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Escape your life for a little while — come play in mine.

The real value of an alarm system on your house

Posted by Lissa on April 26, 2012

A few days ago I grabbed my cup of coffee, hooked my cooler handle over the crook of my arm, slung my elephant-sized purse onto my shoulder and opened the door to the garage.

BWAHBWAHBWAHBWAHBWAHBWAHBWAHBWAHBWAH

“Dammit!!!”

I hurried back inside and punched frantically at the alarm code box to shut up the godawful noise. Panting, I glared at it. (Rajah didn’t stir from underneath his blanket, if you’re wondering.)

“Dammit.”

I put down my things and waited.

And waited.

And waited.

About three minutes later the phone rang.

“Sunshine State Alarm System, do I need to send the police?”

“No,” I babbled, “my name is Lissa, the code is ****, false alarm, false alarm, thank you.”

She wished me a nice day, I hung up, and I dashed off to work.

Let’s add this up. Three minutes for the alarm people to call and check. At *least* another five minutes for the police; I’m sure they are a very good and dedicated force, but I live in the WAY back of our neighborhood. Unless they can get here as the crow flies, sheer geography says five minutes or more. That means eight minutes from when your door is kicked in to when your rescuers arrive.

So really, what’s the point of an alarm?

Actually, that’s quite easy. The point of the alarm is to give off an earsplitting shriek when someone opens my door or my windows.

I’m a pretty sound sleeper. I don’t know if I’d hear it were someone to pick my lock at 2:37 A.M. If they smashed something, I’d probably wake up; but then again I have yet to experience the true sleep deprivation that will come with kids, so give me a year and ask me again :)

In a nutshell – I really like my house alarm because it will wake me up if someone opens a way into my house. It’s not a signal for the cops to come rescue me — although that would be very nice, time constraints mean that serious stuff would have gone down long before they arrived. It’s a danger signal more than a rescue beacon.

Make sense?

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9 Responses to “The real value of an alarm system on your house”

  1. My alarm is for two reasons. #1 its hooked to my smoke detectors. So if my house catches fire while I’m away on vacation, it’ll call the fire department so maybe I’ll have a home to come home to. Also I enjoy my vacations more when I know my cell phone hasn’t rang from the alarm company informing me something happened while I was sitting on the beach.

    #2. If somebody enters my home and sets off my alarm and doesn’t IMMEDIATELY leave hearing that ear-spitting din, they deserve the ear-splitting Din from my .45. Yeah it could be a person too drunk or high to realize my home is their home (thin…maybe less thin in housing developments where all the houses are similar) or somebody looking to nick some stuff to fence won’t stick around when the alarms chime. That means the person is DANGEROUS, and needs to be dealt with as such. I suspect a jury of my peers will be sympathetic to that.

    Oh there’s a nice #3 too. There have been a few occations where I forgot to lock my door when I left. Has happened from time-to-time in all the places I’ve lived. But now when I notice the door is unlocked and push it open to hear the alarm, I know the door hasn’t been disturbed since I set the alarm, so there is almost no chance somebody has been in my home since.

    I will never live in a home without an alarm ever again, they’re too awesome. I will also never live in a home without guns, because the alarms are no substitute.

  2. Ruth said

    Considering I’ve been known to sleep through the fire alarm…..I can understand that attraction though.

  3. Amy said

    The alarm is your wake up call so you can grab your gun. Then the police can come pick up what’s left of the burglar. :)

  4. momiss said

    It does make sense. I don’t have an alarm but I have been thinking of getting a camera. I live in a small town, and in small times we still have crime, but we have the advantage of knowing WHO it was. It works out pretty well. lol

  5. momiss said

    hmmm. Since that posted, I will tell you that I have been TRYING to reply to your comment on my blog, but it just disappears every time and I am trying to fix the issue.
    I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you to the world of motherhood! I look forward to following your journey.

  6. It do.
    Alarms are meant to be just that, to alarm the owner to take action, & alert the intruder that his/her lifespan may now be measured in seconds..

  7. Robert Hewes said

    You know, I always figured I didn’t need an alarm because I have 3 dogs. This post (specifically Weer’d Beard’s comment) made me rething that. I do go on vacation on occasion, duh.

  8. boardsnbikes said

    Security is layers. Layers that will hopefully deter a break-in or worse. Alarm. Dog. 12 Gauge. Pistol.

    Robert H…dogs are good but, sadly, they have a “half-life” of effectiveness too. My rottie-mix long ago would bark at every car coming down the road and her bark could wake the dead. Living on a dirt road cul-de-sac in the country meant that cars were in-frequent and the barking acceptable. Besides, I trained her that barking was good but sustained barking was not acceptable.

    Any idiot breaking into my house after hearing my dog bark deserved everything in their now, short 10 second future.

    Now, she’s just old, 14 1/2 years old. She mostly sleeps. I haven’t heard her bark in two years.

  9. briawyatt said

    I have my alarm for the exact same reason. It’s there to alert *me* that there’s someone breaking in, it’s not a shout out to the police to rescue me. Also, while I’d love to think that my dogs would be 3 ferocious balls of teeth & terror to an unwelcome visitor, I’d rather rely on an electronic warning system and let my dogs remain pets.

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