Home Security System Test: Why it’s Important and How to Test

How realistic would it be to expect a car that sat idle for three years to start up and operate perfectly? Or how about a home that sat vacant for five years? Would you expect the air conditioner to work? And it’s exactly why conducting a home security system test is so important.

Just like with any piece of mechanical equipment, periodic testing of your home security system is essential for optimal performance. In the event of an emergency, there are no second chances. Your security system and home fire alarm system must work flawlessly when needed.

How to Test Your Home Security System

Testing your home security service helps to ensure that your home security system will work properly. It identifies problem areas that may require attention from your home security company. You want to test alarm signals as they appear on your home security alarm system control panel and at the alarm monitoring center to ensure proper communication between both.

Procedures for testing your wireless home security system may vary by manufacturer. Consult your owner’s manual for more details. However, the general steps laid out here should work well for most systems. Be sure to keep your account number and unique personal identification password or code handy when speaking to your home security monitoring service.

You Should Conduct a Home Security System Test Each Month – Here’s How:

Call your home security monitoring service and request to put your system in ‘Test’ mode. This is an important step so when you send in a signal from your security system, they do not contact the emergency services.

Arm your security system. Once the system is fully armed, open a few doors or windows that are connected to the security system. Once the siren has sounded, wait for 45 seconds, then promptly disarm the system.

Call your home security monitoring service back to confirm they received the signal from your security system. Then, confirm you are ready to take your system off ‘Test’ mode.

Test All Sensors and Motion Detectors

Testing the signal between your panel and monitoring station is important, but it’s just one piece of the protection puzzle. Double checking that all of your installed sensors and motion detectors are also properly functioning ensures that your panel has something to communicate if and when the time comes. Here’s what to do:

  • First, verify that your system is in “Ready” mode and not armed. Disarm the system to avoid the deployment of emergency services.
  • Open each door and window where sensors are installed, doing so one at a time.
  • Check your panel. It should display the door or window that you are testing.
  • Close the door or window. Your panel should change back to “Ready” mode.
  • Repeat this process for each of your motion detectors.

Test Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors

Testing your CO and smoke detectors regularly are other important pillars to your home and family’s safety. Test smoke and CO detectors monthly, and as a general rule, swap for fresh batteries annually. You don’t want to be at risk of a house fire or carbon monoxide poisoning. Here’s how to conduct a CO and smoke detector test:

Remember, when testing either detector, it should make a noise after pressing the “test” button.

If no noise occurs when pressing the test button, start by changing the batteries in the device.

If this doesn’t work, make sure to contact your home security system provider.

As an additional in-home test, you may consider canned smoke. Available to order online or from your local hardware store, canned smoke simulates real smoke interacting with your detectors in a safe way. It allows for a more hands-on test than simply pressing the “test” button.

For More Security and Tips and Solutions, Stick with Boyd & Associates

Preventative maintenance is the name of the game for making sure your home or business stays safe. After all, if the security system in place doesn’t function properly, how can you expect it to provide protection? Boyd & Associates recommends testing your system every 30 days.

And if you’re looking for more ways to keep yourself and your family safe, check out our home security and automation services at Boyd & Associates. We offer a wide range of home security options to protect you and your family. If you’re ready to discuss our custom solutions, contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you prepare for what’s next.

6 Tips to Keep Your Home Safe in 2022

Even if you don’t own a home security system, there are inexpensive tactics you can implement to protect your household. Boyd & Associates experts offer some key tips below.

Identify potential risks. Before you move to a new neighborhood, connect with families in the area to evaluate whether it is in line with your expectations and needs. While it may seem safe, don’t be misled by appearances or notions presented to you by your realtor.

Do a gut check. Evaluate what you are most trying to protect and use that as a starting point to develop your home security program. The wellbeing of your family members will likely come first, with valuable assets falling next in line.

Don’t underestimate old-school locks. Whether you’re a renter or homeowner, ensure that door and window locks work appropriately and are used. If necessary, install window stops for an added layer of protection. Unwanted visitors typically look for easy access to a home.

Leave the light on. Leaving lights, and even a radio or TV, on in the house can go a long way in making your home look active. Implement inexpensive motion sensor lights to add safety for anyone coming home late and to deter burglars.

Commit to landscaping and upkeep. Trim bushes and shrubs, mow the lawn and remove leaves and snow. Don’t allow newspapers or mail to pile up whether you’re home or on vacation. A groomed appearance gives the impression that you are regularly present and protect the value of your home.

Participate in the community. Knowing your neighbors is invaluable to your home’s safety. Develop relationships with families on your street to ensure mutual safety. Notify each other of suspicious activity or nearby threats.

The Ultimate Level of Security

Though the above tips help, a home security system backed by a 24-hour monitoring center is the ultimate safeguard. If an emergency occurs, a security system will ensure responders are dispatched through Central Station monitoring, saving critical time for your family.

Smart home security can also alleviate the inconveniences associated with managing home safety on your own, such as maintaining your alarm system, remembering to lock up, or turning lights and appliances on and off. Through a mobile application, homeowners monitor and control smart devices from anywhere and at any time.

And if you’re looking for more ways to keep yourself and your family safe, check out our home security and automation services at Boyd & Associates. We offer a wide range of home security options to protect you and your family. If you’re ready to discuss our custom solutions, contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you prepare for what’s next.

Five Smart Home Security Tips for a Worry-Free Holiday Season

Do you feel that your home is more attractive to criminals during the holidays?

Two-thirds of homeowners do, according to recent research. After all, with valuable package deliveries, brightly-lit windows and the hustle and bustle of holiday travel, it’s easy to make home security mistakes—or to worry about them.

If you’re concerned about holiday security and looking to step up your crime prevention game for the season, start with these smarter home security tips.

1: It’s easier than you think to deter a burglar.

Have you ever wondered if your home security system will really keep a burglar away? According to the experts (a panel of actual burglars), it will. 83 percent of burglars look for them, and 60 percent say they’ll go elsewhere if they spot one.

This means that it pays to make your security system visible. You can do this by adding smart outdoor security cameras, placing stickers and yard signs where they’re easily spotted, or automating your outdoor lights to put prowlers in the spotlight.

Don’t have any of these features? It might be time for a home security upgrade from Boyd & Associates

2: Avoid leaving gifts out for package thieves.

Not all holiday crime involves breaking and entering. With more Americans shopping for gifts online every year, the holidays have become prime time for package theft.

If you’re concerned about your gifts falling into the hands of a porch pirate, it’s worth investing in a home security setup that includes a doorbell camera and smart lock. This gives you the ability to secure any package delivery in seconds, using only your phone. It’s an easier alternative to staying home for valuable deliveries, and far smarter than leaving things to chance.

3: Safeguard against security mistakes when you travel.

Half of homeowners worry more about home security when they travel—and with good reason. The hustle and bustle of a holiday road trip leaves plenty of room for security mistakes like leaving your garage open or front door unlocked, or forgetting to turn your alarm on.

If you own a modern security system, be sure to set up a few smartphone alerts and reminders before you travel this year. You’ll know if you forget anything essential, and you’ll often be able to fix the problem without having to return home.

4: Connect with your neighbors for peace of mind.

Not every holiday security safeguard needs to be hi-tech. Teaming up with your neighbors is a simple and effective way to stay safe and worry less over the holidays. It’s also one of the most popular home security measures: this year, more than half of US homeowners will keep an eye on their neighbors’ homes when they travel.

If you’re teaming up with your neighbors this year, consider trading in your spare keys for a smart lock. While you may not be among the 20% of homeowners who lost their house keys this year, a smart lock with temporary user codes is worth it to ensure that no one else loses them for you.

5: Think beyond the holidays for long-term protection.

Not all home security technology is the same. If you’re looking for year-round, whole-home protection, it’s worth doing some research before hopping online to buy a standalone doorbell camera as a quick fix. It’ll cover your front door, but not much else.

A complete smart  security system gives you many more ways keep your home and family safe–such as professional monitoring for emergencies, connected smoke and carbon monoxide detectors for safety, and safeguards like unexpected activity alerts and “crash and smash” protection.

For more information on options to upgrade or add on a new system, contact Boyd & Associates today!

3 Tips for Thanksgiving Cooking Safety

You know it’s fall when the smell of roasted turkey, stuffing and all things pumpkin fill the air. Thanksgiving is a favorite holiday of many; however, heightened safety risks associated with the feast can foil your plans. Follow these three tips to keep your loved ones safe this Thanksgiving.

1. Understand Food Prep Safety

When a meal is the center of the festivity, you better be sure it’s prepared safely. Foodborne pathogens are a risk during the holiday. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and fever.

An unclean or cluttered kitchen, coupled with improper sanitary food prep standards, can put you and your family at risk.

To maintain food prep best practices:

  • Thaw poultry in the refrigerator. When poultry is stored in warm places, such as out on the counter, foodborne bacteria can multiply quickly.
  • Thoroughly wash hands, cooking instruments, and surfaces that come into contact with raw meat.
  • Heat turkey to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Contain contamination. Use separate cutting boards for meat versus non-meat food items.
  • Use or freeze leftovers within three to four days.

2. Prevent Kitchen Fires

Putting together a Thanksgiving meal can be tricky. You’re preparing so many foods that it can be easy to lose track and let something cook too long, which is a fire risk. The below pointers can help:

  • Write out a cooking schedule. Include what time you will put each dish on the stove or in the oven.
  • Label timers — either with built-in technology functionality or a post-it note. This will help you keep track of what timer correlates with which dish.
  • Do not leave your kitchen unattended while food cooks. An unattended stove or oven is a recipe for disaster.
  • Follow cooking safety protocols. Deep-fried turkey has become a popular tradition for many families. Be sure you have the right equipment, attire and safety precautions in place for this or any unique cooking method.

Most importantly, test your smoke/fire detectors to ensure that they are working properly. If something goes wrong, you and the local fire department will be alerted immediately.

3. Keep Kids Safe

If your kids have a tendency to wander around the kitchen, take extra precautions to ensure their safety.

  • Turn pot and pan handle toward the back of the stove, so that nothing is accidentally reached for or pulled down.
  • Ensure kids are always supervised by an adult in the kitchen.
  • If helping cook, teach children proper kitchen hygiene — i.e. to sneeze or cough away from food, to wipe hands on a paper towel instead of a dishtowel, and to wash hands between each task.

We’re here to help

If you do experience a fire or medical emergency on Thanksgiving, remember: Boyd & Associates is here for you 24/7, and that includes holidays!

Don’t have a Boyd & Associates professionally monitored fire alarm system? Call us today to speak with one of our security experts.

Small Business Security Systems – Protection for the Little Guy

Here at Boyd & Associates, we love small businesses. They’re the backbone of our economies, our cities, and our country! For that reason, we wanted to talk about how security systems can help out. Despite what you may think, small business security systems feature the same power and features as their big business counterparts – often they’re just less complex.

Small Business Security Systems

Intrusion Protection for Small Business

Intruders are just as much a problem for small businesses as they are for others. And the solutions are the same as well!  An intrusion alarm allows us to monitor your property when you aren’t there, keeping your property, people, and product safe and secure. Detection devices in our complete commercial business security systems include:

  • Door contacts
  • Motion sensors
  • Photoelectric beams (often used for large spaces like storage yards or warehouses)
  • Glass break detectors
  • Panic buttons

Video Surveillance for Small Business

Video surveillance is a powerful tool for businesses of any size. A well-designed video surveillance system is comprised of HD-quality IP cameras covering every angle of your business. These not only provide higher security over the business but are powerful tools for increasing the productivity and efficiency of employees, processes, and customer service. And it provides business owners with protection in case of insurance claims for injury etc. It’s a boost no matter the size of your business!

Features of our video surveillance security systems for businesses include:

  • Scalable solutions – start while your business is small, it can grow with you!
  • Sophisticated software, but simple to use
  • Long-range video detection
  • Wireless video detection systems options
  • Remote access from anywhere using a smart device
  • Digital Recording

Access Control for Small Businesses

Access control might be the place where businesses can practice a bit more discretion – but there are still benefits! Access control is crucial for the physical security of the building and allows for more fine-tuning of the control to who gets in and when. A simple key and lock don’t provide the fine-tuning that a real access control system does – such as who can access the building, what days and time, and more. Typically, small businesses don’t have as many different roles within the business structure or areas in their business space so they don’t need as robust an access control system – but even a simple one can do wonders.

Video Verification for Small Businesses

Standard, bare minimum small business security systems can have false alarms frequently. Because of this, many jurisdictions require some sort of verification before there’s a response from emergency services. Using monitoring and video verification services for your small business means that any alarm is verified and ensures a priority response from police, so your alarms don’t go unnoticed.

Business Security Systems for California Businesses – Large or Small

When you’re searching for the best in small business security systems in the Southern California area, Boyd & Associates is here to help. These are just four of the big picture services we offer our clients to keep their businesses running smoothly and operating safely. We also provide automation and fire safety services – because running a small business is difficult enough, you should be able to rely on your security team!

Our easy-to-use security systems use advanced tech to deliver a higher level of protection – for your customers, your employees, your property, your business. Give us a call today if you want to take advantage of a fully automated security system you can control with the tap of a finger from an online portal or app on your smartphone.

 

7 Tips to Reduce Neighborhood Crime

When you turn on the evening news, it may seem as though there is constant neighborhood crime throughout the nation. However, the FBI recently reported that crime decreased across all categories between the first half of 2020 and the first half of 2021. In their report, they show robberies falling 7.4% compared to the prior year. Nevertheless, it is important to remember that crime can make its way into any neighborhood. There are plenty of preventative measures you can take to promote safety in your neighborhood.

So, what can we do?

We can work together toward a safer community and consider getting more involved in crime prevention. As a matter of fact, throughout the 90’s, there was an average of a 30 percent decrease in burglaries nationwide due to communities getting more involved in crime prevention.

So, let’s keep it up. Check out these seven ways for more community involvement to keep it safe.

  1. Join the Town Watch (or Start One)

Join in a town watch program (or get the community involved in one). Staying in tune with the neighborhood’s regular activity and keeping streets and homes well-lit can deter any possible burglaries. When criminals see a well-marked neighborhood with town watch and security system signs, it makes them think twice before committing a crime. Town watch programs have helped communities experience a 16 and 26 percent reduction in crime compared to areas not involved in a town watch.

  1. Get to Know Your Neighbors

Whether you are going on vacation or heading to work, knowing your neighbors can provide an extra set of eyes on your house (and maybe an extra set of keys in case of emergency). People care about those they know, so getting to know your neighbors and building relationships provides that layer of community and a sense of wanting to watch out for each other.

  1. Educate Kids About Bullying

Educate kids on a safe way to help others. Encourage confidence in resolving problems peacefully and not through violence. Make it clear that you expect kids to take action if they see someone being hurt, or if they are hurt themselves. By leading by example, you can teach empathy rather than violence.

  1. Initiate a Buddy System

The buddy system is not just a system for kids. It’s less likely a criminal will approach two people instead of one vulnerable person. A buddy can be more than just a walking partner. Your buddy can also make sure that you have everything you need to be safe. Whether from a long trip or just a simple walk down the street. And, of course, a buddy can always be there to call for help in those times of emergency services.

  1. Get Involved in Local Organizations

By getting involved, neighbors become better acquainted and make the connections necessary to keep the community safe. The Bureau of Justice Assistance offers ways your community can get involved and pair with local businesses and organizations to create a safer community.

  1. Create a Favorable Rapport with Local Police Enforcement

Encourage involvement from local law enforcement in community events. Get to know who they are and what they do. By creating trust with your local law enforcement, you can communicate community concerns more effectively and build a better relationship.

  1. Stay Current with Crime Trends

Knowing what is happening in your neighborhood and those around you can help you understand the possible warning signs of impending crime. Know what is happening and report any suspicious activity to your local law enforcement. Staying up to date with the news and crime trends can help your community stay proactive and involved.

By focusing on a safer community, you can work toward protecting you, your family, and those around you from falling victim to crimes that could leave your community devastated. By getting more involved or following any other tips mentioned above, you can help lead the way in creating a safer community for everyone.

 

Home Security Tools for Seniors Living Alone

As we get older, our home security concerns change. What works for families or young people may not meet the unique needs of seniors who live alone. And, just over one in four adults over the age of 65 lives alone. Concerns about seniors’ health, memory, and physical safety can create anxiety for loved ones and caregivers. But there are several strategies that can help seniors maintain both their safety and their independence. Read on for some of the best home security tools for seniors.

Medical Alert Devices

Every 11 seconds, an older adult suffers a fall serious enough to send them to the emergency room. If a senior is injured in a fall in their home, they may not have the ability to get up and call for help. Boyd & Associates Medical Alert can help. It is a safety and medical alert system that allows an individual to signal for help from a wireless alarm pendant.

These systems immediately alert an emergency operator who will dispatch the appropriate help. In the event of an emergency, the local 911 Emergency Response Team will be dispatched. Otherwise, a family member, neighbor, friend, or caregiver can be notified for assistance.

Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is the most common kind of poisoning worldwide and is the leading cause of accidental deaths in the U.S. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas found in the exhaust of generators, stoves, furnaces, cars, or anything that burns fuel and most victims have no idea they’re being poisoned.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates about 500 people die from unintentional exposure in the U.S. every year. Another 8,000-15,000 people are examined or treated in hospitals.

Most of carbon monoxide injuries and deaths are entirely preventable. That is why carbon monoxide detectors are crucial to have in your home, especially seniors who are living on their own.

Monitored Fire and Burglar Alarms

According to the Bureau of Justice, 59 percent of violent crimes against seniors happen at or near their homes and they are more likely to be victims of property crimes. A monitored home security system can offer seniors living alone an added layer of protection in the event of a burglary or fire by alerting an alarm monitoring center. An alarm monitoring agent will contact emergency responders quickly, saving precious minutes.

Most home security systems offer a feature that allows you to remotely control your home security system. This feature is accessible through an app by using your smart phone or tablet. This is a great feature for those who want to check the status of their senior family member’s system and receive alerts when an alarm or event triggers.

Video Doorbell

With smart video doorbells, seniors can answer their front door remotely via a tablet or smartphone to ensure visitors don’t know they are home alone. Family members of seniors can also use this feature to ensure the safety of their loved one.

Environmental Monitoring

It’s a scenario that can be more frightening and dismaying for an elderly individual than anyone else: a pipe burst, or a water heater leaks, causing damaging flooding that can go on for hours while they are away or asleep.

Environmental monitoring can alert seniors of the problem right away no matter where they are. The longer a leak goes unfixed, the more likely structural damage will occur. By getting the news right away, seniors and their families can avoid expensive and inconvenient repairs.

Home Automation Tools

A senior’s financial security is as important as their physical safety. With home automation tools, you can save time, money and energy by setting scenes and schedules, turn lights on or off, or control the thermostat.

Ask an Expert

Modern security technology means that it’s easier than ever for seniors to enjoy security and independence in their homes. If you’d like to learn more about the kinds of security planning, processes, and technology available for every budget, give us a call today to request a free quote.

The Importance of Flood Alarms and Flood Alarm Monitoring

Flood alarms and flood alarm monitoring are essential to preventing damage when a disaster arises. In the U.S., statistics show that households report roughly 850 water main breaks every single day. And for homeowners, it is estimated that the average cost of repairing flood damage is about $15,000. These damages are not only a nuisance but very costly to repair. And sometimes, the real damage goes much deeper.

It only takes 24 hours for mold to develop in water-damaged areas, so it is essential to repair damages as quickly as possible to avoid adverse long-term effects. With flood alarm and monitoring from Boyd & Associates, you receive real-time flood alerts via text message or phone call the minute a flood is detected, so you can quickly cease the flow of water.

WHAT CAUSES FLOODS?

There are many causes of home flooding which can include natural disasters as well as manmade causes.  Natural disasters might include:

  • Mudflows
  • Flash floods
  • Heavy rains

It is also important to consider the environment around your home. Are you located near major bodies of water like lakes or rivers that can be at risk of flooding? Do you have a basement or other area in your house that is particularly exposed and susceptible to potential damage? General awareness is a major step.

Most manmade floods occur with a pipe bursting, plumbing problems, or when a malfunctioning water heater is present. 70% of floods are actually due to water heaters bursting or leaking. So outside of flood monitoring, you should be aware of the age and condition of your household utilities. Generally speaking, try to commit to an annual inspection from a professional to ensure your home utilities are in safe working order.

HOW DOES FLOOD ALARM MONITORING WORK?

What if there was a way to interrupt a potential flood, before any damage can occur? Here’s how flood alarms and flood alarm monitoring from Boyd & Associates protects you:

  1. Water sensors are installed near appliances such as your hot water heater and washing machine.
    2. When overflowing water is detected, a flood alarm signal is sent to the home alarm panel.
    3. When water is detected on the alarm panel, an alert will notify you via call or text.
    4. Alarm systems with the Flood Avert feature are designed to automatically cut off the water source at the onset of flooding.

HOW DO YOU PREVENT OR PREPARE FOR A FLOOD?

Sometimes, accidents are unavoidable. While you cannot always control natural disasters, you can control how you protect yourself against the unknown. Some quick flood prevention and preparation tips include:

  1. It is always a good idea to have flood insurance.
    2. Ensure that all pipes, water heaters, plumbing, and foundation are working properly on a regular basis.
    3. In the event of a natural disaster, attempt to seal the perimeter of your home with waterproof materials that may help prevent damage.
    4. Create an emergency plan for your family’s safety and any valuables.
    5. Consider adding a flood monitoring system and flood avert automatic shut-off to prevent costly repairs.

FOR MORE SECURITY AND HOME AUTOMATION TIPS AND SOLUTIONS, STICK WITH BOYD & ASSOCIATES

It is important to protect your home before a flood or disaster occurs. The best way to protect your home from damage is with a flood monitoring system installed to always ensure you are aware as soon as the flooding starts. Contact Boyd & Associates today for information on flood alarms and flood alarm monitoring protection.

And, if you’re looking for more ways to keep yourself and your family safe, check out our home security and automation services. We offer a wide range of home security options to protect you and your family. If you are ready to discuss our custom solutions, contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you prepare for what’s next.

Dogs and Home Security: 5 Ways Pooches Boost Home Safety

How often do we see dogs and home security crossover scenarios play out in pop culture? Think about the classic watch dog moment in countless movies and TV shows, where we’ve seen man’s best friend cast in a heroic, starring role. The burglar breaks into the home with something nefarious in mind, but before he knows it, the tables are turned as the family’s faithful pooch backs him into a corner or chases him out.

While they’re no replacement for an actual home security system, there are plenty of ways dogs can add an extra boost to your home protection.

1. DOGS ARE GREAT PERIMETER DEFENDERS

One of the best things about dogs are their heightened senses. They will first smell, then hear people coming long before you ever notice them. A K9’s sense of smell is 10,000 times stronger than that of a human’s, and will often notify their owners if something out of the ordinary is nearby.

The difference is distinguishing your dog’s “normal” behavior, like barking at the mailman, versus warning you of a possible disturbance on your street or property. But in essence, a good watchdog is another set of eyes that can keep a close watch over your “den.”

2. DOGS WARN OTHERS OF DANGER

Another home security advantage to a barking dog is that it not only alerts you to possible dangers and disturbances, but your neighbors and any passersby as well. Just like a loud, ear-piercing alarm sounding off, a non-stop roaring dog is going to draw attention.

If you have neighbors that know your animal, they may know the difference in sounds of barks, too. Not to mention, the hour could make it glaringly apparent to others that something is out of the ordinary. A loud bark disturbing the middle of the night, for instance. A concerned neighbor might be drawn to investigate, and call authorities in some cases when necessary.

3. DOGS CAN SCARE AWAY INTRUDERS

There are plenty of reasons not to confront an intruder in the event of an actual home invasion, but in some cases, the situation might be unavoidable. If you have a particularly large breed of dog, that can be a major intimidation factor to home intruders. Especially if for some reason your dog doesn’t bark at first, or those initial noises don’t scare off a burglar, the physical presence of your dog (and the reality of being in the same space) might make all the difference in a dangerous situation.

4. DOGS ARE LOYAL TO OWNERS

As we said earlier, dogs are protective of their den (your home!). And that means everyone in it, too. Your dog’s loyalty to you and your family adds an entirely new dimension as a home security asset. You know your dog better than anyone, which means you understand their behavior and can sense when something is truly amiss in the way they’re behaving toward outside disturbances.

And in the event of a home invasion, your dog may even attack an intruder to protect itself and its family, giving you time to escape and contact the proper authorities. But unless your pooch is military trained, an attack would likely be instinctual. And this may put your pet in serious physical danger,  and should be avoided at all costs. But in the cases it isn’t, it’s nice knowing your watchdog has your back, right?

5. COMPANIONSHIP AND PEACE OF MIND

The point is, most dog owners feel a strong sense of companionship to their animal. And in many cases, that loyalty is reciprocated. Beyond the natural advantages a dog can provide to home security, their comforting presence alone can make a world of difference to your day-to-day peace of mind. In general, it’s a comforting feeling to have an active, physical presence in your home to beef up security. And that’s just the icing to the canine cake – dogs are “man’s best friend” for a reason!

HOWEVER, DOGS HAVE THEIR LIMITS

It’s important to note that not every dog breed is suited for home security. The American Kennel Club suggests that some of the best guard dog breeds include Akitas, Boxers, Bullmastiff, Doberman Pinschers, Rottweilers, various Shepherd dogs (German, Australian, etc.), and more. These are mostly larger breeds, but there are smaller and medium sized dogs that fit the mold based on their natural behavioral instincts.

However, proper training is also another major factor. You don’t want a dog that barks at every noise; you want one that tells you when something is wrong. It’s also important that you’re able to call your dog off and tell him to ‘sit’ and ‘stay.’ Dogs aren’t born knowing these skills. You’ll need to participate in their training and reinforce what they’ve learned throughout their lives. But even an untrained barking dog may still deter burglars.

FOR MORE SECURITY TIPS AND SOLUTIONS, STICK WITH BOYD & ASSOCIATES SECURITY

Dogs are not a replacement for  24/7 home security and alarm monitoring services. Instead, think of them as a furry extra layer to supplement your home safety! And if you’re looking for more ways to keep yourself and your family safe, check out our home security services at Boyd & Associates. We offer a wide range of home security options to protect you and your family. If you’re ready to discuss our custom solutions, contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you prepare for what’s next.

 

How to Effectively Place Motion Sensors in Your Home

Outside of the physical structures of your home, motion sensors are often the first line of defense for your security system. But how does a motion sensor work? Basically, motion sensors trigger alarms and direct the home security feed to wherever the alarm was triggered. This is usually based on motion or intrusion (hence the name!)

Taking the time to plan out motion sensor placement for your home is so important. If your motion sensors are not in locations where they work the most effectively, your entire system may be flawed. Check out these helpful tips for motion sensor placements:

The most effective motion sensor placements

Motion sensors work to detect movement in an area where there should not be. When thinking of the best placements for your motion sensors, consider important access points and any potential vulnerabilities in your home or business that an intruder might exploit.

Corner spaces

Put a motion sensor in the corner of each room, aimed toward the doorway. That way, if the door opens or someone passes through, the sensor will detect the motion and set off the alarm.

Near valuables

What exactly are you looking to protect with your motion sensors and security system? Place motion sensors directly at your most valuable items. Or, in the case of a small business, consider where you keep or display any important products or business profits. No one will be able to get close to them without you knowing.

Second floor bedrooms

Even if you feel as though a burglar could not enter the house through the second floor, it is a good idea to keep a motion sensor near the bedrooms in your home. As a rule of thumb, all entry points should be accounted for. This way you will be alerted if anyone approaches while you’re asleep.

Basements

It never hurts to be extra careful. Especially if there are any access points or vulnerabilities from the basement. Having several sensors down in that area is a great idea. If you have lots of clutter, make sure they are placed in an area where they won’t be blocked. Also consider installing one near the staircase leading upstairs to the main levels of your home or business.

Ceilings

When an intruder enters the home, they may already be looking for motion detectors. A great place they would not immediately look is the ceiling. Sensors work on any angle, so this is a great way to keep a thief from easily avoiding detectors. And these days, sensors are made to fit discreetly wherever you place them. So, they won’t be an eyesore in your home either.

Within decorations

A great way to hide motion sensors is by making them part of your household decor. Hide them amongst photos and knickknacks so they are not easily spotted by intruders. Plus, they won’t detract from your home’s look and feel.

The least effective motion sensor placements

Motion sensors are designed to detect motion, that means any kind of motion. Placing your motion sensors in certain areas can not only detract from the functionality of your system, but it can also cause false alarm triggers. Avoid placing motion sensors in the following locations:

Near windows

This is a bad location for a few reasons. The first is that heat activated motion sensors can be confused by direct sunlight, which most windows receive a lot of! The second is that the sensor works best when a burglar walks parallel to them rather than straight ahead. Finally, you would not want a false alarm trigger from every single passerby, or even just an innocent visit from the neighborhood cat.

Near heat sources

A heat source could potentially create a false alarm, so it is a good idea to keep motion sensors away from hot air vents and radiators. Any change in infrared heat could trigger the alarm. Plus, extended exposure to high temperatures could potentially damage your equipment as well.

For more security tips and solutions, stick with Boyd & Associates

Ensure that your security system is working to its full potential by strategically installing the motion sensors that are included with it.

And, if you are looking for more ways to keep yourself and your family safe, check out our home security and automation services at Boyd & Associates. We offer a wide range of home security options to protect you and your family. If you are ready to discuss our custom solutions, contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you prepare for what is next.