Home Security Equipment
Here you will
find some basic home security equipment information. If you would
like to see the actual equipment that you can buy online then please
see our products and devices section.
If you elect to go with a home
security monitoring service then some or all of the equipment
that is on this page will be included in your system package. This
home security equipment information is mostly intended for DIY enthusiasts
who would like to buy and setup their own home security system.
The basic equipment
of a home security system consists of locks, gates, alarms, sensors,
wireless video cameras, motion detectors, watch dogs, etc. The basic
parts of an alarm system include the main control panel, security
pad, panic buttons, motion sensors and magnetic door and window
sensors. Optional equipment can include glass breaking detectors,
CCTV recorders and other items.
of a Wired or Wireless Home Security Alarm System
- The master
- The keypad
- Door sensors
- Window sensors
- motion sensors
An easy way to
picture how a home security system works is to simplify. Above we
have listed 5 major components but in reality, a home security system
is made up of only three basic parts. They are the main control
panel (the brains of the system), sirens (they alert you by making
a noise when there is a problem) and sensors (magnetic transmitters
that are attatched to doors and windows or motion detectors that
are mounted in strategic locations).
The sensors send
a signal to the control panel and the control panel sets off an
alarm. If your equipment is monitored by a home security monitoring
company then a signal will also be sent to their central control
center so that they can call emergency services on your behalf.
If you go with
one of the home security monitoring companies then buying your components
will be a very simple task. In this scenario, the company will usually
send out a sales representative who will go through your home with
you in order to survey your unique situation and then he or she
will sit down with you and present your equipment options and recommend
what would work best for your home and your particular needs.
If you decide
to go the DIY route and install your home security system yourself,
you will need to either pick and choose which components you would
like to buy or just go with a preset package deal from a reputable
company such as X10.
You could also just visit your local hardware store in order to
see what types of security devices they offer. Just keep in mind
that you can save some money by shopping for your home security
system components from an online retailer such as X10.
A control panel is the central processing device and is sometimes
referred to as the 'brains' of the home security system. You use
the control panel in order to program your system and turn on, turn
off or reset your security system. The control panel is 'controlled'
by the keypad.
This is your user interface. You use the keypad in order to communicate
with your home security system. You can program your system to turn
on or off, set security codes and more.
A magnetic strip is placed on the edge of the door and a transmitter
is placed on the door frame, or vice verse. When the contact between
these two pieces of hardware is broken, a signal is sent to the
central processing device and, if the system is armed, an alarm
will sound. Your system can usually be programmed so that if your
system is not armed, a broken contact will result in a short chirping
sound. This is a handy way to detect when people are coming and
going from designated areas of your home and can work as a safety
device for children.
These work in the same fashion as the door sensors. When the window
is opened, the contacts are 'broken' and a signal is sent to the
'brains' of the system. If you happen to have a monitored security
system then a signal is also sent to the central monitoring station
so that help can be summoned. Most monitoring companies will first
call your home in order to prevent false alarms.
Used to detect intruders, motion detectors can play a crucial roll
in a home security system. They can also be a pain in your side
until you become completely familiar with their intricacies. False
alarms can be a common occurance when motion detectors are first
installed. You can buy motion sensors that only detect a person
or animal that exceeds a certain weight. This can help to cut down
the number of false alarms.
The vibration detector is not normally a component of a basic home
security system. However, they can come in handy if they are properly
calibrated. They are used in order to detect unusual vibrations
such as those that can be created when a window is broken. This
is just more line of defense between you and the bad guys.
Surveillance cameras can be strategically placed in and around your
home. These cameras can send a video signal to a recording device.
This can come in handy after a break-in as it will give the police
a leg-up on catching the bad guys. Wireless video cameras that are
activated by motion can run for a long time since they only go to
work when something is actually happening.
Don't forget your first lines of defense! Having good locks and
gates can help to keep the bad guys out before they even have a
chance to set off your alarms. Of course, burglars don't like watch
dogs either. Loud noises, bright lights, barking dogs and evidence
of a home security system are all elements of an overall house protection
plan. If the bad guys see evidence suggesting that you have any
or all of these elements in place then they are more likely to just
skip your residence.