5 Things to Consider When Choosing a Security System

| October 21, 2012

setting home security alarm From kickproofing your door to buying a burglar alarm, there are different ways to boost your home security. It’s up to you to decide how much is needed to keep your home safe. Continue reading for tips on home security, and then head on over to DexKnows to find providers in your community.

Can I improve what I have?

Consumer Reports suggests steps such as kickproofing your doors and choosing the right locks. You can use a 1-inch-long deadbolt lock and a reinforced metal box strike to reinforce your doors. Three-inch-long screws will mount them into the framing so they hold better. Talk to locksmiths for tips on how to get the most secure locks possible within your budget and needs. Be careful lending keys to anyone because thieves can makes a copy of your key and use it to get into your house. Check out DexKnows to find a seller of locks in your neighborhood.

Security or safety window film can help protect glass. The film holds glass fragments together, which means less chance of an injury from flying glass in a severe storm. It also means it would take longer for a thief to break through the window. You can even get glass that stops wi-fi signals from leaking through windows and falling prey to data thieves.

Keep your property well-lit and avoid high shrubs or other plants that may give a burglar a place to hide. Consumer Reports suggests that surrounding your house with gravel beds makes it easier to hear people outside.

What are the pros and cons of keyless entry?

Keyless entry systems eliminate the need for keys, which in turn eliminates problems such as losing your keys and having to change the locks. Options include a keyless entry deadbolt, lever or powerbolt lock. You simply assign a code and share it with whomever needs it. If you change housemates or the code gets out to someone who you don’t want to have it, you can change the code. Another option is remote access, which lets you disable and enable the alarm from another location. Whatever you get, make sure that everyone in your household can operate it. Choose passwords hard to guess but make sure they are not so difficult that family members, including children, won’t be able to remember them.

What kind of safe do I need?

When buying safes, decide what’s needed and what’s practical. For some families, a wall safe or a safe requiring keyed entry is best suited to keeping personal belongings protected. Others may benefit more from something like a safe made to look like a clock, a light or even a soda bottle. There are fire safes that keep papers like deeds and tax records safe. Burglary safes protect your valuables from thieves while you can also buy a fire and burglary safe. There are also gun safes to keep your guns from both intruders and children.

Should I get a home security system?

That largely depends on what you have to protect. You can’t watch your family and home around the clock. Decide whether you want to install a home security system that includes off-site monitoring. That means someone is watching out for you and — if any issues arise — contacting authorities.

There are different options. For some, a system that emits a loud noise if an intruder tries to get in is enough. Other systems automatically contact an emergency response center. You can choose a security camera that includes digital zoom, image capture, infrared and motion detection.

Remote viewing options include viewing over the Web, on a smartphone or a tablet. Security cameras are viewable on devices connected to the internet, including iPhones, Android, BlackBerry and Windows phones. Viewing features may include live streaming, zoom wireless control of the camera and remote playback. This gives you the ability to check in on your home or business when you are away.

Some systems also feature a panic button that immediately alerts the monitoring station to contact police.

Remember to not only put sensors on windows and doors but also on any garage doors. Thieves often gain access to the house by going through an attached garage. And search for a system with a battery backup. You don’t want your belongings stolen just because a storm came through and knocked out power, making your home easy pickings for a thief.

Should I get a wired or wireless alarm?

Wired alarms use basic wiring to communicate between the sensors, camera and control panel. They are less likely to suffer interference than wireless connections and cost less to buy. Installing them in a way to conceal them takes some skill that requires a professional installer.

Wireless systems use radio transmitters instead of wires. Interference is a concern, so be careful not to place them too close to other electronic appliances. On the pro side, it is easier to move them, they are easier to install and, if you move, it’s easy to take with you. While they cost more to buy, they cost less to have installed.

Keep these considerations in mind while deciding the best way to secure your home.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Category: Home & Garden, Safety & Security

About the Author ()

Central Ohio journalist with 15 years experience at daily newspapers. Freelance writer and amateur photographer. Storytellers are my heroes, poets my idols and photographers my looking glass.