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Johnson Controls released a Technical Advisory Bulletin on Monday noting that some PowerSeries Neo, Pro LTE, and Internet Dual-Path Communicators have labeling errors. The serial number on the box appears to be incorrect. Comms built between August 15, 2021, and July 29, 2022, are affected.

The model numbers affected are the DSC TL880LECVZ, TL880LECAT, TL880LEBAT, TL880LEBTL, and TL880LECTL. This is a labeling error only and does not affect the signal transmitting, or Alarm.com remote control capabilities of these communicators in any way. The mixup seems to be with the name on the label on the product, and the serial number on the label on the box.

The model name listed on the label of the product is incorrect, while the serial number listed on this label is accurate. The model name listed on the sticker for the box is correct, but the serial number listed on the box is incorrect. So, be sure when registering one of these units that you use the serial number from the sticker for the product and not the one from the box.

The following products, built during the listed date range, are affected:

Model Name Production Dates
TL880LECVZ January 4, 2022 - July 29, 2022
TL880LECAT July 5, 2022 - July 29, 2022
TL880LEBAT November 15, 2021 - July 29, 2022
TL880LEBTL November 15, 2021 - July 29, 2022
TL880LECTL June 6, 2022 - July 29, 2022

Beginning July 29, 2022, new, updated and correct labels should be placed on these products. Remember, the performance of communicators that were manufactured during this timeframe is not compromised. This is only a labeling error, so as long as the serial number taken from the sticker affixed to the product itself, or the IMEI number from the printed circuit board is used everything should work as intended. DSC offers a handy Date Code Lookup tool at this site. You can find information on looking up a date code for any DSC product on that page.

The fact that this issue wasn't discovered sooner seems to indicate that this is a very minor issue. What do you think about this announcement? Do you often use these communicators? Have you run across this issue? Leave us a comment below and tell us what you think. We always enjoy hearing from our readers. That's all for today, until we meet again, stay safe!

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Resideo announced last week that due to a required component becoming obsolete, they are forced to discontinue the popular 5800FLOOD sensor. There is still some available stock, so Alarm Grid has not yet discontinued it, but once all stock has been exhausted, the 5800FLOOD is gone for good.

The 5800FLOOD is popular because unlike the 5821, it doesn't require that a water probe be added to the sensor. Water detection is built-in, and configuration is easy. Another benefit of the 5800FLOOD is that it will alert for flooding more quickly than the 5821. The prongs of the 5800FLOOD need only be in contact with water for about 25 seconds before a signal is sent to the alarm panel. The 5821 flood probe must be in contact with water for about three (3) minutes before sending a signal.

In addition to flood sensing, the 5800FLOOD also monitors for extreme cold and/or hot temperatures locally. This is done using a temperature sensor that is built into the 5800FLOOD. For cold temperature sensing, if the ambient temperature drops below 45℉ (7.2℃) for more than 15 minutes, an alert is sent using Loop 1. For high-temperature sensing, if the temperature rises above 95℉ (35℃) for more than 15 minutes, then an alert is sent using Loop 2. The flood sensor transmits using Loop 3.

Now that the 5800FLOOD is being discontinued, the Resideo and Honeywell Home 5821 is the recommended replacement. One drawback to the 5821 is that it requires a remote probe be added for flood sensing, and for freeze sensing. However, only one (1) remote probe can be used per transmitter, so if you need to monitor for both flood and freeze, two (2) 5821s are required.

The 5821 supports the following functions:

Loop Number Sensing Capability Description
Loop 1 Ambient Low Temperature Sensing <45℉ (7.2℃) >10 Minutes sends alert
Loop 2 - Local Ambient Warm/Hot Temperature Sensing >75℉ (23.8℃) >10 Minutes sends alert; >95℉ (35℃) >10 minutes sends alert. Disabled when any remote probe is used!
Loop 2 - Remote Using T280R or TS300R Remote Probe Freeze Sensing >10℉ (-12.2℃) for 30 minutes; Refrigerator Sensing >42℉ (5.5℃) for 30 minutes. Can't be used if the Flood Probe is used.
Loop 3 - Remote Uses FP280 or 470PB Remote Probe Flood Sensing - Signals when the probe's terminals have been in contact with at least 1/4" of water for > 3 Minutes. Can't be used if the Temp Probe is used.

For flood sensing, we recommend using the FP280 as it includes wiring, and the required resistor is already in place. With the 470PB, the user is responsible for providing their own wire and must add the 2.2 MΩ resistor themselves. In all cases, wiring between the 5821 and whichever remote probe is used should be made as short as possible, and should not exceed 96" (243cm). Be sure to read the full Install Guide for the 5821 for all of its various quirks.

Supply chain shortages claim another victim in the 5800FLOOD. It seems like only yesterday that we were excitedly telling you about it. What are your thoughts on the demise of this "New and Improved" environmental sensor? Leave us a note in the comments, as we always love hearing from our readers.

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Power over Ethernet, also known as PoE allows power to be sent to a device using the same ethernet wire and RJ45 connector that is used for the network connection. Originally designed with VoIP phones in mind, PoE has quickly become a desirable option for IP cameras and other networked equipment.

Before we talk about PoE, we should discuss network cabling. Category 5 (Cat5), Category 5e (Cat5e), and Category 6 (Cat6) cables all consist of four (4) twisted pairs of wire, or a total of eight (8) conductors. The differences between these various categories of cable have to do with their ability to transfer data, over what distance, and at what speed. Generally, Cat6 is faster than Cat5 or Cat5e, and is less prone to crosstalk or noise issues.

The main point we want to make about network cabling, though, is this: With eight (8) conductors, any device that connects to a network using one of these cables, without using PoE, is wasting a number of wires. In fact, there are now cheaper cables out there that only have four (4) conductors, rather than the full eight (8). So, that brings us to two points. It makes sense that PoE has come into existence, and if you're preparing to use PoE devices, be sure you run cabling that will handle both data and power.

In PoE, there are a number of abbreviations commonly used:

Abbreviation Meaning Description
PD Powered Device Any networked device receiving PoE
PSE Power Sourcing Equipment Devices that send both power and data over Ethernet cable to a PD. Referred to as either "Midspan" or "Endspan".
Endspan or Endpoint A typical example of this is a PoE network switch. It provides power to Powered Devices (PD).
Midspan If a switch is used that doesn't provide PoE power, then a power source will need to be added between the switch and the PD. A common example is a PoE Injector. This is considered a Midspan PSE device.

The benefits of PoE are numerous, as you can imagine. Rather than having every camera in an installation require the use of an outlet, a PoE switch using a single outlet can provide both power and Ethernet to a multitude of cameras with a single Cat5 or Cat6 wire going to each. In many cases, Ethernet cabling may already be installed, particularly in commercial installations, thereby lowering installation costs for PoE equipment. Another benefit is that when each powered device is receiving its power from a PoE capable switch, it is often possible to restart a PoE-powered device remotely, without having to go to the device itself.

The IEEE 802.3 standard governs PoE Switches and PoE Injectors. There is no special cabling required with the exception that the standard called Ultra-PoE uses all eight (8) pins of the RJ45 connector, so this would be one instance where a cheaper 4-pin cable would not work.

The table below shows the IEEE 802.3 standards and their requirements:

PoE Standard Minimum Cable Required Pins Required Supported Modes
IEEE 802.3af Cat5 4-pins or 2 Pairs Mode A, Mode B
IEEE 802.3at Cat5 4-pins or 2 Pairs Mode A, Mode B
IEEE 802.3bt Type 3 Cat5 8-pins or 4 Pairs 4-pair
IEEE 802.3bt Type 4 Cat5 8-pins or 4 Pairs 4-pair

There is a type of cable called CCA or Copper Clad Aluminum. Although this cable is fine for networking, it is not suitable for use with PoE. This is due to the aluminum core. Aluminum doesn't conduct as well as copper and has a higher DC resistance. This causes it to lose more power over distance and to get hotter. When working with PoE, stick with 100% copper cabling.

One of the things you may find difficult about using PoE is figuring out if you have enough power from the PSE for a PoE device. These specs are usually listed in Watts, rather than in the available current, which can further complicate things. Here, knowing which standard each device uses is most helpful.

Below, see the various PoE standards, and the power both supplied and required for each:

PoE Standard Voltage @ PD Voltage @ PSE Minimum Power for PD Minimum Output @ PSE Maximum Cable Length
IEEE 802.3af 37-57 V 44-57 V 12.95 W or 350 mA 15.40 W 100 m
IEEE 802.3at 42.5-57 V 50-57 V 25.5 W 30 W 100 m
IEEE 802.3bt Type 3 42.5-57 V 50-57 V 51 W 60 W 100 m
IEEE 802.3bt Type 4 41.1-57 V 52-57 V 71 W 100 W 100 m

The variations in voltage and current at the PD (Powered Device) in the table above have to do with the length of the cable run. The longer the cable, the more power is lost. You may have noticed in the above table that the maximum cable length for each PoE Standard is 100 m (328'). This is actually a limitation of both Cat5 and Cat6 cables, as the maximum length of a single run for either type of cable is 100m. The minimum voltage and available power listed above assume a cable run of the maximum length.

So then, what if you need to run a cable further than 100m? For PoE devices, you would add a PoE extender. Specifications may vary, but usually, each PoE extender can add another 100 m of cable length between the PSE and the PD. Usually, each PoE extender is only good for a single PD. Not all PoE extenders are the same, though, and some may not support daisy-chaining, while others do. Check out the specifications of any PoE extender you choose to use if you find yourself in a position to need longer cable runs.


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Today is Alarm Grid's birthday! We're ten years old today. Wow, how time flies. We've weathered lots of things in our ten years. Hurricanes and pandemics just to name a few. To celebrate our special day, we will be closing early today. Our phones are off as of 12:00 pm Eastern Time.

As is always the case, our central station partners are available around the clock, every day. All signals sent by your Alarm Grid monitored alarm system will be handled in the usual manner. If you need to contact the central monitoring station, either to cancel a false alarm or to verify a signal, customers in the United States can contact Criticom Monitoring Services (CMS) by dialing (888) 818-7728 and choosing Option [9].

Canadian customers can contact Rapid Response at (800) 932-3822. Remember any time you contact either monitoring station, you will need to provide your name, your address, and your false alarm password or phrase. If you provide incorrect information when asked it will result in the dispatch of authorities.

If you have a support question about your alarm system or need to make changes to your account, you need to speak with one of our technicians. For those types of requests, send an email to support@alarmgrid.com with as many details as possible about what type of assistance you need. Remember that when we return tomorrow, there may be a tiny support backlog. Please be patient and we will work through all requests as quickly as possible.

I hope you'll join me in wishing a Happy Tenth Birthday to Alarm Grid. We set out to disrupt the traditional alarm equipment and monitoring model, and I think we've accomplished that. It is our strong belief that everyone should have access to professional quality alarm equipment and that you shouldn't have to pay someone else to do what you can do yourself. We've been working toward that end for a decade now. Happy Birthday to Alarm Grid, and many more!!

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On July 5, 2022 Resideo announced that all LTEM-PA, LTEM-PV, LTEM-PIA, and LTEM-PIV communicators will undergo a slightly revised activation process. Upon registration, if the communicator is not using the latest firmware version, it will automatically receive an Over-the-Air (OTA) update.

This announcement came in the form of MyWebTech Technical Notification #83. For those communicators with a WIFI or Ethernet connection, the OTA update will be performed using this communication path. If WIFI or Etehrnet is not available, then cellular data will be used. The update process typically takes about five (5) minutes, but when cellular is the only communication path available, it may take longer. The length of time a cellular upgrade takes also depends on the cellular signal strength.

During the update, the communicator's LED's will light according to where the communicator is in the two-stage process:

  • Firmware Downloading: REG, Status, and Fault LEDs will fast-blink in unison.
  • Upon Firmware Completion: The device will reset, then all five (5) LEDs, REG, Status, Fault, Cell, and WIFI/Ethernet will fast blink in sequence.

The OTA software update will cause the communicator to generate a few different messages to the central station. These messages indicate the beginning and end of the software update process. The messages sent are as follows:

  • E903 - Application Code Update (Remote Download begins)
  • R903 - Application Code Update Restore (Remote Download Completed)
  • E904 - Application Code Update Failure (Remote Download/Update Failed)

For Alarm Grid customers, this notice means that if you are using one of the LTEM-P Series communicators listed above, it is more important than ever that you have your equipment installed and ready when your activation appointment time rolls around. In particular, anyone who will be using cellular communication only, as any OTA update required may take some time to complete, and we currently have no way of knowing how long.

If you have any questions about this notice, reach out to your alarm dealer for details. If you are an Alarm Grid customer, you can send us an email at support@alarmgrid.com. We're here Monday - Friday from 9:00 am - 8:00 pm Eastern time to answer your questions.

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Our offices will be closed on Monday, July 4, 2022 in observance of Independence Day. On this day in 1776, our founders declared our independence from England by formally adopting the Declaration of Independence. Since then, July 4 has become a day to celebrate family and freedom in America.

Our central station partners are available around the clock, every day. All signals sent by your Alarm Grid monitored alarm system will be handled in the usual manner during the holiday unless you've made previous arrangements with us. If you need to contact the central monitoring station, to cancel a false alarm or to verify a signal, customers in the US can contact Criticom Monitoring Services (CMS) by dialing (888) 818-7728 and choosing Option [9].

Canadian customers can contact Rapid Response at (800) 932-3822. Remember any time you contact either monitoring station, you will need to provide your name, address, and your false alarm password or phrase. If you provide incorrect information when asked it will result in the dispatch of authorities.

If you have a support question about your alarm system or need to make changes to your account, the monitoring station cannot assist you with that. For those types of requests, send an email to support@alarmgrid.com with as many details as possible about what type of assistance you need. Remember that when we return after the holiday, there may be a bit of a support backlog. Please be patient and we will work through all requests as quickly as possible.

If you plan to enjoy fireworks as part of your July 4th celebration, be sure to use caution and follow any provided instructions for safety. We'll see you back here after the holiday, hopefully with all our phalanges and eyebrows intact! Thank you for trusting us with your safety, and the safety of your family. We very much appreciate you being a part of the Alarm Grid family.

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The Resideo LTEM-PA and LTEM-PV are dual-path capable communicators that use the LTE Cat-M1 network. During the global chip shortage, these radios have come to prominence because of their availability in the absence of other LTE communicators. They provide nearly the same speed as LTE comms.

Another feature that differentiates the LTEM-PA and LTEM-PV from other communicators is their modular design. These radios are considered a part of the ProSeries lineup, which includes the Honeywell Home PROA7 and PROA7PLUS and the Resideo PROA7C and PROA7PLUSC. The reason for this is that many of the add-on modules that can be used with the ProSeries panels can also be used with the LTEM-P communicators. Including the PROWIFI or PROWIFIZW, the PROLTE-A or PROLTE-V, and the PRODCM.

The LTEM-P Series communicators support an ethernet connection, but if you find yourself in a situation where a wired connection is not possible, then you can install the PROWIFI or PROWFIZW, which will give you WIFI, or WIFI and Z-Wave Plus capabilities. The ability to add a modular cellular unit is exciting as it allows you to install a separate LTE communicator to use instead of the built-in LTE Cat-M1 communicator. This will come in handy if you purchase an AT&T LTEM-PA, but find out later that Verizon would provide a better signal in this particular installation. Also, far in the future, when LTE is eventually phased out, whatever takes its place can easily be installed in the unit, rather than having to replace the entire communicator.

The PRODCM is a dialer-capture module. It allows the LTEM-P Series communicator to work with an alarm panel that has a built-in dialer and can report using Contact ID Format. The PRODCM installs inside a slot in the LTEM-P Series communicator, then two wires are connected between it and the Tip and Ring terminals on the alarm panel. The panel believe's it is dialing out over a phone line, but the module captures the signal, and transmits it via IP, or Cellular. Many of these add-on modules are also compatible with the ProSeries panels, which is why the LTEM-P Series are considered a part of the ProSeries lineup.

Tip 1: Power Wiring

The LTEM-PA and LTEM-PV come with a 9VDC power supply. Depending on the communicator you may be replacing there could be an existing AC Transformer in place. Do not make the mistake of trying to use the existing transformer. You have two (2) options when it comes to powering the LTEM-PA or LTEM-PV. You can use the included power supply, making sure to observe proper polarity with the power wires, or you can wire it so that the communicator receives all its power from the alarm panel. If you choose the latter option, be sure to calculate the current draw for the communicator correctly, and if you decide to leave the battery out of the LTEM-P Series device, turn off the radio's Low Battery Reporting.

Tip 2: Installing A WIFI Module

If you want to add support for WIFI to your LTEM-P module, you can add the PROWIFI module. When the PROWIFI module is installed, the ethernet connection becomes unavailable, so you can only use one or the other of these, but not both. If you want to add both WIFI and Z-Wave Plus capabilities to your system, then you can choose to install the PROWIFIZW.

Using the PROWIFIZW can add Z-Wave support in a situation where it would otherwise be unavailable, such as when using the LTEM-P with a non-VISTA panel. The PROWIFIZW cannot be used as a secondary controller, so it can't be used to extend the range of another controller such as the Tuxedo or VAM. Using the PROWIFIZW also doesn't give you an option to create scenes through Total Connect 2.0, only manual control of Z-Wave devices is available.

Tip 3: Always Default the Communicator

We've found, through painful experience, that it is a good idea to always default the LTEM-PA or LTEM-PV once all the wiring is completed, prior to account creation and activation. To default, hold down the red button on the upper right side of the main communicator board for at least 20 Seconds. The LEDs on the communicator should begin going through their initial power-on sequence. This is how you can tell the default has completed.

Once the communicator has booted completely up, then do one last power cycle. Do this by unplugging the transformer and disconnecting the red battery lead. If the communicator is being powered completely by the panel, simply power the panel down and back up by unplugging its transformer and backup battery. If the communicator battery is still connected though, be sure to disconnect this battery as well to completely power the communicator off. Wait about 30 seconds, then power back on as you normally would. For VISTA panels, plug in the transformer, then the battery. If the communicator has its own DC Power Supply, plug in the communicator battery, then plug in the power supply. Now you can proceed with programming and activation.

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Resideo has reported that Verizon cellular communicators may experience issues connecting to Total Connect 2.0, issues with commands taking longer than usual to process, or failing completely. This is due to an SMS issue with the carrier which began at 11:00 pm Monday night.

As of this writing, the issue is ongoing and could last for some time. Only Verizon cellular communicators are affected, AT&T communicators and dual-path communicators where the IP path is present are not affected. This issue does not affect the Verizon cellular communicator's ability to send alarm signals!

If you have a Verizon communicator and are experiencing issues with Total Connect 2.0, please be patient. Verizon is aware of the issue, and they are working to correct it. At this time, only Resideo has reported an issue with Verizon communicators. If that changes, we will let you know.

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Resideo and Honeywell Home, formerly Honeywell, released an announcement last week that they will change their date code format from a YDDD (Year, Day of the year) format, to use YYWW (Year, Week of the year). This is being done, ostensibly, to simplify the decoding of date codes for users.

Product date codes are important for determining whether a product is still under warranty, as well as whether it may be affected by a particular anomaly that may have occurred because of an issue in the manufacturing process. For Carbon Monoxide detectors, which always have a finite useful life, the manufacturing date code is important to help determine when a CO detector needs to be replaced, particularly if the detector doesn't include a feature to warn a user when its useful life is coming to an end. For all these reasons, it's important to be able to decode a date code.

Going all the way back to the Ademco days, Resideo products have used a date code where a letter signified the Year of manufacture, and a 3-digit number signified the day of manufacture. For example, 2022 has been signified by the letter F, so a date code of F159 would indicate a product was manufactured on the 159th day of 2022, or June 8. Calendars can be downloaded from the internet with all the days of the year enumerated.

Of course, this date code scheme has advantages and disadvantages. The letter used to signify each year can seem somewhat arbitrary, and at some point, letters must begin to be repeated. So, with a very long-lived product line, there could be some confusion as to whether a particular letter indicates the older or newer iteration of that letter for that product. The advantage of this format is that you know exactly which day a product was manufactured, and exactly which day it was packaged (packaging has its own date code, which follows the same format). This information can be helpful when determining a manufacturing issue.

Starting this month, June 2022, Resideo will standardize on a new Date Code format. In this format, containing four (4) digits, the first two (2) digits will indicate the year of manufacture, and the last two (2) digits will indicate the week of that year (YYWW). This will simplify things, as no one will have to look up or figure out which year goes with which letter, but it also doesn't supply quite as detailed an accounting of when a product was manufactured or packaged as the old format did. Packaging date codes will also be making the switch.

Below are some examples of the new Date Code, in these examples, the Date Codes are all 2223, indicating they were manufactured the 23rd week of 2022:


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Effective in August of 2022, Alarm.com is ending sales of Alarm.Com Image Sensors (ADC-IS-220-GC and ADC-IS-300-LP). Alarm Grid has already discontinued these sensors due to the fact that they are in short supply, and no more of them will be produced. Only the Honeywell Home PROINDMV remains.

The 2GIG IMAGE3:


There was some overlap between the Alarm.com Image Sensor models, and the 2GIG and Qolsys Image Sensor models. I have confirmed with Alarm.com that the 2GIG and Qolsys models are also discontinued as of August, 2022. Currently, the only Image Sensors being offered by Alarm Grid are the DSC PowerG and Honeywell Home PROINDMV models which are discussed in more detail below.

Image sensors were a great idea that never really took off. The original image sensors, first offered by 2GIG and Alarm.com, did not have particularly good resolution or picture quality, which is probably one reason they weren't widely adopted by the DIY crowd. By the time the 2nd generation of these sensors came around, people were prepared to simply go with full-on video monitoring or to avoid capturing images altogether.

Both the second and third-generation image sensors that were offered by 2GIG, Qolsys, and Alarm.com had very good image quality. Combine that with Alarm Grid's policy of offering monitoring for image sensors without an additional price markup, and the image sensor was a viable alternative to the use of video cameras. An Alarm.com user could log into their account and perform a "peek-in", meaning they could request that a particular image sensor grab a picture of whatever it was able to see at that moment, and the image (actually two (2) images) would then be uploaded to the customer's alarm.com account for viewing. The sensor could also take images upon sensing motion after a particular period of inactivity, or upon an alarm. For full details on image sensor features and operation, check out this prior post.

DSC offers a couple of PowerG PIR Cameras that will work with the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 4 in addition to the DSC PowerSeries Neo panels with a PowerG Transceiver added. These are the DSC PG9934P, Indoor PIR Camera, and the DSC PG9944, Outdoor PIR Camera. These sensors work like any other PowerG Sensor with the Qolsys Panels. They can only capture images when the system is armed and the image sensor is active (not bypassed). They send their images to the panel, and then the first image is uploaded to Alarm.com. A total of ten (10) images are taken, and these images are stitched together by the panel into a sort of stop-motion video where each image can also be viewed individually. This is done via the panel screen itself. When used with the PowerSeries Neo panels, the DSC PIR Cameras can be used for Visual Verification only, they do NOT work like a regular image sensor with Alarm.com.

DSC PG9934P, Indoor Image Sensor:

DSC PG9944, Outdoor Image Sensor:


The Honeywell Home PROINDMV is a wireless PIR motion sensor with a camera built-in, just like the 2GIG, Qolsys, and Alarm.com image sensors were. The PROINDMV is currently only supported on the Resideo PROA7PLUSC, and Honeywell Home PROA7PLUS panels. There is no "peek-in" option for these image sensors. They can only capture images when they sense motion while the system is armed in Away mode. Images or videos are captured and uploaded to Total Connect 2.0 for viewing. The user can choose to receive either a still image or a 10-second video clip. You can read their full details of operation in our previous post.

Honeywell Home PROINDMV:


It seems like the era of the image sensor may be coming to a close, at least for now. Who knows, once we're through the global chip shortage, and the availability of components is back to normal, perhaps the humble image sensor will experience a revival. If so, DIYers may want to consider giving these sensors a try. They really are an excellent idea. They can be used for alarm verification in this age of increasing police resistance to alarm response, and they are cheaper, both initially and on an ongoing month-to-month basis, than video cameras.


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