How to Arm Your Home Alarm System

And how to disarm it.


December 7, 2020

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Americans lose nearly $16 billion each year due to property crimes, according to the latest data from the FBI. Interestingly, more property crimes are impulsive, rather than planned, which also means that obstacles (like the presence of home alarm systems) will often deter burglars.

This is why a home security system can be a critical part of protecting your family and property. If you already have a security system or you’ve just purchased one, make sure you know how to arm your alarm, whether you're at home or away. We have a few easy tips to help you learn how to arm and disarm your alarm, quickly and securely, regardless of the system you have installed in your home.

Review your alarm set-up guide

Once you’ve installed your home alarm system (or had it installed by a professional home security provider), it’s a good idea to review the system’s operator manual, even though your security provider walked you through its setup upon installation. If you’ve moved into a new home with an existing security system and do not have an owner’s manual for it, you can generally find these manuals on the alarm system manufacturer’s website.

Most operator or owner’s manuals have a “Getting Started” section that gives you a quick guide on how to arm for away versus arm/disarm for stay. This arming and disarming process will generally require a passcode.

When setting up the passcode for your alarm system, keep the following in mind:

  • Avoid using common strings of numbers such as 1111, 0000, 1234, 4321, etc.

  • Resist selecting a passcode that is your birthday or a birthday of a loved one.

  • Avoid repeating numbers in your password (5050, 2020, 1010).

  • Do not choose a passcode that mimics debit card or ATM PINs.

  • Select a random number that would-be criminals could not easily guess.

Security codes and password activations

Most home alarm systems require security codes and password activations to help you set up and program your system for initial use. Check your system’s instruction manual to determine if it is possible to complete your alarm system’s setup using a password or security code you have chosen to make it easier for you to remember when arming or disarming your alarm.

Read instructions for DIY home security systems carefully

If you’ve installed your home alarm system yourself, it’s critical to carefully review the system’s instruction manual to ensure effective arming and disarming of your alarm system. You can likely also set the system to arm or disarm at different security levels if, for example, you want the alarm on while you’re home alone but don’t want your motion sensors detecting your everyday movements around the house.

Brinks Home™ has an online help center to offer guidance on various alarm arming and disarming scenarios.

Seek guidance from your home alarm service provider directly

If you’re struggling with the setup of your home alarm system or are having trouble with arm for stay versus disarm for away applications, call your home alarm service provider for technical support.

If you need help with an existing Brinks Home system, want to upgrade your home alarm system, or you’re looking to install a new home security service, contact one of our Senior Security Consultants for guidance on choosing a system suited to your home and family’s needs.

Allison Clark is a senior writer for Brinks Home. She enjoys educating others on the benefits of smart home security and using technology to simplify everyday life.

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