Discover answers to the most frequently asked questions from our customers.
1. How can I avoid or limit the amount of false alarms?
Sometimes people avoid using their security system because they’re afraid of setting it off accidentally. But if you use your system regularly, it becomes part of your daily routine, which can help prevent mistakes and avoid false alarms.
One important factor is your system design. Has it been designed correctly from the start?
Have any circumstances changed since the original design?
Did you inform your security company of any changes to the property that might effect your security system from operating correctly?
Did you not have any pets when the system was first installed but now you do?
If in doubt you should always consult your security company to get the best advice.
Another way to avoid setting off your security systems accidentally is to make sure everyone who uses it knows how to.
2. What are some common causes of false alarms?
False activations can result in costly fines and stress for your family. Most false activations can be prevented, saving you money and helping to ensure that emergency services are available for real emergencies within your community. False activations can occur for many reasons, below are some common reasons.
- Incorrect keypad codes entered
- Re-entering the house without disarming the alarm system
- Faulty equipment or low batteries
- Not having your security system regularly maintained by your security company.
Doors and Windows
Door and Window sensors alarm when the two contacts, one on the door or window and one on the frame, become too far apart, such as when the door or window is opened. False alarms can occur when:
- Doors or windows are not shut securely once the alarm is turned on, and then come open
- Due to remodeling or other changes in the house, the contacts become too far apart or out of alignment
- One of the contacts falls off or becomes detached
PIR’s, dualtechs, pet sensors etc, where an alarm condition occurs when movement is detected within their range of vision. Some movement detectors also require heat to be present, such as when detecting a person. False alarms can occur when:
- Party decorations such as balloons and streamers cause motion in the room
- Wandering pets in non friendly pet zone areas
- Drapes moving when air conditioning and/or heating turns on
- A ceiling fan is turned on within range of the detector
- insects crawl across the motion detector
Glass Break Detectors
Glass break detectors alarm when two frequencies of sound are detected – the low frequency “thud” when the glass is initially hit, and the high frequency sound when the glass actually breaks. Some glass break detectors also detect air pressure changes. False alarms can occur when:
- Sounds occur which are in the range of the detectors, such as thunder, fireworks and certain loud music or TV programs
- A dog barks close to the detector
- Acts of nature such as strong winds, electrical storms, etc.
Smoke and Heat Detectors
Smoke detectors alarm when smoke particles enter the unit. Heat detectors alarm when either the temperature rises by a set number of degrees over one minute, or when a set temperature has been reached, depending on the type of detector. False alarms can occur when:
- Household smoke from tobacco products, fireplaces or kitchen equipment occurs within the range of the smoke detector
- The smoke detector becomes dirty with normal dust and circumstances of the environment they are installed in
- Bugs enter the smoke detector
- The heat detector is located in an area that experiences a high temperature over an extended period, such as an attic or near furnace equipment
False Alarm Prevention
Following these tips will help prevent false alarms and keep your home secure:
- Educate everyone on how to avoid triggering an alarm and what to do if they accidently do trigger one.
- Ensure that your verbal security passwords and emergency contacts lists are up to date with your alarm company so that they can keep the records up to date for your monitoring station should they need to contact anyone in the event of an activation.
- Learn to recognise the signs of a low battery and be prepared ahead of time. Regular routine inspections from your security company would take care of this.
- Be sure you are conducting your own regular system tests to help ensure that your system is functioning correctly.
- Inspect door and window contacts periodically to ensure they remain secure and properly aligned.
- Restrain pets from areas where you have no pet friendly movement detectors and glass break detectors which might be accidentally set off, or have the sensors re-positioned or replaced for the correct type.
- Do not install equipment or other hazards in a location that might set off the detector. For example, do not install a ceiling fan within range of a movement sensor or a sound speaker next to a glass break detector etc.
- Periodically clean all types of detectors to remove dust, other particles and insects etc, using a hoover and a slight damp micro cloth only.
It is recommended to take out a routine inspection contract with you security. All the above would be checked during this and your system will be put through a full test to make sure that it remains fully operative as it did when you first had it installed. You would also be advised on any changes required should their be any needed.
For further advice call us on 01482 908404.