April 26, 2012
8 Great Alarm Notifications
Wireless home security has really started to evolve over the past few years. The best alarm systems can now do a lot more than just use your phone line to send an intrusion alarm to the monitoring center. This doesn’t mean that every alarm company is using the latest technology, but at least the advanced products and features are available – from the right alarm company!
There are monitored sensors for every condition now: fire, water, temperature, and carbon monoxide.
The way alarm systems communicate has also changed, increasingly switching toa GSM cellular link for the highest level of safety and reliability.
But the “leading edge” of home security doesn’t stop with new sensors and cellular monitoring. People also want remote control, video services, free apps, and – probably the favorite next-generation feature of all – notifications. With this popular feature, your alarm system can notify you by text or email no matter where you are, about any event happening at your home.
8 Great Alarm Notifications:
- Standard Alerts – When the kids get home from school, or other family members come and go. Whenever a sensor monitoring a door opening or closing is triggered, you can know that one of your family members is entering or leaving.
- No-Show Alerts - When the system is armed, or disarmed. “No-show” alerts can notify you by text or email if your alarm system is not disarmed in a specified window of time – like when the kids don’t get home by a certain time.
- Service Provider Alerts - When a service provider arrives or leaves. As I wrote in my previous post on notifications, we fired our dog walker for walks that were too short. How did we know? Our alarm system sends an email to my Blackberry each time an exterior door opens - and even tells me which door.
- Power Outage Alert - When you lose power – and when it comes back. This is great for second homes and frequent travelers. Most alarm systems have a 4-hour backup battery (FrontPoint uses a 24-hour rechargeable battery).
- Water Alert - When you have water in the basement. Maybe the sump pump is on the fritz, or a drain is blocked. Better to know sooner than later.
- Low Temperature Alert – When the temperature drops, and you’re not at home. Take action before those pipes freeze and burst. Again, great for second home or when you travel, and you can forestall a whopping repair bill this way.
- Actual Alarm Alert - When there is an actual alarm. You’ll know before the monitoring center calls you to verify the alarm. If it’s a false alarm, you may be able to prevent a dispatch in error – and a possible false alarm fine from your local police.
- Garage Door Open Alert – You can even set the system to notify you when the garage door has been left open longer than a set period (like 5 minutes).
How Home Security Notifications Work
Every time a sensor in your home is activated, it sends a signal to your alarm control panel – and that signal can be forwarded to you (or anyone you designate) over the cellular link. You can get alerts each time a door opens or a motion sensor is activated - and even put a micro sensor on “sensitive” locations like a medicine cabinet, liquor closet, or gun safe. You get to choose which sensors, and which events, at what times, become notifications – and who receives them.
Notifications are not new to FrontPoint. In fact, we have been offering them with our Interactive Monitoring for over 3 years – and many customers consider notifications to be the heart of the interactive wireless home security that we are known for. Clearly, people love this level of connection with their homes.
By the way, our technology partners at Alarm.com provide the notification in every FrontPoint system, and they just informed us that they’ve processed over two billion alarm sensor signals since they began operations – now that’s a lot of notifications!
What alarm notifications do you find most valuable?