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Our Security System

La Quinta: After we moved into our house, July 2020, we had a security system installed. We do not live in a high-crime community. Our country club is gated and there is a guard station at the entrance, and constant security circulating throughout the streets. Still, we leave for weeks at a time, and just feel better with another level of protection. We used a national company, installation was quick and easy, and we loved the way the system operated and that I could arm/disarm/monitor the alarm with my phone.

bad guy
Bad guy

A few weeks ago, the main panel began to beep (not the screaming alarm, just a beep similar to a ceiling smoke alarm with a low battery. The panel stated the system could not connect to the mother ship. I reset the system and everything was right again, until a week later when it happened again. And again. And again. I finally had to remove the panel from the wall (removed the main battery and disconnected other wires from the wall. No more beeping, but no more alarm while we waited for a tech to come out.

Flashing forward in time, two different techs came out to "repair" the error. Both times - the repair truck was barely out of our country club gates - the beeps began again and I had to remove the panel again. The third time, I was referred to tech services and the representative believed maybe the batteries in the ceiling smoke detector unit needed changing. I had the (odd) batteries on hand, and while we were on the phone with the tech, DT climbed up the ladder, removed and replaced the batteries. This is when we heard the sirens! The rep on the phone had not thought to put our system in TEST mode, and the batteries we were replacing were NOT in a smoke detector (as it was labeled), but a carbon monoxide detector! The tech apologized and explained anytime a C02 detector goes off the fire department arrives. I could have died of embarrassment.

Gave the neighbors some excitement, that's for sure. A huge red fire engine cruised up in front of our house and it was like central casting had sent their most handsome actors dressed in firemen's uniforms! (Seriously, is there such a thing as an unattractive fire fighter?) I ran out to the street and explained the situation. (Apparently, they have heard this tale before from 5000 other citizens.) But it was, sorry, lady, we still have to go in and test for C02. They had all sorts of hand-held monitors. Nothing. They only found two idiots, one of them on a ladder, looking terribly befuddled. They quickly cased-out the joint, approved of our numerous safety monitors and left. They wouldn't even take a cookie. Our tax dollars at waste work?

Of course, the system failed again only hours later. I ripped the panel off the wall AGAIN, and called for a service tech to come back to our house AGAIN. This time the tech labeled the detectors correctly, and decided it was the battery on a different ceiling monitor! Jeesh! This guy was savvy enough to figure out to hook our system up to our wifi as a back-up to the cellular relay, as during the big music festivals nearby (Coachella & Stagecoach), there is so much demand for cellular service, it is nearly impossible to make a call (thus why our security system can't connect to the mother ship). We thought this was the final house call.

And we were wrong.


Another hour, another failure of the ceiling monitor. I am not a security system expert. I do not play one on TV. But maybe the dang smoke detector was kaput? Maybe it wasn't the batteries at all? How about you come out and replace the entire ceiling smoke detector? And how 'bout you don't charge us for yet another visit? That seemed like a good idea, so they sent someone out - five days later! - and the unit was swapped with a new one and we haven't had an issue since.

Knock on wood.

Until my next update, I remain, That's My Story and I'm Stickin' to It correspondent.

2 thoughts

  1. OMG what a trial and what a story which you shared so
    amazingly well !!
    Life has gotten so technology over the top…..might be my age
    but it seems to be over kill.
    So often getting the appointment with a tech guy takes
    super long.
    Here’s trusting your trouble ( big headache ) is over.
    Sorry, but so enjoyed the read. :))

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