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How burglar alarms work

Burglar alarms are an essential element of home security, particularly in areas with high crime rates. They’re often the last means of defence against intruders and can be a powerful deterrent. Most common burglar alarms have a motion detector integrated with an alarm system and a control panel. How all these components work together will be explained in this article.

The circuit breaker

The most basic type of alarm is known as a circuit breaker. This alarm is triggered when an electric circuit is broken. The circuit can be passed through a window or door. When the window is closed, the circuit is complete, and the alarm stays silent. However, if someone opens the door and the circuit is broken, then this trips the alarm.

This type of alarm is extremely simple and you can put it together yourself relatively cheaply. With a basic concept you can create all sorts of intricate alarm systems throughout your house. You can link it to a cupboard or other place where you keep valuable items that you want to protect with an alarm. You can also link them to a mat on the ground which breaks the circuit when stepped on.

Motion detectors

One of the most common commercial burglar alarm systems is a motion based burglar alarm. You can also buy this type of burglar alarm in Gatwick. While circuit alarms are especially good and economical at protecting the perimeter of an area, nothing beats motion detectors inside a building.

Motion detectors send out bursts of microwave radiation or, sometimes, ultrasonic sound waves. It then “detects” the reflected energy. When an object enters the field of radiation, the energy bouncing back to the sensors fluctuates signalling an alarm.

Not all motion detectors use microwaves or ultrasonic radiation. Some also use laser beams or passive infrared motions detectors. These latter detectors are the most advanced detectors and can actually detect a person based on the pattern of heat given off by their bodies. These motion detectors, unlike circuit breakers, can provide complete coverage of a house.

Raising the alarm

The final step for both these types of burglar alarms is to sound a siren, alert a monitor or call the police. What system your burglar alarm uses will much depend on the price you are willing to pay. Alarms which sound a siren are cheapest and simplest. Other alarms are monitored round-the-clock by security companies who will alert either you or the police in case of an intruder. The final type of alarm, connected directly to the police service is the most expensive but will give you a much quicker response in an emergency.

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