5 Things You Need To Do To Prevent False Alarms
False alarms aren’t only stressful, but they can be expensive, too. The first few offenses can cost you a small fee. The amount generally goes higher the more frequent your false alarms happen. They can also render your system less credible and, at certain times, can even delay response time.
To save yourself from these inconveniences and expenses, you can take these five easy steps in avoiding false alarms.
1. Know your security system.
One of the most common reasons for false alarms involves the user’s unfamiliarity with the system. If you’re not thoroughly aware of how your system works or you’re not conscious enough about it, there’s a good chance it can be triggered accidentally.
To address this, you need to make an effort to know more about your security system. The best way to do this is by performing routine tests. However, before you actually practice activating and deactivating it, be sure to call your monitoring station first to let them know that you’re in testing mode.
It can also help if you can teach everyone at home about your security system. Help kids understand the things that can unnecessarily set off the alarm, such as leaving the doors or windows unlocked. If you allow temporary access, make sure that everyone knows how to enter their pass codes. If your system allows a grace period or extra time before connecting to your local police or other authorities during an alarm, teach your family how they can contact the monitoring station to cancel the alert.
2. Use the right strategy in placing your sensors and detectors.
For better security, it’s best if you can install your sensors on every possible entry and exit points at home. In setting them up, make sure that they are installed properly. Because sensors can detect any unexpected movements, not attaching them securely to your wall can trigger a false alarm. Aside from installation, keep in mind where you placed your sensors. Avoid putting movable and hanging items on these areas, such as clothes or even toys.
You may also want to be careful when setting up smoke and temperature sensors at home. As much as possible, install them in places that are not near to your thermostat, fireplace and stove. These areas are likely to confuse your sensors and, as a result, can cause an alarm. In general, your bedroom and basement are the best places you can install a smoke detector.
3. Regularly check your system.
Batteries must be regularly checked. Although most sensors today can last for a few years, such as Frontpoint’s sensors, it’s still recommended to routinely assess your devices. There are a lot of factors that could quickly drain your sensor’s battery life, including how frequently the alarms are triggered. Other than batteries, you should also be aware of the lifespan of your security equipment. Smoke detectors, for example, need replacements every 10 years.
You should also check your sensors for accumulated dust, spider webs and even bugs as these factors could easily set off your alarm. If you’re going to place a few sensors in your basement, make sure to vacuum the area first and apply a good bug spray.
4. Invest in the right security equipment.
While a regular motion sensor can help keep track of suspicious movements at home, it may not be smart enough to distinguish an intruder from your dog. Because of this, investing in a pet immune motion sensor might be a wiser choice. This type of sensor can ignore movements caused by pets weighing 40 to 80 lbs. You can adjust the sensitivity based on how big or small your pet is.
A glass break sensor that not only monitors for the sound of breaking glass but also the associated impact is more recommended for your windows. This is because broken vases and glassware typically emit the same sound which can trick your sensors into thinking someone has struck your windows.
Any type of smoke detector can work for your home. However, for better accuracy, you should try investing in more advanced equipment. A smoke detector that uses both heat and photoelectric detection is less likely to trigger false alerts.
5. Add a surveillance camera.
Security cameras can help you keep track of what goes on at home while you’re away. If partnered with remote monitoring, you can use it to verify a triggered alarm right before police and local authorities are dispatched to your home. You can also use these cameras to call for help in case a burglar managed to get inside your property without tripping your alarms.
A security camera can also assist local authorities in searching for the culprits. Other than helping with identification, videos and captured images of the event can also serve as evidences.
Aside from prevention, it’s also important that you know what to do in case you or someone in the family accidentally triggers the alarm. As a guide, here are some of the things you need to keep in mind:
- As much as possible, do not panic. Practicing
- If the alarm goes off suddenly, do not immediately assume that it’s a false alarm. Verify its nature first.
- Once you are sure that it’s accidentally triggered, you can disarm your system by entering your dedicated pass code.
- Depending on your system and its grace period, you may have to call the monitoring station to let them know that you’re fine and that the alarm was set off unintentionally.
If you still experience false alarms despite following these preventive measures, calling your security provider can be your next best option. Although user error largely contributes to this type of alarm, faulty and malfunctioning equipment can also be culprits. Replacing your security system or the malfunctioning device as soon as possible is important to keep your home secure and safe.
Have you experienced setting off your alarm accidentally? What other tips can you add to this list?