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Home Security Tips: 6 Ways to Prevent False Alarms

SmartCam, Smart Leak Sensor Kit, Smart Motion Kit, Hedge App, Home Protection & Security, Home Tips

Published: June 14, 2022

When it comes to home security systems, false alarms aren’t just annoying or anxiety-inducing — they can be costly too, wasting emergency responder resources and potentially resulting in fines and penalties.

One government agency reported that the vast majority of alarm calls — between 94 and 98 percent (higher in some jurisdictions) — are false. Common culprits include improper installation, dead batteries, and general user error. Here’s how to avoid these issues (and more) to prevent false alarms this summer and beyond.

#1: Make sure to properly install your home security devices

Improper system installation is a common cause of false alarms. If you have a wireless system with DIY installation, be sure to carefully follow the instructions as you set up your devices. (Curious about Hedge’s installation process? Check out our simple setup guide.)

Also, be strategic about sensor placement to get the most out of your home security system. We’ve provided over twenty recommended placement locations for Hedge’s SmartCam, Leak Sensors, Motion Sensor, and Contact Sensors.

#2: Keep your batteries fresh

Another common culprit of false alarms? Drained batteries. Check your smart home security devices’ tech specs for battery information. (Hedge’s Leak Sensors, Motion Sensors, and Contact Sensors have an estimated 18-month battery life.)

Some battery-powered security devices will also notify you that battery levels are low — either on the accompanying app, or with a beep or chirp. Hedge’s Motion Sensors, Contact Sensors, and Leak Sensors alert you to low batteries via the Hedge App.

#3: Dust your devices

Like anything else in your home, your security devices can get dusty. Dusty or dirty sensors may be less sensitive, making it more difficult for them to detect movement. If you have a security camera, be sure to dust its lens, too — that way you’ll have a clear picture of what’s going on inside your home.

#4: Make sure your smart home technology is up to date

Stay on top of software and app updates so that your security system is using the latest technology. The better your system is running, the less likely it is that mishaps in the form of false alarms will occur.

#5: Properly secure doors and windows

Some systems, including Hedge, can detect if doors and windows have been opened. Get in the habit of securing doors and windows tightly before you leave home, so they can’t unlatch and swing open while you’re away, triggering a false alarm. (Securing doors and windows is a good home safety habit, regardless of false alarms, as open entry points can invite potential intruders.)

#6: Add family members as users on your Hedge account and set up auto-arm

Our auto-arm feature arms and disarms your home based on the proximity of you and other users on the account to the home. If you set up auto-arm, your home will be armed when the last user on the account leaves, and will be disarmed when the first user returns.

How does adding users to your Hedge account and setting up auto-arm prevent false alarms? Well, if you haven't added any other users to your Hedge account — say, your spouse or teenage children — the system won't be disarmed when they arrive home, meaning you'll receive an onslaught of push notifications as your Hedge devices detect their (completely benign) movement around the home.

Here are two scenarios to illustrate this point.

You Haven’t Added Other Users to Your Hedge Account

You Haven’t Added Other Users to Your Hedge Account

You Have Added Other Users to Your Hedge Account

You Have Added Other Users to Your Hedge Account

See the difference? When it comes to auto-arm, adding family members as users on your Hedge account helps your devices determine whether specific activity around the home is problematic and may require your attention . . . or whether it’s a false alarm.

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