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Security Alarm Systems

Security alarm systems are one of the most popular methods homeowners employ to protect their properties and possessions. They are efficient at deterring burglars – initially by their visible presence on a building, and also by their loud alarms which are activated should the property be entered without authority. When it comes to choosing a burglar alarm system, there are several different types – each with different levels of security as well as varying features and benefits.

Types of Security Alarms

Bells-only Alarms

This type of burglar alarm is the most simple to install and operate. If an intruder attempts to enter the property then a bell or siren is activated with the intention of deterring them and alerting people in the local vicinity. The advantages of bells-only alarms include the low installation cost and simplicity of the system. The visible box on the outside of the property will act as a deterrent to thieves. The disadvantages, however, are that there is no response to alarms – it is reliant on you or someone else notifying the police. In addition, the system lends itself to false alarms and these may become a nuisance to your neighbours. It will also be necessary to pay for additional maintenance should the system fail.

Maintenance Contract Alarms

For those who wish to have their alarm systems maintained on a regular basis, a maintenance contract alarm could be the solution. This type of alarm system is different to bells-only in that it will be professionally maintained at least once a year. The idea behind this is to limit the number of false alarms, which are usually activated by faulty systems, and cause annoyance to neighbours and local people. The advantages of this system over a bells-only system are the extra peace of mind that is achieved from the professional maintenance, and the potential reduction in false alarms. The only disadvantage compared to bells-only would be the extra cost for the maintenance services. This type of system also requires someone to notify the police if a burglar enters the property.

Monitoring Contract Alarms

The next type of security system is a monitoring system. In the event that the alarm is activated, a monitoring company will contact you or a named keyholder to notify you of the alarm. You can then either contact the police or arrange for the alarm to be deactivated if the alarm is false. This type of system is more sophisticated than bells-only and maintenance, in that it will only be activated should two indications of burglary occur. These include the alarm being set off, and the sound of a window being smashed, or a door being kicked in.

The main advantage of this type of alarm system is that it is more sophisticated and will notify you, wherever you may be, that the alarm has been activated. This means that you can report a burglary quickly or make sure that the alarm is deactivated if it is false, both giving you extra peace of mind over other types of security alarms. It is a fantastic option for those living in remote areas, where local people are less likely to be alerted, or anyone with high value possessions in their property. The disadvantages, however, are that the system is understandably more expensive than maintenance and bells-only systems. It also relies on either you or a keyholder to be available to take the call from the monitoring company, and may also mean that you need to return to the home to deactivate the alarm.

Police Response Alarms

It is also possible to link your home security system to the local police force. The system will be maintained and monitored by a security company, but will also have a link to the police. This does not mean, however, that a visit from the police is guaranteed should the alarm be activated. It is dependent upon the available police resources in the local area, and how many incidents are being investigated at the same time. If it is absolutely certain that an intruder has entered the property, the emergency call will be given a higher priority.

This type of alarm system understandably gives a higher level of protection, with a direct link to the police force. It therefore gives homeowners much more peace of mind. The disadvantages of this type of system are that it is more expensive that other types, and a visit from the police is not guaranteed. In addition, if three false alarms are activated, then the police will no longer come to your property.

Speech Dialler Alarms

This type of alarm system does not involve monitoring, but instead, an automatic system will dial your nominated telephone numbers should your alarm be activated. The system will relay a recorded alert once the call is answered. A speech dialler alarm system will be activated if only one sensor is triggered.

The advantage of this type of system is that it is cheaper than monitoring, yet it will still notify you in the event of an intrusion. The disadvantage is that the system is not as sophisticated as other monitoring systems (e.g. the alarm will be activated on one sensor being triggered meaning that false alarms are more likely). This type of system also charges for the costs of the phone calls, so the more times the alarm is activated, the more you will pay.

Custom Security Alarm Packages

There are many security companies in the UK that will customise home security alarm systems. Whether it’s incorporating a panic button, or perhaps even smoke or carbon monoxide detection, any level of security is usually possible, at a price. It is also possible to incorporate home CCTV systems in addition to alarms. 

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