Even though home security alarms and alerts are a great thing when you want to get that peace of mind that you’re living in a safe home, false alarms can get pretty bad. It only takes for you to walk in your home, forget to turn off your alarm and trigger it, and before you know it, you have police storming your front door.
To add to that, the false alarms of home security systems are also an issue for police departments, too. Responding to them takes up resources and wastes the police departments’ time, and both the resources and the time could be put to much better use.
With the leading cause of false alarms being human error, there are things you can do to solve the issue and reduce the number of such alarms. Let’s take a look at a few tips.
Use Smart Security Systems
Smart systems have one major advantage over conventional ones – they take out the guesswork of conventional alarms. If a sensor is triggered, your alarm system will send you an alert, allowing you to decide whether or not it’s an actual reason to be worried or just a false alarm. You can oftentimes remotely access any cameras you might have in your home, and see exactly what’s going on.
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Most of these cameras will also start recording immediately if an alarm is tripped, or if their (optional) motion sensor is triggered. If you have an undisturbed house, you can just cancel the false alarm regardless of where you are.
Add to this a smart lock, and you can let babysitters or contractors in or out of your house with ease, without worrying that they might trip the sensors and trigger an alarm.
Replace Your Batteries
Another major reason for false alarms is low, or dead, sensor batteries. There are some instances where they can trigger a false alarm by leading the system’s control panel to believe there was a breach in the sensor. It is a good practice to change out the batteries regularly. This is another nice thing with smart systems because they’ll usually let you know that the batteries should be replaced.
Be Careful with Sensor Placement
One of the most critical aspects of smart security systems is sensors. They’re the ones that will detect if something is wrong and will instantly tell you or the monitoring company that something is happening. And that’s why it’s crucial that you place them well.
For example, when you have a smoke and heat sensor that’s too close to a heat source, or to the humid air of a bathroom, it might be triggered and you’ve got yourself a false alarm. With motion sensors, some will require both motion and heat to go off. Others will be alerted with only motion, and there’s a much higher chance of a false alarm. You could also look at the area that surrounds the motion sensor, and see if there’s something that might be triggering it.
Another important thing when talking about motion sensors is to avoid pointing them towards windows or HVAC vents, especially when you have plants or curtains. They’ll flutter due to the air, which is reason enough for a motion sensor to be triggered. Oh, and get rid of those birthday balloons. They’ll fly by the sensor and trigger it.
Teach Everyone How to Use It
Since we mentioned human error, it’s a great idea to have everyone who goes into your home know how to use it. And yes, that includes the dog walker, the babysitter, or any other contractors or workers that might be going inside your home. This is especially critical if you have no way of disarming the alarm yourself, such as with a non-smart alarm.
If you have a smart lock connected to it, make sure the code is easy enough for everyone to remember, but difficult enough for a burglar not to be able to guess it. When you’re entering it, take your time and do it correctly. Too many mistakes will lead to a false alarm.
Keep Everything in a Good Shape
Our last tip is to keep all of the devices you’re buying in a good shape. This is definitely easier if you opt for a company that has a good reputation for making quality, durable products, but in any case, do your best.
A malfunctioning component can lead to chaos with a home security system. This doesn’t only include changing your batteries, but also replacing smoke and fire sensors every few years, and making sure that all of your cameras and smart locks are fully operational. Some might fail, and you’ll want to know something like this happened before you leave your home.