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What is an Alarm Keypad?

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  • Written By: S. Gonzales
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 04 November 2016
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An alarm keypad, or a security alarm console, is the component of a security system that allows homeowners to monitor and customize their alarm system. From an alarm keypad, owners can arm or disarm the system, monitor sensors, perform maintenance and customize other aspects of the home alarm system. Generally, home owners can choose between a light-emitting diode (LED) or an alphanumeric alarm keypad.

Security codes, buttons and switches all can be used to help customize the alarm system, monitor it and assess its functionality. For example, if a homeowner decides to add or change a zone protected by the system, he or she might make those modifications using the alarm keypad. It's as simple as inputting the instructions using the keypad.

Alarm keypads can come wired or wireless. If a homeowner chooses a wired alarm keypad, he or she might have to install the alarm system to specification. Familiarity with installing wires and electrical systems might be necessary. Wireless devices, however, generally do not require a knowledge of electrical wiring installation.

A keypad should be placed near the most frequented entrance or exit and in or near the master bedroom. Additional keypads should be placed at other entrances or exits in order of their level of use. As a general rule, homeowners should keep central control stations separate from keypad locations.

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The complexity of the alarm keypad will depend on the model and anticipated use. Homeowners who want four sensors or fewer integrated into the alarm system often opt to use LED alarm keypads. These keypads offer simple text instructions, physical push-buttons to operate the system and lights to inform their owners of statuses. Many alarm keypads advise homeowners of the battery charge levels of every part of the system and its peripherals.

Homeowners who wish to incorporate more than four sensors into their system can choose to use an alphanumeric burglar alarm keypad. Liquid crystal display (LCD) screens that might have touch-screen capabilities often accompany these types of keypads. A benefit of using a keypad like this is that they are capable of providing detailed information about a home alarm system's protected areas. Even set-up processes can be completed by using just the instructions that appear on the screens or that are spoken through the speakers.

If a homeowner is so inclined, he or she also can purchase non-functional keypads. These dummy keypads can be installed by doors or windows as if they were in working order. Though non-functional keypads can't compete with systems that actually function, the mere sight of a keypad might be enough to deter burglars.

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