How to Prevent False Alarms
One of the biggest problems with conventional alarm systems is the risk of false alarms. There are several common causes of false alarms, depending on the system. Often, they’re due to motion sensors detecting movement from completely ordinary sources, such as a pet in the home or even dust. Or, the false alarms can be caused by faulty door or window contacts, which cause the alarm to go off even if no door or window has been opened.
Finally, even homeowners can trip their own alarms by failing to enter security codes correctly or by forgetting to inform family members and guests about the alarm when they enter the home.
False alarms are more than just a nuisance. In Toronto and other cities, false alarms are so rampant that police were forced to prioritize alarms that are verified as legitimate. That means systems without verification don’t get Priority Response, resulting in a slower response. And if it turns out that your alarm was an accident, you could be fined too.
Fortunately, there are some easy steps you can take to reduce false alarms and ensure that you get the fastest response possible.
Consider video alarm verification
An ALARM-i video verification system offers an extra layer of protection to ensure that alarm signals are caused by actual disturbances. When your alarm goes off (whether by motion detector, door contact, etc.), the system sends video clips of the event to our monitoring station. This allows our monitoring station operators to independently evaluate the video before dispatching police.
As the homeowner, you too receive video clips of the event so that you can direct the monitoring station whether to dispatch authorities or not.
Make sure your alarm is monitored
Even if you do not use video verification, your security system should still be monitored by a professional monitoring station.
A monitored alarm system ensures that you’ll get the help you need when your alarm is triggered – which is especially critical if you’re away from home or unable to call for help. Additionally, the monitoring station can reduce the risk of false alarms by attempting to make contact with the homeowner before dispatching authorities.
Assess your security system settings & installation
If your alarm is constantly going off for no reason, then you’ll want to assess the cause.
Is the door contact properly installed? Make sure that the contact makes a good connection when the door is closed. Otherwise, the false alarms will only continue.
Are your motion sensors picking up ordinary movement inside your home? Some systems allow you to configure different thresholds of motion, so that things like dust don’t set off the alarm. Some systems also have smart, pet-friendly motion detection, which can differentiate the motion of a burglar from your dog.
Train those with access to the system
If someone else will be using the security system, whether a family member, babysitter, guest or others, they must be properly trained on how to use it. A lack of training will significantly increase the risk of the guest making an error that results in a false alarm.
Take a closer look at ALARM-i
Learn more about protecting your home or business with an ALARM-i video alarm verification system. For more information, call 1-844-416-7587 or contact us online.