Once you’ve decided to install a security system, you’ll have to decide whether you want a hard-wired system or a wireless one. Each system has its own pros and cons, so it all comes down to personal preference. Here’s a quick rundown of some of the benefits and setbacks of both of the systems.
Hard-wired systems can be inconvenient to install unless you’re currently in the process of building your home. Oftentimes, it’s best to leave installing a hard-wired system to the professionals unless you have experience and the necessary tools. A professional will also be able to make the wiring and various other system components as inconspicuous as possible. If you’re installing this yourself, you may wish to install several outlets at strategic points around the house. Even if you’re not planning to use them all at once in the beginning, setting them into place ahead of time may save you a lot of trouble later on. You may also choose to install standard sensors in various locations that you’d like to upgrade your system at some point in the future. You could also just set up the wires in these locations, and cover them with a panel until you want to upgrade your system and put those wires to use.
One advantage of setting up a hard-wired system is that you can fix smoke and fire detectors or alarms to the system at the same time. Since there are more visible components, you’ll have to be sure to do routine checks of the various visible parts of the system to be sure that they’re functioning properly.
With a wireless system there are fewer parts that you’ll have to replace, but you’ll still have to service your system regularly. Where hard-wired systems run on electricity, wireless systems run on battery power. Advertisements may claim that the batteries have an extremely long life, some saying up to two decades, be prepared to have to replace the batteries more often than that. Always be sure to have extra batteries on hand since you never know when the current batteries may die. Wireless systems are usually state of the art and built with the latest technology. This can be a benefit and a setback, as it means that your equipment may become outdated very quickly.
One major factor that determines whether people go with a wireless or hard-wired system is whether they’re going to install it on their own, or have a professional install it. If you’ve decided to install the system on your own, then your best bet is most likely going to be a wireless security system. One downside to the wireless systems is that they work on radio frequencies and are notorious for triggering false alarms. A passing police car may be enough to set these alarms off and it’s unlikely you’ll ever know why. Hard-wired systems may be susceptible to this as well, but it’s less likely to happen with them than with a wireless system. While wireless systems are easier to install, they often cost more than a hard-wired system.
By: Andrea Brooks