A simple but critical maintenance task for anyone with a home security system is a monthly test of the alarm system. Occasionally, the security equipment you count on for protection can fail or experience a malfunction. By testing your alarm system every month, you can catch system glitches before they become a major problem.
This monthly test only takes six easy steps which can be completed in under 15 minutes.
- Set up the test with your monitoring station. When you call, you will need to provide your account number and pass-code, so have those at hand. Let the representative know you would like to put your system in “test” mode, which will stop the monitoring station from contacting emergency personnel when the alarm is tripped. Hang up before you actually test the system, because your landline will not work during the test.
- Arm your security system. First, make sure all doors and windows are properly closed and that there won’t be anyone who accidentally disrupts a motion detector during the test. Then, simply arm the system as you normally would and wait until the delay timer has lapsed.
- Trigger the alarm. Each time you test your system, set off the alarm in a different way (opening a door, setting off a motion detector, raising a window). This way, you are continually testing all the various components of your alarm system and making sure they are correctly communicating with your monitoring station.
- Let the alarm go for one full minute. While the alarm sound will not be pleasant, it’s best to have it go for an extended period of time so that your monitoring station can receive the signal.
- After one minute, turn the alarm off and reset it. Go through the normal steps you would take to disarm the system, such as entering your code on the keypad.
- Lastly, talk with your monitoring station. When you call, ask the representative to verify if the monitoring station did or did not receive a signal when you triggered the alarm. Be sure to ask what signal they received, just to make sure the right one went through. Then, if the system worked, ask the representative to take the “test” mode off from your system. If there was an issue with the test, you can try running it again.