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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-16-2007, 11:03 PM Thread Starter
Default Alarm system

Any one recommend a do it yourself home alarm system?
Looks like our neighborhood has been targeted. three days a go house next to mine was robbed and I'm sure it would have been mine if wife wasn't home and today i saw someone looking through the front door and when I got up, they took off running.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-17-2007, 12:12 AM
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We use AAA Alarms.

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-17-2007, 01:08 AM
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Before alarms comes good lock sets. Install quality locks like Schlage and good 1" throw deadbolts. Automatic lighting that turns on at dusk and off at dawn helps, and since you can get these with compact fluorescent bulbs they don't cost an arm and a leg like they used to.(about $20 per unit) Double hung windows should be able to open up to 6" for ventilation and in this position you can drill holes in the top sash and insert a pin or even a nail to stop them from opening further. Most any alarm system will discourage thief's. The trick is to hide the wires and devices from sight. It is tough to disable a system when you can't see the devices. Alarm keypads or key lock switches visible to a thief also helps. Anything that makes noise helps. The last thing a thief wants is to attract attention. All of this said, you will not stop a professional thief with any of it. Most of the time problems come from amature thief's, and they are a lot easier to deal with.

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Last edited by Mike; 07-17-2007 at 01:11 AM.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-17-2007, 02:04 AM
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Even though I spent a lifetime in electronics, when it came to an alarm system I used a professional company to install a sophisticated monitored system. All the points that Mike raised are pre-requisites and down under give at least a 10% reduction in insurance premiums. Don't opt for the cheapest system, remember, if lucky, you get what you pay for.

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-17-2007, 07:22 AM
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I've got a wireless ADT system. My insurance company had a promotion WAY back when my wife and I moved into our first house, so the whole thing installed was under $200. She didn't like the idea of being alone when I was gone, and the alarm made her feel better. Being wireless, there were no wires to install, just the transmitters on each openning. The boxes are a little bulky on the doors, but after a month you honestly don't see them anymore. We liked the system so much, when we moved we had another installed at our new house.

Monitoring is not the cheapest, but it is basically offset by the insurance premium reduction. In order to qualify for the reduction you have to have FIRE monitoring, so at least one monitored smoke detector and a 'rate of rise' heat detector.

The monitoring does work, because my In-laws got a visit from the Sheriff one afternoon they came to feed my dog while I was on vacation. Also, as the batteries get weak in the transmitters, you will get a phone call from ADT telling you that you need to change them. The lithiums last about 4-5 years, and cost $6 a piece in bulk.

If you have a big dog, DO NOT get a motion detector... good way to get false alarms. Depending on your locality, you get 1 free false alarm, then you pay a fine for the rest.

Now, if your shop is in your garage, and you have automatic door openers, then you can't really have an alarm on the big door. One of the best ways to help secure the garage is make sure that folks can't really see what's inside. If it has window panels down at eye level, hang some thin curtains to obscure what's inside. Or, when you replace your garage door in the future, put the window panels up above eye level. When I leave on vacation I put a deep bale padlock thru the track, and disconnect the door openner.

I hear rush advertise a 'lasershield' alarm system, that is supposedly do it yourself, it's available at Best Buy.

Doug
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