- Home Improvement
Home Security Is A Foremost Concern
With crime growing out of control almost everywhere in this recessionary economy, every homeowner must take steps to protect their family and home. Fortunately there are simple, inexpensive precautions that can be taken.
Home security is a multi-billion dollar a year industry. Lighting controls and time actuated devices have replaced the family dog as the ultimate burglar alarm, and for good reasons. There are computerized programs on the market that will allow you to control any home function while still seated at your desk at work.
Burglars hate lights and noise. If they think that someone is home, they'll bypass your home and move on to the next dark house. Outside lighting is essential to making your home as burglarproof as possible. It is easy to install a photocell to control lighting. Its operation is simple: There is a filament inside the device that generates a small amount of electricity in the milivolt range. This in turn holds a contact open. When the sun goes down, the contact closes and completes the circuit. Street lighting is controlled this way as the photocell is the round knob on top of the light head. Many yard lights use a similar mechanism.
Outside the home, lights can be mounted and controlled through a photocell but they will stay on all night, unless the circuit is switched. Inside the home, table lamps can be controlled with a timer set to come on at a certain time. The stereo, or a radio, can also be set to come on at a certain time, and go off hours later, then come back on hours later.
But if you don't want the lights to stay on all night, then perhaps infrared transmitters, or motion sensors, are better suited to your application. If you're coming home late at night and the garage is dark when the door is opened. A motion sensor detects the moving door and turns on a light until you're safely inside. After a pre-determined time, from six seconds to thirty minutes, the light will go off, after you're safely inside. Motion sensors are used worldwide in a variety of applications and have been proven beneficial and reliable.
Motion sensors can be located close to windows and doors to alert the homeowner if someone enters the home late at night. They can also tell the parents that their teenager has just crawled in through the bedroom window after curfew. Sensors that are set low can be activated by roaming pets, especially cats that love to be out running around at night. The sensor range can be narrowed to a small field or widen to encompass the entire room. Furthermore, sensitivity can be adjusted to ignore small animals.
While the homeowner may not have the need for concealment, motion sensors come in all sizes and configurations, such as located in a fake smoke detector mounted on the ceiling. However, most are plug-in types which are easily plugged into any outlet close to a window or door. There are a number of quality manufacturers of motion sensors and photocells and they can usually be found in any home improvement center.