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 alarms by fail­ing to enter secu­ri­ty codes cor­rect­ly or for­get­ting to inform fam­i­ly mem­bers and guests about the notice when they enter the home.

How To Reduce False Alarms

False alarms are more than just a nui­sance. In Toron­to and oth­er cities, false alarms are so ram­pant that police are 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, you can take some easy steps to reduce false alarms and ensure 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 actu­al dis­tur­bances cause alarm sig­nals. When your alarm goes off (whether by a 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, a pro­fes­sion­al mon­i­tor­ing sta­tion should still mon­i­tor your secu­ri­ty sys­tem.

A mon­i­tored alarm sys­tem ensures 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 con­tact the home­own­er before dis­patch­ing author­i­ties.

Assess your security system settings & installation.

If your alarm con­stant­ly goes off for no rea­son, you’ll want to assess the cause.

Is the door con­tact ade­quate­ly installed? Ensure the com­mu­ni­ca­tion 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 motion thresh­olds so that things like dust don’t set off the alarm. Some sys­tems also have intel­li­gent, pet-friend­ly motion detec­tion, which can dif­fer­en­ti­ate the sign 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 ade­quate­ly trained on how to use it. A lack of train­ing will sig­nif­i­cant­ly increase the risk of the guest mak­ing an error. This 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.

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Mike Wedmann
Mike Wedmann is an experienced Security Industry Professional with over 25 years experience as a Security Integrator and Project Manager. Mike has been with Protection Plus Inc. for over 20 years. Mike has lived in the greater Toronto area for over 25 years with his wife, 2 kids and a dog named Bart. He has an educational background in Communications and writing. Mike is a published author that writes about his experiences on various topics, including his experience as a parent. Primarily Mike writes about Security Industry products and Security Solutions that benefit consumers.