Should a Home Security System Include Garage Security
Is it really necessary to cover the garage with a security system?
Your situation and budget will likely determine the answer to that. But, in addition to our vehicles, many of us house expensive bikes, sporting equipment, tools, snowblowers, generators, and lawn maintenance tools as well.
Moreover, a dark, unprotected garage can serve as a hiding spot for an intruder.
And finally, the garage can be a dangerous source of fires. The garage is a common storage area for flammables such as gasoline, propane tanks, and paint thinners.
Given some of the risks, if the budget allows, it may make sense to invest in some additional protection.
Monitored Garage Security?
In the world of social media, telecommuting, wireless networks, streaming media, mobile phones…we are bombarded 24/7 with the chirps, buzzes, beeps, ringtones alerting us to status updates for Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok, IMs, DMs, VMs, E-mails, Texts, and even old-fashioned phone calls.
Frankly…at times it isn’t difficult to become overloaded or desensitized to the constant barrage of notifications competing for our attention.
Not to mention the fact that there are times when we just can’t pick up the phone. Meetings, airplanes, out-of-service areas…and, even the few hours that we need to hit Do Not Disturb for some well-deserved sleep or downtime. Do you really want to have to be “on-call” 24/7?
Yes…there is a strong case to be made for investing a dollar or two a day to make sure there is a trained professional available 24/7 when it comes to handling a critical emergency involving your home and family.
It is doubtful that many would make that investment for protecting just the garage…but, most of us would agree that, if the budget allows, spending a few dollars more in one-time equipment upgrades is well worth the investment.
Advantages of Including the Garage in Your Home Security System
Quality – First of all, if you are buying components from your security service provider, you know that they have been tested, tried, and proven in the field. The best home security providers aren’t going to use shoddy equipment that will result in complaints, service issues, and lost monitoring customers.
Service – If you do have service or support issues, it is best to consolidate those issues with one provider. It affords you additional leverage and prevents you from having to track down support numbers and deal with multiple providers.
Selection – Home security service providers offer a wide selection of security and home automation equipment that is compatible with their equipment and home automation platforms. You won’t have to worry about getting devices that won’t play well with your other equipment.
Installation – Depending on what company you are working with, your security provider may provide professional installation. But, with the best DIY security companies, you will have an experienced support team that can ensure that everything is working the way it should.
Securing the Garage
Start with the Doors
As always, begin with perimeter protection.
Overhead Door Controls
Most quality home security providers can integrate some 3rd party equipment into their systems.
One of the most cost-effective ways to add automation and control of the over is with the Chamberlain MyQ Smart Hub. It works with most wireless overhead garage door controllers manufactured after 1993 and allows you to control and manage the large overhead door controls.
If this is not compatible with your system, you can also opt for tilt sensors at the overhead doors.
They are simple to install and cost-effective.
While they won’t allow you to control the doors-they will let you know when the doors are opened or closed.
Additionally, you would want to cover any other door entry with a sensor.
This gives you some basic protection at the doors.
Most garages contain flammables that make the area susceptible to fire.
Consequently, another good investment is a heat detector.
This is typically a fixed temperature device that is not susceptible to false alarms from fumes and gases.
However, it will alert you in the event that there is a fire…hopefully before it has a chance to spread to your home.
Additionally, you may want to consider video cameras overseeing the driveway. This will help you stay on top of any garage security issues. Most modern cameras can adjust sensitivity and coverage areas to limit notifications. This particular shot was taken in our review of the ADC-V722W.
Typically, you’ll want something with 1080P resolution, motion detection, night vision at a minimum that operates on an intelligent home automation platform such as Alarm.com.
Upgrading a Home Alarm System to include Garage Door Security
We recently upgraded our LInk Interactive Security test system to include the garage. In our experience, each of these items came into play.
While we ran into some technical issues regarding our home network, the support team at Link Interactive was outstanding and provided us with the equipment and expertise we needed to get the job done.
The ADCV722 Camera synced up easily to the Alarm.com platform. Sensitivity and range were easily be adjusted to provide the visibility and notifications we were looking for.
While we hoped to utilize the Chamberlain My Q Smart hub shown above, we were unable to…as our ancient, but, still working, garage door openers were not compatible.
We moved on to Plan B – installing tilt sensors. This was simply a matter of enrolling the sensor to the system and mounting it to the inside of the overhead garage door.
While we can’t control doors, we at least don’t have to brave the cold New England weather to go outside to check if we remembered to shut the garage door at night.
Now we can see the status on either the panel, the Link Interactive App, or at any desktop with internet capability!
….and that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
We covered a full range of garage security recommendations and products in our post on garage door security.
Stay tuned for our full overhead garage door opener side-by-side comparison shoot-out – coming soon!
In the meantime, here are…
Top 6 Ways to Enhance Garage Security with a Home Alarm System
Outdoor Video Camera – Keep an eye on who approaches your garage doors and monitor activity. Most outdoor security cameras offer 1080P HD resolution with motion detection and night vision.
Overhead Door Monitors – Always know whether the largest entry is open or closed. Tilt sensors use an inclinometer to detect the angle of the garage door. They send a signal to the control panel whether the overhead garage door is in an open or closed position.
Garage Door Openers – Allow automation and remote management of the overhead doors. With a wireless connection to the main home security system control panel, the doors can be controlled and even automated from the panel or right through the alarms system App.
Indoor Video Camera – Monitor activity within the garage when access is gained. In our household, we have shipments and grocery deliveries inside the garage. With an inside camera, we can keep an eye on things remotely.
Exterior Door Contacts – Keep all vulnerable garage doors protected. Exterior and/or home entranceways should be protected.
Heat Detectors – Not affected by smoke and fumes…a heat detector senses rapid rises of temperature due to fire. This is especially important in homes with an attached garage.
So, in summary, if the budget allows…updating or installing a home security system that includes garage door security can be well worth the investment!
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Last Updated on November 18, 2021 by The Home Security Advisor