Testing Your Home’s Smoke Detectors

Why have smoke detectors?

In addition to your alarm system, your monitored smoke detectors are one of your home’s most important safety features. The sole purpose of this product is to ensure that you and your family are quickly notified in the event of a fire, allowing you the opportunity to evacuate the home and giving your monitoring service the time to dispatch emergency services.

Why test smoke detectors?

Like many other electronic appliances in your home, smoke detectors require maintenance to perform properly. Testing your home’s smoke alarms periodically can help to ensure they perform as expected in the event of an emergency.

Smoke detectors and batteries

Residential smoke detectors are either battery powered or hardwired into your home’s electrical system and use a battery backup during power outages. All batteries, including the ones in your smoke detector, lose their charge over time. It is recommended that homeowners change these batteries at least two times per year. The easiest way to remind yourself is to change your batteries is to make it part of your daylight savings time routine; when resetting your clocks, plan to also change the batteries in your smoke detectors.

Steps for testing smokes

Before performing a test on your smoke detectors, we recommend reviewing the smoke alarm manufacturer or installer instructions. You should also inform your monitoring company that you will be testing your system to avoid dispatching emergency services.

For most models, a system test is quite simple. Press and hold the test button on the smoke detector. The detector could take a couple of seconds to respond, but should then emit a loud siren while the button is pressed. We recommend homeowners station family members throughout the home to ensure that the smoke detectors can be heard. If the sound is weak, consider changing the batteries or installing additional smoke detectors.

Testing the system is also a great opportunity to replace the batteries if they have not been replaced in the past six months. It is also recommended that you examine the grates on the detectors, removing any dust or debris that may have accumulated on the surface.

Smoke detectors and home security devices are meant to protect your home and family; however you should never assume they are working. Testing these systems often will not only help you protect your home from fire, it will also extend the life of your smoke detector. According to industry standards, properly maintained smoke detectors will last about 10 years before needing to be replaced. 

In addition to home security monitoring, Owen Security Solutions also offers monitored smoke and fire protection for your home. This 24/7 monitored protection can dispatch emergency services upon being notified of an alarm. To learn more about monitored life and property protection or for more information about testing your system, please call us today at 706.629.7398.

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Home Security and Power Outages

Homeowners are often concerned about their alarm system’s functionality during a power outage or severe winter weather. We at Owen Security Solutions are dedicated to protecting the homes, families, pets and property of our customer 24/7 and our commitment only grows stronger during times of hardship or disaster.

With the winter weather season approaching, we know that power outages or surges are unavoidable. We hope the information below will help give you a better understanding of your home security system and its operation during power outages.

Why is my alarm beeping and what is “Low Battery?”

Your Owen Security Solutions alarm system is equipped with a backup battery that will sustain your system’s operations for a period of time during a power outage. If this backup battery is having trouble maintaining a proper charge or has exceeded its recommended life span, it may try to communicate this to you by a light or a beep on the keypad. This low battery status does not affect the normal operation of your security system.

This battery is meant to keep your system operational during a temporary power outage while the primary power source for your system is disabled. The battery may last between 12-24 hours, depending on the system and the amount of power it requires to operate. If power is restored within 12-24 hours, the battery should recharge itself and return to its normal state. The trouble light should go off within 24 hours of power being restored.

If you have a low battery notification on your system, but have not experienced any power outage, you will need to ensure the system is still connected to a properly functioning electrical outlet. This may indicate a battery in need of replacement or service.

Typically, when our monitoring department receives a low battery signal from your system, we will call you to ensure you are aware of the low battery, assist you in silencing the trouble beep and try to schedule service to replace the battery if needed.

If you need further assistance on resetting a trouble light, replacing a system battery or have further questions about your alarm system’s operation during a power outage, please call our customer support center at 706.629.7398.

Better Safe Than Sorry This Season

The holidays are finally upon us! The season for merrier moods, the spirit of giving–annnnd, unfortunately, an increased opportunity to be taken advantage of.

During the holiday seasons, we often become slightly less vigilant and a bit more relaxed–it is the holiday season, after all! This contributes to the influx of thieves and burglars who take advantage of the spirit of the season.

Don’t be robbed of your sense of security and joy during the holidays! Here are some basic tips for keeping your home and family safe this season:

Gift Go-Tos

Avoid posting photos of your gifts on social media. Letting the world see your newest valuables increases the chance of being burglarized.

Dispose of boxes and wrappings quickly to prevent advertising your newest valuables to burglars who may be passing by.

Avoid storing or opening your gifts near windows or areas easily viewed from outside your home to avoid enticing theft.

Home Sweet Holiday

A working and monitored home security system is important to the safety of your home, belongings and loved ones. These systems often include home automation options and mobile access for an increased sense of security and ease of use.

Your home should always look occupied, even when traveling to visit family during the holiday season. An empty home is an enticing target for thieves. A remotely controlled household and security system can benefit those who plan to travel during the holidays. These systems can keep the alarm system armed and set schedules to control interior lighting, Christmas decor and small appliances to make the home appear occupied.

Using cracked windows or doors to run extension cords to your outdoor holiday decor is another mistake many homeowners make. In addition to running up electricity, thieves often use these unlocked windows or doors to gain entry into homes. Instead, try to use an outdoor electrical source to prevent making entry into your home any easier for trespassers. 

Various Visitors

Holidays are the peak season for visiting relatives. Homeowners often leave spare keys under doormats or flowerpots to allow family members access to their home. However, the unfortunate truth is that any passersby could observe these habits or easily discover these “hiding spots” and access your home with a key intended for a trusted party.

An easy solution? Home Automation and Z-Wave door locks can solve such dilemmas with ease. Z-Wave door locks can be accessed from the homeowner’s mobile device and can be locked or unlocked using the mobile app.  Personalized door lock codes can also be assigned to trusted visitors and are easily edited from the mobile app as well.

We hope these safety tips will help keep your home and family safe this holiday season and beyond. If you would like more information on an effective and convenient home security system or home automation system, please contact us at 706.629.7398 or visit http://www.OwenSecurity.com.

We hope you and your family have a fantastic holiday season and we welcome any feedback or additional safety/home security suggestions!

Protection For Your Furry Family

October is National Animal Safety and Prevention Month. What better way to show your furry family members that you care about them than to use your home security system to protect them when you’re not home?

According to a study done by the American Kennel Club (AKC), 88% of pet owners consider their dogs or cats to be valued family member. Along with the basic needs of these furry family members, pet owners should also remember to consider their pets’ needs in an emergency situation.

Most homes and apartments come standard with some sort of non-monitored smoke, heat and/or carbon monoxide detectors. These devices are great for alerting occupants when they are present, but what happens if you are not home? Not only is your property and possessions at risk, but so is the life of your beloved pet. With a monitored security system, authorities are alerted immediately when they receive signal from your life safety devices. This reduces the risk of the injury or death of a pet due to a house fire, smoke inhalation or carbon monoxide inhalation. These sensors can also be set to send notifications to your phone via a mobile application for added peace of mind.

Many homeowners choose to leave their family pets at home while out of town instead of boarding them in kennels. A monitored security system can be set up with temporary access codes for family members, trusted friends or petsitters to drop by to and check in on the home and animals. This allows access to the home while still offering the confidence that the home is secure and protected. In addition, it allows the homeowner to know when the system is armed and disarmed.

Added benefits to professionally installed and monitored home security systems include:

  • Protecting your belongings and your beloved pet from burglars by alerting authorities if an intrusion occurs.
  • Ensuring your pet is happy and comfortable by monitoring your home’s thermostat remotely using a mobile app. Added bonus–this can also reduce utility bills!
  • Reducing false alarms in your home by having pet-immune motion detectors installed and calibrated by professional technicians to ensure your system can remain effective without false alarming.
  • Taking advantage of the wireless technology offered by professionally installed security systems, eliminating possible damage to the system by your pet while reducing possible risks of electric shock or digestion of unsafe material by your pet.

If you are interested in protecting your loved ones, belongings and furry family members, contact an Owen Security Solutions representative today! Also, be sure to stop by our office and pick up a window decal for your home to alert first responders that there is a loved member of your family inside the home in the event of an emergency!

 

Owen Security Solutions Rises on Nation’s Top 100 Security Companies List

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Calhoun-based Owen Security Solutions was recently recognized as one of the Nation’s Top 100 Security Companies, according to the 2018 SDM 100 Report. This annual ranking is provided by SDM Magazine, which has been producing the report of the top 100 largest security providers in the country for the past 27 years.

Security Distributing and Marketing is a trade media that provides security professionals with industry news, insights and technical solutions. The magazine ranks companies in the United States that earn their revenue from the sale, installation, service and monitoring of electronic security systems, such as intrusion and fire, access control, video surveillance and related low-voltage systems, to residential and non-residential customers.

The primary objective of this report is to measure and account the size of the market served by the nation’s 100 largest security providers. The firms listed on this report are ranked by their recurring monthly revenue.

Established by founder Gary Owens in 1973, Owen Security Solutions is a second-generation, locally-owned and operated company based in Calhoun, Georgia. Now led by owner Justin Owen, the company staffs more than 30 employees and serves more than 7,000 customers from offices in Calhoun, Cartersville, Dalton and Rome.

“I’m extremely proud of our team’s commitment to personal and professional growth,” said Owen. “It is exciting to see a group of people be driven to grow as a company and see what we can accomplish together. As always, without our loyal customers and supportive community, this would not be possible. We are grateful and humbled and look forward to what the future holds.”

Owen Security Solutions is part of the Electronic Security Association, the Georgia Security Chapter, National Institute for Certification in Engineering technologies, the local Chambers of Commerce for the communities it serves, as well as a member of the Honeywell Authorized Dealer Program and the DMP Dealer Program.
For more information about SDM or Owen Security Solutions, please visit www.sdmmag.com/SDM100Report and www.OwenSecurity.com.

 

Home Security On the Go

Summer has arrived and many children will be spending much more time at home. Summer activities and schedules can get hectic—many parents are transporting children to camps and practices, have young-adult babysitters in the home and plan to take family vacations. A smart-home security system that includes cameras can help ease the worries of busy parents everywhere.

These systems allow live-view monitoring through a mobile app or remote access on any computer, smartphone or tablet. In addition to the live-view capability, activity-triggered cameras can be configured to send push notifications and clips of movements in specified areas of your home to your smartphone. You could even program your home security system to send clips of anyone entering or exiting your home!

These cameras can also be set up to monitor your home’s swimming pool in effort to prevent accidents or unauthorized visitors. The security system can be configured to notified you when the area is occupied and allows the opportunity to check in on loved ones. Interior cameras can be discreet and mounted in areas that will not interfere with home décor; however, it is often suggested to place outdoor cameras in obvious locations to deter potential threats.

Camera footage can also be useful evidence in the event of theft or damages, to help identify perpetrators and to verify insurance claims. These systems also save you money on homeowner’s insurance. Most major insurers offer lower premiums to homes with professionally installed and monitored security systems—especially those with advanced video surveillance.

Whether you are at work, dashing to the store around the corner, or on a family vacation across the country, keeping an extra eye on your home and loved ones in real-time and being notified of suspicious activity is an undeniable benefit of today’s technology—and it is much more affordable than you may think! Contact an Owen Security Solutions representative today for your free camera!