New System Questions

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Old 04-17-03, 10:04 AM
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New System Questions

Safewatch, I emailed you about a system! Here are a few more generic questions:

Are there differences in motion sensors? (I have a big cats, want the motion to work while we are out, but want to turn this zone off when we are inside).....

The ITI micro sensors (Part no: 60-688-95), are these good sensors (I have no problem replacing the coin-cell batteries if needed)

Should I use general window sensors, or should they also have glass break incorporated in them? (like the ITI shock sensor Part no: 60-461-10-319.5)


How easy is this system to install??? I am really handy, and my father owns an audio/visual/telephone company and does high end custom installations, including retrofitting wall speakers/ceiling speakers/recessed TV's etc....so he has all the equipment (long drill bits, snakes, etc....)
 
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Old 04-17-03, 12:17 PM
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I'll get to your e-mail ASAP (it's been a long week )

Essentially what you have with motions is what's referred to as Pet-Immunity. In simple terms, the motion does not recognize objects under a certain size (depending on the immunity rating - 30lbs, 40lbs, 80lbs, etc.) Now, that being said, technically this rating means nothing - it should only be used as a guide when selecting motions (most are 30-40lbs immunity.) Pet-immunity is all relative to the distance from the "eye" of the motion. For example, if you hold your hand up at arms length in front of your face, the perception of it is much smaller than if you hold it half-way between your face and arms length. Then, put it up to your face and that's all you can see. Motions work exactly the same. A spider crawling across the eye can look exactly like a person walking across the room at 10 ft away. So, the main consideration with motions, is to make sure cats/dogs/birds/etc cannot get near them. Fortunately, cats are not as much of a problem since they are very well insulated and do not produce as much body-heat as humans. BTW, that's how PIR technology works - body heat and motion.

There are also dual-tech motions available (like the Range-Controlled-Radar motion) that use Microwave technology combined with PIR technology to decrease the likelihood of false alarms.

The Micro sensors are definitely good sensors. They use lithium batteries, so battery life is about 5-8 years (depending on use.) Like every other ITI sensor, they are easy to install also. And, best of all, they are inconspicuous (being only 1.75" long, .875" wide and .5" high.) The only problem with the Micro sensors is that there is no hardwire input. The HW input is nice for multiple window installations (for instance, 2 windows side-by-side - or double-windows.) With double windows you can save some money by using 1 transmitter for both windows. This can really add up in a large house (I think you said 24 windows total?) So let's say you have 10 double-windows and 14 single windows (most homes have more double-windows actually), using 1 contact on the 10 double-windows (actually, 5 double-windows) would save over $200 in transmitters. The 60-362-10-319.5 (Crystal Sensor) is the best for this type of installation. The SAW types have hardwire inputs, but they require a harness to connect the inputs (the Crystal turns out to be cheaper.) The Long-life sensors (60-641-95) also have hardwire inputs. The Long-life may be the best bet in your case, since you were talking about recess mounting them (up to 20 year battery life.) But, then again, if you want truely recessed contacts, just use the 60-741-95 Recessed Sensors. I've installed many of them and they work great. They also have long-life batteries. Not to mention they are essentially the same price as the rest.

As for shock sensor/glass break detectors, that's pretty much a judgement call. I know you had mentioned the Concord Express, so here's my suggestion on that: try to hardwire some glass breaks in. Not only will it save you hundreds, but I, personally, like the hardwired glass break detectors better. Not that they necessarily provide better coverage, but more better supervision. With the wireless glass breaks, there are no lights to tell you the glass breaks are detecting anything and this can make them difficult to test. With most hardwired glass breaks, you get a visual indication that the sensor is working. Just clapping your hands usually trips the indicators. This makes them much easier to set up, and much easier to test. BTW, some of the wireless glass breaks also have test indicators, they just have to be activated (and that's only on the high-end technology.)

The Concord Express couldn't be easier to install, program and use. Most of the programming is factory defaulted to what it should be. Just program your additional sensors, maybe put in a Pager number or 2, program the Monitoring info, and you're pretty much done (you have to set the time and date too ) If you can use DIY.com and a computer, you can install and program the Concord Express, it's really that simple. If that's not easy enough, there's the Simon panels also, the only wires they require are power and phone, no contacts, no siren, no keypad wires. I've literally installed Simons in less than half an hour, that's how easy they are.

One note: if you are considering using the Concord Express system, have you looked into wiring the entire house, or is this even a possibility? Some houses just absolutely cannot be wired, but if you can wire it, that will save you hundreds in parts. You could use the extry money to step up to the Concord Hybrid/Commercial system or even the Advent Home Navigator, and add home automation capabilities and many other features.

I'll try to respond to your e-mail shortly.
 
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Old 04-17-03, 12:58 PM
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I mentioned this in my e-mail, but I thought I would put it here also:

The Concord Express only supports a total of 24 zones
(either hardwire or wireless or a combination of the both.) The system comes with 6 hardwire zones and a 16 zone wireless receiver. Now, you can add more hardwire inputs, but you're stuck with 16 wireless zones on this panel, no more. If you need more, you'll have to move up to the Concord Hybrid/Commercial panel (76 zones.) Not to mention, you can add more wireless zones if you need to.
 
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Old 04-18-03, 09:14 AM
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zones? Wireless....WOW!

I am a bit confused about the zones. with my last security system, a Zone was considered a "room", ie the zone could be protecting many windows in the same room at once.

With the concord system, is a zone just one individual sensor/device, or is it also considered a room.....

I think with all the windows in the house (over 20+) but only 8 rooms, that the 16 zone system would work for me if this is the case.

Also....WOW, the price of wireless is high. The house has adequate crawl space, and unfinished basement, good attic exposure, so I think I may be going wired! I had no idea wireless sensors cost so much (should have figured!)

What do you think the most economical way of doing this system would be?
 
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Old 04-18-03, 09:15 AM
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Panic buttons....

What panic button/remote control should I be looking at. My wife is really interested in this feature!

By the way, would it be possible to "hardwire" multiple sensors in series (i.e. the 10 windows in the sunroom) to create 1 zone?
 
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Old 04-18-03, 01:05 PM
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I am a bit confused about the zones. with my last security system, a Zone was considered a "room", ie the zone could be protecting many windows in the same room at once.

With the concord system, is a zone just one individual sensor/device, or is it also considered a room.....
Basically, a zone is a "loop" of wire on the system, hence the name "Zone loop." You almost answer your own question in the second post:
By the way, would it be possible to "hardwire" multiple sensors in series (i.e. the 10 windows in the sunroom) to create 1 zone?
That's exactly what a zone loop is, a series of wires. Most windows are literally looped together. Some installers choose to "home run" the wires (run a single wire from the window back to the panel), then they series the wires at the panel. Either way, it's the same thing, you create a loop of wire consisting of several openings. In theory, you could loop a whole house on 1 zone (now, there are several considerations for not doing this, but <i>in theory</i> it's possible.)

Basically, what I do with most homes is to wire the Entry Doors together (Front and Garage Doors - maybe others), the back door, the basement as a whole, then I put the windows on 1 or 2 zones and that leaves me with 1 zone for the motion. That's a total of 5 or 6 zones (depending on the windows), the capacity of the panel without any add-ons. This is for hardwire only though, if you use wireless, then you have 16 zone capacity for wireless. If you use both, then you have 6 zone hardwire and 16 zone wireless. Am I confusing you yet? If you want to do more than 6 zones hardwired, then you need a Zone input card.

Also....WOW, the price of wireless is high. The house has adequate crawl space, and unfinished basement, good attic exposure, so I think I may be going wired! I had no idea wireless sensors cost so much (should have figured!)

What do you think the most economical way of doing this system would be?
If you have access (and you do) and you want the windows protected, wire it. Plain and simple. You could have the house wired for you for a couple of hundred dollars, but you would save probably over $1000 by not using all wireless. Figure it this way: to wire a window averages from $15-20 each. To use wireless averages $50-75 each (depending on double windows, etc.) So, if you have 24 or so windows: hardwire = $480 (24x$20); wireless = $1200 (24x$50) Big difference. And, you'll notice, I used the high number for hardwire ($20) and the low number for wireless ($50).

Of course, your other option is to use a combination of glass breaks and motion detectors. You had also asked about the shock sensors. If you wire the windows, you can use hardwired shock sensors, but glass breaks will provide more coverage for the money.

What panic button/remote control should I be looking at. My wife is really interested in this feature!
Well, you had asked me about the keychain remotes, and personally, I think that's the best way to go. The main reason being that, for about the same price as a panic button, you get the added arm/disarm features on the keychain. With a 5-button remote, you have a separate panic button on the remote. However, all the keychain remotes (2-button, 4-button and 5-button) come with a panic, it's just activated differently (on 2 and 4-button remotes, you press and hold lock and unlock at the same time to activate the panic.)

Does any of that make sense? I know the zoning is confusing, but basically just look at it this way, 6 hardwire zones standard (can be upgrade with an add-on card), 16 wireles zones, but you can only have a total of 24 in any combination.

Let me know if there is anything else I can help you with.
 
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Old 05-11-03, 05:57 PM
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Thanks

Can thank you enough for your contributions to this forum, and your incredibly detail responses.

I emailed you again!

Once again, thanks.
 
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