Home alarm Systems: Beware, summer is here, it’s false alarm season


If you have a home Security Alarm system and use it regularly be aware that you can cause a false alarm that will annoy you and your neighbours and prompt a drop in the confidence you have in your system.

The false alarm is the industry’s ‘bogie man’. No one benefits from false alarms and the industry has worked wonders to reduce these events over a period of many years.

  • Users hate them
  • Nearby neighbours hate them
  • The police and local authority environmental departments get very annoyed about them.

Modern burglar Alarm systems incorporate the latest electronic processors which have been specifically designed to reduce false activation of the alarm system.

Six common causes of false alarms in your home security alarm system

There are many causes of false alarms in intruder alarm systems. Poor installation can be the cause and can cause an event years after the system was completed.

1. Product failure.

Low quality products will have a shorter life than the equipment used in better quality systems. If they fail they can cause a false alarm.

In professionally installed home alarm systems, product failure is rare. If a product does fail when the alarm is set there is a good chance it will cause a false alarm. Many sensors are designed so small pets can walk around the property when the alarm system is set. You must have the special sensors though. Standard sensors will not allow small animals, pets to move around while the alarm is set.

2. Accident.

Leaving a door unlocked can cause a false alarm when a friend or family member opens the door without a key they will assume someone is at home, wander in and set off the system.

If you set your system and then remember you need to re-enter the property you must de-activate the system first. You cannot nip back in while the exit bleeper is sounding. You must unset the system get what you need and re-set the system in the proper way.


3. Cable damage.

Changes and alterations within your property can cause damage to wiring that was originally installed. Decorating tasks, paint stripping with a blade and more substantial alterations can stretch and damage old cables. This type of damage can cause false alarms any time at a later date. Take care with old alarm cabling.


4. Electromagnetic interference.

Cables become aerials and can pick up spurious electronic interference which may cause false alarms. Because of this the more recent types of alarms have no wire between sensor and control panel. They are described as wireless.


5. Lack of servicing.

Alarm Systems contain batteries. Old systems use at least two special batteries and modern ‘wireless’ systems have batteries in all the sensors. These batteries often will last more than a year but because all batteries can leak or ‘sweat’ it is best to change them regularly. Change the old conventional batteries as recommended by the manufacturers of the equipment – every four years on average. On the modern wireless sensors change the batteries at least once a year. Never be tempted to leave them longer. Once the battery contacts are corroded the growth of the corrosion can cause a temporary power failure and if the alarm is set, a false alarm.


6. Seasonally induced false alarms

Draughts. The classic passive infra red movement detector operates by detecting a change in the ambient temperature of the area it is scanning. It is designed to detect a person sized moving heat source. The latest type of professional PIR movement sensors are designed to be very stable in all circumstances. Nothing is perfect though and sudden changes in the ambient temperature can cause a false alarm on your intruder alarm system


On hot summer days householders sometimes decide to, or accidentally, leave a window open to keep the property cool. This open window could be the source of a draught induced false alarm. When the air in a room changes rapidly the passive infra red sensor can detect the change in temperature and it may be moving across the room just like an intruder would. If your alarm system is set the device may signal an alarm – a false alarm in this case.

How to prevent seasonal false alarms?

Do not leave windows open when your alarm is set. It is bad for security and it is bad for your alarm system’s stability.

To learn more about a Home Alarm Systems for your premises or to speak with one of our burglar alarm experts and arrange a survey of you premises please contact us or call and visit our Trade counter at

Benn Lock and Safe Ltd

13 St David’s Square,Fengate,Peterborough PE1 5QA 01733 552728

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