Why Should I
Have a Security Alarm System?
It is debated whether having a burglar alarm system decreases the chances
of a burglary. In theory, if a burglar is aware a house has a system, he
or she might move on to another home. Even if the alarm system does not
keep a burglar from breaking in, the burglar has a tendency to stay a
shorter amount of time. This may decrease the number of items stolen and
the extent of damage done.
What Should a Security Alarm System
rely on a combination of contacts placed at doors and windows and motion
sensors. Motion sensors, however, do not detect someone until they are
already in the house. Motion sensors should NOT be used as the primary
means of detection. It is best that all exterior potential points of
entry have contacts that sense when they are open.
Glass break sensors are also available
The basic elements of a
standard home security system include:
- Control Panel:
This is the location where the system wiring terminates
This is where the system is armed and disarmed. Additional keypads can be installed. For example, a
keypad can be installed next to the homeowner's bed. If the alarm sounds
in the middle of the night and the security system had the
capability, the keypad display could indicate which door, window, or motion
detector caused the alarm.
- Interior Motion Detector:
Passive infrared, microwave, or photoelectric detectors sense changes in a room caused
by human presence. Special motion detectors are available
for people who have pets.
- Door and Window Contacts:
Magnetic contacts form a circuit between a door and doorframe or a window and a
sill; when the door or window is opened (and the system is on), the
circuit is broken and sounds the alarm.
- Backup systems. A typical monitored home security system offers a 24-hour backup
component that kicks in should your phone lines get cut by a
potential intruder. A radio or cellular backup system will send a
signal to the central monitoring station that the phone line was
dropped thus ensuring that the alarm signal gets to the proper