Alarm Users: Prevent False Alarms

As an alarm owner, it is important that you take responsibility for the operation of your alarm system. False alarms can be prevented.

User Error

  • The vast majority of false alarms are caused by user error.
  • Everyone who has a key to your home or business needs to know how to operate the system and how to cancel an alarm with their password.
  • Typical persons causing false alarms are your children, neighbors, house sitters, new employees, cleaning crews, real estate agents, delivery personnel and contractors; either they did not have the code or did not know how to properly operate the system.
  • Provide anyone using your alarm system hands on training.
  • Failure to shut interior doors to control pets can cause false alarms.
  • Doors and windows not properly locked can be blown open during wind storms.
  • False alarms can also occur because of after hour’s deliveries or when businesses fail to lock a closed door and then a customer opens it.
  • Exit and re-enter with a time delay. Once you exit, you must disarm the system to re-enter if you forgot something inside. The exit time delay allows for only one exit before it arms the system.
  • Balloons and hanging items are a cause of false alarms.
  • Notify your alarm monitoring company immediately of all changes in responsible parties and/or phone contact numbers. This can help prevent a false alarm call and is extremely important during emergency contact notifications.
  • Keep the 24 hour phone number of your monitoring company handy. You cannot cancel an activated alarm by calling 9-1-1; only your alarm company can cancel the alarm.

Alarm System Maintenance

  • Know how your system works. Check with your alarm company if you have questions. If you have misplaced the operations manual, ask your alarm company for a copy.
  • Schedule regular maintenance checks by your alarm company; they can help prevent equipment problems and provide valuable on site training.
  • Test the system according to the frequency suggested by the alarm company.
  • Notify your alarm company if you add DSL, VoIP, call waiting, fax line, change your direct phone lines or add new walls or remove walls.
  • Change the back up batteries every 3 to 5 years or earlier if you have experienced long power outages. Check your batteries on wireless alarm systems.
  • Have the system’s sensors properly set for all door and window contacts, pets, balloons, hanging decorations and air heating/AC systems.
  • If high winds and storms have caused a false alarm, have your alarm company readjust your sensors or upgrade your alarm sensors.
  • The technologies in alarm equipment have advanced tremendously in the past few years; check with your alarm company to take advantage of new systems.


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