How to permanently power off or disable an ADEMCO Vista-10SE Home Alarm System

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Old 06-23-14, 05:11 PM
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How to permanently power off or disable an ADEMCO Vista-10SE Home Alarm System

I recently bought a house with an ADEMCO Vista-10SE Home Alarm System. The previous owners had cancelled their contract with ADT but the system is still live (locally). One night at 2:30 in the morning it started beeping. Not the beeping I would associate with an actual intruder, but more some sort of warning. I noticed it said something about "low battery". In any case, I just wanted the sound to stop so I could go back to sleep. I disconnected the battery. That didn't work. So I located the breaker outside and flipped that. Success! However, that breaker also controls other things (lights in bedrooms, wall sockets, etc.). What I'd really like to do, is turn off power to the Alarm, or failing that, deactivate the system. From my research online, I expected to find a transformer ADEMCO 1321 that I could just unplug from a wall. But I can't find this anywhere. There must be some sort of transformer somewhere stepping the voltage down from 110 to 12 volts. So first question:

1. Is the transformer necessarily a ADEMCO 1321 or could it be built in some how and (relatively) inaccessible? Where to look for a transformer if it is a plug in type?

If I can't find the transformer, or it's hard to disconnect (I'm no electrician!) it occurred to me there must be some way to deactivate the system. I've included a picture of what I assume is the central control box.



2. Can someone tell me which wires to pull? I've already taken out the battery. I was hoping to find a transformer here, but no luck.

I also have several of the little control panels (picture included) that you enter the codes into when the alarm goes off, but as far as I can see, there is only the one big control box.

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Needless to say, I don't know the codes/etc. Perhaps if I get enthused, I'll resurrect the alarm system. My understanding is that it can be used without a contract with a company. But for now, I'd just like to disconnect it. I have a dog for alarming me to problems.

Clearly (1) is preferable to (2). Why power a system that you're not using? But either would be better than just throwing the breaker outside.

Let me know if I should provide more details and thank you very much in advance.

Dave
P.S. Bonus question. Feel free to tell me (flame me) with advice about whether I should be attempting to resurrect the system. I have no idea how ancient the 10SE model is. Clearly someone's gone to trouble at some time to put it in. There are multiple access control panels, sensors on windows, etc. The ADT folks stopped by and spoke with my wife when I wasn't there. According to her, their line was, "We'd prefer to install all new equipment so we know what we are dealing with".
 
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Old 06-23-14, 05:21 PM
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Adding picture of central control panel...


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Old 06-23-14, 07:05 PM
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If you can't find the transformer plugged into the outlet that powers the system, simply take the wire off of terminal 1 on the main board (it's 16VAC so it's safe) and throw a wrap of electrical tape on the bare wire end.
 
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Old 06-24-14, 09:00 AM
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Thanks MrRonFL

Out of an abundance of caution, can you confirm that what I have marked is terminal 1? I put a light pencil mark around it in a picture (hard to see). I realize that other terminals are marked in the picture and I should be able to just count down to 1, but I want to make absolutely sure.

Is the system a lot of money and worth salvaging? Or should I think in terms of disposing of it (I'd have an electrician remove it) and get something more modern if/when I need something?

Thanks,

Dave

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Old 06-24-14, 10:22 AM
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It's the correct terminal. The first one on the left.

The system you have is a modified Vista 10se. It's not a high end system, but it's a perfectly functional basic security system. You might find features in something more current, that you like, but the basic hardware is a version of one of the industry standards.
 
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Old 06-25-14, 10:42 AM
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Thanks! Disconnecting the wire to terminal #1 worked great. I was able to reset the breaker and have the other things on the circuit (bedroom lights) come back on.

I'd still be happy if I could find the transformer and unplug that, but I'll keep my eyes open. I also have to make a decision on whether to invest time getting to know this system and use it, or remove it. If I remove it, I'll probably have an electrician remove it.

Thanks again,
Dave
 
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