smartstopstart.com/jeep-dodge-chrysler-products.html

    Note: SmartStopStart, offers a RISK FREE 90-day money-back satisfaction guarantee. I can tell you... you buy it / you try it.... you won't be wanting to send it back.
     
    blnewt and WranglerMan like this.
  3. OP
    OP
    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    Was running errands all day yesterday and I tried over and over to get this sweet little device to hiccup and I just could not, every way possible it just simply works, I am going to continue to use it for a week or so but if it works like it’s been working I am pretty sure I will leave it plugged in.

    On a side note I do have the original Tazer JL and some have reported that the Tazer has caused them some battery issues but I did a two week test and did not seem to have any issues but figured since I was not using any of the live features why leave it plugged in to possibly cause any problems so I pulled it after changing tire size, TPMS threshold limits and fog light drop I then installed the Smart Stop/Start over top of the Tazer and it works perfectly so if you believe the Tazer is causing you battery issues by leaving it plugged in you could run double programmers as I currently am and am having zero issues.

    But if all I wanted to do was disable ESS the Smart Stop/Start would be the one item I would sure get, it’s so simple to install just unplug and plug in one connector and your done, there is no process of marrying it to the JL
     
  4. Arrowhead

    Arrowhead Well-Known Member

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    I think it depends on how you want to use ESS that may lean you to one product or the other. If you want it disabled for good and not ever want to turn it on, then maybe go with the Tazer (even though you can still turn it on when you want to). But say you do like the feature just not all the time (you commute in heavy traffic everyday and like the ESS, but on weekends your off roading and don't need the feature) then maybe the SmartStop would be a better fit.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    The Smart Stop/Start goes a step further than the Tazer as it remembers the last setting you had it on, the Tazer if you have it disabled then choose to enable it and let it do its thing when the engine restarts after ESS shuts it down the Tazer automatically disables it so you have to do that each time but the Smart stop/start remembers the last setting you have it on
     
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  6. OP
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    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    Well played around with ESS in Houston traffic today and the Smart Stop/Start works like a dream, as I said I was in Houston traffic with lots of stops and starts so what better way to try and trick this sweet little gadget in failing but no matter what I did it performed perfectly, when I enabled ESS it worked and when I disabled it the same happend as in it was disabled and I even tried to leave it disabled and then enabled it once stopped and it enabled it and vice versa so all in all so far those looking for a solid ESS disabler that takes literally 5 mins to install you need to get this and you won’t be disappointed
     
  7. OP
    OP
    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    I played around again today with the Smart Stop/Start and I honestly have to say I really like the feature of it remembering the last state that ESS is in so you can enable it when you want without it automatically being disabled when the JL starts back up, currently I have my Tazer married so I can take advantage of my corrected tire size so my speedo is correct and also adjusted myTPMS threshold limits so I can run lower pressure on my 315’s and also take advantage of fog light drop and then I unplugged it and am useing the Smart Stop/Start to take care of ESS and it does a fantastic job of doing that, as Joe pointed out these are two different programmers that both offer something one can take advantage of and it’s up to that person as to what they want to do, my son for example has a stock Rubicon and says he’s going to put keep it all stock and he even likes the ESS function but said he wishes he could turn it on and off as needed so the Smart Stop/Start would serve him well.

    My main reason for the side by side compare was to only compare the ESS function and install of each and I did not know that the live functions could be utilized without the Tazer being married but then if you were only looking to get rid of ESS the Tazer would be over kill, my method of madness for currently using both is also to see if there is a power issue with the Tazer plugged in versus unplugged as some have stated that leaving it plugged in it somehow wakes up the Uconnect system and drains the battery and my testing is going to continue with that.
     
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  8. smithrd65

    smithrd65 Well-Known Member

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    I like the ESS on my Rubicon, I don't see the big deal about pushing a button.
    But each his own.
     
  9. OP
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    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    Had another test day with the Smart Stop/Start and I can honestly say this product is OUTSTANDING and I throughly endorse it 100%, if you are a person that dislikes ESS or a person that actually likes ESS but wants better control of it then this is the product to get.

    I have used this for almost a week and have tried every way possible to get it to fail and it just works and the install as I have stated in previous posts literally takes 5 mins and you can’t make a mistake so if you are looking to control ESS like it should have been originally designed then this is what you want to get
     
  10. OP
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    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    Well it’s been right at two weeks with the Smart Stop/Start installed and I have had no issues at all, I do and have used ESS at times but in heavy stop start traffic I have disabled it and ESS stays in the last state I left it in so for those looking for IMHO the best thing to control only ESS this is the piece of hardware to get and the install as I have lined out only takes a few minutes but plan on 20 mins if your SGW module connectors are tight but you only have to remove the one connector, Steve with Smart Stop/Start has created a very nice compact piece of hardware that does exactly what it is designed to do with no bad side affects at all and it’s very simple to remove before haveing the vehicle serviced.
     
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  11. OP
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    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    I just wanted to give a quick update on the Smart Stop/Start module I have installed for several weeks now and I have had zero issues.

    I know several use a Tazer and I use one as well and currently have two programmers running, I am using the Tazer to control tire size, TPMS limits and fog light drop and then unplugged it to avoid any power issues that may arise from leaving it plugged in and then installed the Smart Stop/Start to ESS and it to me is an excellent setup.

    I have no intention of taking my Smart Stop module out anytime soon as I have not had a single problem with it, yes I know it only controls ESS but there are some out there that only want to control that particular item and if that’s the case I would have to vote for the Smart Stop/Start system.

    With either system the SGW has to be dealt with the Smart Stop/Start you only unplug 1 connector from the SGW and put the Smart Stop/Start between it and the connector so if you can plug something into a wall socket you can do this.
     
  12. islandtees

    islandtees Well-Known Member

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    With the changes on the Tazer, you don't need both since Tazer ESS is no longer a live menu feature.
    ESS alone, yes Smart/Stop. Tazer to do ESS and everything else.
     
  13. OP
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    WranglerMan

    WranglerMan Well-Known Member

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    Yes I am aware of that but early on several of us had power issues with the Tazer and Uconnect system and I wanted to compare the install and operation of the of just the ESS side of it so I got together with Steve and did a test run and have so far liked it so well it’s still installed, I have no immediate need for any of the live features of the Tazer like Darkmode or the light shows, yes there are more live features than that but my current equipment setup does not need to utilize any of them so why mess with what works is my mindset
     
  14. SmartStopStart.com

    SmartStopStart.com Well-Known Member
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    Another point of comparison is that the Tazer completely disables the factory installed Security Gateway (SGW), whereas SmartStopStart works behind the SGW and allows the SGW to continue to do its job.

    So is this important? Well the SGW, in addition to locking out unauthorized access to the OBDII port (which most of us just find a nuisance) also provides some level of security for over the air attacks (such as through UConnect) on the vehicle systems.

    How important is this? Who knows, but when it comes to computer security, threats that we never see coming have all too often materialized.
     
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  15. jdhunt0

    jdhunt0 Well-Known Member

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    I want to have the ESS disabled all the time. With either of these systems, can you have it disabled and the light not be on or will I always have a light on my dash if the ESS is off?
     
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