4 Types of Home Security Systems
Protecting the home and the people and things inside it is among most homeowners' top concerns. The good news is that home security systems have a good track record for deterring break-ins and securing the home. There are many options on the market at a range of price points, each with its own benefits and drawbacks.
Traditionally monitored systems worked by sending an alert to a call center or emergency responders when triggered. While this sort of system still exists, it is no longer the only option.
Monitored systems require the least interaction from the user. A help response can be triggered even when the homeowner is away and unaware of what is going on at the home.
Traditionally monitored systems are among the more expensive options available, as they typically involve an ongoing subscription. If a false alarm is triggered, it must be disabled with a phone call to keep authorities from arriving.
Self-monitored systems work over Wi-Fi and give real-time responses when the alarm is activated. Often, hidden cameras can be viewed through an app when the system is triggered. The homeowner can then, if necessary, call the authorities. These systems can often be easily installed by an individual. However, they typically require the homeowner to make a phone call to police. If the homeowner is not near their phone or in an area with no signal, they may miss an intruder.
Unmonitored systems work by setting off a loud alarm when triggered. These typically use motion detectors, glass-break sensors, and door and window sensors to detect potential intruders.
Unmonitored systems usually involve a one-time expense at installation. While these often provide enough of a deterrent, they may be less effective in areas where there are few or no neighbors nearby.
Wired Security Systems
Both monitored and unmonitored systems can be wired into the home through low-voltage wiring attached to an alarm panel. In this type of system, all entry points in the home are wired back to a main control panel. Motion detectors, glass-break sensors, and other security devices may be used.
Wired systems are highly reliable because they do not depend on radio frequencies to communicate. As long as the wiring is intact, they will continue to work. However, these systems are more expensive to install.
Wireless Security Systems
Wireless systems include all the same sensors and monitors as wired systems. The difference is that these communicate with the control panel through Wi-Fi.
Wireless security systems are inexpensive and easy to install. Most are simple DIY projects. Because there are no wires to interrupt, the system cannot be cut off the way a wired system can.
Because each component is wireless, these systems require batteries that must be regularly replaced or recharged to work.
No one security system will be the solution for every single homeowner. Many people opt for a mix of system types that meet their personal preferences and price points. By investigating the system types that are available and the pros and cons of each, homeowners can find the system that helps address their security needs and keeps their households more secure.