Wired vs. Wireless: Choosing Your Home Security Path

A wired vs. a wireless home security system: What'sthe difference? We break down everything you need to know about both forms of home security so you can choose the right system for you.

Most people can agree that getting a home security system installed is an important part of keeping your home safe. Even so, only 17 percent of homes in the United States are protected by a home security system. Crime rates may not be rising, but break-ins can happen any day and in any neighborhood, so it is important to keep your loved ones and your belongings safe. Regardless of whether you live in an apartment building or a house, relying on a security system will keep you in the know and give you a peace of mind.

After familiarizing yourself with the many reasons and statistics for why getting a home security system is a good idea, the next step is determining what type of system suits you well. Thanks to technology, there is no shortage of home security companies to choose from. Before even getting to the pricing, installation and monthly packages arena, you must first figure out what kind can be installed in your home. The two main types are wired home security systems and wireless home security systems. While they are similar, the two have some key differences when it comes to installation and the features provided.

Are wired and wireless home security systems the same?

Yes and no. The first question that may come to mind is, “Well, which one offers more security?” If you’re referring to the the type of protection they offer, then yes, both wired and wireless home security systems are home monitoring systems that notify you in the case of a break-in. However, when you break down the actual specs, installation and pros and cons of each, then there are some noticeable differences between the two. Knowing the difference between these two systems will help you figure out which works best for you.

Wired Home Security Systems

wireless home security system technician

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Wired security systems have been around for longer than their wireless counterparts. Wired systems are the type of monitoring systems that are hard-wired in your home. They require electrical installation and are a bit more complex in terms of installation. If you do not have one pre-installed in your home, or if your home doesnot have a landline, it may be a bit more complicated to get a wired system installed. However, wired home systems provide optimum support and accurately detect any movement due to their hardwired sensors.

Pros of Wired Home Security Systems

  • A wired system is reliable because the sensors are hardwired into the ground, meaning that they do not rely on radio frequency, which can sometimes run into issues.
  • Because they do not rely on wireless technology, wired systems are preferred for larger spaces. There is no limit to the amount of sensors you can install, as long as you can connect them to the home monitor. This is ideal for larger homes or homes with multiple stories.
  • Once the system is installed by a professional, there is no need to keep track of the monitor. Unlike wireless home security systems, you do not have to regularly change the batteries. Wired home systems are relatively stress-free when it comes to maintenance.
  • Because wired systems do not rely heavily on radio frequency, they are therefore less likely to be hacked. The only way to hack a wired system is to physically connect a system to it, which is difficult since most wires are underground or concealed.

Cons of Wired Home Security Systems

  • Wired systems can be a pain when it comes to installation. Most companies send professionals to set them up, but these installations can be both expensive and time consuming. Because the wired system requires hardwiring to the house’s electrical line, this can take some time. If your home doesn’t already have this set up, then it could require drilling holes to connect the wired sensors throughout the house. If your home is large, then this would take even more time.
  • They can be disabled easily. The disadvantage of wired systems is that they can be cut off by simply cutting the phone lines outside ofthe house. If the burglar knows this, then this can leave your home more vulnerable to attacks.
  • Wired home security systems are permanent and not mobile. Uninstalling wired systems is pretty much unheard of. It’s just as difficult and time consuming as installing it. This means if you’re moving to a new place without a system, it is likely that you will have to go through the entire process again.
  • You cannot remotely operate a wired system; it must be controlled from its control panel.

Wireless Home Security Systems

wireless home security system controlled by mobile phone

A wireless home security system is the latest in home security technology. Essentially you eliminate the cons of getting a wired system and instead opt for a wirelessly operated monitor. This may seem like the way to go at first glance, but taking a deeper look into how it operates can give you better judgment when it comes to choosing. It is important to note that wireless systems offer more flexibility when it comes to installation and monitoring. They also offer different types of features that utilize multiple forms of modern technology.

Pros of Wireless Home Security Systems

  • Installation is a breeze. With wireless systems, you completely omit the entire tedious process of installing a hardwired system. You can even self-install them, which cuts out the need for a professional and their costly installation fees.
  • Uninstalling is also a breeze. Since you don’t have to pull out wires or fill drill holes from installation, you can easily uninstall and move your new unit to your new home. For renters who frequently move apartments, this is a huge perk.
  • A wireless home security system has remote access to the control panel. In most cases, you can remotely deactivate and activate your system from your mobile phone. The sensors are all connected via radio frequencies, making it an easy, hands-off control panel.
  • A wireless home system is easily upgraded. Wireless systems are always being upgraded, and if your company offers upgrades, they are easy to install, modify and uninstall.
  • Wireless systems are the tech-savvy choice. If you have a smart home, then wireless is the way to go. Having a wireless home security system makes it easier to connect to the other home automation technologies in your home.

Cons of Wireless Home Security Systems

  • They are vulnerable to hacks and interference. Because of the wireless aspect, this leaves your system more susceptible to all sorts of interference. It is possible that a system can be hacked by a third party. It is important to make sure your connection is encrypted and protected. Also, if there is an interruption with the connection, for example with Wi-Fi, this could also cause issues to arise.
  • Since wireless systems don’t rely on electricity, you have to remember to periodically change the batteries.
  • There is a limit on how far the sensors can reach, so a wireless home security system is ideal for smaller- and medium-sized homes and apartments.

A wireless home security system mat first seem like the easiest method of choice, but depending on the size of your house and a number of other factors, you may want to consider a wired system. Learning about the differences will get you one step closer to choosing a provider and one step closer to protecting your home.