Technology keeps changing at a rapid pace. If you’ve thought about adding a smart home security system to your Ponte Vedra Beach, FL property, you probably have some questions about the devices, services, and installation involved.
Should you do it yourself or invest in a professional? What’s required to run each device quickly and consistently? As your local technology advocates, we’ve put together this blog to give you some smart tips on building a system that works for you. Keep reading below.
How fast should my Internet be?
Most home security cameras, whether DIY or professionally installed, use your Wi-Fi network. Most DIY one-off smart devices work through WiFi as well. All these devices can quickly eat up your bandwidth! We recommend at least 150 megabits per second (MBPS) — a speed that can handle most normal household usage. When you go with a professional installer, they can add software that prioritizes your devices, so signals won’t get backed up and jammed. If possible, we recommend using smart devices with ZWave. To find out what that is and how it can help to free up your signal, click here.
How do I avoid networking dead spots?
For new construction custom home automation and structured wiring, we design hardwired networks. Structured wiring basically means we run wires throughout your home and hide them within the walls. But technology is advancing every day. Now there are mesh extenders and mesh routers that expand coverage throughout your space and provide almost as much coverage and range as hardwired WAPs (wireless access point).
What are some devices affected by dead spots?
Some of the most common problems with a limited network range have to do with video doorbells. Think about it: if the doorbell is by the front door and the modem is in the back of the house, your network has to stretch to reach it. And video doorbells require a strong signal to function properly. It can often seem like your doorbell doesn’t work that well. It’s often not a hardware problem, but due to a lack of consistency in the WiFi network signal.
A well-designed system and layout includes extenders that will help your network connect each device in your home, no matter the location. This is why it pays to work with a professional.
Should I have local or centralized smoke alarms?
The most common type of “alarm” in any home is a local smoke detector. These “local noise makers” are put into every home by electricians and are designed to wake you up in the event of a fire.The device works independently and draws power from a hardwired connection. To stay on during outages, local alarms are equipped with backup batteries — that’s what makes the “chirping” sound at night when the battery goes out.
A smarter approach to fire safety is a supervised and monitored smoke alarm system. I call our monitored smoke detectors “pet & property protection”. They help when you are there, but also when you are not there. These alarms will call out to a fire station, and can even tell your smart thermostat to shut off.
Are monitoring services worth the investment?
Two reasons why monitoring is good. One, like I said above, our smoke, heat, and CO detectors are monitored by a human operator 24/7. Police, fire, and medical services can be dispatched as needed. But also our equipment is supervised. That means our operators can see if it’s working.
You should also invest in a monitoring service to help keep an eye on your system and alert the fire department in case of any emergency.
Have more questions about smart home security? Click here and let us know, or chat with a live representative by clicking on the chat box at the bottom of your screen.