How does a smart alarm system work?

Posted February 15th, 2021 by SimpliSafe

So, burglar alarms have gotten a lot smarter these days. In fact, many of our go-to gadgets are labelled ‘smart’. From mobile phones to clocks, advanced and intelligent technology is at our fingertips. When it comes to a home alarm, a smart alarm system is invaluable; how exactly does one work though?

How is a smart alarm system set up?

As opposed to traditional alarm systems, a smart alarm is super easy to set up, as you can do it yourself in minutes. Why is it so easy? Well, being that there are no wires involved, you don’t have to rely on the hassle of getting a professional to install it for you, to get it completely wired around your house. Check out our guide on wireless alarm systems vs wired systems to find out more.

With a smart alarm system, it also uses an inbuilt cellular connection and Wi-Fi to connect, making it both wireless and reliable. If you don’t have Wi-Fi, a smart system can also use a cellular backup. When connecting a smart home security camera, however, Wi-Fi is needed. When connecting sensors around your home, all you have to do is simply pair them to a wireless keypad and base station - like the SimpliSafe keypad and SimpliSafe base station.

What can a smart alarm system connect to?

One of the best things about a smart home alarm is its ability to connect to a variety of devices and sensors. For instance, did you know that you can connect a smart alarm system to:

  • A glassbreak sensor - if any of your windows break from an intruder entering your home, this detects the distinct sound of glass breaking to trigger the alarm

  • A motion sensor - detects motion using the unique heat signature of humans within nine metres

  • A water sensor - this type of sensor triggers an alarm whenever it comes into contact with water, such as from floods or leaks.The SimpliSafe water sensor can be placed near common household water sources, such as a dishwasher or boiler room, to help monitor leaks and prevent major flood damage

  •  A temperature sensor - the SimpliSafe temperature sensor is built to sense if your home ever drops below 5°C and will trigger an alarm so you can prevent pipes from bursting or freezing

  • A smoke detector - this triggers an alarm whenever smoke is detected. The SimpliSafe smoke detector is built with photoelectric sensors

  • Mobile, tablet or computer - you can connect the smart alarm system to a mobile app, tablet app or computer to monitor, control and arm or disarm your system from anywhere, as well as look into recordings or camera footage

  • Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple Watch - this smart alarm can work with a variety of smart home integration technologies

Professional monitoring

Whether you’re away for the weekend or out for a walk professional monitoring allows you to rest easy as your home is monitored 24/7 by security experts at an alarm receiving centre that will act on any alarm signal when received. Here is a step-by-step process of how a monitored alarm system works:

  • Upon receiving an alarm signal, an alarm receiving centre will call you to check up on you.

  • They can access your home security camera to visually verify an incident. If it’s tricky to confirm or verify, the monitoring centre can send out a guard to your home.

  • If an intruder or fire incident has been visually confirmed, they will request the dispatch of the appropriate emergency services.

Guard dispatch with smart alarms

If you’re not able to check in on things or a visual confirmation is hard to get, a guard can also be dispatched. This works by:

  • Once an alarm has been triggered and you’re not able to confirm or check on things, a guard can be dispatched to check the perimeter of your property, looking for any signs of a break-in. Find out more about how the guard dispatch works here.

  • If the guard doesn’t find anything suspicious and has monitored the perimeter and house in good time, they will report a false alarm. If, however, the guard does find that there has been an intrusion and sees any damage to the property, they will call the police for you.

  • They will also call your nominated keyholder(s).

  • They will wait on site for both the emergency services, yourself and/or keyholders to show up.

  • Everything will be logged and added to a report.

Recording and capturing footage

With a smart home security system, you can help gather incriminating evidence on intruders thanks to cameras being able to record around your home. These are best placed near entry points to capture any potential break-ins.

Not only does a  home security camera work with professional monitoring to help confirm incidents, you can also use them to access live video and audio footage from a computer, smartphone or tablet from wherever you are to keep an eye on things: your pets, babysitters, children, family etc.

Why not see why our alarm system is voted one of the best for smart alarm technology, find out even more about how SimpliSafe works by getting in touch.