What Is Burglar Alarm System & How Does It Works?

What Is Burglar Alarm System & How Does It Works?

Burglar Alarm

A burglar alarm system is a series of electrical equipment and sensors connected to the main system that detects any unauthorized or forceful access in the premises and alerts using alarms, hooters, and notifications. With ever-increasing cases of offensive and unlawful activities (thefts, vandalism, etc.) burglar alarm systems are perceived as security essential. The high state of insecurity among owners and a need to keep resources safe from any intrusion or damage is also driving its adoption.

Historically, these systems used to be expensive due to its complex nature and with the high-end application only. But the recent developments in technology is bringing down its costs and increasing its acceptance in both residential and commercial spaces. A burglar alarm system is mainly of three types-

  • Wired – every component and electrical systems are connected through wires
  • Wireless – Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or any other radio technology is used as a mode of connection between appliances
  • Hybrid – it consists of a combination of wired and wireless equipment communicating with the main system

Installing a burglar alarm system is a sophisticated and complex task with virtually unlimited combination because of the large number of input devices available. They are capable of identifying movements before the actual offensive threat. But the basic concept behind each design or combination remains the same.

How do burglar alarms work?

Isn’t it interesting to see how automation has taken over manual security systems? We see the alarms going on in case of any intrusion. What we don’t see is the complex network of sensors and detectors integrated with the control panel that identify any kind of physical breach in the premises and alert the concerned people. This whole process is taken care of by computers and machines, easing the security-related steps on humans.

There are three steps that the burglar alarm system goes through in securing the premises from intruders.

  • Detection
  • Verification
  • Notification

Step 1 – Detection

First and foremost, specific hardware needs to be installed on the premises that are capable of detecting any intrusion-related activity. This hardware greatly varies with needs, environment, and type of protection the owner needs. So, this step is taken care of by installing burglar sensors which detect a change in the typical environment and informs the control panel about the same. Each sensor varies in its working and can be further customized according to the spaces.

We’ve been talking about sensors a lot, lately. But what are these sensors? How are they different from each other? How do they work? Let’s talk about it.

The main task handled by the sensors is detecting any motion or forceful entry. There are a plethora of sensors available for detecting the same, but the way they work is unlike. These are few of them –

Active Infrared Motion Sensor

An active infrared motion sensor emits infrared light from the end and the receiver on the other end receives the signal. If that electrical beam is cut off by any object between the emitter and the receiver, it triggers the alarms.

Passive Infrared Motion Sensor

Unlike the active sensor, a passive infrared sensor doesn’t emit any light of their own. Instead, it detects the infrared energy radiated by an individual. These are programmed to detect human temperatures.

Ultrasonic Motion Sensor

These sensors send out ultrasonic sound waves that are inaudible to the human ear. These sounds waves bounce back from the other end in a specific time. Any change in the timing of the sound waves received due to an obstacle in between sends out a signal about the same.

Tomographic Motion Sensor

These are usually used at wider and larger places. It consists of a network of nodes spread across an area, communicating with each other, and detects a motion when someone passes from those nodes.

Door and Window Sensor

When armed, door and window sensors detect and set the alarm whenever doors and windows are opened. These can be installed on the frame near the hinges that get activated when on the movement of the same.

Glass Break Sensor

Glass break sensor is capable of sensing loud noise and vibration of glass breaking. These are usually installed directly on the glass or can be installed at a place surrounded by glass for optimum utilization.

Step 2 – Verification

The control unit is the brain of the burglar alarm system. This contains the circuit board, power supply, batteries for the units, and keyboard to access it. Smart systems can be connected to the cloud and the main security management software via the internet for data safety, easy access, data analytics, and receive alerts remotely on any device. Multiple control units or alarm panels can be spread across large areas for easy access with the master unit being the most important. This is where signals from all the sensors are received, analyzed, and verified by the user.

When sensed something unusual, the sensors trigger the alarm that could be a siren or an alert to the user or a signal to any other authority like a police station or combination of any of the above. However, the signal sensed by the hardware may not be accurate every time. Pets, human error, equipment malfunction and improper operation can also activate the alarm system. This is called a False Alarm. Improper use or installation of sensors can also cause false alarms. This can cost a lot of money for the owner. Therefore, verification of all the alarm signal is very much important. The primary reason for providing a keyboard with the system is to check if the alert is true and turn off the sirens in case of false alarms.

Another function of the keyboard is to change the status of the system as a whole or for specific burglar sensors. In the case of a smart system, all these tasks can be easily performed from an integrated system. All these sensors can be switched to arm and disarm modes simultaneously by the user to ensure smooth and efficient working of the alarm system. For a bank working from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., specific sensors can be switched to disarm mode for easy working as a lot of people visit the branch and can be switched back to arm mode to engage the sensors and hooters during after-hours.

Step 3 – Notification

Notification here refers to the alerts sent to the user, system, and the concerned authorities. Once the burglar alarm system verifies that the alerts are made to any crime or after multiple failed attempts to verify the alarm, the burglar alarm system contacts the local authorities or emergency response teams according to the programming.

The smart alarms connected to the main surveillance system also record the audio and the video of the incident for the evidence afterwards.

Applications of Burglar alarm system

Applications of burglar alarm systems are diverse, being used across residential, commercial and industrial establishments. With the integrated solution including burglar sensors and IP cameras, burglar alarm systems facilitate the secure and efficient operations of all premises.

  • Industrial areas such as offices and factories
  • Residential homes and garages
  • Commercial premises including shops, restaurants, and hotels
  • High-security areas such as banks, ATMs, lockers, etc.
  • Storage and warehouse facilities

Maintenance of burglar alarm system

No matter how good a machine is, it needs to be regularly checked to reduce issues and increase its working life. The system should be checked once or twice a year to keep it well-run and updated. A burglar alarm system, with its predictive and scheduled device maintenance checks, keeps the system updated and saves it from device downtime.

We at IGZY have a huge assortment of security systems to suit every kind of customer. From consulting to installation to maintenance, our security specialist provides every service around security and surveillance. Get in touch with our team for your burglar alarm system and always stay safe from intruders.