How Do I Upgrade a Honeywell LYNX Touch to Use LTE?
You can upgrade a Honeywell LYNX Touch to use LTE by adding an LTE communicator and activating it for alarm monitoring service. You may need to upgrade the firmware for the system before it can support an LTE communicator. The Honeywell LYNXTOUCH-MSD Updater Tool can update the firmware.
When it comes to communication for security systems, cellular is seen as the best option. It is the most reliable communication path available for a system, and it offers speeds that are nearly as fast as WIFI. Unlike WIFI, cellular connectivity almost never goes down or becomes unavailable. This is really important for a Honeywell Alarm System that needs to maintain constant contact with the Resideo AlarmNet Servers for monitoring service. This is why many LYNX Touch users upgrade their panels to use cellular connectivity.
But something important happened in June of 2019. This was when Resideo stopped allowing activations for 3G and CDMA communicators. Only LTE activations are permitted now that this has happened. The reason why 3G and CDMA activations are no longer allowed is because these networks are mostly going to be shut down in the coming years. AT&T and Verizon are expected to shut down these networks sometime in 2022. Once these networks are shut down, all communicators that connect with these networks will no longer work. Cellular service providers are shutting down these older networks in order to increase their support for LTE and 5G infrastructure. The more advanced LTE and 5G networks offer vastly superior speeds and much better reliability overall. That is why cellular service providers have decided to make these networks the way of the future.
If you have a LYNX Touch System that is currently using a 3G or a CDMA communicator for monitoring service, then it will continue to work until the associated cellular network is shut down. But eventually, you will need to upgrade to LTE if you want to continue using the system for cellular monitoring service. This upgrade goes beyond just keeping your system active. Upgrading to LTE will provide faster and more reliable communication for your system when transferring information to and from the AlarmNet360 Servers. This is important for ensuring that system notifications, including alarm events, are sent to you and/or a central monitoring station as quickly and as reliably as possible. You may also find that your system responds more quickly when sending remote commands from Total Connect 2.0 after upgrading to LTE.
Some users have expressed concern with LTE, stating that it too will eventually be discontinued in favor of the 5G cellular networks that will inevitably be activated at some point. Fortunately, that is unlikely to be the case until the very distant future. Cellular service providers have repeatedly stated that they plan on maintaining support for their LTE networks, even as 5G networks begin operation. These cellular companies have invested tremendous amounts of resources into establishing the infrastructure needed to support their LTE networks. With that in mind, they are not going away any time soon. Cellular companies plan on providing long-term support for their LTE networks. In fact, LTE even stands for "Long-Term Evolution". This is very important, as it means that adding an LTE communicator to your security system will provide a true long-term solution in keeping it monitored. Although it is impossible to determine exactly how long LTE networks will remain in-service, it is expected that they will still be supported even many decades from now.
As upgrading to LTE is extremely important, Resideo released two (2) LTE communicator options for LYNX Touch Systems. The Honeywell LTE-L57A will connect with the AT&T LTE Network, and the Honeywell LTE-L57V will connect with the Verizon LTE Network. Whether you decide to go with AT&T or Verizon should be based on the network coverage in your area. It is recommended that you check the respective coverage maps for these service providers and go with the network that you believe will provide the most reliable service in your area. It is important to understand that this decision has nothing to do with the service provider you use for your phone, and it will have absolutely no impact on your monthly monitoring expenses. If you find that neither AT&T nor Verizon provides adequate service in your area, then you may consider getting a cellular antenna or a cellular amplifier in order to boost communication signals.
It is important to note that there are firmware requirements for a LYNX Touch Panel to use an LTE cellular communicator. The Honeywell LTE-L57A AT&T LTE Communicator requires Firmware Version 9.00.201 or higher. The Honeywell LTE-L57V Verizon LTE Communicator requires Firmware Version 9.00.209 or higher. Only L5200, L5210, and L7000 Systems can be upgraded to a high enough firmware version to support these communicators. As a result, the older L5000 and L5100 LYNX Touch Systems can never be set up to use LTE communication. If you have an L5000 or an L5100, then you will need to replace the panel entirely if you want to use LTE connectivity for alarm monitoring service. The Honeywell Lyric Controller and the 345 MHz Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus are the most common replacement choices for older L5000 and L5100 Panels.
Many users are unsure of what firmware version their LYNX Touch Systems are running. Fortunately, it is very easy to check. From the main screen of the panel, choose Security > More > Tools > enter your Master Code > Test. The firmware revision will be displayed at the top of the screen. Please be aware that your Master Code should not be confused with your Installer Code. Your Master Code should be the main code that you use for arming and disarming, and it is almost always changed from its default of 1234 for security purposes. Your Installer Code is used for entering programming, and it should never be used for arming and disarming. The default Installer Code on a LYNX Touch Panel is 4112, and it is usually kept at its default.
The image below shows an L7000 Panel that is running a high enough firmware version to support both the Honeywell LTE-L57A AT&T LTE Communicator and the Honeywell LTE-L57V Verizon LTE Communicator:
If you find that your Honeywell LYNX Touch System needs a firmware upgrade to support the desired communicator, then you can upgrade the firmware using the Honeywell LYNXTOUCH-MSD Firmware Updater Tool. This updater tool can be purchased from Alarm Grid as a standalone accessory. Alarm Grid also offers LTE upgrade kits that include a new LTE communicator and the updater tool. The Honeywell LTEUPGKT-L57A includes the AT&T LTE Communicator, while the Honeywell LTEUPGKT-L57V includes the Verizon LTE Communicator. We recommend purchasing one of these kits if you have a Honeywell LYNX Touch Panel that is not on a high enough firmware version to support an LTE communicator. Please note that upon upgrading the firmware revision on an L5200 System to Firmware Revision 9 or higher, AlarmNet will begin considering that system to be an L5210 Panel. This will not affect how you use your panel in any way, but it is important to understand for information purposes. For more information on using the Honeywell LYNXTOUCH-MSD Firmware Updater Tool to update the firmware on your L5200, L5210, or L7000 System, please review this helpful FAQ.
Lastly, it is important to understand that upgrading to LTE will require you to get a cellular monitoring plan for the system. Many users choose to use IP-only monitoring plans with their systems, as they typically cost less than plans that include cellular service. However, IP-only monitoring is less reliable than cellular or dual-path (IP & cellular) monitoring, as an internet outage will take the system offline. A LYNX Touch System can be set up with IP connectivity by adding a Honeywell L5100-WIFI module. Please note that new versions of the L5100-WIFI require Firmware Version 8.00.183 or higher. Older Honeywell L5100-WIFI models with the MAC prefix of 00D02D do not have this requirement. More information on L5100-WIFI firmware requirements is available here. Remember, even if you add a Honeywell L5100-WIFI to your system, you can also add an LTE cellular communicator to your system so that it supports dual-path connectivity with both IP and cellular.
If you do decide to use cellular communication with your LYNX Touch System in any manner, then you must get a plan that includes cellular connectivity. Some examples of monitoring plans that include cellular connectivity include the Alarm Grid Gold and Platinum Plans (Self or Full) and the Alarm Grid Cell-Only Plan. We recommend shopping around for different monitoring plans to determine which one is best for your unique needs. Remember that all Alarm Grid Monitoring Plans are no-contract, and they include absolutely no added fees. Additionally, any Alarm Grid Monitoring Plan that includes cellular will also include IP service if you decide to add a Honeywell L5100-WIFI module to your LYNX Touch System.
For this FAQ, we will assume that the LYNX Touch Panel is already on a high enough firmware version to support an LTE communicator. We will also assume that the user has already obtained a Honeywell LTE-L57A or Honeywell LTE-L57V Communicator. Complete the following steps to get your Honeywell LYNX Touch System Connected to LTE:
1. Power down the panel. Since you are making a hardware change to your system, you must first power down the panel. Start by opening up the panel and disconnecting its backup battery. You can keep the panel open, as it must be open to install the communicator. After disconnecting the backup battery, unplug the transformer for the panel. The system should power down. You can confirm this, as the screen will be blank.
2. Install the communicator. You can now take the LTE-L57A or LTE-L57V Communicator and install it inside the panel. Before doing this, make sure to write down the IMEI number for the module. This information is needed when you go to activate the communicator. The IMEI number is usually found on a white sticker on the module itself. It may also be displayed on the packaging for the communicator. Save the IMEI number somewhere safe, as you may need to access it again sometime in the future. As for the actual installation process, please refer to the installation manual for the communicator. Alarm Grid has the LTE-L57V Installation Manual available here. The LTE-L57A follows the exact same installation process, so you can just refer to that manual if needed.
3. Activate the communicator. The last step is to activate the communicator. This process must be completed by your alarm monitoring company. You should contact your monitoring company to determine a plan for activating the communicator. Alarm Grid customers will typically need to schedule an activation slot to complete this process. This is done when choosing a monitoring. Existing Alarm Grid customers can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for support. We maintain support hours from 9am to 8pm ET M-F. Remember that you will need to have the IMEI number for the communicator to complete the activation process. Make sure that your monitoring company tests the cellular signals for your system once the activation is complete.
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