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There’s a myth that professional alarm monitoring is overpriced and redundant. The idea goes like this: if window sensors, carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors are plenty capable of triggering alarms that shriek loud enough to let you and your neighbors know there’s something going on, why pay a company to be clued in on the obvious?

First off, alarm monitoring doesn’t need to be expensive. For example, Safe-T provides monitoring services for as little as $13.95 per month—an incredible bargain considering all you get in that package.

So what are the benefits of alarm monitoring?

When an un-monitored alarm goes off, you have three responsibilities: ensuring both the safety of your family and yourself; identifying the source of the threat; and contacting authorities. Professional alarm monitoring services cut this list down to one item: get everyone to safety.

Alarm monitoring centers—of which Safe-T is linked to three simultaneously—pay attention to the status of your alarm system 24/7. When your alarm goes off, the center receives a notification and immediately contacts authorities to be dispatched to your property—so if you’re sleeping at night and your smoke or heat detector senses a fire, all you need to do is get out of the house safely and the monitoring center and fire department handle the rest.

Additionally, you can’t hear your alarms when you’re at the store or out of town, but the monitoring center can. If you’re on vacation and a burglar breaks into your house or a fire starts, a Safe-T monitoring center will send assistance so you can rest assured your property will stay safe. It’s true that unmonitored systems could just as easily notify you of a security breach via phone call or text message, but that still means you have to worry about assessing the situation and calling authorities if necessary—which becomes quite difficult when you’re not on-site. With Safe-T monitoring, you get both the peace of mind that your property is being looked after and the personal notification services all in one affordable package.


It’s early afternoon on a fall day, just after the lunch hour. Most homeowners who return home for lunch have already headed back to work, and since school is in full swing, most teens are in the classroom. The neighborhood is relatively empty, but just for good measure, the burglar circling around is dressed as a mailman. In the event that anyone sees him, it’ll be assumed that he’s a mailman delivering packages.

This burglar chose the daytime to strike, because he knows most homeowners will be away. But what is he looking for as he roams through the neighborhood? What are his eyes fixated on? What is he hoping to discover?

An Unkept Property

Are there newspapers piling up on the front porch? Have children’s toys, lawn equipment, and other home goods been left outside? Is the grass untrimmed and walkway full of leaves and debris?

These are the clues a burglar is looking for. If items are left outside, they are perfect for stealing. But if the items aren’t to a burglars liking, at least he knows that homeowner doesn’t seem to care too much about the property. If it’s unkept, that means the homeowner likely didn’t go through the process of installing home security equipment.

Is There Protection Installed?

According to the University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology, 60% percent of burglars will choose a different home if they know home security equipment is installed. If a neighborhood is filled with homes that are secured, they’ll likely choose another neighborhood altogether. Many neighborhood watch groups require members to obtain security equipment per their membership guidelines.

But does your home have decals and signs that advertise equipment? Is the neighborhood boasting neighborhood watch signs? Do you have other signs to promote dogs or other forms of protection?

If you have home security, your equipment should be advertised everywhere you can: windows, doors, yard, and more. If you need a new Safe-T sign or some more decals call us anytime (866) 607-2338.


Safe-T recommends you test your alarm system quarterly. It takes 5 minutes and is the only way to ensure your devices are all operating properly, and communicating with our monitoring station in the event of an emergency. Below are quick instructions, and of course call us with any questions:

  • Notify Safe-T monitoring at 866.689-0599 that you are checking your system. You will be asked some basic identifying questions, and for your password.
  • Locate and turn off the breaker that feeds electricity to the outlet powering the alarm system transformer. Verify the touchpad is still functional, indicating the battery back-up is working. 
  • Open and close each door and window that is tied to the alarm system. Have someone assist by watching the touchpad. It should display when each zone is opened. Some systems display an asterisk (*), and you must press the status button to display the actual zone. 
  • Arm and disarm the system from each touchpad. 
  • Check each panic button. 
  • Listen to the volume of your system. Is it adequate? 
  • Check to see if the strobe light functions, if applicable. 
  • Reset the system, disarming it. 
  • Check with Safe-T at 866.689.0599 to ensure signals were received. 
  • Test each smoke detector, and if they are not tied into your security system change the batteries. Consider upgrading to monitored detectors to ensure Safe-T can dispatch the fire department which is critical if you're not home! 
  • The backup battery should have carried the system through this testing process with no issues. If the system detects that the battery is low, please call Safe-T as it should be replaced. 
  • Turn the breaker back on. 
  • Contact Safe-T monitoring at 866.689.0599 and let them know you are done testing. Even if it isn’t fun, it is free, and it is a really good idea. Call Safe-T 24/7 if you have any questions about testing your system.


When’s the last time you bought something from a door-to-door sales person? It’s not just the pest-control or cookies they’re selling anymore- sometimes it’s a home security monitoring service.

How Do Alarm Systems Work

Electronic alarm systems are made up of three component parts designed to detect, determine and deter criminal activity or other threatening situations. An alarm system can detect an event such as an invasion, fire, gas leak or environmental changes; determine if the event poses a threat; and then send a notification about the event.

Detect

The component of an alarm system that detects activity is called a sensor. Here are some common types of sensors that may be used to protect your home.

· Door and window contacts are switches that indicate the opening or closing of a door or window. The switch is mounted to a door or window and is held closed by a magnet attached to the frame. When the door or window moves away from the magnet, the switch opens and it is sensed by the alarm control panel.

· Motion Sensors can detect movement or motion in a large room.

· Glass Break Detectors are designed to constantly listen for the sound of breaking glass. When the glass break detector hears the sound pattern caused by shattering glass, it sends an electronic signal to the alarm control panel.

· Shock Sensors can detect an intruder that is using force to pound through a wall, roof or other area of the structure.
Carbon Monoxide (CO) detectors are used to detect carbon monoxide; an invisible, odorless, colorless gas. Upon detection of CO, the sensor will send a signal to the control panel, which will then emit an audible alarm.

· Panic Buttons send an immediate, discreet call for help upon the press of a button.

· Environmental Sensors react to the presence of water or sudden increases or decreases in room temperature.

· Smoke Detectors are designed to detect fire. There are two types of detectors: ionization and photoelectric. The most common smoke detector, ionization, is best used to detect flaming fires without a lot of smoke. Photoelectric detection reacts to smoldering fires that produce large amounts of smoke. Both technologies are required to perform at the same level in a fire and provide the same amount of warning. The most effective smoke detector is one that combines both forms of detection.

· A Keypad is a device that is used to arm and disarm an alarm system. Keypads are generally installed near the entrance or exit of home. If a door or window is opened when the system is activated, the keypad will immediately initiate an alarm.


Determine

The alarm system control panel is the brain of the system. It carries out the decide function by processing the information it receives from various sensors and responding accordingly. For example, if a door or window is open while the system is disarmed, the control panel ignores the event. But, if a window is opened while the system is armed, it will immediately respond by sending a signal to your alarm monitoring center and triggering an audible alarm.

Alarm system panels have built in communicators that transmit and receive signals via a phone line. These signals are sent to a central alarm monitoring center where trained dispatchers monitor alarm system signals. In the event of a triggered alarm, a dispatcher will contact you to verify the emergency situation and if necessary, contact the police or fire station on your behalf.

Deter

An alarm panel responds to a triggered alarm by activating physical alarms such as a siren and/or strobe lights. These devices are used to scare an intruder away from your premises or alert you of a threatening situation such as a fire or the presence of carbon monoxide.

The component parts of an alarm system work together to detect, determine and deter danger in your home. To ensure your equipment will function properly in the event of an emergency, it is important to conduct regular testing on your systems.


The Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act requires carbon monoxide detectors to be installed by July 1, 2011 and owners of leased or rental properties must comply by January 1, 2013. READ MORE.