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Joined: Apr 2007
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fs483 Offline OP
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Hello,

I'm planning on installing an alarm system in my finished apartment and want to do it with minimal damage to the walls. For my first alarm setup, I made a square hole beside the window frame and 1 behind the baseboard then I drilled a small hole horizontally from the side of the window. I then fed the wire through that small hole and into the square hole. From the square hole, I fed the wire down to the hole behind the baseboard. It works ok but makes a lot of square holes to patch. I had a lot of time to fix those holes but in my second install, I don't have much time so I need to be as neat as possible. How do the pros run their alarm cables in finished apartments (both floors above and below are fully finished. I know wireless is one way to go but I don't want that. I guess I can drill straight down from the window frame into the hole behind the baseboard but most of the time I see the wire coming out horizontal to the window frame. Same question for door contacts.

Also, if I'm going to setup a perimeter for stay mode (arm only perimeter when I sleep), how can I deal with an air conditioner that sits in the window during the summer days ? I can always deactivate that window but then, it doesn't offer much protection at night since all PIR are not armed at night ? I thought of putting an extra contact somewhere in the middle of the window frame or maybe stick the magnet side of the contact onto the air conditioner itself. I can also add a second contact w/magnet onto the piece of plexiglass/plywood above the air conditioner. That way, if the plywood or AC is removed, it would trigger the alarm. Window would be jammed in the position with a simple piece of wood in the track.

thanks

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Hello and welcome to the board. Well drilling straight down is the way I normally do it, or if possible I remove the molding and work that way. It really does depend on the installation.

As far as the AC I normally put a contact right on the ac as well as the window, I just run them in series. This way if the window is open or the ac is moved the alarm trips

I have to agree I prefer a hardwired system but in your case I would probably use a wireless window transmitter and wire in contacts to each window, that way you have one transmitter but can cover multiple windows.

good luck


I Swear I did not touch anything bash
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welcome
In order to better understand your installation, once you fish the wire out of the square hole behind the base board how are you getting it to the control panel? Surface mounted, attic or crawl space?

And are the window jams wood or sheet-rock?

I'm sure we can help you but we need to know a little more information. smile

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fs483 Offline OP
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Anthonyh : What do you mean you put 2 contacts, one on the ac and the other on window ? The window frame already has the reed switch and the window normally has the magnet. If I have an AC in the window, simply putting a magnet on the AC so that it closes the circuit on the reed switch. Now to prevent the window from opening anymore than it is already, I will just put a piece of wood inside the track thus jamming the window against the AC. Of course that wouldn't prevent anyone from lifting the window out of the frame. Another solution would be doing as above, then add another reed switch on the other side of the AC and the magnet already on the window will close that circuit. When the AC is not in place, I would have to remove the wire between the 2 reed switches. Doing that a 2 times per year isn't that bad but I would need to find a way to easily pull out and push in the wire into the window frame to make the connection in series. Everytime I remove that piece of wire, I would need to cut it part of the wire coming from the window frame. Termination would look ugly because I would be using beanies.

TexasTechnician : Wood door jams. Sheet-rock on the walls. Tar paper/styrofoam on exterior walls. Parquet glued directly onto cement slab. Once I get to the baseboard level, I can drill through the bottom plate and go into the garage in some areas. For other areas where there are actual room underneath, I would drill a small hole in the studs (in a angle) to pass the cable horizontally until I reach the panel. That's going to be hard between the walls under the windows usually have a large wood going horizontally to alle easy installation of baseboard heaters during the winter. Unfortunately I have cement slabs between my floors and there no attic or crawl space. If I happen to have a door in my path, I guess I could go around door casing between the jam and the wall. I live in Canada and the walls/floors/ceiling are insulated because of the cold so passing wires is much more difficult.

I have done a lot of wiring in my house (from 10base2 to be replaced with 100baseT, from RG59 that I replaced recently with RG6 Quad Shield. I upgraded my current alarm system from an old SurGard panel with only PIR by adding window/door contacts and glass break detectors. I recently replaced teh Surgard with a DSC632 and added a few keypads and extra zones. I pretty familiar with this stuff even thought I don't do this every day but for all the wiring I did before, I always had time to come back a week or two or more later to "clean up" by patching the walls and repainting. Now with a 60-70 hour week job, the Miss that will become Mrs in very short time and out of the country projets, time is NOT on my side. Of course I need all this done before I can paint the walls which is delaying the sanding of the floors and the delivery of the furniture. Project starts July 1st if my tenant leaves on time and have about 4 weeks before the guests arrive.

Also one more thing, how about PIR. I know you should point it towards the window because the sun rays can confuse it or cause it to trigger. How do you normally position them ? I was thinking of having it on the same wall as the window and pointing towards the door leading into the room. Obviously if the PIR is on the same wall as the Window, it means it's on a insulated outside wall and even more troublesome is that it needs to be in the corner which normally is studded for structural support and drywall surface nailing.

Wow long post. Hope you guys didn't fall asleep reading it.

thanks

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I use two switches...I mount both on the window frame, one magnet goes to the window the other to part of the ac, so If the ac is pushed out it trips. I will take a picture of my one window and post it to give you a better idea


I Swear I did not touch anything bash
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[Linked Image from i62.photobucket.com]

I do not remove this AC so I only have the two magnets. If I did remove it I would keep the switches where they are and just use a third magnet on the window itself, so the window would have one magnet for the top switch and one for the bottom switch (used when the ac is out) and a third on the ac unit itself. Their is a bit more wire exposed their then I like but this is a double wall brick house ad that is as far as I could go with out drilling out brick.


I Swear I did not touch anything bash
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It sounds like you have the majority of the route figured out.
And Anthony is getting you going on the AC. smile

You are correct about not pointing the PIR (motion detector) towards the window if direct sunlight can be reflected into the PIR. I say reflected because generally speaking the PIR will be mounted in a position that is usually high enough sunlight cannot shine directly into it, unless you have some very tall windows. laugh
But if there is no way the light can be reflected it won't cause a problem to point a PIR at the window. The daylight alone will not interfere with the PIR. It's always best to avoid this if possible but I've done it many times over the years with no problems I can recall.

Also, PIR's do not have to be mounted in a corner. They can be mounted anywhere you wish as long as there is nothing that can cause false alarms, such as an air/heat vent.

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well, i hardwire when ever possible, but as they say, time is money and if i have to spend more than a half day wiring a house, i go with wireless. i have many wireless systems installed and have had very few problems with them. infact, the only windows i have every hardwired have been in new construction.

the other option for the ac, is to put just the one contact higher up on the window and use 2 magnets. this is a good thing to get use to cause some people will want to open there windows in spring, but still alarm there house, obviously they can not open the window all the way, but can open enough to get air. then screw the ac unit to the window.


sam

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fs483 Offline OP
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Well so far, all wires have been installed except for the adaptor and speaker. I have read either here or on other sites that is suggested to use 18 gauge wire the speaker and the adaptor. Is this really necessary ? My old Surgard and my PC1555mx (Power632) both used 22 gauge wire (double-up, red with green and black with yellow). The one I'm installing now is the PC1616. I see that almost all installations of similar alarm systems by alarm companies do the same... Any bad effects of doing so ? Probably not since common practice. My wires haven't burned since they were installed. Tomorrow, I'll test the wires. Then I have the scary part of installing the baseboard and quarter-round. Hopefully I don't pierce any wires. Yeah I know, I should hide my wire and should avoid running wires that low but in a finished house with full insulation, I had very option other than taking out the baseboard and drilling a hole in the stud. Once baseboard is up. Will retest the 1000' of alarm wire, 500' for ethernet and 500' of RG6. That's a lot of wires for a 5 1/2 apartment on 2 floors !

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I often used use the 22 gauge doubled up. Never had a problem.


I Swear I did not touch anything bash
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