Security Alarm Systems

Why should I have a security alarm system?

Having a security alarm system may decrease the chances of a burglary. Statistcs show that the chances for an attempted burglary are reduced six-fold with the presence of an alarm system.

What Should a Security Alarm System Include?

Most systems rely on a combination of contacts on doors and windows along with the use of motion sensors.

It is best that all potential points of entry have contacts that sense when they are opened. Glass break sensors are also available and recommended for many installations.

Motion sensors should not be used as the primary means of detection. They do not detect a burglar until he is already in the house. Motion sensors are generally used for BACKUP protection, if the primary perimeter systems fails to detect an intruder.

The basic elements of a standard home security system include:

                                 Control panel: This is the location of the Central Processing Unit, system wiring, backup battery, and phone lines.

                                 Keypad: This is where the system is armed and disarmed.

                                 Siren: Noise makers inside or outside.

                                 Inside motion detector: This ia a device that senses a change in a room caused by human presence. Special motion detectors are available for people who have pets.

                                 Door and window contacts: This sounds the alarm when the door or window is opened (and the system is on).

        A central monitoring station (Company): If the system is monitored, and the alarm is set off, the control panel sends a message to a central monitoring station, which is manned 24 hours a day.

         After attempting to contact the homeowner, the central monitoring station will contact the police, fire department, or medics.

There is always a monthly fee for this service.


Additional items that can be added to the basic system are:

                                 Smoke detectors

                  Heat Detectors

                                 Glass break detectors

                                 Panic buttons

                                 Carbon Monoxide Detectors

                                 Closed circuit TV to allow monitoring and/or recording inside or outside a home.

                                 Alarm screens for windows.

                                 Medical alert buttons



Costs of systems vary, depending on the amount and type of equipment used.  A typical system may cost as little as a few hundred dollars, up to thousands of dollars.

Monitored System or Unmonitored System?


Monitored systems typically work as follows:

1.                  The security system senses something.

2.                  The security system waits 30 to 45 seconds to give the homeowner a chance to deactivate the system to prevent false alarms.

3.                  If the alarm is not deactivated the security system sends a message to the monitoring company over telephone lines or over a secure cellular network.

4.                  The monitoring company receives the message and verifies the alarm, generally by placing a phone call to the home. If they do not receive the proper password or do not receive an answer, they dispatch the police.

5.                  The police respond.

Note:  There are several levels of monitoring service


Unmonitored systems typically have on-site alarms and/or flashing lights. It relies on neighbors to call police.  Unmonitored systems rely on a neighbor to call the police.  Most insurance companies offer an increased discount for monitored alarm systems.

How to choose an alarm company

 Choosing an alarm company can be confusing and the technology complicated. Here are some suggestions:

                                 Check with friends or neighbors for recommendations on reliable companies.

                                 Find out if your equipment is being purchased or leased.

                                 Find out if the equipment purchased is proprietary (that is can anyone service and monitor the equipment, or only the installing company.)

                                 Always ask the length of the contract your must sign.

                                 Lastly, when comparing prices remember to compare detection coverage and features. Not all alarms are created equal, nor are all companies created equal.


Things to Remember About Security Alarm Systems

Burglars realize most security systems sound inside the house and then the alarm is transferred to remote locations through the telephone line.  Since typical phone line are vulnerable to being cut, a good backup reporting means is important.  We can provide cellular devices which continually monitor alarms, no mater what..


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