Remote control security systems: what can I control

Remote control security systems: what can I control

Just a few years ago, the big new feature for home security systems was wireless digital sensor technology that made it so no cables had to be run. The next cool feature was the addition of remote key fobs that allowed you to arm and disarm the system on your way into or out of the house. As smartphone, tablet and sensor technology advanced, the ability to do more things was added with no end in sight.

How New Remote-Control Security Systems Work

The main security panel connects to wireless sensors all over the house. The sensors communicate back and forth with the panel. The system is connected wirelessly or by an Ethernet cable to the home’s existing Internet service. Some systems may solely use cellular Internet or may use it only in the event the main Internet access goes down. The connection permits sending sensor information to apps installed on your smartphone, tablet or laptop computer. You log into the apps with your own secure account to use them. The apps can both send commands to sensors as well as receive information of their status anywhere you have an Internet connection. Cameras can send live video and audio over an Internet connection as well.

Remotely Controlled Security System Gadgets

Your whole house can be wirelessly controlled by apps on your mobile devices. Many new devices that can be controlled are self-contained. There are remote-control LED light bulbs made to burn for years that can be switched on and off with a smartphone app. Wall switches that control light fixtures can be replaced with models that can receive a wireless signal to turn them off and on or control brightness. Long lasting and powerful CR123 lithium batteries not only make window, door and smoke/carbon monoxide sensors run for years on a single battery, they also allow you to replace your door locks with ones that can be remotely locked or unlocked from your secure smartphone app.

Need to let a neighbor in to let your dog out, and make sure he locked up after he leaves? There are remotely controlled devices that can do that. You can even watch a live video feed of your surveillance cameras on your smartphone, and the motion detectors in the cameras can be set to let you know when your neighbor shows up to let the dog out.

Thermostats can be adjusted to control the heat and air conditioning, kitchen appliances can be turned on or off, and surveillance cameras can be set to email or text a still image when motion is detected. You can be notified when that package arrives. You can even control your garage doors and outdoor lights from work. Obsessing that you might have left the garage door or back door unlocked before leaving for work? Just press a button on your remote security app to close and lock them, and receive confirmation it was done.

If it plugs in, there is a way to control it remotely. There are also multiple solutions to each device you would like to control. Consider that not only can you control light switches and electrical outlets remotely, you can control individual light bulbs. You could set a pattern of lights to come on when you get home late. You could turn on the hot tub an hour before you get home to have it heated and ready.

The setup and configuration possibilities are practically limitless. However, be savvy when choosing a security system that can be remotely controlled. You want to avoid systems that have severely limited wireless sensor technology options, and you want to avoid any aftermarket components that are not compatible with your security system. Follow theĀ Federal Trade Commission’s guidelines for avoiding security scams, and make sure your provider has the sensor and remote technology you want now.


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