Locks are important for homes, apartments, condominiums, and other places where people stay, as these locks are one of the many mechanisms that provide safety and protection for people staying in those areas. However, locks are often not enough for security, as they can sometimes be easily opened and pried by intruders or strangers that aim to steal your belongings and commit other crimes.
Luckily, there are several gadgets and accessories that you can purchase and install in order to improve the security of the place you are staying in. Two of those gadgets are the door alarm and the door monitor, which serve different functions for homes and rooms. To know more about these great devices, here is the ultimate guide to door alarms and monitors.
What is a Door Alarm?
The door alarm is primarily utilized to keep homeowners and their families alert if there is a stranger or intruder that opened one of their doors. Door alarms are equipped with sensors that allow the devices to sense if the door it is installed to is opened. Besides doors, these alarms can also be used in windows, where most burglars would usually enter.
In terms of how door alarms work, they would usually have contact sensors, which are activated when the contact between the sensor and the magnet lightly attached to it is disrupted. The sensor part of the door alarm is attached to the frame of the door while the magnetic part is installed to the door itself. So, the disruption occurs when someone opens the door since the magnet moves further away from the sensor as the door opens.
Types of Door Alarms
There are two major types of door alarms that you can purchase in hardware stores and specialty shops. Here are descriptions for each of those types.
The sensor of door-open alarms is activated whenever an intruder opens the door and holds it open. The amount of time that the door should be held before the alarm activates can usually be set from seconds to minutes. If the door alarm is activated, it will emit a siren sound, a high-pitched chime, or a flashing light in order to alert homeowners of the presence of an intruder.
Door-force-open alarms are activated when an intruder forcefully opens a door without actually using the doorknob or opening the lock. This type of alarm has a different sensor from door-open alarms since the sensor-magnet mechanism found in the latter wouldn’t exactly work on doors that are forcibly opened. Instead of the said mechanism, door-forced-open alarms have a special sensor that detects if a person is standing at the door and if there was significant force applied to the door for it to be opened forcibly.
Most people would only install door-open alarms on their doors, but there are some that actually install both types of door alarms for every door in their house for improved security. Of course, having both alarms in one door can be expensive, but it is much better to be safe rather than to save money on door alarms.
What is a Door Monitor?
A door monitor is used to monitor or keep an eye on people that are entering and exiting the doors of your home or room. Door monitors would usually have sensors for detection, but they are also accompanied by a built-in camera for better surveillance. Door monitors are often paired with door alarms so that homeowners will be able to monitor the doors through the door monitor and be alerted of intruders if they are asleep or are not looking at the monitors through the door alarm.
The most advanced door monitors will use their built-in sensors to tell homeowners if the door is open or locked. The alert would then be shown on the included monitor, which will also show live footage of the built-in camera. Through the door monitor, you can make sure that every door in your home is locked before you and your family go to sleep.
The Best Door Alarms
There are hundreds of different models of door alarms for you to choose from, but there are only a few that are considered the best when it comes to functionality and durability. Here are the best door alarms you can buy online.
The most popular door alarm that you can buy is the Ring Alarm Contact Sensor, which has a special feature that lets it alert homeowners about opened doors through a smartphone app. As of 2021, the Ring Alarm Contact Sensor is in its second generation, which features a much more streamlined and slimmer design that reduces the bulk of the first generation. Because of the simplistic design of the Ring Alarm Contact Sensor, it could not ruin the overall look of your doors at all.
As previously stated, the Ring Alarm Contact Sensor can connect to the app, where you can control the sensor’s parameters and settings. In addition, the app can also let you see how much battery life each sensor has left. The downside to having the Ring Alarm Contact Sensor is that you will need the Ring Alarm Base Station in order for it to function properly. Thankfully, the Ring Store provides a kit that includes the sensor and the base station, as well as other useful accessories and gadgets.
Another popular door alarm purchased by many people online is the GE Personal Security Door and Window Alarm, which features a simple design that doesn’t make it noticeable. Moreover, the GE door alarm also has three settings that allow you to choose what type of alarm the device will emit. There are two types of alarm that you can choose, with the first one being a high-pitched chime while the other is a loud 120-decibel alarm that activates when a door or window is opened.
What’s neat about the GE door alarm is that it is relatively easy to install, as you don’t need to connect it to wires or base stations for it to work. However, there are some reviews that have stated that the adhesive at the back of the door alarms is not that sticky, so you may need to get better adhesive tapes for the GE door alarms before you install them. Make sure that the adhesive that you will buy won’t ruin the paint of your doors and door frames if you ever plan to replace the door alarms.
A peculiar door alarm that you can get is the SABRE Wedge Door Stop Alarm, which may look like a simple door stopper at first glance, but it is also a very effective door alarm that produces a much louder alert sound compared to most door alarms. As its name suggests, the SABER Wedge Door Stop Alarm is a type of door alarm that acts as a door sensor and a door stopper at the same time. You can turn its sensor off if you just want to use it as a regular door stopper to keep one of your doors open, but before you go to sleep at night, you should turn the door alarm on and keep it underneath the door.
Once the door is open, the sensor of the door alarm will sense that it has moved position. When the alarm is activated, it emits a loud 120-decibel alert sound that can wake you up and startle the intruder. A drawback to this type of door alarm is that they can easily be moved by pets and kids since they are placed on the floor and not on the top of your door or on the upper sides. So, if you want to use this door alarm, you will need to make sure that kids and pets won’t notice it.
If you want a controller to activate the features of your door alarm, then you should buy the HENDUN Wireless Door Alarm, which has an included remote controller for each door alarm. These remote controllers can control one door alarm independently, but you can also program the controller to control more than two door alarms.
Through the controller, you can choose one out of four modes on the door alarms. These modes are Arm (turn on the alarm), Disarm (turn off the alarm), Panic (activate the sound of the alarm), and Doorbell (alerts homeowners if someone opens the door). With the panic button, the door alarm can act as an alert device that you can use to call family members in emergency situations. While the HENDUN alarm has many great features, it still has one con that needs to be addressed. This con is related to its durability, as it has a thinner exterior that makes it prone to damage. However, if you are careful while keeping it away from children and pets, you can make the door alarm last for much longer.
One of the smallest door alarms that you can purchase is the Noopel Door and Window Alarm, which has the same features as standard door alarms but in a much smaller body that makes it look more unnoticeable by intruders or home invaders. The Noopel Door and Window alarm have a curved pill-like shape that doesn’t have rough edges so people won’t get wounded or injured if ever they hit the door alarm. In addition, the magnet included with the door alarm is also quite small and thin in size, so it doesn’t ruin or affect the overall appearance of your door and door frame.
Despite its small size, the Noopel Door and Window alarm can emit a 120-decibel alert sound that startles intruders and wakes you and your family members up once the alarm is activated. The said door alarm also has two adjustable settings that can let you turn the alarm on or off. Unfortunately, because of its smaller size, it also has small batteries that have a shorter life than the other door alarms mentioned in this guide. But, because of how cheap they are, you can easily replace them with another Noopel alarm or another alarm if you want to experiment with brands and models.
|Ring Alarm Contact Sensor (2nd Generation)||GE Personal Security Door and Window Alarm||SABRE Wedge Door Stop Alarm||HENDUN Wireless Door Alarm||Noopel Door and Window Alarm|
|Battery||Two 3V CR2032 Batteries||Four LR44 Batteries||One 9V Battery||Two AAA Batteries||Three LR44 Batteries|
|Modes||Disarmed, Away, and Home (Requires Ring Alarm Base Station to Use the Modes)||Alarm Mode, Doorbell Mode, and Off||Door Alarm Mode and Door Stopper Mode (Off)||Arm Mode, Disarm Mode, Panic Mode, and Doorbell Mode||On and Off|
|Sound||None (Only Sends Alerts Through the Ring Alarm App)||Loud 120-Decibel Alarm (Doorbell Mode Deactivates the Alarm and Replaces It with Chimes)||Loud 120-Decibel Alarm (Can Be Turned Off)||Loud 105-Decibel Alarm (Deactivated on Disarm and Doorbell Mode)||Loud 120-Decibel Alarm|
The Best Door Monitors
Much like door alarms, there are also dozens of door monitors that you can choose from in hardware stores and online shops. Picking one door monitor randomly is typically not recommended, as there are pros and cons to each model of door monitor that may or may not be suitable for your home. So, it is important to know several details about door monitors to know their compatibility with you and your family. To help you have an easier time choosing, here are five of the best door monitors based on online reviews.
One of the simplest door monitors in the market is the AMOCAM Wired Door Monitor, which has an outdoor IR camera that is capable of 92-degree viewing and is durable enough to withstand rain and other types of weather conditions. Besides the reliable outdoor camera, the AMOCAM Wired Door Monitor also comes with an indoor intercom monitor that automatically turns on when someone presses the call button on the outdoor camera. But, you can also activate the monitor if you want to see if there are any strangers in your front yard.
The AMOCAM door monitor is equipped with a 7-inch LCD screen that allows you to have a better look at the camera feed. Moreover, you can also set 16 different kinds of doorbell chimes using the monitor. The con of getting the AMOCAM door monitor is that both the monitor and the camera are wired, so you really can’t take them anywhere around the house if they are already installed in a particular area. But, the wired feature of the door monitor allows it to have a more stable connection compared to wireless models.
Another wired door monitor you should take a look at is the ANBOSON Wired Door Monitor. This product includes an HD camera that has infrared-assisted lighting so that you can still monitor the outdoor area near your door even at night. Furthermore, the ANBOSON door monitor has an indoor intercom monitor that works the same as the monitor found in the AMOCAM, as it also has a 7-inch screen and a feature that turns on the monitor when the doorbell button of the outdoor camera is pushed.
In addition to the auto-on function, the ANBOSON door monitor also has the ability to set up the brightness, volume, and contrast of the outdoor camera, and it can also control which of the 16 ringtones is activated when someone presses the doorbell button. The downside of the ANBOSON door monitor is that it has a relatively thin exterior, so it is not as durable as the other monitors mentioned in this guide. However, this product is the cheapest, so this could be a great choice if you are trying to save money on door monitors.
Next on the list is the TMEZON Wireless Door Monitor, which features two indoor intercom monitors so that you can install them in two rooms or areas of your house. Aside from the indoor monitors, the product also comes with an HD camera that is capable of automatic snapshots and video recordings that can be saved using a MicroSD card. Another great feature of the outdoor camera is its motion detection, which allows it to detect if there is a person moving near the door. When the motion detection feature is triggered or activated, the camera will automatically take a photo or a video recording of the person or animal that caused the activation.
What’s great about the TMEZON door monitor is that you can connect it to a smartphone app that you can easily download on the app store. Through the app, you will see the camera feed on your smartphone whenever a person pushes the doorbell button on the outdoor camera. Moreover, you can also save snapshots or recordings of the outdoor camera through your smartphone with the use of the app. While it is advertised as wireless, the TMEZON camera and monitors are actually wired, and the only wireless feature that it has is its ability to connect to your smartphone.
For a true wireless door monitor, you should get the Morecam Wireless Door Monitor, which is 100% cordless, so you don’t have to hide wires and set them up properly since the door monitor will automatically work once you install the camera near your door. In order for the camera to work without any wires, it has a built-in 5000mAh rechargeable battery that can make the camera last for more than 10 hours before you need to charge it again.
The Morecam Wireless Door Monitor doesn’t come with an indoor intercom monitor, but what it does come with is a separate motion sensor that detects movements near your door. As for what you can use to see what the camera sees, you can download the CloudEdge App, which can transform your smartphone into an intercom monitor. So, the app allows you to see who pushed the doorbell button of the camera, and you can also see recordings and snapshots taken by the camera after the motion detector is activated. Because it is wireless, you will need to recharge it after 10 hours of use. So, be sure to charge it during the day so that you can use it at night.
The Ring Alarm 8-Piece Kit is arguably the best door alarm and monitor system out of all that is mentioned on this list, as it already has everything you need to enhance the security of your home or apartment. The Ring Alarm 8-Piece Kit contains four Ring Alarm camera sensors (which are mentioned previously), one base station, one keypad that you can use to arm and disarms the sensors, an indoor camera, a motion detector, a range extender, and an Echo Show 5 tablet that can act as the indoor intercom monitor.
Because this product already has everything you need, you won’t need to buy a door alarm and a door monitor separately. In addition, every gadget included in the kit is wireless, so installing them is pretty easy. The only downside to this kit is that almost everything is battery-operated, so you may need to charge some of the devices regularly.
|AMOCAM Wired Door Monitor||ANBOSON Wired Door Monitor||TMEZON Wireless Door Monitor||Morecam Wireless Door Monitor||Ring Alarm 8-Piece Kit|
|Wired/Wireless||Wired||Wired||Wired (Only the Smartphone App Connection is Wireless)||Wireless||Wireless|
|Monitor Screen||7-inch LCD Screen||7-inch LCD Screen||Two Monitors With 7-Inch LCD Screens||No Monitor Included (The Smartphone App Can Serve As the Monitor)||5.5-inch Smart Display (Echo Show 5)|
|Camera||Outdoor IR Camera with 92-Degree Viewing Angle||Outdoor Camera with IR Light and 150-Degree Viewing Angle||1080P Pinhole Camera with IR LED Illumination (Capable of Taking Photos and Videos)||1080P Camera with IR Lights and 140-Degree Viewing Angle||1080 Indoor Camera with night Vision and 140-Degree Viewing Angle|
|Sound||16 Different Doorbell Chimes||16 Different Doorbell Chimes||12 Different Ringtones||Loud Tamper Alarm||None (Alerts Are Given Through the Ring Alarm Smartphone App)|
Those are several details about door alarms and door monitors that you should know about, as well as some of the best door alarms and monitors that we recommend. Remember that safety is always a priority, so invest in great, durable, and reliable door alarms and monitors for the protection of you and your loved ones.
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