Contractor Tips Blog


Structured Wiring Explained

Posted in Home Security

Structured wiring is a system of wiring used in internal construction whereby all the wiring components in a home or commercial building are set up using a home run configuration. This means all the telephone, video, satellite, cable, internet, security alarm system and other communications wiring are pulled from a central distribution panel, as opposed to a daisy chain wiring scheme whereby wires are looped from outlet to outlet, and jack to jack, throughout the house.

With structured wiring, the central panel is located in a closet, utility room, or any other unobtrusive place.  It is strongly recommended that the central panel be installed in a location with low humidity and controlled room temperature so that the panel doesn’t get too cold or overheat. Because all the wires run back to a central panel, it is easy to maintain or make changes to the system; the individual cables can be easily isolated to test for shorts or to change connections if desired.

With daisy chain wiring schemes, the wires are looped and spliced, which degrades signal quality.  As signals travel through the looped system they are split and grow weaker so that devices connected further along in the loop tend to have weaker signals and connectivity issues. Also, with daisy chained wiring, if one connection fails, all of the devices further along the chain go out. With structured wiring on the other hand, all of the signals are travelling the same distance and there is no need to split signals. This results in stronger communications signals and more consistent device performance throughout the building.

Structured wiring is considered a superior wiring scheme for homes or commercial buildings. It is a flexible, more layman’s-friendly approach to building wiring that results in a fully and smoothly functioning home or business place.


Types of Home Security Technology

Posted in Home Security

If you are a homeowner, then keeping your family members and property safe is a top priority. It used to be that the best way to keep your property secure was to get a guard dog or leave the television on while away to trick potential intruders into thinking someone was at home. While these methods are still useful, modern-day home security technology provides even more protection and peace of mind. Nowadays, home security technology runs the gamut from do-it-yourself burglar alarms to expensive surveillance systems installed by a professional. Here are four of the easiest and most effective home security devices you can use to help put your fears to rest. 

Closed circuit television cameras

Closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras can be used to monitor areas of the home that are common break-in points for burglars, such as the front door, rear windows, and basement door. These cameras can also be installed indoors to monitor domestic staff, babysitters, or in-home caregivers. With CCTV cameras, homeowners have around-the-clock access to the video footage which they can view from anywhere in the world on a computer or laptop.

Motion detectors

Motion detection systems use infrared technology to detect the presence of an intruder. When the sensor detects motion, the system automatically turns on floodlights outside the home and sends an alarm signal to the receiver unit. Motion detectors can be installed both indoors and outdoors. Many of them can be programmed to respond only to human movement, so that pets do not end up repeatedly triggering the system.

Burglar alarm systems

Burglar alarm systems combine a number of security features. Along with video camera monitoring of the premises, they may include things like electronic access control (for doors), motion detectors, glass break detectors, door and window contacts, spotlights, and invisible force fields. Burglar alarm systems have alerting devices (sirens, bells, or flashing lights) that go off when the system detects an intrusion.  Burglar alarm systems also come with a keypad. The keypad is placed in a central location inside the home and can be used to disable the alarm system by punching in a code.

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