December is almost upon us and making sure your alarm system is in working order ahead of the festive season rush should be a priority, says Charnel Hattingh, national marketing and communications manager at Fidelity ADT.
“We are often contacted by customers who only realise on the day that they are about to leave for their holiday that their alarm systems are faulty. It is very difficult for any service provider, including ourselves, to respond to a flood of last-minute calls for help,” she says.
Hattingh recommends that home owners take all the required steps now, to spare themselves the anxiety that could ruin their holidays. “Ensuring security systems work properly should be an important part of home maintenance throughout the year.
“If the system – and this includes panic buttons and infrared detectors – is not functioning properly, it could mean the alarm activation signal may not reach the security company who will not know that there is an emergency and that assistance is needed. Testing is quick and easy. If anything out of the ordinary is noted, a technician can be dispatched to address the problem.”
Another important aspect to remember is that should a repair be needed, parts may need to be ordered and an installation appointment made which could take some time. “We obviously prioritise alarm repairs but customers need to be cognisant that leaving this to the last minute is not ideal.”
It is also a good time to assess your overall security and, if necessary, consider upgrading the system to make sure it still delivers the best protection. This can be done during a walk around the property. Questions to consider include: Is there a need for additional or motion-sensing lights? How easily can intruders access my property and should I think about installing outdoor beams?
“Again, a security service provider can offer advice if there is any uncertainty on how to identify security needs,” she says.
Lastly, she recommends checking that your security service provider has your most current and updated contact details. “Your security company must know exactly how to get hold of you, or the details of anyone you have asked to look after your property while you are away. You don’t want any confusion about who should be contacted on your behalf in case of an emergency or alarm activation,” she concludes.
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