March 2020 Archives

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We are often asked about security system options for those on a tight budget. At Alarm Grid, we believe that everyone should have access to alarm monitoring, and we try to accommodate as many people as possible. We have found that a basic starter security system can start at under $250.

Honeywell lyricpk lyric security system w 3 door window sensorThere are two main expenses you need to consider when setting up your own alarm system. There is the up-front cost of your equipment, and there is the monthly cost of alarm monitoring service. At Alarm Grid, our customers must purchase their own equipment. This is universal equipment that can work with virtually any alarm monitoring service. It is not proprietary equipment that will only work with a specific platform. If you ever want to switch monitoring companies you can easily do so. Once your system's communicator is released, it can be taken to nearly any company.

Some companies may offer you a free security system just for signing up for their service. That might sound like a great deal, but there are a couple of things to look out for. One issue is that the system they are offering might be a proprietary system. In other words, it will only work with their monitoring service. If you try to switch to a new monitoring company for any reason, you will be stuck finding new equipment. But perhaps even more concerning is that a company might lock you into a long-term contract for their services. This can make it tough to change or cancel your service.

With Alarm Grid, you own all your equipment outright. You can easily take your Alarm Grid Security System to a completely different monitoring company if desired. We will always release a communicator if requested, and we will never hold your system hostage. Additionally, all of our monitoring plans are month-to-month, and you can cancel your service before your next billing cycle to avoid paying extra. Also remember that we never change any extra or hidden fees, and there is never any additional fee for starting or stopping service.

The best way to get a low-cost security system is to consider both the up-front cost and the monthly cost. And we have a viable system option that will get you started for less than $250. We would like to recommend our Refurbished Honeywell Lyric Controller for anyone on a tight system budget. Add in a couple of VERSA-2GIG Door and Window Contacts and a Honeywell LT-Cable for powering the system, and you are still looking at a total cost of under $250. We are extremely confident in the quality of our refurbished equipment. More information can be found here.

The Lyric System is also ideal for keeping monthly monitoring costs low, as it can connect with the Reisdeo AlarmNet360 Servers through an IP-only connection. This is considerably cheaper than using cellular monitoring. However, you must understand that an internet outage will take your panel offline if you don't have cellular backup. But many users who understand the risks involved are happy to save money by going with IP monitoring. The Lyric already includes a built-in WIFI card, so you will not need to add anything to the system to do IP monitoring. And if you ever decide to upgrade to cellular monitoring later, the system has two (2) LTE options available.

Alarm Grid offers its Bronze Level Plan for just $15 per month. This plan will allow your Lyric System to connect with the Honeywell AlarmNet Servers for central station monitoring service. This is all you need to get a Certificate of Alarm for potential savings on your homeowner's insurance. You might also consider adding at least one smoke detector to your system for further savings with your homeowner's insurance. Currently the least expensive wireless smoke detector for the Lyric System is the Honeywell SiXSMOKE Smoke Detector. Another nice accessory is the Honeywell LCP500-DK Desk Mount, which will allow you to use the panel without mounting it to a wall or lying it flat on a surface.

For just $250 up-front and $15 per month, you can get central station monitoring service and a state-of-the-art security system that is perfect for building around as your budget grows. And if you lack funds up-front, then we offer financing options that we are happy to discuss. Please email us at support@alarmgrid.com if you want to learn more about our products or monitoring services. We answer emails during our regular support hours from 9am to 8pm ET M-F. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Are you bored during the social distancing era from COVID-19 outbreak? If you're going crazy, wondering just what to do with yourself, you might try testing your home security system. It can be a great feeling to know that everything is working properly. And you can do it yourself!

Alarm grid inside security stickers

A complete security system test involves checking all of your sensors and making sure they report to the panel properly. This practice of testing a system is also sometimes referred to as a Walk Test. Many systems have a designated Walk Test mode for this purpose. This mode is often most convenient, as the faulted zones will appear on the screen. You can have a friend stand in front of the panel, while you go around and fault various sensors. This can be a good way to keep track of zones on your system in the event that you ever lose your zone list.

Before conducting any security system test, you should make sure to put your system on test mode. This is very important if you have monitoring service with a central station. If an alarm comes through on your central station account while your system is not in test mode, the central station operator will think that it is a legitimate alarm. This could result in unnecessary dispatch to your residence, and you may receive a fine from your local jurisdiction. Please do not waste the time and resources of your community, and always put your system into test mode when testing equipment!

The best way to put your system on test mode is by using the MyAlarms.com feature from our central station partner, Criticom Monitoring Services. This complementary service will allow you to put your system on test mode by yourself, without needing to receive verification or have someone else do it for you. We have a blog about the MyAlarms.com service, which you can view right here. Other ways to put your system on test mode include contacting us between 9am and 8pm ET M-F by emailing support@alarmgrid.com or by calling (888) 818-7728, or by contact CMS directly.

Each sensor will be tested in a different way. Some common examples include:

A regular system test is a routine affair that you should perform often. It is the best way to ensure that your system is working properly. And also remember that if you need an updated Certificate of Alarm (CoA) for a homeowner's insurance discount, then you must perform an annual test to prove that your system is working properly. Each CoA is good for one (1) calendar year, so make sure to keep up with this so you don't lose out on your insurance discount. We have more information on Certificate of Alarms that you can click here to view.

If you need further help testing your system, or if you are interested in learning more about our products or services, please contact us at support@alarmgrid.com. Although our support staff is currently working from home, we are still committed to providing you with the very best customer service and technical support. Our support hours run from 9am to 8pm ET M-F, so keep that in mind when contacting us. We look forward to hearing from you!

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The Cincinnati Police Department has begun limiting police response for non-urgent matters in an effort to stop the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus. Calls deemed to be non-urgent are being redirected for online or phone reporting. The temporary policy took effect Tuesday, March 24th.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Chief of the Cincinnati Police Eliot Isaac stated, "I want all of the residents and visitors to Cincinnati to understand that the Cincinnati Police Department is ready and able to respond to any emergency call from the public... Our recently implemented Differential Response Plan is intended to limit the exposure of our officers and the public to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and our desire is to continue to provide the highest level of police service, while maximizing our efficiency and effectiveness."

The department went on to add that the following calls will be redirected for phone and/or online reporting:

  • Assaults not requiring medical attention where suspect is no longer present.
  • Auto collisions, except those w/ injuries and/or vehicles that are no longer drivable
  • Breaking and entering w/ no suspect & no possibility of property recovery.
  • Criminal damaging reports.
  • Dog bites.
  • Found property
  • Lost or stolen license plates.
  • Menacing reports, unless suspect is expected, threatens to return, or is associated w/ domestic violence.
  • Phone harassment.
  • Property damage.
  • Theft reports w/o possibility of “immediate apprehension or property recovery”, unless value is equal to or greater than $5,000 and/or the stolen property involves a firearm.

Cincinnati residents are encouraged to report crimes online via the Cincinnati Police Department website, which can be accessed here. Another option for reporting any of the crimes listed above is to contact the Cincinnati Police Department Telephone Crime Reporting Unit (TCRU) at (513) 352-2960. The TCRU will accept reports from 8am to 5pm The Cincinnati Police Department also operates a non-emergency phone line at (513) 765-1212 for non-urgent matters.

If you have central station monitoring service in Cincinnati, then you should understand that the Cincinnati Police Department will still be responding to dispatch requests like normal. Cincinnati is not a verified response community, meaning that a dispatch request from a certified central station operator is sufficient for warranting an emergency response. An alarm from a security system is considered to be an emergency, and the appropriate authorities will still respond ASAP. However, Alarm Grid would like to remind all of its monitored customers to do their part in preventing false alarms by saving the CMS telephone numbers in your phone, setting appropriate entry/exit delays for your system, knowing your false alarm passcode, and placing your system on test mode before testing sensors.

It is presumed that the change in policy will be temporary and last until measures relating to COVID-19 are relaxed. No official or expected end date has been provided at this time. Please continue to check our blog for more information relating to police response policies in major cities and metropolitan areas.

Alarm Grid customers in Cincinnati who would like to learn more about this change in policy are invited to reach out to us by emailing support@alarmgrid.com. We are available to respond to emails from 9am to 8pm ET M-F. We look forward to hearing from you.

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Nortek and 2GIG made waves last year with their release of the 2GIG GC3e System. This panel is known for its exceptional build quality and its robust and powerful features. It is a great option to consider if you are new to alarm monitoring. Here are five (5) things we love about the GC3e.

2gig gc3e wireless encrypted alarm panel

1) Many Sensor Options

When you get a 2GIG GC3e System, you will have the choice of many sensor lineups. Arguably the most powerful are the encrypted 2GIG eSeries Sensors. These are the only encrypted sensors available for the system, and they offer an impressive wireless range of 350 nominal feet. Other wireless sensor options include the 2GIG 345 MHz Sensors and the Honeywell 5800 Series Sensors. And if you have hardwired sensors, you can bring them over using a Honeywell 5800C2W or a 2GIG TAKE-345.

2) Partitioning Support

Referred to as "Smart Areas", the 2GIG GC3e provides support for up to four (4) individually controlled partitions. If you aren't familiar with partitioning for alarm systems, it basically means splitting the system up into different sections that can each be armed and disarmed individually. Each Smart Area Partition can be assigned its own selection of zones its own set of user codes. This is perfect for businesses, multi-family homes, guest homes, rental properties and more.

3) Z-Wave Plus

The 2GIG GC3e features a built-in Z-Wave Plus controller for using smart home automation devices. You can add a variety of devices, including lights, locks, thermostats, and more to create a truly customized smart home that meets your needs. These connected devices can be controlled directly from the panel, and it is even possible to establish smart scenes to have multiple home automation devices activate automatically based on a set schedule or with certain system events.

4) Alarm.com

If you want to truly unlock the potential of your GC3e system, you will want to get it set up with an alarm monitoring plan that includes access to Alarm.com. This is an interactive service platform that you can use to control your GC3e from anywhere using a web browser or a mobile app on your phone. Once you have accessed Alarm.com, you can arm and disarm the system, control Z-Wave home automation devices, view the live feed for Alarm.com Security Cameras, and more.

5) Great Build Quality

While this is hard to measure, we are honest when we say that the 2GIG GC3e arguably has the best build quality out of any alarm panel we have ever seen. The panel is extremely tough and very well-made. It doesn't feel flimsy like some other security panels, but it is still sleek and compact enough that you will be proud to display it on your wall. If mounting an alarm panel isn't your style, then the 2GIG CP-DESK can be added to rest the system on a sturdy table or desk.

Get a 2GIG GC3e System from Alarm Grid!

If you have decided that the 2GIG GC3e System is for you, then we would love to help you get started! You can email us at support@alarmgrid.com if you have any questions about the GC3e or our monitoring services in general. Our technical support specialists are available from 9am to 8pm ET M-F to provide you with the help you need. We look forward to hearing from you!

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One of the best security systems on the market right now is the Honeywell Lyric Controller. While it's clear that Resideo is currently hard at work on their next-gen alarm panel, the Lyric still remains a viable option for many users. Here are five (5) things we love about the Lyric.

Honeywell lyric controller encrypted wireless security system

1) HomeKit Compatibility

As of March 2020, the Lyric is hands-down the absolute best HomeKit compatible security system on the market. This is great news for iOS users who are looking to control their system remotely using Siri voice commands, as well as users who want to have their HomeKit smart home devices activate automatically with certain system events. For more on getting a Lyric set up with Apple HomeKit, we encourage you to check out this helpful FAQ.

2) IP-Only Monitoring

Don't get us wrong. We always recommend dual-path monitoring with both IP and cellular. But we also understand that some users will want to save money by going IP-only. The Lyric is the newest and most advanced security system that can be set up for alarm monitoring using an IP-only path. This makes it eligible for the less expensive Bronze and Silver Level Monitoring Plans from Alarm Grid (Self or Full). You don't even need to add a communicator, as the system already has a built-in WIFI card. Of course, you can also add a Honeywell LYRICLTE-A (AT&T LTE) or a Honeywell LYRICLTE-V (Verizon LTE) if you want to use the system for cellular or dual-path monitoring. This will require an upgrade to one of the Gold plans.

3) Total Connect 2.0

Total Connect 2.0 represents one of the best features for the Honeywell Lyric Alarm System. You can use this robust interactive platform to control your Lyric System from pretty much anywhere using a web browser or a mobile app on your smartphone. By accessing Total Connect 2.0, you can arm and disarm the system, control programmed Z-Wave devices, view the live feed for Total Connect IP Cameras, and so much more. Make sure that the monitoring plan for your Lyric includes access to this great platform.

4) Backwards Compatibility

The Lyric proved that just because you get a new security system doesn't mean you need to throw out your old sensors. All of the uni-directional 345 MHz Honeywell 5800 Sensors work with the Lyric, which is important for users upgrading from older Honeywell LYNX Touch Panels. And users with hardwired sensors could easily bring most of them over using a Honeywell 5800C2W Wired to Wireless Converter. Either way, users have a good option to set up the Lyric without having to buy new sensors. And if you do want to buy new sensors, the encrypted Honeywell SiX Sensors are an excellent option.

5) Ease of Use

If you are familiar with other Honeywell Security Systems, then you will have no problem making the jump over to the Lyric. The system features a very similar UI to that of the LYNX Touch Systems, and its programming has been largely retained. While there are some minor updates to freshen things up and to provide a more user friendly experience, the Lyric System is almost identical to its predecessors. Overall, it is very easy for end users to set up, thereby making it the perfect DIY alarm panel.

Get Your Lyric Controller Now!

Our team is happy to help you get started with a brand-new Lyric Controller! If you want to learn more about the Honeywell Lyric System or the monitoring services we provide, please contact us at support@alarmgrid.com. Our support team is available from 9am to 8pm ET M-F to help you find the perfect alarm system for your unique needs. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Alarm Grid isn't your traditional alarm company. We're a little bit different. We're a young company built in the modern age. We use the same old technology, but we use things like YouTube and online content to teach you how to use it. Most companies obscure how these systems work. They will hide codes from you. They'll have provisions in their contracts that let them take the system back when you leave them. At Alarm Grid, we believe you own your system; you own your codes. We give you the tools to take full control of the security you so desperately want for your family. Oh! I almost forgot. We don't have contracts.

We think that we just do things better here. We rely on high quality service. Our team is incredibly knowledgeable. They know these security systems in and out. But now, as everyone is sitting at home on their sofa's trying to figure out how to fill their time, there is even more reason to work with us.



There is no better time than now to secure your home and family.

Alarm Grid Doesn't Send Anyone to Your Home

When you get an alarm system, most people expect someone to show up to their home and put it on the wall. Not Alarm Grid! To date, Alarm Grid has been for the enterprising do-it-yourselfer. But in the age of coronavirus, we're really the best way for you to keep your quarantine, socially distance, and get the protection your family needs in a unpredictable world.

Our process is simple:

  • If you have a security system, you can just sign up and give us all the system information we need. We can help you find that information if you need to. But we can monitor most systems.
  • If you need a security system, you can find a whole bunch of different systems that you can install in your own home. Pick your system, and watch our installation video on that system. Once we ship you the system and it arrives, you'll be able to get it up in an hour or two. It's fun, easy, and perfectly safe. Program the sensors to it. Voilla, you have a brand new, professional security system installed by you.

Our Systems are the Same Systems ADT and Other Big Name Brands Install

Notice I said "professional security system" above. We don't sell janky or cheap systems. We sell top of the line security systems. Our systems are used in millions of restaurants, businesses, and homes all over America. That's right, millions of people have the systems we sell. They are the same systems that an installer would put in if you ordered from one of the big names in the industry. So you don't have to worry about the quality of these security systems. Your family will be as safe as ever.

While we have lots and lots of choices available, our two favorite systems are the Qolsys IQ Panel Plus and the Honeywell Lyric. Read about the differences, if you are trying to decide between these two incredible systems.

The biggest difference between these two systems is that the Honeywell Lyric is compatible with Apple's HomeKit. The Qolsys is not compatible with HomeKit. However, both work excellently as Z-Wave home automation controllers. Both systems can be controlled from a phone or computer. The Qolsys is compatible with Alarm.com's interactive services. Honeywell's Lyric is compatible with Total Connect. Both Alarm.com and Total Connect allow for remote management of your system. Finally, the Lyric's communicator is removable. The Qolsys's communicator is built in.

Old alarm systems used a phone line to send signals. This means that when someone broke into a home, the system would make a literal phone call, and deliver information to the central station. The central station would then call the police and give the dispatch information for checking on your property.

Phone lines are notoriously insecure. For the enterprising thief, in order to disable the alarm system, they would simply cut your home's telephone wire. But the bigger problem came as phone systems modernized. We moved from analog copper phone wires to digital phones and, many times, digital switching. This causes phone calls to be less clean and pure than they used to be. Signals from these devices can become problematic for central stations.

Modern security systems no longer send signals through the phone. Rather they use an IP connection and a cellular back up. IP suffers from some of the same security concerns as the old phone lines. Someone can cut an IP system's line. But, when coupled with the cell signal, modern security systems are both cheaper and more secure than the old analog systems. Oh, and they're far less complicated as well. As computers have advanced, they have progressed from old wired systems with wonky keypads to new beautiful systems with excellent user interfaces. And that's where we come in. We help you learn how to select, buy, and install your system.

If that sounds appealing to you, call us today!

855-945-1433

If you're still intimidated though, perhaps it will help you to know that you can...

See Everything You Need to Do for a DIY Installation by Watching a Step-by-Step Video

Don't get too intimidated. The secret of the alarm industry is that installing these devices is really easy. We have videos of everything, including installation.


If you dislike video, we have lots of written FAQs. And if you dislike those, you can call us. We can teach you to install the system, learn sensors into the system, and we can give you an overview of how the system works all over the phone.

Whatever the case, if you're at home, trying to figure out what you're going to do for the next few months, consider checking "Get a Security System" off of your bucket list. And do it all without breaking your quarantine or social distancing rules.

We Have No Contracts

Alarm Grid is a month to month service. You can cancel any time. We basically invented the concept of no contract alarm monitoring. Traditional companies usually require that you sign a 3 year deal. You'll pay a lot more than we charge. And the service they give you will cost more every time they do what's called, "roll a truck." That's industry speak for "sending someone to your house to fix a small problem." And the problem with that is, you don't know the repairman from Adam. You never know who you're going to get... if you know what I mean...


The truth is, we've rarely had to roll a truck. Our goals is to not send someone out ever. This Coronavirus thing doesn't changed anything for us. We have been doing this for years. Most fixes to your security system take mere minutes. And almost never are any of the fixes a system needs so difficult that you won't be able to do it on your own. If you don't believe it, check out our reviews.

These reviews are real. We don't hide them, we don't suppress them. They are all verifiable, real customers of Alarm Grid's. But remember, behind the no contracts, and no strings attached thing is an implicit promise we have to our customers. If you hate us, you can leave us. Because we aren't making proprietary systems, because we're helping you install professional systems, because we want you to be our customer for a long time, we have to be great to you. We have to help you from beginning to end. We have to work you through problems you encounter in the installation. If we don't, you can leave the very next month. We promise you!

Your experience is all we care about. So while you're sitting at home, bored off your fanny, give us a call. Let us help you get a brand new security system or take over your existing one. You won't regret it. In fact, you'll probably love it. And if you have kids, it's so easy, you can probably just make them do it. Maybe they'll learn something. We'll call it homeschooling... in the subject of "computer science" or something. Whatever the case, we'll work with you.

Call us today, and see how different we are.

855-945-1433

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This begins "Week 2" of Alarm Grid employees working from home. Our headquarters in Florida is shut down, except for a very small number of employees who absolutely need to be there. The rest of our FL team is working from home. Our team members in KY and CT are also working from home.

Alarm grid inside security stickers

As you know by now, COVID-19 is a serious global health pandemic, and we must all do our part to prevent the spread of the virus. This means making necessary sacrifices in certain situations, with the greater good in mind. We will continue to provide you with the best support possible, and we know our friends at Criticom Monitoring Services are doing their part as well. Rest assured that these temporary changes should have no effect on your monitoring service, and your home or business will remain protected and secured if you have to leave it unmanned for whatever reason.

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit some of our manufacturers hard, and some products may be backordered as a result. In the event that you order a product that is currently unavailable, we will do our very best to let you know as soon as possible. Our team will suggest a suitable replacement if one is available, and we will try to remain as flexible and as accommodating as possible. We appreciate your understanding and patience during this time.

It is recommended that you practice social distancing until further notice to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Stay at home if possible, and remember to wash your hands regularly and use hand sanitizer if it is available. If you must leave home for some reason, then avoid large crowds and gatherings, and stay away from those who are sick. Keep face-masks and other needed medical supplies available for those who need them most. Contact your doctor or healthcare provider if you believe that you may be sick. They will tell you the best actions to take. Make sure that your family and other loved ones also follow these steps to protect themselves and those around them.

We understand that this is a difficult situation for everyone involved. Some people may feel upset or emotional during this time. We are here to tell you that this will pass, and hopefully things will return to normal soon. While working from home might sound like fun, we can assure you that our team wants to get back to regular life in the office and to stop living in a world of fear and isolation. If you know someone who is struggling emotionally through this process, do your part to reach out. Give them a call or send them a gift to try and uplift their spirits. Remind them that these are temporary circumstances, and the best thing we can do for now is hold out until this eventually passes.

Remember, COVID-19 should have no impact on your monitoring service. If you have any questions about your monitoring service, or if you want to know if a certain product is backordered, you are welcome to email us at support@alarmgrid.com. Although we are working from home, our team is still regularly checking emails and providing support from 9am to 8pm ET M-F. You can feel assured that our team will see your message and respond as soon as possible. We know that this is a tough time for everyone, and we will do our part to help you get through it. We look forward to hearing from you.

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Arguably the best and most innovative alarm panel on the market right now is the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus. This security system is jam-packed with great features that help it stand-out from other alarm panels on the market. Here are 5 reasons we love the IQ Panel 2 Plus from Qolsys.

Qolsys iq panel 2 plus verizon lte with powerg s line and legacy

1) PowerG Sensor Support

PowerG Sensors are some of the best in the industry with their ability to be used up to 2,000 feet away from the IQ Panel 2 Plus in open air and their 128-bit AES encryption that provides comfort and peace of mind in knowing that they are not prone to wireless hacking or takeovers. The PowerG offerings are continuing to grow and expand, and you should have no trouble finding new sensors within this robust lineup.

2) Automatic Bluetooth Disarming

At this time, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus is the only panel to offer the option for automatic Bluetooth disarming. The way that this works is you will enroll your smartphone to the system. When you get home, the panel will detect your phone using wireless Bluetooth technology and automatically disarm the system. No more racing to disarm the panel in time or fumbling around with a mobile app. Of course, you can also turn off this feature if that makes you feel more comfortable.

3) Choice of Legacy Sensors

The IQ Panel 2 Plus is a rare example of a security system that we can safely recommend regardless of what older panel you are upgrading from. With three (3) legacy sensor options (319.5 MHz, 345 MHz, 433 MHz) you can bring your existing sensors over to your new IQ Panel 2 Plus, no matter which panel is being replaced. There are also wired to wireless converters available like the Qolsys IQ Hardwire 16-F and the Honeywell 5800C2W that can be used to support converting wired sensors to wireless.

4) Built-In Communicators

Normally, a new system will require you to buy some type of communicator to get it online and set up for alarm monitoring. But not the IQ Panel 2 Plus, as it already has everything needed for alarm monitoring built inside. The system features an LTE cellular communicator (AT&T LTE or Verizon LTE), which meets the Alarm.com requirements for cellular connectivity. It also includes a built-in WIFI card, making it dual-path ready right out of the box.

5) Sleek Design

An often overlooked aspect of the IQ Panel 2 Plus is its sleek and crisp stature, which truly proves that an alarm system doesn't have to be an eyesore or a big ugly mess that you put out of sight. With it's slim, tablet-like design and overall thin profile, the panel is something you can feel proud to display on your wall or rest on a table or desk using its included table stand. It even offers a picture frame slideshow feature that can be used to display photos when the panel is not in use.

Get Your IQ Panel 2 Plus Today!

We're happy to help you get started with a brand-new IQ Panel 2 Plus System! If you have any questions about the panel or our monitoring services, please email us at support@alarmgrid.com. Our team of experts is here from 9am to 8pm ET M-F to help you find the perfect security system and alarm monitoring plan for your needs. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Reed Exhibitions has announced new dates for the 2020 ISC West show in Las Vegas. The event will now be held July 20 - 22, 2020. The show will still take place in the Sands Exposition Center. Information about registration for the event will be sent out as soon as more details are available.

Alarm Grid plans to have a team on the show floor, bringing you news, including video and interviews from some of the top vendors on site. As the show dates draw nearer, we'll provide more information on what you can expect from our coverage. If you can't make it to the show and you have a burning question about upcoming products or services from your favorite security vendor, put them in the comments. We may ask your question on camera at the show!

In the meantime, please follow the recommended precautions to avoid the Coronavirus. According to the CDC you should take these precautionary measures to avoid becoming sick or making others sick:

Take Steps to Protect Yourself
  • Clean hands often: Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, in particular after you've been in a public place. Do so also after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If you can't wash your hands, use a hand sanitizer with at least a 60% alcohol content. Cover your hands completely, and rub them together until they feel dry.

  • Avoid contact: Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick. If COVID-19 is spreading in your area, keep your distance from other people. This is especially important for the very young, the elderly, and people with compromised immune systems.
Take Steps to Protect Others
  • Stay home: If you are sick, stay home. Contact your doctor or hospital and follow their instructions when seeking treatment.

  • Cover Coughs and Sneezes: Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze. Use a tissue when available, if no tissue is available, use the inside of your elbow. Avoid using your hands, and if you must use your hands, be sure to wash thoroughly immediately afterward. See the note above for proper handwashing technique.

  • Wear a facemask: You should only wear a facemask if you are sick and you must come in contact with other people. If you can't wear a facemask, such as those people who have trouble breathing, do your best to cover your coughs and sneezes. Suggest that others around you wear a facemask. If you are not sick, you do not need to wear a facemask, unless you are caring for someone who is sick. Facemask supplies may be depleted, and should be reserved for those who are sick, or those who are caring for others who are sick.

  • Clean and Disinfect: Commonly touched surfaces should be disinfected daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, sinks, car door handles, and steering wheels. Most EPA-registered household disinfectants will work. You can also make a bleach solution of 1/3 cup of bleach per 1 gallon of water, or 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water. Check bleach to be sure it is not past the expiration date. Also, be sure to use bleach products in a well-ventilated area. New products that claim to be effective against viruses and that are EPA-registered are also expected to be effective against COVID-19. Be sure to follow the manufacturers recommended use instructions when using these products.
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As you may recall, Qolsys recently released Firmware Version 2.5.0 for the IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 2 Plus. One thing we forgot to explain in greater detail is the new ability for IQ Panel 2 users to receive temperature sensor alerts from Alarm.com. Alerts can be sent via email and/or text.

Qolsys iq panel 2 plus verizon lte with powerg s line and legacy

We posted awhile back about the inability for Alarm.com users to receive alerts regarding temperature sensor activity. This issue has now been addressed with Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Version 2.5.0. While this doesn't fix the issue for other security systems, it does provide an effective solution for anyone using temperature sensors with the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus. Being able to receive remote alerts from Alarm.com regarding temperature sensor activity can be very important in case of a broken HVAC system causing an overly hot or cool home.

The solution comes from the new Sensor Group - 25 Non-Reporting. This Sensor Group is available for use with environmental sensors, including any temperature, flood and freeze sensors. When a zone uses this Sensor Group, activating the associated sensor, will result in an alert being sent to Alarm.com, but not a central monitoring station. Alarm.com can then automatically forward the alert to the end user through text and/or email, depending on their notification settings.

If you are looking for a temperature sensor for a Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus, we generally recommend the DSC PG9905 Temperature Sensor. As a PowerG Sensor, the PG9905 will work with all versions of the IQ Panel 2 Plus. There are also various legacy RF temperature sensors available if you cannot go the PowerG route for whatever reason. If you have an original IQ Panel 2 System, then you will want to consider 319.5 MHz temperature sensors, such as the Qolsys IQ Temp.

Remember that you will need an alarm monitoring plan with Alarm.com service to start using the Alarm.com platform. Examples of compatible monitoring plans include the Gold and Platinum Level Plans from Alarm Grid (Self or Full). We offer free technical support for all Alarm Grid monitored customers, and we are happy to help you set up a compatible temperature sensor for your IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus if you are experiencing difficulties. Just email us at support@alarmgrid.com. Our support hours run from 9am to 8pm ET M-F, so keep that in mind when emailing our support team. We look forward to hearing from you!

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