Do It Yourself Home Security
As a child growing up in the 70’s, I vividly remember going to gas stations and receiving full service, where an attendant would check your oil level, radiator water level and even wash your windshield. A hardware store was a place where you would pick up items to do minor repairs around your home. The mention of any type of home improvement was strictly left to experts in their respective fields. However in today’s day and age things have taken a turn towards self reliance and independence. A full service gas station is almost impossible to find, and a do it yourself home improvement mega store is just around the block from your house, with materials to practically build a home yourself. A television network has even been created for the do it yourself handyman or woman which gives around the clock instructions on how to do any type of home improvement imaginable. Surprisingly though, seldom do we find any mention of advice for installing your own home security system. Although we all agree that there are some home improvements that are best left up to professional contractors to perform, such as roofing or adding a swimming pool, the question of whether a home security system installation falls under that category will be the topic of discussion for this article.
The following information is given on the assumption that the residence where the installation will take place is an existing home and not a home under any kind of construction.There are three stages involved in the installation of any security system. The first stage is the design and installation of all device wiring. This is the most difficult part of the job and is the part that requires knowledge of how the interior of a home is built because visually it is impossible to see through walls and determine where a barrier of any kind will hinder you from getting a wire through the wall. Even if a wireless system is being used, a wire for the power transformer, a phone line to the outside dmark, a siren wire, a ground wire and a keypad wire must all be run to provide proper system operation. In some cases these wires can all be run to relatively close proximity to one another, but in other cases they are nowhere near one another. If the use of a hardwired system is the choice for the installation, then all the wires mentioned previously must be run in addition to a wires going from the main control panel to every single door, window or device which will be installed. However, for a do it yourself installation it is wiser and much more practical to attempt and install a wireless system.
Once all the required wiring is installed, then stage 2 begins, which is the installation of the devices. The control panel can be installed first, followed by the siren, keypad and then the power transformer. It is then recommended that the phone line connection is made and the ground wire connection be terminated. After successfully performing all necessary wiring connections, then it is time to install all of the wireless devices. Each and every device should be fastened with screws and mounted at their proper alignment.
The third and last stage in the process of installing your wireless home security system is the programming of the control panel. Every control panel comes with very detailed information on how to program every device as well as multiple features relating to the installation. Sensors have to be assigned a type of format which tells the control panel what the function of the device will be. Codes must also be programmed into the system to gain access to arming levels.
It is not a coincidence that no alarm manufacturer allows end users access to installation or programming manuals for their equipment. No technical support will be given to anyone who calls a manufacturers tech support line unless they are a licensed alarm contractor. Most US cities or towns require electrical permits to install a home security system even if it is a wireless system because of the risk of fire or life safety due to incorrect wiring or installation. Aside from the hazard concerns also comes the concern that if a device or entire system is not properly installed it could result in the system creating numerous false alarms which most cities now apply fines to homeowners for.
Although these days homeowners all over the country are willing and able to upgrade almost anything in their homes, you would be well advised to leave the installation of your home security system to a licensed and insured professional installing company.