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Old 01-03-2011, 01:03 PM   #1
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Non-Monitored Home security


Home security is something i didn't think i would be putting on my current house however a house in my neighborhood was broken into this month and it got me thinking.

Here's all i am looking for...
Wired or wireless system (doesn't matter to me)
Door and window sensors ( i have a dog so motion is more difficult) (6 windows and 4 doors)
A keypad (and two keychain remotes if possible)
Lastly, and the difficult part, i want to me able to monitor it from my iphone. I simply want to be notified if the alarm goes off ( I may add cameras later however for now just either need a text/email sent to me, or an app for the system on my phone. I would connect the system through my high speed router at home.

I know security has been talked about before on here however i haven't been able to achieve what i'm looking for. I also know that a monitored system will be encouraged by many of you for me and i may add this feature later however, right now i would like to self monitor it.

Thanx in advance.

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Old 01-03-2011, 01:24 PM   #2
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Personally I think monitoring is a waste of money except for fire and CO2. If the neighborhood hoodlum is trying to break in and the alarm starts squealing, he's not gonna wait around to see if you have monitoring, he's gonna skedadaddle.....

Check out www.smarthome.com I'm sure you'll be able to put a system together that's exactly what you are looking for

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Old 01-03-2011, 01:54 PM   #3
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Non-Monitored Home security


I'd also be interested in finding out more about this. I have an Android phone and believe that I've heard about some sort of home monitoring app that you can download but I haven't taken any time to look into it any further yet. Thanks for the initial post gmhammes!! Any advice/help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:10 PM   #4
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We have a couple dogs in our house,

I have secured both doors with long, heavy screws in the hinges and latches. Our windows are secured. We have motion-sensor lights on all sides but the front of the house.

But seriously, if burglars want in to any house badly enough, they'll get in. My goal is to make my house far less vulnerable than the houses in some other neighborhood. It's theft-deterrent, not theft-proof.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:16 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by DrHicks View Post
We have a couple dogs in our house,

I have secured both doors with long, heavy screws in the hinges and latches. Our windows are secured. We have motion-sensor lights on all sides but the front of the house.

But seriously, if burglars want in to any house badly enough, they'll get in. My goal is to make my house far less vulnerable than the houses in some other neighborhood. It's theft-deterrent, not theft-proof.
Good points. I have a dog as well. I also know first hand that the burglers around me are pretty dumb and just a siren would send them running.

I'm not looking for anything elaborate although the phone app feature would be nice.

Another reason i am looking into these systems is because i will be building my next house in about a year and a half so it will be good to know more about them to pre wire.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:23 PM   #6
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Pretty much ANY alarm that has a dialer can be self-monitored. Instead of having the dialer call a monitoring service, you simply have it dial your cell phone. There are systems that will work with your broadband internet, and that have web/smartphone based interfaces, that will allow you to recieve texts, emails, and even live video feed of your home whenever you want them or at scheduled intervals. If you really want to get fancy there are systems that put a camera and intercom on your front door. When someone pushes your doorbell it rings your cell phone and you can talk to them, regardless of where you are, and even use your phone to unlock the door, or open your garage to let them in. you can use your phone to turn up the heat or air before you get home as well. www.smarthome.com is a good place to start, although most of what you find there can be found cheaper elsewhere...
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmhammes View Post
Good points. I have a dog as well. I also know first hand that the burglers around me are pretty dumb and just a siren would send them running.

I'm not looking for anything elaborate although the phone app feature would be nice.

Another reason i am looking into these systems is because i will be building my next house in about a year and a half so it will be good to know more about them to pre wire.
Good point. It's much easier to have the wiring there and not use it, then to need it and not have it.

I also think you're right about most burglars being pretty dumb. Not all, but most. They're not Ocean's Eleven. They're just stupid punks looking to score some easy money.

I've often thought of installing some of these el cheapo door and window alarms. For no more money than they are, it might be worth the deterrent.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmhammes View Post
Another reason i am looking into these systems is because i will be building my next house in about a year and a half so it will be good to know more about them to pre wire.
If your new house will have an attached garage, do yourself a favor and wire the OVERHEAD doors for alarm contacts. Most people just do the door between the garage and house, but I have found alarming the overhead door to be a lot more convienent.

The other thing you want is multiple keypads. I have one by the front door, one in the garage, one by basement walkout and a forth in the master bedroom. This way your always close to one in the event that one of the kids sets off the alarm by mistake, and with them set to chime when a contact is opened/closed you can pretty much monitor the house from anywhere inside it, even when the alarm isn't set. Most keypads have a panic button feature as well, so that's another great reason to have more than one, and with one in the bedroom you'll never have to get out of bed to see if you forgot to set the alarm
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Old 01-03-2011, 08:28 PM   #9
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I use the QSee 4ch DVR, it has a 320g HD for recording and can be upgraded. It allows you to set motion areas from a grid that each camera has. It supports calling on the phone and monitoring via internet by I think 5 people. I've had it for nearly a year now and the only problem is the quality of the camera. I wouldn't get any camera less that 520 TV lines and I got the 520 on sale w/rebate less than $100 each @ frys.
I haven't used the smart phone monitoring yet so can't say much about it. I just got the raincheck for a second one @ $99 @ Fry's which is a steel.
I tryed the swann brand and it sucked, couldn't monitor via internet, backup to USB had to be 2g or less, that sucks. I use an old TV to monitor.
Some notes, the nite vision drops the quality down but still works. The quality of the camera is very important, the cheap ones just plain suck. Anything less than 520 TV lines, I'd pass on. I'm looking at using an HD pocket camcorder but it has to have the HD pass thru and not all do this (Kodak Zi8 doen't do pass thru). The reason for looking at these is that they can be in the < $200 range and the quality should be much better. The CCD cameras in the 600TV lines tend to get pricey...
Overall I'd have to say that the QSee system is great and a great value, you might want to check the specs because it does interface with other equipment.
Another option is to use an old PC, hook into the serial/printer ports to monitor switches and with a modem, it can dial out. If you don't have an old PC, they can be found REAL CHEAP.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:09 PM   #10
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There is a lot of information at www.diysecurityforum.com
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Old 01-04-2011, 06:30 AM   #11
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There are several systems out there. Do your research and please do not buy the cheapest system. They tend to be unreliable. Been there myself.

I use HAL 2000. It's best with a dedicated PC and I use a UPS battery back-up too. When any of my wireless cameras are tripped I receive a real-time video on my cell as well as the PC hard-drive.

Add a few signs around the property and stuck to the windows, a couple motion detectors that sound alarms inside the garage and home and your off to a good start. I also use a Voice Alert wireless motion detector for the garage and house when I'm at home. Beef up the man door lock on the garage.

I have a few other items installed but you get the picture. They might figure a way to break-in, steal some things, but I'll have you on video.

Security isn't cheap. If you end up with an ADT paid monitor type system you can have it send a warning/images to a phone, the police and or a neighbor. This can be the best option for most folks.

Just my 2˘
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:18 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Chips View Post
If your new house will have an attached garage, do yourself a favor and wire the OVERHEAD doors for alarm contacts. Most people just do the door between the garage and house, but I have found alarming the overhead door to be a lot more convienent.

The other thing you want is multiple keypads. I have one by the front door, one in the garage, one by basement walkout and a forth in the master bedroom. This way your always close to one in the event that one of the kids sets off the alarm by mistake, and with them set to chime when a contact is opened/closed you can pretty much monitor the house from anywhere inside it, even when the alarm isn't set. Most keypads have a panic button feature as well, so that's another great reason to have more than one, and with one in the bedroom you'll never have to get out of bed to see if you forgot to set the alarm
Are you kidding? I am tempted to put asecond, seperate alarm on my garage!
Definately though i will put contacts on the overhead doors in the new place, thank you for the advice.

Great idea about the multiple keypads. For my current house i planned on having only two since it is smaller however i will make sure to pre wire for more in the new house. If i just run 12/2 and an ethernet cable to the locations, i should be good right?
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Old 01-07-2011, 12:02 PM   #13
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Self monitoring can be deceiving - and below is a link to an article that lists some of the reasons why. I have also seen some great posts on other DIY forums that speak to the issue of professional monitoring vs. self monitoring. Just this morning we did not arm the system, and I got an alert on my B'berry from my system that told me my garage door had opened (the overhead one) when nobody was at home. I was at work, so dilaing 911 did not work. I found the number for the police, and they patched me through to the dispatch center, where I got the 3rd degree - and a lukewarm response that perhaps someone could go. If my central station had made the call, the dispatcher would have sent someone right out. Varies by jurisdiction, of course. And the point about fire is really a good one - do don't want anything to delay that. Protecting our homes and families is worth something.

http://blog.frontpointsecurity.com/2...is-a-bad-idea/
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:55 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by peterrogers View Post
Just this morning we did not arm the system, and I got an alert on my B'berry from my system that told me my garage door had opened (the overhead one) when nobody was at home. I was at work, so dilaing 911 did not work. I found the number for the police, and they patched me through to the dispatch center, where I got the 3rd degree - and a lukewarm response that perhaps someone could go. If my central station had made the call, the dispatcher would have sent someone right out.
I must be missing your point ( i am not too smart so it's no suprise). Wouldn't this scenerio have played out EXACTLY the same whether you are self monitoring, or paying a service? Since your alarm wasn't armed, the monitoring service would never have been contacted since the alarm was never triggered. what am i missing?
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Old 01-07-2011, 05:08 PM   #15
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Mr. Chips - you are right. My point was that we should have armed the system, since then it would have been the central station calling the police (and they have the right number) - and the police would have gone, which is what I wanted. I could easily missed that signal (bad cell spot, traveling, asleep, etc.) - and then what? Especially true with fire monitoring, where every minute counts. Shame on us for not arming the system... But if you are self-monitored, you don't have the option.

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