Weather patterns across the country have started to change, as we move from one season into another. Depending on where you are, this might mean windier conditions that usual, or that you can expect heavier rainfall than the last few weeks. Homeowners should remember these changes as it has a clear impact on home security systems.
“It is particularly important to remember that any electronic device – such as a movement sensor or CCTV camera – that is installed outdoors, would be exposed to these weather conditions. Seasonal changes mean that you should test to see if everything is still working as well as it should. Recent heavy rainfall for example could require some parts of the system to be replaced,” explains Charnel Hattingh, Group Head of Communications and Marketing at Fidelity Services Group.
“It ultimately boils down to testing your system today so that you can have peace of mind that it is properly working when you need it tomorrow. A proper system once-over is also very useful, in the same way that your car goes for regular service checks. Your security provider might also be able to suggest new products that are more efficient than the elements you installed a few years ago.”
A good start is to take a look at your garden and the area surrounding your property. Identify any trees that might be overgrown and in need of a trim, or any plants that have grown to block your outdoor movement sensors.
“Pay attention to anything that could damage your security system when a sudden gust of wind blows a tree over and knocks down your electric fence. It is also a good idea to check the tensioning of the electric fence as it can shrink or expand depending on colder or warmer weather and lead to false alarms,” says Hattingh.
Another bit of advice, she adds, is to contact your security provider immediately if you have experienced any kind of storm damage.
“Technicians can do a quick and easy test to see if your security system suffered any kind of damage because of the stormy weather, and recommend what fixes are needed. Areas that experienced heavy rains or even localised flooding, should definitely consider these tests.”
Hattingh suggests giving your security systems a good once-over as often as possible. Contact your security provider and put the alarm and panic buttons on test, and book a technical service call if necessary.
“This test is of the utmost importance. If the system is not functioning properly the signal may not reach your security company and they will then not know there is an emergency at your property and won’t respond. Security companies treat every alarm signal as a possible emergency, but false signals due to system errors can take valuable resources away from the calls that are legitimate. You also need to know that your system will still function when bad weather strikes,” she says.
“The best is to start at the perimeter of your property and work your way in. Think like a criminal and evaluate whether your fencing or wall, garden, windows, doors, shed, or garage have weaknesses a criminal can exploit or which can be exacerbated by heavy rain or winds.
“Security needs to change with the seasons, and even with the way in which climate change is impacting weather patterns. By following these tips, we hope you will have peace of mind that your security system is as prepared for winter as you are,” she says.
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