Which Wires Do I Use for My Siren?

The wires you will use for your siren are the black wire and either the yellow wire or the red wire. The black wire is for negative (-) power, and the yellow or red wire is for positive (+) power. You use the yellow wire for a continuous, steady sound, or the red wire for a warble sound.

Honeywell 748 dual tone siren

Please note that only a dual-tone siren will have three (3) wires. A single-tone siren will only have two (2) wires. If you have a single-tone siren with two wires, then just use both of them. The black wire will provide negative (-) power, and the red wire will provide positive (+) power.

A dual-tone siren will have three (3) wires, but you only use two (2) of them. The black wire is always used. This wire is for connecting negative (-) power to the siren. For a basic setup without a power supply or relay, this wire is simply connected to the negative (-) bell output. Some examples of dual-ton sirens include the Honeywell 748, the Honeywell 747, and the Honeywell 702.

But whether you use the red wire or the yellow wire for positive (+) power depends on what type of sound you want the dual-tone siren to produce. If you want a steady, continuous sound, then use the yellow wire. If you want the siren to produce a fluctuating, warble sound, then use the red wire. If this is for a simple setup without an added power supply or relay, then the yellow or red wire can be connected directly to the positive (+) bell output.

However, many users will require a more complex siren setup, involving a power supply and a dry-contact relay. In this case, the same general principle applies. Just use the siren's black wire for its negative (-) connection. And use either the red wire or yellow wire for the siren's positive (+) connection. And if the siren only has two (2) wires, just use the black wire for negative (-) and the red wire for positive (+). You can learn more about adding a siren using a power supply in this helpful FAQ.

Also note that some sirens will not have a black wire, and they will instead have a white wire. If that is the case, just use the white wire for the negative (-) connection, in place of the black wire. Either the red or yellow wire is still used for the positive (+) connection, depending on the type of sound you want to achieve.

Note: This information is primarily for use with residential alarm panels. Many residential panels provide a steady bell output for a burglary alarm, as well as a temporal pulsing output for a fire alarm. This may have a negative effect on the sound produced if using the warble (red wire) option with the siren. Make sure to test both burglary and fire alarms after adding the siren to be certain that you achieve the desired results.

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