Home security consists of both the physical security hardware put into a house and people’s personal security techniques. Physical security hardware usually includes deadbolts on doors and windows, secure lighting, alarm systems, motion sensors, and security cameras. Personal security equipment may consist of a small gun, keychain keypads, pepper spray or stun gun, keychain necklaces, compartments for keys and jewelry, and even a portable padlock. All of these tactics are designed to give homeowners an added degree of protection and to discourage intruders from breaking into a house.
Motion sensors are used in home security systems to detect intruders and are typically used in pairs. There are two types of motion sensors: passive infrared and ultrasonic. Passive infrared motion sensors pick up heat from a surface and change its temperature when movement is detected. If the sensor “thinks” there is an intruder, then it will send out an alarm or signal to a base unit that broadcasts the information to the monitoring system. Passive infrared glass break detectors will only set off the alarm if it detects a break in through glass.
Alarms are the primary component of security hardware. These alarms can be set to different levels of sensitivity, which correspond to different costs of the alarms. Some security hardware packages include “shock” commands that initiate alarm activation based on proximity to the triggering point. Other alarms use sensors to detect when doors or windows have been opened while the device is in standby mode. Other “smart” or programmable alarms will automatically activate once doors or windows have been opened and will contact a monitoring service to dispatch emergency authorities. These advanced alarms are becoming more popular in homes as they offer greater flexibility and are easier to install.
Glass break detectors are a popular option for home security systems because of their ease of installation and effectiveness. They can be controlled by a remote device or by a computer. Most glass break detectors use infra red laser sensors that locate intruders through the broken glass on windows and doors. These sensors can also detect heat signatures that are characteristic of entering hands.
Motion sensors can also detect motion through window panes and glass doors and come with optional attachments for added functionality. Many motion sensors are powered by a lithium-based battery and need to be installed on the exterior of the home or within a perimeter before sensors can be activated. One advantage of smart motion detectors is that they do not require manual control. They can sense motion throughout the premises and send an alert to a remote monitoring service if motion is detected.
A home security system consists of several components such as motion sensors, switches, control panels, phone lines, and a monitoring center. The control panel controls all of the functions of the entire system. It is generally the part of the home that is most vulnerable to potential intruders and will be the target of most attacks. Security systems can vary in complexity, depending upon the property in question and the owner’s budget. Most systems today include a centralized control panel, which serves as the hub of operations.