Safety And Security-How A Car Alarm System Works

Knowing how the parts of a car alarm work can help us better understand what an alarm system can and can't do for us.

Car alarms are one of the most underappreciated pieces of technology around today. The problem stems from car alarm owners that let their vehicle's alarm go off until the preprogrammed time expires and the alarm resets itself. This causes most people to ignore sounding car alarms and consider them annoying noisemakers.

However, when you hear a car alarm going off, it is usually due to improperly adjusted impact sensors. The impact sensor is the most common and most problematic sensor. This is a device that senses vibrations which could be caused by someone attempting to break in. These impact sensors have an adjustable sensitivity setting. Often, these sensors are left with the sensitivity set way too high. This condition can cause a car alarm to go off, for example, if another car drives past or if someone bumps his or her car door lightly. To ensure your car alarm's impact sensor is set properly, remember this rule. It should take a good hard slap to set off the alarm. If the alarm goes off by just bumping your car, the impact sensor requires adjustment. It is necessary for equipment installers to ensure that every impact sensor is not set to sensitive, since this will cut down on the number of false alarms.

The next most common sensor in car alarms is the door sensor. These door sensors trigger the car alarm if any door is opened. This can include the hood and trunk as well, depending on the installed alarms configuration. Door sensors can even be used to protect removable car stereos. Some high-end car alarms also come with optional proximity sensors. A proximity sensor is a device that monitors for motion within its range. If you get too close to the vehicle, the proximity sensor will trigger the alarm. There is also an option where this sensor can be used with a verbal warning. The intruder is given a 10 to 15 second period to back away from the car before the alarm sounds. These talking alarms can really startle an innocent bystander!



There are a few sensors that are still relatively new to the market. The first one is the audio sensor. This sensor monitors for the noise of someone breaking or attempting to break a vehicle's window. The other one is a temperature sensor. This one is triggered by a sudden increase in temperature inside the car, which is normal when someone enters a car, especially in a colder environment.

It is important to understand what happens when a car alarm is set off. Most everyone is familiar with the loud siren and flashing lights. All car alarms, when engaged, disable the vehicle's starter. This is the primary defense against car thieves. If they can't start it, they can't steal it. Most car alarm systems also come standard with a tilt sensor. This causes the alarm to sound if someone tries to tow the vehicle while the alarm is engaged. This won't prevent it from happening, but it will draw attention to what is going on. Some car alarms also send an alert to the vehicle owner through a small paging device. This way, the owner can respond to the alarm even if he or she is out of audible range.

Hopefully, by addressing the problem with impact sensor sensitivity setting and discussing some of the primary ways an alarm system can help keep a car from being stolen, we as a society can begin to better appreciate what car alarms are capable of doing for us.

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