Power outages, mostly due to load shedding, are a common occurrence these days. Without electricity, your alarm system will be useless and unable to protect you, anyone else or your property. The good news is that with a bit of planning an inoperable alarm system due to load shedding can be avoided.
Let’s have a look at the following:
- Your alarm system as a standard
- How long does an alarm backup battery last
- Add more to get longer backup times
- Recommendations and good practices
Your alarm system as a standard
You would be happy to know that all alarm systems are installed with a backup battery, regardless if it is a basic system or a more complex and advanced system.
The system will be powered by a transfer that plugs in at a wall socket. From the alarm system the battery will be charged and will not be actively used for the most part. In the event of power outages the system will switch seamlessly to battery power. In most cases notices get sent out when the power source changes, or there is a spike or drop in the supply current.
How long does an alarm backup battery last?
The backup battery on smaller alarm systems will typically power the system for 3 to 5 hours under normal circumstances, while larger or more active systems will get less.
A lot is also dependent on how many devices are linked to the panel, how active the system(for instance during office hours the sensors work a lot more) and what age the system and battery is. Other conditions for the life span of the battery would be if you experience frequent power outages or current spikes which will diminish the lifespan of the battery.
Add more to get longer backup times
Under normal operating conditions an alarm system battery will take between 10 and 12 hours to be optimally charged, and with load shedding being so frequent multiple times a day it will be unable to do that.
One of the most cost effective ways to mitigate the risk is to add a supplementary backup battery. The unit is fully enclosed and can be specified to use a larger capacity battery to extend operating times. This standalone unit also charges from its own dedicated charging module and thus does not put strain on your current system.
Another benefit with having an additional battery is that if one of the two batteries is not in the best condition you have additional power to mitigate a possible failure of the system.
Recommendations and good practices
Here follows some recommendations and tips to keep your alarm system power pack in the best possible shape:
- When you have your alarm system installed make sure the battery is supplied and that the system gets tested with a simulated power outage.
- Have your alarm system and battery tested at least one a year.
- If there is regular load shedding and/or spikes, have your system and batteries checked more often, twice a year should be sufficient.
- a Battery in poor condition will affect performance of your alarm system and could possibly fail during a power outage if not maintained.
- Bigger alarm systems need more power, as a general rule of thumb 9 or more external devices are considered a larger system.
- Power requirements depend a lot on what type of external devices are connected and how active they are during the power outage.
When load shedding or power outages strikes, it is important to have a backup plan for your alarm system. All alarm systems come with a battery backup, but this can only last for so long. You can extend the backup time of your alarm system by adding a supplemental power pack. The addition of the power pack will greatly assist in keeping the system powered and will add some support in the event that one of the batteries is in a poor condition or all together fails.
For more information or assistance feel free to contact Lutigyn Systems on the following:
Phone: 081 508 2785