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Testing Procedures.

 

It is important to periodically test your alarm system to make sure it is still communicating properly to the central station.  In the owners manual you will see it says to test on a weekly basis.  While this may be the optimum routine, it is not practical for most people.

 

I recommend a test once a quarter (when you receive your monitoring bill) or at minimum twice a year (daylight savings time is a good bench mark).  When testing your alarm there are several things to look for:   

1)         The individual sensors are responding properly

2)         The siren is functioning

3)         The panel is able to communicate with the central station

4)         The back-up battery is in good shape (this should be replaced every 5 years)

 

By following the procedures outlined below you can test several of these at one time.

Testing Alarm Reporting & Siren

1)                  Call the central station (1-800-752-2490), tell them you want to put your system on test for an hour.  Give them your account number if you have it, or they can find you by your address. 

2)                  Arm your system, and then activate it by opening a window (if you open a door keep in mind that you will have to wait for the delay times to expire before the alarm will actually sound).

3)                  Let the siren sound for at least 30 seconds before shutting off the alarm.  This would be a good time to open a few more windows to test those sensors too.  You will not hear any difference, but the windows that were opened should be displayed on the keypad.

4)                  Turn off the alarm, and note on the keypad that the windows you opened were displayed on the keypad.  On most systems you will have to enter the disarming sequence again to clear the display of the alarms.

5)                  Call the central station back and confirm that they received alarms from the zones that were activated.

6)                  Tell them you are done testing and put your system back on line..

 

If the test was not successful, notify me either by phone or email to schedule a service call.

 

 

 

 

Testing individual sensors

 

There are a couple ways to test the individual sensors.  One is following the procedures above, but you may not want the siren to run while you are opening all of the windows and doors. An alternative is as follows:

 

The system should say “Ready to Arm” before entering the test mode.

1)      Enter your code and press the 5 (test) key. 

a)      Some older systems will run the siren immediately for about 3 seconds.  Do not try to turn off the system, it will stop by itself in a few seconds

b)      Newer systems will ask you to press 1 for Dial test or 0 for walk test.  Enter 0 for walk test, the siren will sound for a few seconds.

2)      You are now in the test mode.  Note that the keypad will beep at you once every 30 seconds to remind you that you are still testing.

3)      Open and close the doors or windows that are connected to your alarm.  Each time you open the window/door, the keypad should beep 3 times (sometimes more on some systems).  Some systems will also beep when you close the window/door again.  Verify that each opening is registered at the keypad.

4)      When you are done testing enter your code plus 1 just like you are turning off the system to exit the test mode.

5)      In the test mode, motion sensors will also cause the keypad to beep.  If you have wireless motion sensors, these generally only activate once in a 3 minute period (battery saver feature) so you may not get an activation every time.

 

If any of the sensors did not activate the keypad, then call my office to arrange a service call.