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Hi DIYers! Today, we're taking a look back at what Honeywell and Total Connect 2.0 accomplished throughout 2018. Obviously, there's the big story of the Resideo spin-off. While this is certainly very exciting news, we'd like to focus more on what new features were added to TC2 this year.


Without further ado, here are some of the most exciting new features released for TC2 in 2018:

Support for Honeywell Home Smart Thermostats - Being able to control Honeywell Home Thermostats like the Lyric Round was a huge addition to TC2. This helped to further cement TC2 as the one-stop hub for all things smart home automation. Honeywell also released one of the premier Z-Wave thermostats this year, the Honeywell T6 Z-Wave.

Honeywell t6 z wave thermostat smart thermostat

Support for HD Security Cameras - Honeywell added support for its HD security cameras to be controlled from Total Connect 2.0 this year. These cameras, which were previously referred to as the the "Lyric HD Cameras", include the Honeywell IPCAM-WIC1, the Honeywell IPCAM-WIC2 and the Honeywell IPCAM-OC1.



Amazon Alexa Support - The announcement of the TC2 Alexa Skill was huge. Now Honeywell users could control their security system through Alexa voice commands! Later on, the skill was updated to include scene control as well! Perhaps next Honeywell will allow users to control individual Z-Wave devices?

VISTA Partition Support - The ability to control individual partitions on a Honeywell VISTA System was a much-anticipated feature. Honeywell delivered in making it finally possible for homes and businesses to arm or disarm specific systems directly from a TC2 account. Using a Honeywell VISTA has never been easier!

Honeywell vista 20p wired alarm control panel

Chamberlain and LiftMaster MyQ Garage Door Support - End users certainly appreciated the ability to finally control their state-of-the-art garage doors directly from their TC2 accounts. This feature has proven to be a huge success for Alarm Grid customers with a Silver Plan or higher.


Multi-Language Support - Total Connect 2.0 opened its doors to a greater number of users by offering support for several new languages. Some of the new languages that became supported included French, Spanish and Portuguese.

Refresh Status Button - This was a great move by Honeywell, as it allowed end users to troubleshoot many of their own issues. With the press of a button, a user can send a refresh signal to the TC2 account to clear various messages that may be stuck in the TC2 display. DIYers rejoice!


Bulk User Addition Support - Honeywell made it possible to sync users in multiple locations and to add multiple users at once with update 2.5.2. Setting up TC2 for multiple locations became more straightforward than ever!

We have certainly had a lot of great news to discuss with Honeywell and TC2 this past year! Now we look forward to 2019 to see what the company brings. Please join Alarm Grid for this exciting ride as the security industry continues to grow and evolve!

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Ah the Honeywell 6160 Keypad. This is perhaps the most common alarm system keypad used with the Honeywell VISTA Security Panels. It is an alphanumeric keypad that allows for deep-level programming of the system, and it allows for the backdoor method if a user gets locked out.

Honeywell 6160 alphanumeric alarm keypadWith these great features, every Honeywell VISTA System should really have at least one keypad from the Honeywell 6160-series. For the Honeywell VISTA 15P, VISTA 20P and VISTA 21iP, up to eight of these keypads can be supported, as long as appropriate power is provided. Even if you supplement your VISTA with additional keypads like the fixed English 6150 or the touchscreen Tuxedo Touch, you'll still want at least one 6160 Keypad around to perform deep-level programming functions and for using the backdoor method in case you ever get locked out.

Many users mistakenly believe that the 6160 is an actual alarm control panel. But that is not the case. The 6160 is just a keypad use for controlling the rest of the system. The actual system is most likely inside a metal container that is hidden somewhere in the building. Some users also mistake the name for the Honeywell 6160, believing that it is called the K4274V1-H M274. However, this is just the part name of the small plastic door that is used to cover the buttons. This small plastic enclosure is used across all Honeywell 6160 Keypads. Indeed, the actual name for the keypad is 6160.

In addition to the standard Honeywell 6160 Keypad, there are also two other very popular keypads that are part of this same lineup. These include the 6160V and the 6160RF. For all intents and purposes, these are the same keypads as the standard 6160, but each offers an additional feature. The V in 6160V stands for "Voice", and the keypad offers voice annunciation. This means that the keypad will speak out any zone descriptors and the current arming status for the system. Users can also use the 6160V to record and playback voice messages of up to 2.5 minutes.

As for the 6160RF, the letters RF stand for "Radio Frequency". This keypad has a built-in 345 MHz transmitter for supporting Honeywell 5800 Series Sensors. This a great keypad to add if you want to start using wireless sensors with your Honeywell VISTA System. Not only can uni-directional devices like standard security sensors, be used, the transceiver will also support bi-directional devices, like the Honeywell 5800WAVE.

If you have questions about any of the 6160 Keypads, please reach out to us! You can email us at support@alarmgrid.com or call us at (888) 818-7728 from 9am to 8pm EST M-F. We look forward to helping you with all your security needs!

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As you may know, stolen packages is a very serious problem today. It's easy for a common thief to walk right up to your doorstep and make off with your belongings. And in many cases, these criminals get off entirely scot-free. Well one victim decided to take matters into his own hands.

This YouTuber managed to rig up a contraption that, upon opening, would spew out more than a pound of glitter and shoot out continuous sprays of fart gas. It also included four smartphones that would record the reaction of the unsuspecting thief and upload the footage to a cloud server for later viewing. Needless to say, any package thief unfortunate enough to steal this guy's mail certainly got what's coming to them!


We gotta give it to this guy for this genius idea, and we're sure that no thieves are going to mess with his packages ever again! While Alarm Grid doesn't have anything quite like this, we do offer SkyBell Doorbell Cameras that you can use to record any bad guys who try and violate your privacy. You might also have some luck with our new Arlo Cameras as well. But props to this smart YouTuber for putting together a great way to get back at some thieves!

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Hi DIYers! We have learned that Alarm.com is adding a feature that will let you place an image of Santa Claus directly into a security camera screenshot! Now, as we all know, you can't actually capture a real picture of Santa - he's magic! But you can at least pretend with this fun feature!


Alarm.com is making this feature for any Alarm Grid customer on a Platinum Level Plan who uses the Alarm.com interactive service platform. The feature will only be available from December 21st thru the 26th. This will give you a chance to test the feature before Christmas Day. But once Christmas is over, the feature will disappear. You'll have to catch Santa next year instead!

The feature will be supported by the following Alarm.com Security Camera models only:

To get started, simply pull up the Alarm.com App or website. Navigate to the Cameras Section, and select the video feed for a compatible camera. Then press the Santa icon:


You can then choose which Santa image to add to the screenshot:


You can even move or resize Santa to fit your home's setting. Finally, download the image or share it via text or email. Then you can show all your friends and family that Santa paid you a visit! If you have any questions about this feature, reach out to us at support@alarmgrid.com or call us at (888) 818-7728 from 9am to 8pm EST M-F.

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Alarm Grid is proud to announce that Arlo Security Cameras are now available on our site! These are versatile and easy-to-use security cameras that provide exceptional performance for virtually any residential application. It has never been easier to set up video surveillance for your home!


Arlo Cameras are unique for their ability to operate 100% wire-free. They receive power from removable batteries. Depending on the camera model, the batteries can be rechargeable for easy use. The cameras can remain powered for several months at a time with a single charge. However, this duration varies significantly based on overall usage. For communication, the cameras send wireless signals to a central base station. This module serves as a central hub for the setup, and it allows the cameras to connect with a local WIFI network.

The cameras will activate for recording whenever motion or sound is detected. The user can configure the settings for the cameras so that they only activate when they need them to. For example, a user might set up a GeoFence so that their camera only records while they are away from home. All recordings are stored on the Arlo App, which is free to download for Android and iOS devices. The app will store recordings for up to 7 days. All of the Arlo Cameras we offer are water and UV resistant, making them great for outdoor use.

One of the best options is to pair an Arlo Camera setup with a home security system and an Alarm Grid monitoring plan. This way, you can receive notifications from Total Connect 2.0 or Alarm.com and then check your Arlo Camera to see exactly what happened. The cameras are also compatible with various smart home platforms like Amazon Alexa, IFTTT, Stringify and Samsung SmartThings (select models only).


At this time, we are proud to offer the following Arlo Camera models:

Note that the Arlo HD Camera is a certified refurbished model. Alarm Grid is not offering a new model of the Arlo HD at this time. A four-pack of refurbished Arlo HD Cameras is also available. Meanwhile, the Pro and Pro 2 Cameras are both new models. There are no refurbished versions available for either of these cameras.

The Arlo HD uses four replaceable lithium CR123A batteries, while the pro models use rechargeable batteries. Both the Pro and Pro 2 come with a single rechargeable battery. Additional rechargeable batteries can be purchased through the following link:

Remember that the Arlo HD, Arlo Pro and Arlo Pro 2 all require an Arlo Base Station for basic operation. The cameras communicate wirelessly with this module, and it connects to the internet on their behalf. The base station uses a hardwired ethernet connection to communicate with your home's WIFI router. Without a base station, you will not be able to use any of the Arlo Camera models mentioned above. One Arlo Base Station can support up to five Arlo Cameras. This module also allows for local video storage by inserting a USB flash drive.


Alarm Grid offers both a new Arlo Base Station model and refurbished Arlo Base Station model:

Arlo Cameras are also known for their flexible mounting options. Each camera comes with a magnetic mount for basic installation. Users can also purchase any of the following separate mounting options.

Finally, we are also proud to offer the following optional Arlo Camera accessories:

Arlo Dual Battery Charging Station

Arlo Solar Panel Charger

Arlo Camera Skins for Pro and Pro 2

Arlo Indoor Power Adapter Replacement

If you have any questions about Arlo products, please do not hesitate to reach out to us! You may email us anytime at support@alarmgrid.com, or call us at (888) 818-7728 from 9am to 8pm Monday thru Friday. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Hi DIYers! We're back with another video recap to help you learn about your security system. Joe and Jorge are back as usual, while Alarm Grid Team Member Jarrett is making his debut. Also, I even made a one-off video just for fun. Don't expect me in the regular video rotation though!

Here are the new Alarm Grid videos for December 6th thru 13th:

How to Switch Partitions on a Honeywell Vista System

Jorge teaches users how they can switch partitions on a Honeywell VISTA Security System. Partitions allow users to separately control a certain section of their alarm system, while the rest of the system remains in its current armed or disarmed state. Each partition can be assigned its own set of access codes to restrict access of any given user to only select portions of the security system. Additionally, Honeywell recently made partitioning control possible through Total Connect 2.0.

Finding the MAC and CRC on a Lyric Security System

Jorge shows users how they can the MAC address and CRC code on a Honeywell Lyric Alarm System. This information is typically needed to register the system with an alarm monitoring company for monitoring service. The MAC and CRC codes can be found on the box for the system and underneath its back cover on a sticker. However, many users prefer to find the MAC and CRC codes through the system menus. This will require knowing the system's Installer Code, which is 4112 by default.

Changing the Battery in the Qolsys IQ Panel 2

In his much anticipated video debut, Alarm Grid Team Member Jarrett explains how to change the battery for a Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Alarm System. To do this, you must first power down the system by accessing the appropriate menu option. Once the system has powered down completely, it can then be opened up, and the battery can be replaced. The Qolsys IQ2 Battery is designed to last for several years, and it will keep the system powered for up to 24 hours in the event of a power outage.

Using Phone Line Monitoring on an Interlogix Simon XT

Jorge teaches users how they can use phone line monitoring on a Simon XT Security System. Although phone line monitoring is possible, Alarm Grid does not recommend using this type of communication path. Phone line communication is known for being very slow, and it is quite unreliable. Instead, a much better option is to use cellular monitoring service with an Interlogix Simon XT. Cellular service is much faster and more reliable. Cellular connectivity will also allow the system to be used with Alarm.com.

Setting the Siren Timeout on a Simon XTi & XTi-5

Jorge talks about the siren timeout feature on the Simon XTi and Simon XTi-5 Alarm Systems. When an alarm occurs on an wireless Interlogix System, it will begin to produce a siren. The purpose of this siren is to alert those in the building to a serious event, such as a burglary or fire. To stop the siren, the user must disarm the system. However, if the system is not disarmed, the siren will continue to sound until the timeout period elapses. This setting determines how long the siren will last if the system is never disarmed.

Pairing the 2GIG SP1 Keypad with the 2GIG GC3

Joe shows users how to pair the 2GIG SP1 Wireless Keypad with the 2GIG GC3 Security System. The most common way to do this is through a WIFI pairing. The SP1 is a very useful wireless keypad that includes a built-in touchscreen controller. This keypad offers support for voice annunciation, smart home automation control, bypassing zones, producing system chimes and general arming and disarming. It is perfect for placing by secondary entrances in the user's home, such as their back doors, garage doors and basement entrances.

Using Z-Wave with an Interlogix Simon XTi and XTi-5

Joe discusses how it is possible to use Z-Wave smart home devices with a Simon XTi or Simon XTi-5 Alarm System. These systems can support Z-Wave devices once they have been activated with the Alarm.com interactive service. This is because the ADC Cellular Communicator actually doubles as a Z-Wave controller for the system. Once a user has set up a Z-Wave device with the system, it can be operated from the panel or from the Alarm.com website or mobile app.

Can I Use a Qolsys IQ Panel 2 w-o Alarm.com?

Joe explains how the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 can technically be without the Alarm.com service. However, this will severely limit the functionality of the system. By doing this, the system will only serve as a local sound maker and as a fairly limited Z-Wave controller. All versions of the system come with some type of integrated cellular communicator. This module lets the system connect with Alarm.com for remote access and control. This is the only way to use the system with a central station for automatic emergency dispatch.

How Do I Reboot the Qolsys IQ Panel 2

In my first ever Alarm Grid video, I show you how to reboot the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 System. A user might need to reboot their IQ Panel 2 System because they are applying a firmware update. They might also do this because the panel is experiencing problems, and rebooting the system can be a good troubleshooting step. To perform the reboot, the user can select the reboot option in advanced settings. They can also choose to power down the system entirely and then manually power it back on.

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Hi DIYers! We're taking a look at the 2GIG CO3-345 Wireless Carbon Monoxide Detector today. This life-safety sensor responds to the presence of invisible and odorless carbon monoxide gas that can be lethal when inhaled. Every home should have a CO detector as a form of protection.

2gig co3 wireless carbon monoxide co detector

As we enter into the winter months, it's important to know that carbon monoxide related deaths are the highest this time of year. This is largely due to the increased use of heaters in the home. The best way to prevent these fatalities is to have any heating systems inspected by a certified technician annually and to maintain ample carbon monoxide detecting sensors in the home. For owners of 2GIG Systems, the 2GIG CO3-345 is arguably the best sensor to use for this purpose.

The CO3-345 is a wireless sensor that is powered by a CR123A lithium battery. Upon activation it products a loud temporal 4 pattern sound to alert those in the building to the danger. A helpful LED status light assists users in recognizing an alarm. The device has a five year product life before needing to be replaced. For best results, the CO3-345 should be installed near fuel burning appliances and kept clean of any dirt or dust. In addition to working with the GC2 and GC3 Systems from 2GIG, the device will also work with the Honeywell Lyric Controller.

Alarm Grid also offers CO detectors for other systems. These include the Qolsys IQ Carbon and the Honeywell 5800CO among others. All of these sensors can offer great protection for your home or business. Keep your property monitored for CO gas with a new carbon monoxide detector from Alarm Grid!

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It's almost Christmas DIYers! The holiday is less than two weeks away, and time is running out to get presents. Even if you celebrate a different holiday, the season is here. It's time to start planning! If you're looking for a last minute gift, you might consider equipment from Alarm Grid.

2gig gc3 diy wireless security system w slash 7 screenThe most obvious present if you're shopping for a security present is to consider a new panel. Right now, wireless systems are all the rage, and most users with older systems have an easy upgrade option available. Three of the hottest systems right now are the Honeywell Lyric Controller, the 2GIG GC3 and the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus. Each one stands out in its own way. For example, the Lyric works with Apple HomeKit, the GC3 offers partitioning support, and the IQ Panel 2 allows security camera streaming directly from the panel. All three can keep a loved one's home monitored for many years to come!

If you don't want to shell out for an entire new alarm system, that's perfectly understandable. There are still many smaller security gifts you can offer for the holidays. If you know what panel you're shopping for, a new sensor or two is always a good idea. It could be something like a door and window contact, a glass break sensor or even a flood sensor for those who live in rainy areas. If you're looking for something more seasonal, a temperature sensor can monitor for freezing temperatures. Carbon monoxide detectors are also a nice gesture, as the winter months represent the most common time of the year for outbreaks of lethal CO gas.

If your gift-recipients don't need new sensors, maybe a second keypad is more appropriate? These gifts are great, because many users only bother to use the main panel for arming and disarming. Being able to easily control the system from a second location, such as near a back door or inside a bedroom, can offer great convenience. Often, a user doesn't know how convenient it is until they have one! Most systems have some type of wireless keypad that can easily be set up and programmed. Some examples include the Honeywell LKP500, the 2GIG SP2-GC3 and the Qolsys IQ Remote. Now controlling an alarm system has never been easier!

Honeywell lkp500 wireless keypad for lyric controller

If you need any help deciding on a Christmas or holiday gift, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. Our team will help you choose the perfect security gift to make the holidays merry! Please email us at support@alarmgrid.com, or call us at (888) 818-7728 from 9am to 8pm EST M-F. We look forward to hearing from you and helping your choose the best security present for your friends and family!

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Hi DIYers! Recently, we paired an Alarm.com Security Camera with our Alarm.com account so that we could try viewing it through a Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Alarm System. We gotta say, we're extremely pleased with the crystal clear recording capabilities, and we're sure that you will be too!

Qolsys iq panel 2 at and t wireless security system with at and Streaming video directly to the panel from Alarm.com is a feature available for both the standard Qolsys IQ Panel 2 and the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Systems. The system just needs to be running firmware version 2.2.1 or higher, and the user needs an alarm monitoring plan with video surveillance that is set up with Alarm.com. For Alarm Grid customers, these are our Platinum Level Plans.

Only select camera models are compatible with this feature. The following Alarm.com Security Cameras can be used with the IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus for panel streaming:

Additionally, the ADC-V521IR and the ADC-V522IR can support two-way audio as well. For our testing, we worked with the ADC-V522IR 1080P Indoor Security Camera. We were amazed with the quality of the video, both through Alarm.com and from the panel itself. The two-way audio functionality worked great as well.

If you don't believe it, just see for yourself. Here's a quick photo taken of our IQ Panel 2 System as it streams live video and audio. Yeah, our support room is a bit messy, but bear with us! The key point here is that the quality looks absolutely tremendous for an easy-to-use security camera. Just imagine putting one of these cameras in your home and streaming directly from Alarm.com and your IQ Panel 2 System!


We also took the opportunity to create some new FAQs to help users get started with this feature:

We have to give it to Qolsys for creating such a versatile alarm system with this outstanding feature. Now you can view your ADC Camera from Alarm.com when you're on the go, or from your alarm panel when you're at home!

You can get the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 or IQ Panel 2 Plus and many great Alarm.com Security Cameras from the Alarm Grid website. If you ever need any help deciding please reach out to us any time at support@alarmgrid.com. You can also call us during normal business hours, which are 9am to 8pm EST M-F. We look forward to hearing from you!

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If you're taking the leap into the exciting world of home security, one of the first decisions you will make is whether to hire a professional installer or to install the system yourself. While most new users still hire a professional, installing your own system is often the better option.

Honeywell lyric controller encrypted wireless security system

Many people mistakenly believe that a home security system is difficult to install and that it has to be done by a professional. But the industry has actually made great strides in recent years, and now alarm systems can be installed by almost anyone. DIY monitoring companies like Alarm Grid have helped to make this possible. We've shown the security industry why the DIY model is the right model for alarm systems. Now you too can install your own home or business security system! Simply obtain the equipment you need, either from our website or from somewhere else, and sign-up for one of our alarm monitoring plans to get started.

The key to setting up your own home security system without hiring a professional is to make the installation as easy as possible. Choose a wireless control panel and wireless sensors that don't require holes to be drilled. Most wireless panels can be rested on a desk or table with a compatible desk mount, and the sensors can be mounted using double-sided foam tape that often comes included. From there, you just need to program the sensors, which is super easy when you own your own system and know the proper access codes. Before you know it, you will be a true DIYer!

Honeywell sixminict wireless door slash window contact for lyric

Here are ten reasons why you should install alarm system instead of hiring a professional:

1. Understand Your System Better

When a professional installer sets up your own home or business security system, they usually aren't there to play teacher. They will often show you the bare minimum so that you can perform basic functions on the system. By setting up your own system, you can understand its features and capabilities better. This way, you can configure the system exactly to your liking to suit your lifestyle!

2. Choose Your Own Equipment

If you hire a professional, you might have little say over what equipment will be used in the installation. To have full control over what equipment is used, your best bet is to install the system yourself. If you need help choosing your equipment, Alarm Grid offers free support online and over the phone in planning home and business security systems. And with a DIY monitoring company like Alarm Grid, it doesn't matter where you find the equipment. If you can find it cheaper outside our website, go for it!

3. It's More Satisfying

We've discussed the IKEA Effect in the past and how customers who install their own equipment are more satisfied with the end result than if they had someone else do it for them. When you put in the time and effort to set up your own alarm system, it becomes much more valuable and personal to you than if you just throw money at someone to get the job done. Users who complete their own installation grow to love their alarm systems and the protection they provide for their families.

4. Save Money

This one is obvious. Installers charge hundreds or even thousands of dollars for most alarm system installations. Just check out the hourly rates for most outside installers. It's staggering! The truth is that you can install your own equipment just as well as a professional, all without having to spend a cent. So roll up those sleeves, get an Alarm Grid Tech on the phone, and save some money by installing your own system!

5. Feel Empowered

Installing your own alarm system is empowering. It offers a feeling of accomplishment in knowing that you did it yourself. You don't have to rely on others to install the system for you. Instead, you are self-sufficient and in control. Of course, if you ever do need some assistance, our technicians can walk you through the process online or over the phone. But you're the one in control of the project. You have the power!

6. Learn Something New

Many people enjoy learning new processes and tasks. Why not learn how to install and program a security system? It can actually be a fun and amusing challenge to take on for yourself, and it's knowledge that might come in handy later. After you've installed your own alarm system, you can add it to the list of things you know how to do. And it might make for interesting conversation to teach others about the system as well.



7. Make Your Own System Changes

Almost all alarm system users will need to make changes and adjustments to the settings at some point or another. For users who hire a professional, they often don't know the system's Installer Code, and they have to have an installer come out to their home or business to make the changes. But if you install your own system, you'll know the Installer Code so you can go right in and make your own changes in a matter of minutes. How cool is that?

8. Easily Move Your System

Are you planning to move to a new home? Do you need to take your business security system to a new office? If you set up your own system, this process is a breeze. Simply dismount your equipment, and set it up in your new location. You will need to contact your monitoring company and let them know about the address change, but the transition is seamless overall. Remember to test your sensors after moving them to your new home or business!

9. Complete Ownership

It's a common tactic for other security companies to offer a free installation and a free security system when signing-up for their monitoring services. The problem with this is that most of these companies offer proprietary equipment that will only work with their services. So while you might own the system, it's no good if you want to take it somewhere else. When you choose and set up your own equipment, it is usually non-proprietary, and you can take it to a different monitoring company if you want to.

10. Future Installations

Once you have installed your own alarm system, you can repeat the process and steps for any future installations you might complete. Perhaps you're setting up a security system for your office, or maybe you need one for a summer home. What you've learned from your first installation can easily apply to a second one. Take what you've learned, and put it into action!

Whether you're installing your own system for a home or business, Alarm Grid is here to help you every step of the way. We offer support online and over the phone so that you can get your system exactly the way you want it. To get started, sign-up for one of our monitoring plans with the orange button above.

If you have any questions, you can always email us at support@alarmgrid.com, you can call us during our normal business hours of 9am to 8pm EST M-F. We look forward to working with you and helping you complete your own security system installation!

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