New & Noteworthy

CAN I STILL GET A HOME SECURITY SYSTEM IF I HAVE PETS?

One question I have learnt to ask at every residential sales call is “Do you have pets?”  That’s because pets can drastically affect the way a security system works, and therefore should be a huge factor in deciding what your alarm system should look like.  Similarly, an existing system might work perfectly for years, only to have false alarms start when a new pet is introduced to the house.   It can certainly be a challenge, but one that can be overcome with careful consideration and planning.

Motion Detectors - The most obvious culprits for false alarms in the presence of pets are motion detectors.  Many motion detectors are “pet friendly”, and many even give a weight (between 40-80lb on average) under which a pet can essentially be ignored.  However, there are some limitations to these devices, and improper placement or setup can still result in false alarms.

A standard PIR (Passive Infra-Red) motion detector shoots out beams in a sort of three-dimensional grid, and is triggered by objects big enough to cross 2-3 beams at once.  “Pet friendly” motion detectors work by having reduced sensitivity for the grid slices in the lower half of the field of view, making it less responsive to objects that stay low on the ground.  And that is the key; height.  Pointing a pet-friendly motion detector at a flight of stairs will inevitably give you false alarms, as will pointing it right at your cats’ favourite jumping spot.  I have seen more 6lb cats set off false alarms than 40lb dogs, because they love to jump on things when no one is around (even when the owner swears that they don’t!).

Glass-break Sensors - If you have a cat that loves to jump or a dog that enjoys getting rowdy when no one is home, a better alternative might be to strategically cover windows with audio glass-break detection.  These sensors have a microphone in them, and listen for the high-pitched frequency of breaking glass.  Your pets can move around freely without any worry of setting the alarm off.  However, dogs with very high-pitched barks, or pet birds, have been known to set these off too.  One just has to think ahead: does your dog sit at the front window and bark at every car that drives past?  Then maybe the glass break detector should be covering the back windows only.

Placement - The last thing we need to talk about is the general placement of sensors.  I have seen many door contacts, window sensors, and even one glass-break detector damaged by pets because they were placed too close to the ground.  A puppy will chew on just about anything it can get its teeth on, as anyone who has owned one will know.  There are few circumstances where a sensor would have to mounted low (wiring a sliding patio door in a finished house might be one), so these cases can usually be avoided before they happen.  But if you’re system was already setup before you got your pet, it might be worth getting a security professional in to evaluate the existing equipment and its placement.

To sum up, here are the important things to consider:

-          YES, you can definitely have pets and still have a reliable alarm system

-          If you have pets and are getting a new security systemPLEASE bring it up with your salesperson (if they don’t bring it up themselves) and plan around the pets

-          If you have an existing alarm system and then get a pet, CALL your Calgary alarm installation company to discuss how this might affect you and how to minimize false alarms

-          NO, you should not have to live with false alarms just because you have pets.  It may take some effort to get things setup for your pets, but don’t let that dissuade you from having an alarm system altogether; it’s there for your safety AND that of your pets.

Dave Schlegel
Owner, Calgary Security Expert
Oxford Security Systems
Reed Security Authorized Dealer  


Contact Us online today to book your No Obligation, Free Security Evaluation.

CALGARY SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 587.393.2800

SASKATOON SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 306.653.3200

REGINA SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 306.206.0700

PRINCE ALBERT SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 306.922.7200

LLOYDMINSTER SECURITY INQUIRIES...COMING SOON






WHAT CAN AN ACCESS CONTROL SYSTEM DO FOR MY BUSINESS?


Managing a business’ accessibility via the use of swipe cards or keyfobs is a practice that is on the rise in today's marketplace.  Systems are becoming more affordable and easier to use.  Here are some key reasons why more and more Calgary businesses are investing in these state-of-the-art access control security systems:

1. Key Replacement

One of the primary reasons many business owners choose to implement a card access system in their workplace is to eliminate keys.  A large business might have tens, if not hundreds, of locked doors spread across multiple work sites, and as such, the number of keys floating around between employees can be staggering, and incredibly difficult to track.  Keys get misplaced all the time, and it can be days or weeks before an employee either realizes they’ve lost it, or gets around to telling the boss.  During that time, your business is vulnerable to theft, and then there’s the expensive and often time-consuming process of re-keying locks.

With an access control system, a lost card can be disabled with the click of a button.  Not only that, but a “trace” can be put on the card, so that if anyone attempts to gain access to your building using that card, you can be notified, or an integrated CCTV system can take a picture of the door in question.  If the employee then finds it again, you just re-enable it in the software, and you haven’t lost a thing.  And because employees have one “key” that opens every door, they are much more likely to realize that they have lost it and report it to a supervisor in a timely fashion.

2. Grant Access on Your Terms

A card access system allows you to grant an employee access to any door at any time you choose.  Have an employee who should only be in Building A from Monday to Friday?  No problem.  Have a vendor who needs to drop off some equipment between 4AM and 6AM on a Saturday?  Easy.  What about an employee who has just been promoted and now needs access to a different set of rooms?  Just change their access level in the software, and you’re golden.

Unfortunately, one of the realities of running a business is that sometimes you need to let someone go, and not always on the best of terms.  Changing one setting in the software ensures that the employee can’t re-enter the building again, even if they haven’t given you their card back.

Access control can also effectively manage your visitors and clients; people who don’t have a card.  Having your front doors automatically unlock at opening time allows customers into your sales room, but keeping doors to offices and hallways locked means only your employees can access them.

3. Integrate Multiple Systems, Multiple Locations

One of the biggest advantages to implementing a card access system, particularly for large or multi-site businesses, is that many features can be controlled from one centralized computer.  Systems can be setup to control multiple sites across the city, province, country, or even other continents, in real time.  Not only is it easier to have one person or a small team managing the software, but now, when a manager travels to a distant branch of the company, their same card works there too.  Their pre-defined access level allows them access to whatever sites and whatever doors are deemed necessary.

Many card access systems can also interface with alarm systems and video surveillance systems.  Now your alarm system can disarm itself when the first card is swiped in the morning, and a video camera assigned to that door can take a picture for the archives.  You can even manage employee’s user codes directly from the access control interface

 

These are just some of the reasons why many Alberta businesses are implementing access control in their workplaces.  At Reed Security Calgary, every access control system is heavily customized to meet the needs to the building it is protecting. The highly scalable nature of the system means that whether you have one door to manage or 1000, there is always a solution that can keep your employees safe and improve your overall productivity.  Give us a call today to arrange for a free, no-obligation security evaluation; we’d love to meet you and show you how you can get the most out of your security!

Dave Schlegel
Owner, Calgary Security Expert
Oxford Security Systems
Reed Security Authorized Dealer  


Contact Us online today to book your No Obligation, Free Security Evaluation.

CALGARY SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 587.393.2800


REGINA HOME SECURITY TIPS: DESIGNING A PROPER SECURITY SYSTEM


With more Regina Security & Automation Companies to choose from and promoting a variety of Security Packages, we think it's important that you focus on the level of protection that is right for your home. The best Regina Security & Automation Companies work closely with you, and make recommendations based on the layout of your home and the way you will be using your Security & Automation system.


It’s All About You.

The most important thing to remember is that your Security & Automation system should be designed with You in mind, and that means considering the following questions:

  • Do you have pets? Where are they allowed to go in the home, and when?
  • Do you have children? How old are they, and what issues will you face integrating a residential security system into their lives?
  • Will you arm your system when you are at home? Many people do so (growing numbers, in fact), and that can impact your choice and placement of security sensors.
  • Are there areas of the home where you don’t go at night? A basement is a great example, and that can influence the sensors you use there.

There are other questions, of course, and a reputable Regina Security & Automation Company can help you work through all of them. But the main point is that every system should be customized: not just for how your home is laid out, but also for your lifestyle.


This is no time for a “one–size-fits-most” approach!


1. “Stay” vs. “Away” System Arming

One thing we want to address up front is that most up to date alarm systems can be armed in either of two modes: “Stay” and “Away.” In the “Stay” mode, often used when you are home at night, only the perimeter (entry/exit) is armed, and you can move about freely in your home without triggering an alarm. In the “Away” mode, used when you leave your home, there are interior sensors that are also armed – meaning an intruder moving about within the home will also trigger an alarm. 

2. Start with the Perimeter

Since doors are the most common place for an intruder to enter your home, we start there. You should have a door sensor on every exterior door, including the door from the garage into the home. This is the foundation of your alarm system is perimeter protection.

Next come the windows you want to protect – with the window sensor. It’s best to focus on the windows on the sides and back of the house first, since they are less visible, and are therefore more attractive to a burglar. And as for those upstairs windows, you may decide to pass on those – unless a burglar can find an easy way to reach them.

For rooms with lots of windows, a glass break sensor is a great solution. This device has a limited range in any direction (as long as there is line of sight), and that makes the glass break sensor an efficient and cost-effective component of your perimeter protection.

3. Interior Protection

When you arm in the “Away” mode, then you bring into play your interior protection detection device – the motion sensor. You’ll seldom see a security system without at least one of these, and they are designed for backing up your perimeter devices, for an extra layer of security. This sensor is generally placed in high traffic areas and detects movement. The best motion sensors are immune to pets up to 50 lb.

4. Additional Peace of Mind

Once you get your arms around the intrusion component of your system, then you can consider the other devices that work in conjunction with your system – so that you can feel protected and connected.

  • Smoke & heat sensor – we recommend at least one with every system.
  • Carbon monoxide sensor – another important life safety device.
  • Water/flood sensor – if you have a burst pipe, you want to know right away.


Get the Help You Need.

Remember – you should never be on your own when it comes to designing the right level of protection for your home with Wired or Wireless Security System. The advice we've provided on our blog is a good starting point, but you should have an in-depth conversation with our trained security professionals at Reed Security to make sure your Security & Automation system is the right one for you.


Contact Us online today to book your No Obligation, Free Security Evaluation.

REGINA SECURITY & AUTOMATION INQUIRIES...CALL 306.206.0700

7 TIPS TO KEEP YOUR ALARM SYSTEM RUNNING PROPERLY DURING RENOVATIONS

Renovating your house can be a challenging experience, both physically and mentally.  On top of that, many people inadvertently compromise their alarm system by making some very common mistakes.  Avoid adding stress to your renovation by following these precautions:

1. Call your alarm installation company before you start!  Almost every issue can be avoided by planning ahead.  It is also worth letting the monitoring station know the dates of your renovations, so they can respond appropriately if they get any unusual signals.

2. Be cognisant of wires.  While many modern alarm systems are primarily wireless, be aware that alarm wires may be hidden behind walls, baseboards, ceilings, and other pieces of the house you may be dismantling.  If you or your workmen see a wire you don’t recognize, find out what it is before you cut or damage it!  Failing to do so can be a costly mistake.

3. Be careful what you paint!  Many devices, such as door sensors and motion detectors, can be painted to match the décor of the house to some degree.  However, make sure to check with your Calgary alarm professional first.  Painting over the infra-red window on a motion sensor, for example, will render it useless, as will painting over the microphone on an audio glass-break detector.  Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors will also stop working if they are painted.

4. Don’t remove/remount anything you’re not sure about.  I’ve seen painters remove a motion detector to paint behind it, then put it back upside-down.  I’ve seen contractors remove alarm keypads and put the wires back in the wrong order.  If you or your renovation team are not 100% certain about something, consult a Calgary alarm professional first!

5. Replacing door sensors can be a tricky business.  If you’re getting a new door where there once was an alarm sensor, be very careful!  Some security sensors are wireless, and can be relocated to a new door with relative ease; however, I’ve seen contractors throw sensors out with the old door, so be aware of what and where they are.  Wired security sensors can be very difficult to manipulate in an old door frame, so call your Calgary alarm installation company to see if they can assist you.

6. Be aware of powered wires.  Almost everything in an alarm system runs on very low DC voltage, so there is not too much risk to your safety in dealing with alarm wires.  However, touching the wrong two wires together can seriously damage the equipment, leading to costly repairs or replacement parts.

7. When you’re finished, test everything!  No one wants to find out three months after a renovation that the front door sensor wasn’t hooked back up properly.  Open and close every door, walk in front of every motion, and make sure all the alarm zones are registering on your keypad.  Again, if there’s any doubt, call your Calgary alarm company

Above all, don’t take risks with your personal safety or security!  Incorrect installation of alarm equipment can be very hard to detect, so if there’s any question, make sure to have a Calgary alarm system professional come out to verify correct operation before putting your trust back in the system.  That’s what we’re here for.

Dave Schlegel
Owner, Calgary Security Expert
Oxford Security Systems
Reed Security Authorized Dealer  

LEADING CONSTRUCTION DISTRIBUTOR PARTNERS WITH REED SECURITY

Security Building Supplies are veterans in the construction industry since 1968 and supplies lumber and building materials to home builders, renovators, and general contractors.

We supplied and installed a layered security solution which included:

When the project was over we interviewed Jay Fafard, VP of Business Development, and these were his comments:

1. Reed Security proved to have the most detailed quote and provided the best pricing. Both the Sales Representative and the Owner drove to our facility to walk through exactly what we needed and give us advice on where they felt our resources were best spent. We didn’t know exactly what we wanted but we were presented with our choices and Reed Security made it easy to find the best solution for our facilities. 

2. As well, the professionalism and expertise made Reed Security come across as a major player in their field. Our CEO was amazed to find out they were a locally grown business.

3. I would recommend Reed Security any day of the week for both residential and commercial solutions. From first contact with Reed Security right through until the completion of the project the staff was committed, a pleasure to work with, and most importantly knew exactly what they were doing. Reed Security made the process feel easy and straight forward when I am sure that isn’t close to the reality.

Reed Security makes Families Feel Safe and keeps them connected. We also help Businesses Re-gain Control and Grow their Bottom Lines.

Contact Us online today to book your No Obligation, Free Security Evaluation.

SASKATOON SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 306.653.3200

REGINA SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 306.206.0700

PRINCE ALBERT SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 306.922.7200

CALGARY SECURITY INQUIRIES...CALL 587.393.2800

LLOYDMINSTER SECURITY INQUIRIES...COMING SOON

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