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The Top 10 Tips for Installing DIY Wireless Burglar Alarms.

Hints and Tips for Installing DIY Wireless Burglar Alarms/Wirefree Systems ( Courtesy of FM Electronics Limited ) 

When installing a DIY wireless burglar alarm or system, in addition to reading the instructions supplied for each piece of equipment, here are my top 10 tips for a successful installation.

1. Always check the signal strength and background noise levels from the proposed locations of all devices, before you mount any device onto its intended location. If a signal strength measurement is not available, at least do a few tests to ensure that alarm signals are received at the control panel before you mount any devices.

2. Avoid mounting transmitting, receiving devices or aerials under metal lintels at the top of windows & doors etc. Use a hand held metal detector to check it out.

3. Don’t mount transmitters or receivers onto metal or upvc clad metal door or window frames. Use a hand held metal detector to check the surface.

4. In DIY wireless intruder alarm systems, where the receiver aerial is mounted vertically, the greatest radio range can usually be obtained by mounting all the transmitters so that their aerials are also vertical. In some systems the aerials are mounted in both orientations, so this will not apply.

5. If you need to run wiring into any transmitter or receiver always try to keep this away from the aerial(s) as any metal object near an aerial will reduce it’s performance.

6. Don’t alter the length of the aerial or replace the aerial inside any transmitter or receiver with an aerial that is not approved by the system manufacturer. Aerials are designed to a tuned frequency and altering the physical length of the aerial will affect the operating frequency and performance of the aerial.

7. Avoid mounting the receiver or the receiver aerial near to electrical distribution equipment, televisions, or computer equipment as these can generate background noise. Avoid large metal objects i.e. water tanks, boilers, radiators etc. large metal objects can prevent radio signals from passing between the transmitter and the control panel.

8. If you install a remote aerial on a DIY wirefree burglar alarm system, ensure it is mounted in the correct orientation. Don’t cut the aerial cable until you have checked the signal strength. Always look at the direction which the cable leaves the aerial and keep running the cable in the same direction and away from the aerial for as far as practically possible, never clip the aerial cable or any other cable close to the aerial or the aerial cable. Try not to run your aerial cable next to mains cables, but running the aerial cable with the bell wire will not usually cause a problem.

9. Sometimes in properties with very thick walls adequate signal strength cannot be obtained through them. If the receiver or the receiver aerial can be mounted high up in a loft space so the signal path is through the floor boards this can increase the signal strength to an adequate level, particularly where the devices are mounted on outside walls.

10. Look for the ideal position for the detection device, i.e. a passive will not necessarily need to go at ceiling level or on an internal wall as hiding a cable is not a consideration.

Check for Sold Secure or Thatcham approval as a guide to quality and effectiveness.

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