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By Matt Cwioskowski

May 11th, 2017 in

DIY Security

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How to Choose the Right Z-Wave Alarm Siren

Get the Best Device for Your Needs

Z-Wave Siren (or “sounder”) is one of those versatile devices that takes your smart home system from good to great. It allows you to set up your system notifications in an incredibly versatile and useful way, making the technology a seamless part of your everyday life. But as is so often the case with technology, not all Z-Wave products are created equal. So before you go out and buy the first siren you see, read over this quick buying guide that outlines the best features for homeowners.

Look at the Chime Settings

If you’re going to get a lot of use out of your Z-Wave siren, it should have flexible settings.

  • Number of Chimes:Number of Chimes: A siren that plays the same sound for every event isn’t very useful. You won’t know if the siren is chiming because the door just opened or because there’s a fire in the kitchen! You’ll want to be able to set different chimes for different notifications – a soft, gentle chirp to remind you that it’s time to leave for work, and a loud alarm if a window is forced open in the middle of the night, for example. In our research, only our Siren offers multiple chimes. If you know of any Sirens that let you play different chime sounds, let us know!
  • Volume of Chimes:Be sure to read the fine print on whatever device you’re considering. Many alarms might promote different chime types, but they’re all the exact same volume. There are good options that do offer softer and louder volume settings, so there’s no need to settle for a device that only has one volume.
  • Controllable LEDs:Some Sirens might let you disable the LED. If you’re the type of person who likes complete darkness while you sleep, this feature lets you get rid of that pesky light in the bedroom.

    SEE ALSO:How to Make the Most of Your Z-Wave Alarm Siren

Look at the Power Options

Consider how the siren is powered. Does it have to be plugged into an outlet in order to work? If so, you’ll be limited on where you can place the siren, though it will act as a repeater for your Z-Wave network. Our recommendation is to go for a battery-powered device. Normally, battery-powered means you have to go through the rigmarole of replacing the batteries every year, but Z-Wave has very low power requirements. So if you choose the right device, you won’t have to bother with swapping batteries for years.

Look at the Integrations

Don’t make the mistake of buying a Z-Wave siren only to realize after you try to connect it that it isn’t compatible with your smart hub. Check the listed integrations on the product you’re buying. Often with Z-Wave technology, the hub will recognize the siren as a generic Z-Wave device, which is fine. The important thing is that it’s able to connect and work properly. If the supported integrations aren’t listed under device specifications, contact the manufacturer – they’ll be able to tell you for sure whether the siren will work with your system.

 

You won’t regret adding a Z-Wave alarm siren to your system—if you get one that actually has the versatility and flexibility you need. If you still have questions about adding Z-Wave devices to your home, feel free to contact us!