5820L Sensor Loss of Supervision

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Old 03-30-17, 12:19 PM
J
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5820L Sensor Loss of Supervision

I have a DIY installed residential alarm system which was installed new and brought into service on 12/1/15. It consists of a Vista 20p panel, one 6160RF keypad, two 6160 keypads, 11-5820L sensors for two sliding doors and nine sliding windows. I also have four glass break sensors and one motion detector, all wireless. My front and back doors are hardwired to the panel and everything else is wireless through the 6160RF.

The system ran flawlessly from the date of installation to March 15, 2017 when I got a loss of supervision “check” message from the monitoring company and at the keypads. The sensor at fault (zone #17) was in a bedroom window about 30 feet from the 6160RF and it's behavior had become erratic. Ultimately I replaced the sensor yesterday, 3/29/17, with a new 5820L. I did change the install location from across the top of the window to along one vertical edge. After one day at least it seems to be working correctly. No LOS signals as yet and manual testing seems consistently correct.

My new problem occurred last night when a 5820L in an adjoining bedroom (zone #18) threw a LOS check to the keypad. Sure enough today in my testing it was erratic. I removed the sensor / magnet from the window frame and manually tested response in various locations of the room and sure enough when I get closer to the window and effectively further away from the 6160RF it seems to be erratic. The window location in that bedroom is about 40 feet from the 6160RF.

I've tested with the wireless phone on and off and the wifi in the area on and off and that doesn't seem to make a difference. Perhaps there's some other new environmental interference in the area that I don't know about.

I need to observe it for a few days, but I can imagine coming to the same conclusion of replacing the sensor. My question is whether I should go again with a 5820L or perhaps one of the bigger sensors since I have adequate space on the window frame. Maybe a bigger sensor would have a more robust transmitter.

What do you think? I'll appreciate your input.

Thanks.

Jan
 

Last edited by jbkieser; 03-30-17 at 12:30 PM. Reason: more information
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  #2  
Old 03-30-17, 08:01 PM
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The transmitters on all of these devices can, and do, fail, 40 feet is not a real range issue normally. Just replace the transmitter.

Once in a while, a change in the RF environment can make a difference (large mirrors are, surprisingly, a common problem), but start with a known good transmitter.
 
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Old 03-30-17, 10:38 PM
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Did you not try a new battery as the first step in troubleshooting?
 
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Old 03-31-17, 06:19 AM
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It is possible the batter has drained enough that the sensor isn't transmitting as far and reliably as it used to be but not so low that it reported the low battery issue. I would try new batteries before calling it a bad sensor.

There is also a repeater (5800RP) you can add if you continue to have supervision issues due to a change in the environment.
 
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Old 03-31-17, 02:48 PM
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I'm the OP. Thanks for your responses. Good suggestions.

On the original problem in #17, I did switch the battery and still had the same problem of it not firing consistently. Thus I ended up replacing the sensor. So far after two days, it's seems to be working correctly. I just now checked it and all is good. No LOS messages so far and good consistent response to window open / close cycles.

On this new problem in #18, I just now installed a brand new lithium AAA battery and temporarily installed it in the window. Sometimes it responds consistently when cycling the window open / close and then other times it doesn't respond at all. Eventually it does, but not consistently.

Interestingly in walking the sensor / magnet in the same room (only about 10' x 12') and using the chime function on the keypad, I find the response is inconsistent in the area near the window but when I walk it just a few feet closer to the 6160RF, but still about 35+ feet, it seems to be completely reliable.

Also I took the #18 sensor / magnet and walked it to the most distant location in the house which was actually in our garage which is about 60 feet + from the 6160RF and it worked just fine. It seems like anywhere else in the house it works just fine, but when it's installed in the window at #18 it behaves badly.

I'll keep putzing with it and maybe I can find something environmental going on but so far all the usual suspects (wireless phone, wifi, bluetooth, mirrors, etc.) seem to have been eliminated or discounted. My wife's computer is in the room and haven't tested with it shutdown as yet. I'll give that a try and see if it makes any difference.

While writing this I just remembered that about six months ago I installed a new duplex wall outlet in each of these two rooms and they have USB charging ports built into them. I wonder if they might be creating some interference? I'll have to check into that.

I understand a repeater is a possible solution.

Thanks.

Jan
 
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Old 04-03-17, 07:01 AM
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Are there any locations on the window for zone 18 that work reliably when testing the fault/restore with the sensor/magnet in your hands?

Is the window frame metal by any chance?
 
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Old 04-04-17, 09:35 AM
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This morning I temporarily installed the #18 sensor/magnet in the sliding window along the opening vertical edge. By cycling the window open / close a number of times it seems to be working consistently at least at this moment. We'll see how it performs over a few days and whether I get LOS check messages again at some point.

Nothing has changed in the room or area which makes me wonder about some unknown external influence such as someone's network in the area.

The window has a vinyl frame.

I do have metal thin slat blinds on the window but that is true in a number of other protected windows in the house and that doesn't / hasn't seemed to make any difference.

The original LOS problem #17 is working perfectly now a week after the installation of a new sensor. That problem seems completely resolved.

Thanks.

jk
 
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