Tip & How-To about Home Security
Is your alarm beeping? Is it not working like it should be? No need to panic, it's already broken, now it's time to fix it! You need two things to find out what the problem is. The first is a manual for the alarm system. Locate the main metal box where all the wires are ran to and look for a white sticker on the board. If you can't find anything that is close to a manufacturer name look at the panel door for a manufacturer and version. If both of those options fail take a picture of the keypad and post it where it can be identified by someone with a knowledge base. The second item you need is a digital meter. If you don't have a digital meter pick one up at Harbor Freight (sometimes you can find them for free!).
Once you have the manual in hand you can begin troubleshooting. If your system has power great, if not use your manual to locate where the power terminals are located and your meter to see if you have power. If you're unfamiliar with using meters there's lots of YouTube videos that can assist you. This link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QZ57aFQvNc is just one example. If you don't have power, is the panel plugged in? If so, is the outlet working? If your outlet is working, the panel is plugged in, it sounds like you have a bad transformer. Buy a new one that matches the old one's specifications and you'll be ready to go.
Maybe your system has power but is going off all time for no reason. First, you need to find out what zone is going off. After you have located the zone you have to determine if it's hardwire or wireless. If it's a plastic box, chances are it's wireless and the battery needs to be changed. Examine the box closely and look for an area were a small screwdriver could be used to open the box. Be careful!! The clips break! See what battery is in it and replace it. If it's a hardwire system it's a little bit more difficult, it would be best to leave that up to the professionals.
One last tip is to go to the troubleshooting section of your user manual. Often times it will have great instructions on how to pinpoint down the problem with specific troubleshooting techniques for each panel. Most of the time it has to do with different lights that are being displayed on the keypad. There's a lot more that could be said on this topic but this is only Troubleshooting 101.
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