picture of a red strobe light

Sirens and Strobes in a Security System

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Written by Chuck Amundson

As an in-office technician, I get asked a lot of times, “Should I have an outdoor siren or indoor siren for my alarm system?” Many people think their neighbors will check out their house if the siren were blasting in the neighborhood. That may be true in some cases, but not in all cases. For me personally, I can’t hear a siren unless I am outside or the window is open. It begs the question, “Do you stop when a car alarm goes off”?

What is a siren?

A siren is the noisemaker when an intruder goes into your home and trips the alarm system. It can make a tone sound or talk and say “intruder, intruder, the police have been called.” This siren can be placed indoors, outdoors, or both. The rule of thumb is to place the device in the home. When a break-in happens, the noise is piercing to the ear. The problems with outdoor placement is the city or township may have a noise ordinance against the device. While they may not have an ordinance today, it may become an issue in the future.

What other ways can I alert people of an intruder?

I would suggest to maintain a monitored response to a burglary event. If an alarm goes off inside the house, those in your contact list are called and police are called to your residence. Additionally, your friends, relatives, or neighbors may be called to meet with the police to check out the house. However, you should always let the trained professionals check out the alarm. I would hate for my neighbor to surprise an intruder and get hurt trying to save my property.

What is a strobe light?

picture of a red strobe light

Strobe is a light that pulses when the alarm goes off. It comes with a variety of colors, such as blue, red, yellow, and clear. This is great to have on your home for nighttime emergency issues. With a strobe light, police are able to find your home faster as darkness approaches. When an alarm goes off, the strobe flashes brightly to passing traffic. When a smoke detector trips in your home, the fire department would be able to find your residence sooner.

A strobe could also be used for a low temperature condition at home. Neighbors seeing the house would know if the house went cold along with monitoring company calling them. Strobes can also be used in the home for the hearing impaired.  Commercial fire systems use strobe lights to alert people of a fire condition.

Consult with a sales professional or our office staff should you need to add to your alarm system. They are trained to determine if an outdoor or interior siren would be best for you. Consider monitoring your  alarm system before just going with a siren to give you peace of mind 24/7. Finally, think about adding a strobe light as a valuable tool for finding your home in the night time.