Tag Archives: interactive security

Home Security 101 – What is a Motion Detector?

There is definitely some mystery surrounding motion sensors. They are a core element of most alarm systems and a standard feature ion our Smart, Safe Home package. So, let’s dig into what they really do.

Motion sensors detect and report motion – in most cases when nobody is home (Armed-Away). That’s why they are not “awake” when you arm your system for the night (Armed-Stay) . It’s usually not practical to put a sensor on every window, and you usually don’t need to, since you can use motion sensors and glass break detectors to get the protection you need more affordably. Plus, motion sensors have come a long way from the original models – much more reliable, and less prone to false alarms.

How do they work?

The early motion sensors were considered “active” devices, because they emitted energy (microwave or ultrasonic) to see what was happening around them. There are some still some microwave sensors being installed in commercial spaces. Today the most common motion sensor uses Passive Infra-Red energy to detect heat given off by people (and animals!) – hence the name “PIR” given to the device. The smart detectors look for objects warmer than the normal background temperature, using a special lens to create “beams” of passive energy, and then look for motion: when the sensor detects a “warm” object moving across several beams within a specified time frame – that trips the alarm.

Where do you use them?

The standard range is 30-35 feet, and the coverage area is shaped like a large water droplet, with the skinny part at the detector. The ideal spot for a motion sensor is in a high-traffic area that an intruder would cross if moving about in your home or business: think hallways, living rooms with big-screen TV, etc. The sensors work better when people move across the beams, as opposed to approaching the sensor directly. The beams project out and down, to pick up anyone trying to avoid detection by crawling.

Motion sensors and pets

Today’s sensors are usually “pet-friendly” up to 40 pounds, which means they “ignore” cats and small dogs – unless your Siamese is downright acrobatic! That means that large dogs with the run of the house all day and night make it harder to use motion sensors – unless you kennel them!

 Things to Remember

Manufacturers recommend careful placement of their products to prevent false (non-intruder caused) alarms. They suggest mounting the PIDs in such a way that the PIR cannot ‘see’ out of a window. Although the wavelength of infrared radiation to which the chips are sensitive does not penetrate glass very well, a strong infrared source such as from a vehicle headlight or sunlight reflecting from a vehicle window can overload the chip with enough infrared energy to fool the electronics and cause a false alarm. A person moving on the other side of the glass however would not be ‘seen’ by the PIR.

They also recommended that the PIR not be placed in such a position that an heating and air conditioning vent would blow hot or cold air onto the surface of the plastic which covers the housing’s window. Although air emits very small amounts of infrared energy, the air blowing on the plastic window cover could change the plastic’s temperature enough to, once again, fool the electronic


Based on the latest in infrared technology, the Burns & McBride motion detector comes with three different mounting brackets and a 90° lookdown, ensuring intruders cannot pass by unnoticed. It also communicates directly with tyour Burns & McBride Go!Control panel, so if the detector is triggered, the panel will connect you to the central monitoring station in as few as 17 seconds.

Dimensions and weight
  • Width: 2.5″
  • Height: 3.2″
  • Depth: 1.9″
  • Weight (including battery and brackets): 3.7 oz. (104.9 g)

Regulatory Listing(s)

  • ETL, FCC Part 15, Industry Canada
  • 90° lookdown
  • 110° wide-angle spread
  • Three different mounting brackets
  • 30’x50′ range
  • 33–55 lb. pet immune
  • Five-year lithium battery
  • Tamper-protected
  • 90° lookdown: Ensure that no one can walk beneath your sensor undetected
  • Tamper–proof: Know when someone is trying to tamper with your alarm
  • Fully monitored: Get connected to the Burns & McBride central monitoring station in as few as 17 seconds
  • Wireless signal range
  • 350 ft., open air, with 2GIG Wireless Alarm Control Panel
  • Transmitter Frequency
  • 345.000 MHz (crystal controlled)
  • Transmitter Frequency Tolerance
  • ± 15 kHz
  • Transmitter Bandwidth
  • 24 kHz
  • Modulation Type
  • Amplitude Shift Keying—On/Off Keying (ASK-OOK)
  • Peak Field Strength
  • Typical 50,000 uV/m at 3m
  • Material
  • ABS plastic and poly-carbonate
  • Color
  • White
  • Operating temperature
  • 32° to 120°F (0° to 49°C)
  • Relative Humidity
  • 5-95% Non-Condensing
  • Unique ID Codes
  • Over one (1) million different code combinations
  • Supervisory Interval
  • 70 minutes
  • Lifetime
Included equipment and accessories
  • Battery (installed)
  • Two (2) Panasonic CR2032, or equivalent Lithium batteries
  • Included Accessories
  • Mounting brackets, two (2) long Phillip’s head screws, two (2) plastic wall anchors, magnet

For more information on this exciting product call us at 302-656-5110 or visit our website at http://www.burnsandmcbride. Finally you might want to follow our blog at http://www.burnsandmcbrideblog.com. Just as Smartphones are adding applications and changing every day so to with the technology behind our Smart, Safe home system. Our blog explains some of the constantly changing things that are happening in the industry and we hope that you find it informative.

Leave a comment

Filed under Home Safety, Home Security, Home Security 101, How Things Work, Uncategorized

Home Management 101 – What is a “Smart” Thermostat?

Where does a smart thermostat fit in a home automation system?

Your thermostat: A gateway to savings.

Home energy management starts with the thermostat. In the U.S., more than 8 percent of energy consumption is controlled by the thermostat.

Most homes these days have a programmable thermostat. In fact, 40 percent of existing homes use programmable thermostats while almost 100 percent of new homes have them installed. But that doesn’t mean that people are taking advantage of them. There is one major reason for that: Programming a thermostat is easier said than done.

Program? I just turn it on and off…

For over 60 years we have providing heating and cooling service. Our experience tells us  that a majority of programmable thermostats are left in manual mode. Many homeowners tell us that they rarely or never change the program (kind of defeating the purpose of a programmable thermostat). So if you’re like most people and you’re not taking advantage of your programmable thermostat they way you could, what can you do about it?

Here at Burns & McBride Home Comfort we have a solution. It’s a Honeywell “Smart” thermostat. It’s similar to a programmable thermostat, but with one key difference: Every time you leave your home it is smart enough to turn the heat off.

What makes a Smart Thermostat smart?


Your Honeywell “Smart” thermostat is connected to the Internet through your Burns & McBride Go!Control. Having your thermostat connected to the Internet through our interactive website keeps things simple.

Through Internet access or your smart phone, you can control your heating and cooling whether you are at home or away. It only takes a few seconds to set up a schedule based on government-approved Energy Star heating and cooling programs. And you can do it all through your Burns & McBride Home Comfort online account.

  • The smart thermostat communicates with your Burns & McBride Home Comfort home security system. When you arm that system, the smart thermostat can automatically raise or lower the temperature. The thermostat adjusts to your schedule; not the other way around.
  • Every time you leave home and arm your system, it will turn the thermostat back! When you return and disarm the system, it returns to the original settings.
  • You will even receive a text or email notification if the temperature in your home crosses a high or low temperature threshold. In’t it better to know that you have a problem with the heater at 10 in the morning rather than finding out at 6 in the evening when you get home from work?


Having a simple way to manage your energy saves you money.

  • Simply using a smart thermostat will save energy and save you money. Reducing the temperature on your thermostat a few degrees when you are sleeping or away will save money over time.
  • When using government-recommended Energy Star heating and cooling schedules, you can expect to save around $30 a month.

Smart thermostats may seem like a small thing, but at the end of the day, they make a huge difference. They are one of the simplest ways to manage your energy consumption and save money.

Burns & McBride Home Comfort’s Energy Management Package

Do you have a Smart Thermostat? The Honeywell “Smart” Thermostat is a standard feature on our Smart, Safe Home System. Call us today at 302-656-5110 or visit our website at http://www.burnsandmcbride.com to learn more.

For more information on this exciting product call us at 302-656-5110 or visit our website at http://www.burnsandmcbride. Finally you might want to follow our blog at http://www.burnsandmcbrideblog.com. Just as Smartphones are adding applications and changing every day so to with the technology behind our Smart, Safe home system. Our blog explains some of the constantly changing things that are happening in the industry and we hope that you find it informative.

Honeywell Model TH8320ZW Thermostat Specifications and Features

  • Automatic Heating/Cooling Changeover : Y
  • Backlit : Yes
  • Batteries Included : No
  • Battery Back-Up : Yes
  • Battery Operated : No
  • Color Family : Whites
  • Daylight Savings Time Ready : Yes
  • Display height (in.) : 2.5
  • Display width (in.) : 3.75
  • ETL Listed : No
  • Energy Star Compliant : No
  • Lockable : Yes
  • Manufacturer Warranty : 1 year limited warranty
  • Number of HVAC Zones : 1
  • Periods per Programmable Day : 4
  • Product Depth (in.) : 1.25
  • Product Height (ft.) : 4.5
  • Product Width (in.) : 6
  • Removable Interface : Yes
  • Returnable : 90-Day
  • Shape : Rectangle
  • Thermostat Type : Heating and Cooling
  • Touch Screen : Yes
  • UL Listed : N-No UL Code Rating
  • Vacation Mode : Yes
  • Voltage Rating : 24
  • Remotely monitor and control your thermostat from anywhere
  • Universal scheduling – can be configured to meet virtually any scheduling requirement: selectable 7-day programmable, four daily periods, cancel unneeded periods, selectable non-programmable
  • Universal application – works on virtually any heating or cooling system type
  • Heating and cooling energy savings set points allows the homeowner to put the thermostat into an energy savings mode from other Z-Wave devices
  • Easily integrates with other Z-Wave enabled home automation devices
  • Large, easy-to-read backlit display
  • Includes wire saver module – allows for installation in homes that do not have a common wire (typically connected to the “C” terminal)
  • Automatic change from heat to cool option
  • Menu driven programming – guides the user through the programming process only showing necessary information and choices on each screen
  • Smart response technology for maximum comfort control
  • Battery and filter change/check reminders
  • Real time clock – Keeps time during a power failure and will automatically update the time for daylight savings
  • No batteries required
  • MFG Brand Name : Honeywell
  • MFG Model # : TH8320ZW
  • MFG Part # : YTH8320ZW1007/U

Leave a comment

Filed under Energy Management, Home Security 101, Uncategorized