Honeywell VISTA: Check 103 LngRng Radio or bF Error

How to deal with a common trouble error alert on the Honeywell VISTA system, the Check 103 LngRng Radio or BF alert.


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Description

The check 103 LngRng radio error alert is one of the most common issues experienced with the Honeywell VISTA system. This error displays as “BF” on fixed English keypads. This error code indicates a failure to communicate with the long range radio module.

The long range radio is a cellular or internet module that communicates with the alarm system and the monitoring company’s alarm servers. Common modules include hardwired ethernet connections as well as the 7847i ethernet module, or GSM modules such as the GSMV4g, GSMX4g or iGSMV4G dual path GSM communicator.

If one of these modules loses its connection and is no longer able to communicate with the alarm company’s servers, the check 103 error will display. This is a common issue that you’ll experience if you ever lose internet service to your home or business and it indicates that the alarm system is no longer communicating with Honeywell’s AlarmNet server.

For example, if your router has been powered off, your cellular signal is compromised, your ISP has reported that your internet service was compromised or there’s some issue with the router or wiring itself, the check 103 error will be triggered. This is also a common error you’ll encounter if monitoring service has recently been disabled to your home or business.

This video outlines the different troubleshooting steps necessary to clear this error and ensure that internet service is restored so that the system can resume communications with the monitoring company. For example, this may include a reboot of your router to restore internet service.

To confirm that internet service is restored, it can be helpful to turn to another internet ready device such as a mobile phone, tablet or computer and ensure that those devices are able to connect to the internet. Once internet service is restored, you’ll be able to disable the alert by performing a double disarm.

The check 103 error will also display on systems which have recently been had system monitoring disabled. This is common if you recently purchased a new home with an existing Honeywell VISTA security system which is not currently enabled, as well. To disable the check 103 error, in this case, the video shows how to activate programming mode by entering your installer code.

There may be instances where you don’t have the installer code, especially if you’ve just purchased a new home with an existing system. At that point, the video also details instructions on how to enter programming mode through a work around. The work around entails disconnecting your alarm system from power, reconnecting it, and then holding the star and pound keys simultaneously for several seconds.

Once in the installer mode, you’ll learn how to disable IP/GSM monitoring to clear the check 103 error code by entering into the *29 menu. Once monitoring has been disabled, you’ll learn how to exit programming mode and return to the main menu. Once you’ve returned to the main menu, you’ll notice that the check 103 error code has been cleared.


Transcript

Hi DIYers. This is Frank at Alarm Grid again, and today we're working on the Vista panel, the 21 iP, 20P, and 15P. And it will actually work, it will carry over to most other Vista panels.

We're going to be working on troubles today. So the first and most common trouble error code that we see is the Check 103 Long Range Radio. On the fixed English keypads, it will say, bF. It's a failure to communicate on your long range radio. OK? So, a long range radio is a cellular, or internet module.

If you have the 21 iP and you're using the hardwire ethernet connection, or if you have a backup cellular, or 7847i which is an ethernet module, or the GSMV4G, the GSMX4G, even the iGSMV4G, which is our favorite dual path communicator for the 20P. If any of those lose signal, whether it be the internet or the cellular, if those go down and your communications to your central station are down-- or rather, communications to Honeywell's alarm net server that hosts all the communications-- if that connection goes down, whether your internet router is powered off, or the connection is somehow compromised, or the cellular signal goes out for a myriad of reasons, when that signal is lost, you're going to get a Check 103 error on your keypad.

Now you'll see right now, it's kind of jumping between Check 103 Long Range Radio 00F on there, and then on our fixed English keypad-- that you can't really see in the shot-- it will say bF on there. OK? So the way that we're going to clear this is restoring the connection. So the first thing you would need to do is, let's say your internet was unplugged, you plug it back in, your internet's restored, maybe your internet service provider reported that your internet was down. Once it's back up, you can basically go, double disarm at the keypad.

So, our master code is still on default 1234. We have 1234, and then the 1 key. So that will be a disarm. And then we'll do 1234, and then off again. That's a second disarm.

If the trouble has been restored, this would go away. OK? But it didn't, because we still have an issue, because our Vista 21iP that we're connected to, the ethernet cable is unplugged right now. So in that case, we would have to plug it back in, double disarm again, and that would clear it. So that's the case for restoring connections when you are monitored.

Now let's say you have a Vista panel, maybe you bought a new home, or you have a system that you recently disabled monitoring, and you're still getting this alert and you do not want it-- which is also a question we get a lot. So, the way you would do that is actually get into programming. Now you will need the installer code.

So in some cases, if it's a new home and you don't have the codes, you would need to get into the backdoor programming-- which we're going to do a video on-- and you'll be able to see that on our channel. That will just be basically getting into programming on your Vista panel. And then that would require a reboot where you disconnect the AC transformer and the battery, reapply it, power back up, and press and hold the star and pound keys, simultaneously for at least three full seconds within the first minute. That'll put you right into programming.

So I'm going to jump us in here. We'll do 4112, 800. Our panel still has the default installer code at 4112. You'll see Installer Code 20. This is the same thing that you would see if you did the reboot and getting in the back door. Once you're in programming, you then want to go into the star 29 field.

Now this is very important. The 6160 keypads, which are known as alphanumeric keypads, are the only keypads that you can actually see the star 29 menu in, or see the deeper level diagnostics and programming. So we want to be sure, after we disable this, to hit a zero to quit-out, to not get stuck into the deeper level communications programming menu.

So, it says enable IP/GSM, No-Yes. If you are getting the COM error, then it's probably enabled. And if you don't have anything connected and you're not monitored-- maybe you disconnected your internet and you don't want monitoring right now-- you can hit No , enter zero. You'll see the zero comes up. Hit star. That will bump you out of that field altogether.

Now you're back at the home-- at the main menu, still in programming, so don't press any crazy buttons until we're out. We'll hit star 9 9. And you'll see a 9 on the screen, it will back out. And we're back to disarm, ready to arm.

Any time you go in and out of programming, you want to remember to re-enable your chime, if you had chime enabled before. If not, you can keep it off. We keep it on in the lab here. But yeah, basically that's how you would clear out the Check 103 Long Range Radio.

Keep in mind that if you do have monitoring, the best thing to do when you lose internet or cellular with the internet, generally a reboot of your router, and then verifying on other internet devices is a good way to start. If you need help from your alarm company, definitely reach out to them. You can get cellular signal readings from them to verify what happens on your cellular path.

But yeah, basically once your communications are back up, you can do that-- the master code followed by off-- which is a disarm. Do that twice. And that will clear out that Check 103 error and the bF code that's listed on your keypads.

So, that's how you clear communication trouble from your long range radio. If you have any other questions regarding the Check 103 error, you can email us at support@alarmgrid.com and don't forget to subscribe to our channel.


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