How to Test your Surety Alarm System
After installing your alarm sensors and connecting to your suretyDIY Alarm.com account, you will want to test your system. Even if it is an existing system, it is always a good idea to test and verify that everything is functioning as you would expect. There are a number of things a thorough quick test can verify:
- Verify sensors are programmed correctly for their use case. For example, opening an entry door sensor with the system armed and the alarm immediately sounds without entry delay. You can investigate programming questions up front to make sure there are no surprises when later using your system.
- Verify sensors are in good working order. An existing sensor with a dead battery doesn’t do anyone much good. You want to find any problems in the system components up front. This test will also help determine that any new sensors are installed properly.
- Verify any sensors with a low signal strength. Wireless alarm systems are extremely convenient, effective, and inexpensive to implement, but very large homes may require a little extra effort to best centrally locate the controller and make sure sensors farther from the panel have clear communication. If you notice a cluster of distant sensors have a lower signal, a repeater is an easy way to improve performance.
- Verify the Central Station is receiving your alarm signals. Not only will you be able to verify all sensors report alarms as they should, setting off the alarm for each sensor will help you learn the system, how it functions, and help develop habits. You will be able to contact the Central Station directly to verify all signals. For the last sensor test, taking your account off of test mode and running through an actual alarm response from Central Station operators will let you know what to expect when an alarm occurs in the future.
- Verify that you know all of your account info and passcodes. You will want to be able to easily remember your verbal passcodes as well as user codes at the panel. A full system test will give you experience using the different codes.
- Verify that you have notifications set up the way you want. There are a lot of options through your Alarm.com account regarding notifications, with additional options for Gold Interactive subscribers. Creating notifications that are desired will let you easily test these out as you test other system components.
Testing Your System
- After you have run your manual communication test, you will be able to log into Alarm.com. At this point you can view your system history easily online.You sensors programmed into your panel will be visible as well. Under Security and Sensors on your Alarm.com account, you can rename any sensors. Note that this will only affect the sensors as they are named in notifications, not the sensor name at the panel. By navigating to Notifications, you can create any additional sensor notifications you wish to test with the rest of the system up front.
- Make sure all sensors are installed in their desired locations. Navigate to your system test on your panel.
2GIG: Security – Menu – Toolbox – (enter master code) – System Test.
Qolsys: Settings – (enter master code) – System Tests – Sensor Test.
GC3: System Settings – (enter master code) – System Tests – Sensors Test.
Begin tripping sensors. Keep in mind battery operated motion detectors will require a period of time without any motion to reset (power save feature) so you will want to stay out of any motion covered rooms for 3 minutes before walking in front of them to test.
If you have glass break detectors, depending on the model, it may be easy or difficult to properly replicate the sound required to set it off. Honeywell 5853 detectors, for example, have efficient false alarm protection built in and require much more specific and pronounced sound to trigger. We would recommend using an actual sound recording of shattering glass combined with an impact sound. By comparison, 2GIG GB1 glass break detectors can be tested by stomping and jingling keys.
- Note any poor signals reported by sensors in the sensor test. 2GIG 900mhz devices such as the TS1 and Image Sensors will automatically report a signal strength.If you are having trouble with certain sensors or areas of the home, try relocating the control panel to a more central location. If you have questions or need troubleshooting assistance, be sure to visit our forum.
- Verify your monitoring account is on test mode with the central station. Arm your panel and trip the alarm with one of your sensors. It is a good idea to test all sensors this way. Make sure the panel responds as you would expect to entry doors, perimeter sensors, and motion detectors. (Motion detectors will only alarm when your system is armed “Away”)
While your system is in alarm state, further opened sensors will also transmit an alarm signal, so setting off the alarm and subsequently tripping the rest of the sensors will still let you verify the signals.
If you do not want to wait for the delay countdown, using your Alarm.com app or web login to send arming commands will verify your commands are going through as well as arm the system immediately without a countdown.
- Contact our monitoring station using the information in your welcome email in order to verify all tested sensor alarm signals have gone through.