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How to Make Sure Your Security System Will Work in a Real Emergency

How to Make Sure Your Security System Will Work in a Real Emergency

Having a security system can ward off burglars, but you should test this system at least once a month to ensure the safety of your cherished possessions and your loved ones in the event of a true emergency.

So, how do you test your alarm without freaking out your family and annoying your neighbors? Read on for step-by-step instructions for making sure your alarm system is ready for an emergency.

1. Read the Manual

For the most part, the testing process will be the same regardless of your home security system. Many manuals will include something called a “walk through” test for testing your alarm. Double-check the testing instructions in the manual in case there are any steps not covered in this tutorial.

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2. Call Your Service Provider

Your alarm service provider will be able to take your system offline during a test. This way, the test will not cause any accidental dispatch.

3. Alert Your Family and Neighbors

The sound of the alarm can incite panic in any unknowing family members or neighbors, so make sure everyone in the house and in the surrounding homes knows you will be running a test.

4. Make Your Pets Comfortable

Don’t forget about Fido! Since animals have very sensitive hearing, make them as comfortable as possible during the alarm test. Secure pets in an enclosed room with familiar items to help keep them calm.

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5. Prepare for the Test

Run the test as if you were actually leaving the house. Lock all protected windows and doors.

6. Arm Your System

Now is when the fun begins. Once everything is in place, activate the test mode on your system and allow the delay time to expire so it is active.

7. Test the Sensors

Your system may tell you which sensor areas to check, especially if any are not working properly. Test each sensor to make sure the signal is strong and the alarm sounds each time. All it takes is one unchecked area to allow an intruder to enter your home.

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8. Test Other Detection Methods

If your system includes other forms of detection, read the following sections as they apply to your security system:

  • Smoke detectors: Test the smoke detectors by pressing the test button or by using a can of smoke, but whatever you do, do not test it by burning something.
  • Heat detectors: Rub your hands together for 30 seconds and place your hands on the heat sensors to see if they respond.
  • Motion detectors: Walk back and forth in front of the motion detector. Motion detectors will usually respond when they sense heat and motion, so make sure that you create motion in the area where the detector is aimed.
  • Flood sensors: Create the same response as a rising water level by completing the circuit with a piece of metal to join the two prongs on the end of the sensor.
  • Low temperature sensors: Put an ice cube or tray of ice water in front of the sensor to mimic freezing conditions.

9. End Test Mode and Review Results

Once you have completed the test, end the test mode and rearm the alarm. If you experienced any errors, contact your service provider.

Consider testing your alarm system monthly. However, this is no substitute for professional maintenance; also arrange for periodic inspections and servicing from your alarm service provider.

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False alarms cost consumers thousands of dollars in fines every year, so make sure you understand how to operate your alarm system and test it properly.

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Last Updated on March 24, 2021

8 Smart Home Gadgets You Need in Your House

8 Smart Home Gadgets You Need in Your House

We’ve all done it. We’ve gone out and bought useless gadgets that we don’t really need, just because they seemed really cool at the time. Then, we are stuck with a bunch of junk, and end up tossing it or trying to sell it on Ebay.

On the other hand, there are some pretty awesome tech inventions that are actually useful. For instance, many of the latest home gadgets do some of your work for you, from adjusting the home thermostat to locking your front door. And, if used as designed, these tools should really help to make your life a lot easier—and that’s not just a claim from some infomercial trying to sell you yet another useless gadget.

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Take a look at some of the most popular “smart gadgets” on the market:

1. Smart Door Locks

A smart lock lets you lock and unlock your doors by using your smartphone, a special key fob, or biometrics. These locks are keyless, and much more difficult for intruders to break into, making your home a lot safer. You can even use a special app to let people into your home if you are not there to greet them.

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2. Smart Kitchen Tools

Wouldn’t you just love to have a pot of coffee waiting for you when you get home from work? What about a “smart pan” that tells you exactly when you need to flip that omelet? From meat thermometers to kitchen scales, you’ll find a variety of “smart” gadgets designed to make culinary geeks salivate.

3. Mini Home Speaker Play:1

If you love big sound, but hate how much space big speakers take up, and if you want a stereo system that is no bigger than your fist, check out the Play:1 mini speaker. All you have to do is plug it in, connect, and then you can stream without worrying about any interruptions or interface. You can even add onto it, and have different music playing in different rooms.

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4. Wi-Fi Security Cameras

These are the latest in home security, and they connect to the Wi-Fi in your home. You can use your mobile devices to monitor what is going on in your home at all times, no matter where you are. Options include motion sensors, two-way audio, and different recording options.

5. Nest Thermostat

This is a thermostat that lives with you. It can sense seasonal changes, temperature changes, etc., and it will adjust itself automatically. You will never have to fiddle with a thermostat dial or keypad again, because this one basically does all of the work for you. It can also help you to save as much as 12% on heating bills, and 15% on cooling bills.

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6. Smart Lighting

Control your home lighting from your remote device. This is great if you are out and want to make sure that there are some lights on. It is designed to be energy efficient, so it will pay for itself over time because you won’t have to spend so much on your monthly energy bills.

7. Google Chromecast Ultra

Whether you love movies, television shows, music, etc., you can stream it all using Google Chromecast Ultra. Stream all of the entertainment you love in up to 4K UHD and HDR, for just $69 monthly.

8. Canary

This home security system will automatically contact emergency services when they are needed. This system offers both video and audio surveillance, so there will be evidence if there are any break-ins on your property. You can also use it to check up on what’s happening at home when you are not there, including to make sure the kids are doing their homework.

Featured photo credit: Karolina via kaboompics.com

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