Best Line of Defense: A Properly Functioning Intrusion Alarm
Intrusion alarms, also called burglar alarms have become so common that not only do most new houses being built have pre-installed alarms but so do many apartments and condominiums.
LINES OF DEFENSE
Statistics show that individuals who have NO intrusion alarm system installed in their home or business tend to be burglarized more than those who have a system. The display of an alarm company window sticker or a yard sign can create the first line of defense as a deterrent notifying a potential burglar that your property as an alarm system. The second line of defense is the warning signals (sirens that render very loud noise) which creates attention and can scare off burglars. And the third line of defense is a monitored alarm that has been tested, is in proper working order and is being monitored.
ENTRYWAYS AND ZONES
An intrusion alarm is set up in zones; an area of the property which is protected. These protected areas are entryways like your front door, back door, sliding glass door, and some or all windows. Some windows may be excluded because they are out of reach from a possible intruder or they are windows that do not open. Entry points are installed with a sensor. An alarm may also have a motion detector and smoke detector connected to the system.
WHEN AND WHY TO TEST YOUR ALARM
It is strongly recommended that you test your alarm system monthly. The best line of defense is a properly functioning system. Beyond creating a testing schedule, you should also test:
After a power failure or lighten damage.
After equipment malfunction.
If you have experienced telephone trouble.
If you have had changes to your telephone service – DSL, call waiting, new jacks, etc.
If you have had your carpet or flooring changed.
HOW TO TEST YOUR ALARM
Follow these simple steps, which should take about 15 minutes. You can also reference your alarm system’s user guide for complete instructions.
Call your monitoring company and ask them to place your system on test mode. Have your account information and pass-code available. After you hang up with the monitoring center begin testing.
Remember, during your testing you will not receive a call or actual response from authorities.
Arm your system as usual and step outside and close the front door. Wait outside until you hear the exit delay time-out and the keypad announce “armed”.
Re-enter your front door then wait for the entry countdown to run out which will sound the alarm. Allow the siren to sound for 30 to 60 seconds to ensure the monitoring center receives the signal.
Now disarm the alarm and determine the next entry sensor to test.
Continue this process for each entryway/door or window that has a sensor.
Once you are finished with the testing, call the monitoring center to confirm the results of the test making sure they received each signal you sent. If all signals were received, ask them to take your system off test mode.
If a signal was not received, re-test that entryway sensor. If after re-testing, it still is not responding, you need to schedule service.