Home Security 101

Imagine

You could protect your home and family with the click of a button!

Whether you are on vacation or sleeping, you are protected from burglars and an unexpected fire. A burglar alarm system is a great way to give your family peace of mind. But how does it work?

Alarm System Components

Alarm systems are controlled by an alarm panel or the “brain” of the system.On wireless systems, the brain is the keypad. On traditional hardwired systems, the central control unit is located in a closet, attic or the garage. Hardwired keypads simply allow you access to control your system. The alarm control panel connects your alarm system with the monitoring company. In the event of an alarm, your control panel automatically communicates emergency messages to the alarm center. Alarm systems are so advanced, the alarm company will even know what point of entry was breached by an intruder!

Here are the main parts of an alarm system:

  • Alarm contacts are installed on your doors and windows. When your door/window is opened, the alarm contact sends a signal to the control unit triggering an alarm.

  • As a secondary defense, a motion detector is placed in a high traffic area (stairs, hallway etc.) of your home. Motion detectors sense the movement of an intruder, sending an alarm signal to the main control. Most modern motion detectors are equipped with a low sensitivity setting to allow pets under 40 lbs to run freely at floor level without triggering an alarm. Your alarm system also allows you to arm only the perimeter doors and windows at night so you don’t accidentally trigger the motion.

  • Glass break sensors pick up the frequency of broken glass. They work great in rooms with lots of fixed windows that do not open. A benefit of glass break sensors is that they arm at night and work great with homeowners who own multiple large (over 40 lbs) pets.

  • Traditional smoke detectors sound an alarm when smoke is detected, awaking your family in the event of a fire. What happens if you are on vacation, at work, or sleep too soundly to hear the noise? Alarmed smoke detectors are specially designed to not only sound a high decibel siren, but they also send an emergency message to the alarm center, which in turn dispatches the fire department. Most insurance companies offer extra discounts for homes with monitored smoke detectors.

  • Keyfob remotes allow you to arm or disarm your system from anywhere around your house (up to 100 feet away from the keypad). Keyfob remotes also have a special panic button that turns the siren on and dispatches police if you need immediate help.

Homes with an alarm system are 70% less likely to be broken into than homes without an alarm system!

Here are some additional tips to keeping your home and family safe!

  • Always lock your doors and windows.

  • Thieves are opportunistic. You would be surprised to find out how often thieves check for closed but unlocked windows around homes they scope out. Fix or replace windows that close but can not lock properly.

  • Join a Community Watch Program.

  • Vigilant neighbors can greatly reduce the risk of break-ins. For more information check out the link on our Frequently Asked Questions Page.

  • Add motion lights around your home.

  • Motion lights can replace your traditional outdoor lights. The lights sense motion and illuminate, scaring away an unwanted intruder.

  • Add additional locks on windows.

  • Inexpensive window locks can add additional protection to prevent a thief from prying open small windows.

  • Protect your sliding glass doors

  • Sliding glass doors are easily lifted up. Place a 2×4 or pvc plastic pipe in the track of the door to prevent tampering or movement.

  • Upgrade your windows to double pane glass.

  • Double pane glass windows are much harder to break than single pane glass windows.

  • Use a light timer when on vacation.

  • A dark home=no one home. Automatic lights turn on lamps at certain hours of the evening giving the impression you are home.

  • Going out of town? Pack your car in your garage.

  • Loading your car in front of your house advertises you are going out of town.

Do you know the person trying to break in? Consider a Camera Surveillance System.

Some victims of break-ins know their intruders (an angry ex, someone on drugs etc.) If you have reason to believe someone wants to harm you or your house, consider a Camera System. A camera system allows you to record the identity of the person causing you harm, even if they don’t enter your home.

Don’t leave valuable items in plain view of windows or glass doors.

  • A laptop computer or other expensive device left out in the open can instigate a thief to break in. Either put away expensive equipment or close your blinds or shades when you are not home.

  • Change your locks if you know someone had access to your key.

  • If you just bought your home or had a roommate move out, re-keying or changing the locks of your home eliminates the risk of unwanted entry.

  • Trim back bushes and shrubs around your home.

  • Excessive plants can provide cover for thieves checking out your home. Make sure your windows and doors are not hidden by plants and shrubbery.

  • Consider a guard dog if you live in a rural area far from neighbors.

  • If you can’t see your nearest neighbor’s house they can’t see you. A guard dog can help scare away potential thieves.

  • Report any criminal activity to local authorities.

  • If you think that someone has tampered with a window or door on your home, report it to the police. If you see someone in your backyard that you don’t know, report it!

Questions? We provide a free in-home security consultation.

1-866-745-4586

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