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YOUR BUSINESS

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YOUR HOME

FAQ

General

What is the benefit of using a NSI Gold approved company?

Choosing an NSI approved company ensures that the contractor you select works to the highest recognised industry standards as demanded by the Police, Fire and Rescue Services and insurance industry.

As a result of installing quality equipment, ensures reliability, extra functionality that provides the customer with bespoke system and enabling the intruder alarm to gain a police force response.

Also providing an annual maintenance plan will ensure customers ‘peace of mind’ that the system will function correctly in accordance of with industry standards.

 

How do I know what type of system I require?

There are a wide range of systems and options available and as a result we always provide a free site survey to provide a bespoke system that fully suits your needs.

 

What if I need an engineer out of hours?

Our Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) is manned 24 hours a day, 365 days a year so as long as you have a current maintenance contract we will always be able to help either over the telephone or by sending one of our engineers to site.  Our response time according to standards is either within 4 hours of the call being taken or before the systems is next due to be set.

 

Will I have to pay a call out charge?

This depends on the type of maintenance contract you have.  Our fully comprehensive contract covers you for any necessary repairs or replacements to the system caused by inherent defect or fair wear and tear.

 

What areas do you cover?

Anywhere within the UK.

 

 

Do I own the system?

Yes all of our systems are based on an outright sale agreement (with exception of our residential offer package which will become your property after the first 12 months).

 

How quickly can I have an alarm installed?

We understand that once you have decided to protect your property you want it protecting as soon as possible, so we endeavour to install your system to a fully operated status within 1 week.

 

Can’t find the answer to your question?

Email us at salesinfo@securityservices.uk.com and we will get back to you as soon as we can!

 

Intruder

Which burglar alarm – wireless or hard wired?

We can offer both. Hard wired were always the most reliable, however wireless systems have come a long way in the past 5 years with more and more people opting for this method, purely based on the fact that they take half the time to install, saving on installation costs, eliminating exposed wires and more flexibility with sensor location. Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors can also be integrated into the system which if activated will alert you on your mobile.

 

So how much will it cost?

Our security packages start from as little as £499 for a fully installed wireless alarm system.

 

What happens to the alarm during a power cut?

Alarm systems are fitted with batteries which can keep the system running for up to 24 hours during a mains failure. During a power cut the keypad will beep and the mains light will flash to indicate a problem. If the system is monitored a signal will be sent to the Alarm Receiving Centre which will notify them of a mains failure and you will then be contacted. A PIN code may be required on mains restore.

 

Do I need a sensor in every room?

Not necessarily, although a sensor is recommended in a room which has:

  • Anything of high value such as a laptop, television, etc.
  • An easy access or escape such as doors, windows, balcony or fire escape
  • A history of attempted break-ins

Usually, rooms which have no entry or exit route or no high value assets such as kitchens, bathrooms, meeting rooms, conference rooms etc do not require a sensor. On the other hand, areas which are extremely vulnerable or have high value assets may need two sensors of different technology, such as Glassbreak detector/Vibration sensor plus a PIR detector. This way an alarm is generated before entry has been gained.

 

Do I need a separate phone line for monitoring?

If you already have a phone line then this can be used. It is not uncommon to share the line with a fax or an existing phone.

 

What causes my alarm to false activate?

False alarms are usually caused by PIR’s detecting heat movement from something other than people, such as:

  • Insects or spiders: If they walk close enough to the lens, the PIR will activate, some are even found inside the detector. The best way to minimise this is to keep the PIR clean and free of cobwebs.
  • Pets: If you are leaving your pets in the house when you arm the alarm you must ensure that Pet-Immune PIR’s are installed.
  • Direct sunlight: PIR detectors must be positioned away from direct sunlight during installation.
  • Open fireplaces: Heat can be generated from open fires long after the fire has been extinguished. PIR detectors must be positioned away from open fires during installation.
  • Harsh environments: Rooms such as workshops, warehouses or garages can attract drafts which can cause standard PIR’s to false activate. Dual-technology (PIR and Microwave) detectors are recommended in harsh environments, where heat movement of a solid object is required to cause the sensor to trigger.

 

Can I change my own code?

Yes, the installer will demonstrate how to do this when the system is installed. You will also be given a user-friendly manual which clearly outlines the procedure.

 

Can pets cause the alarm to trigger?

Yes they can… if you have pets we will bear this in mind when designing your system.

 

CCTV

What does CCTV stand for?

CCTV stands for Closed Circuit Television. It is a television system that operates on a “closed loop” basis. Unlike broadcast television, which is available to anyone with a suitable receiver, CCTV pictures are only available to those connected to the loop.

 

What is the difference between analogue & IP systems?

Analogue and IP cameras are similar in many ways; in both technologies the lens projects the image to the analogue image sensor where the signal is then converted to digital using an analogue-to-digital converter. The signal is then processed by the camera’s on-board digital circuitry (DSP). In IP cameras the video is compressed and encoded internally then sent to the Network Video Recorder (NVR) via IP protocol. In an analogue camera the signal is converted back to analogue and sent to the Digital Video Recorder (DVR) where it is compressed and encoded.

 

What happens if a intruder enters the site or a crime appears to be taking place according to the images caught on CCTV?

This all depends on the type of system installed and what procedures the customer has requested. One of the options available is for the fully trained operators at the ARC to talk to site via the telephone line through on-site speakers. If this doesn’t work the ARC operator would normally contact the Police. We are also able to dial into the system and do “camera patrols “of the site. This can be done randomly or at fixed times.

We can supply and install bespoke systems for schools, hospitals, construction sites and car dealers who require a cost effective security solution without using manned guards.

 

Is it best to install dome cameras or full-body cameras?

Dome cameras are becoming increasingly popular and many customers and security companies are opting to install dome cameras instead of full body cameras. It may be said that full body cameras offer more of a deterrent as they are usually more visible than dome cameras; on the other hand, dome cameras can be favourable as they are more discreet and aesthetically pleasing. Dome cameras can also be more cost effective, as all of the components such as the camera, lens and housing are manufactured in one product. The Field of view in dome cameras is often unknown and the public are usually unaware of which area they cover. Full body cameras are more prone to vandalism or theft and can be tampered with easily; they can be pointed in another direction or removed using a rope.

 

How do I view my cameras remotely?

By connecting your DVR to your home broadband or office network it is possible to view your cameras from virtually anywhere, as long as there’s a broadband connection or mobile phone signal. You can even view your cameras from any smart device.

 

Do cameras need lighting to see?

It is always best to ensure the camera field of view is adequately lit, however, with the introduction of Infra-Red (IR), lighting is not essential. Many cameras now have built-in IR illuminators which claim to produce effective images in zero light conditions for distances up to 50metres.

 

How do I keep my cameras recording during a mains failure?

An Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) can be in installed as part of your CCTV system’s hardware. A UPS is basically a battery backup and is a cost-effective way of ensuring your CCTV system has enough power to keep running in the event of a power cut. A UPS Also acts as a surge protection unit and regulates the supply to the equipment, reducing the risk of damage from electrical surges or spikes.

 

Access Control

What locks do I use on my access control doors?

There are many different types of electronic locks to suit the application in which they are installed. In most cases the site needs to be surveyed prior to choosing the types of lock as circumstances such as type (single/double/inward opening/outward opening, bi-fold, roller), construction material (wood/aluminium), location (internal/external) and size, needs to be assessed before implementing the final design.

 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using Biometric readers, PIN codes or Proximity cards?

Biometric systems are usually more secure than the standard Proximity mean. A Proximity card can be lost or stolen and a PIN can be announced or viewed. Biometric systems are usually more expensive than PIN or Proximity systems for the following reasons:

  • Hardware such as Biometric readers are likely to cost more than PIN or Proximity readers
  • The Biometric software usually requires a license which is purchased upon initial setup
  • There are usually ongoing costs such as Annual license fees with Biometric systems

The big advantage of Proximity over Biometric technologies lies in its simplicity. There are no moving parts, no mechanical wear, no slots, and no read heads to maintain. The reader can be concealed inside walls or special enclosures and poses even fewer problems when surface-mounted because it has no opening with which to jam or tamper.

 

What happens if a Proximity card is lost or stolen?

Proximity cards can be easily deleted or void from the system which instantly disables the user from accessing any doors. Cards can be made void through the system’s keypad or through the management software. If the system is set-up for remote off-site connection the card can be deleted remotely without the need for a visit to site. It is recommended that the card is not carried with ID badges (which could potentially display details of the premises), and that the loss or theft of a card is reported immediately.

 

Fire Alarms

Do I need a Fire Risk Assessment?

Yes! This is now part of English law, under the “Regulatory Reform Act 2005”. If you have a HMO (House of Multiple Occupancy)property or business premises which employs 5 or more persons, including part time staff, or you have members of the general public in the premises.

 

What is the Fire Regulatory Reform Act 2005?

This is a government act, introduced to improve the fire safety in the workplaces and all public premises. Each business is required to have a “responsible person” to monitor the compliance.

 

What benefit does the Fire Risk Assessment give me and my business?

It identifies risk and helps you manage it for the benefit of all staff and members of public.

 

What sort of organisation or business needs a Fire Risk Assessment?

Any business premises with 5 or more staff or a public premises.

 

How do I arrange for an assessment to be carried out?

Contact us and we can arrange this on your behalf.

 

What is the difference between an “addressable” system and a “conventional” one?

Conventional Systems

A conventional system is a cost effective approach for a fire alarms system. These are usually found in small to medium sized commercial premises such as shops or offices. They provide the means to detect and warn of fire.

Detectors are installed on zones, when a detector is activated the control panel will indicate which zone the triggered detector is located in.

Addressable Systems

An addressable system provides a more technologically advanced fire alarm system – usually at a higher price.

This type of system acts more like a computer; it can diagnose exactly which detector has been activated so that the fault/fire can be located a lot more efficiently.

These systems tend to be used in buildings such as hospitals, schools and large offices or factories.

 

Are the panel on the site addressable?

No, the panels we currently stock are conventional panels. We can supply addressable panels to meet individual needs, please contact us for a quote with your requirements.

 

 

Domestic Fire Alarms

Which type of domestic fire alarm do I need?

Depends on location, in general for a:

  • kitchen: heat alarm
  • corridors, hallways and landings: optical smoke alarm

 

Optical Smoke Alarms

Optical sensors are more responsive to smouldering fires producing large particle smoke typical of fires involving furniture and bedding.

They are more immune to invisible smoke produced by ‘burning the toast’ and similar cooking fumes. This makes them ideal for siting in hallways close to kitchens where false alarms from ionisation alarms may be a particular problem. The BS 5839: Pt.6 standard recommends the use of optical alarms in circulation spaces of a dwelling, such as hallways and landings. Optical alarms are prone to false alarm if exposed to steam and should not be located too close to poorly ventilated bathrooms or shower rooms.

 

Ionisation Smoke Alarms

Ionisation type sensors are particularly sensitive to the almost invisible smoke produced by fast flaming fires. This makes them more liable to false alarm due to cooking fumes if sited in a hallway close to a kitchen. Ionisation alarms are less vulnerable to false alarms caused by dense tobacco smoke, excessive dust and insect ingress. The BS 5839: Pt.6 standard recommends that ionisation alarms should not be used in hallways and landings, where there is a risk of false alarms caused by cooking fumes.

 

Heat Alarms

Heat alarms are less likely to cause false alarm problems as they are not responsive to any type of smoke or fumes, only heat.

Because of the potential for a slower response than smoke alarms, they should only be used in a fire alarm system that also includes smoke alarms, and all of the alarms must be interconnected.

The BS 5839: Pt.6 standard recommends that heat alarms should be used in kitchens. It goes on to suggest that they may also have a role to play in the main living room but they should not be installed in circulation spaces or areas where fast response to fire is required.

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