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KEYPAD BEEPING or FLASHING LIGHTS

IF YOUR ALARM IS BEEPING OR FLASHING LIGHTS YOU HAVE FOUND THE RIGHT PAGE

If your system is "acting up" read on:  Most emergency service calls are due to phone line, battery or power interruptions.  In all of these cases, the alarm system will notify you of the problem by beeping and flashing lights.  It is annoying, but it is necessary that you know what is going on.  Here's how to deal with these "trouble" signals.

BEEPING:  MAKE A NOTE OF ANY WORDS OR NUMBERS SHOWING UP. Then, to silence beeping (trouble signal): Honeywell: press any key. DSC: hold down reset or view trouble on DSC by pressing * then 2.  Napco: hold down 9 (reset)

You can read more about these trouble conditions and what to do about them below.  To speak with a technician: call our office at 816-436-3000 x2 on weekdays.  Call our on-call service technician for help with emergencies at 816-921-9600 after hours.  A technician will call back within 15 minutes.  If you don't hear back promptly, call again in case there has been a failure of the paging system.

MOST COMMON TROUBLE CONDITIONS:

A/C fail:  This means that your system isn't getting power from its normal source, a power outlet.  It could be that:

  • the power to the building is out,
  • an electrical breaker has tripped,
  • a GFI outlet has tripped,
  • the transformer has gone bad,
  • the system took a power surge,
  • or the charging circuit has gone bad
  • (or a number of other possibilities). 

You need to restore power to the system if possible. 

  • Check the circuit breaker/fuse box. Flip circuits that are tripped or replace fuse as needed. 
  • Check GFI outlets and reset them with button in the middle marked reset. 
  • Find the system's transformer and make sure it is plugged in.  If it is and none of the circuits are bad or GFIs* are tripped you can see if another appliance will work in that outlet.  If not, try running an extension cord to power the system transformer temporarily until the outlet gets fixed.

If you can't restore the power, you'll want to silence the trouble and wait for the power to be fixed.  If that won't work, you may want to disconnect power to the system.  To do this you have to unplug the transformer AND open the alarm panel box and disconnect the battery.  You only have to disconnect one wire to the battery to kill it.

*(GFIs/ ground fault interrupt outlets are installed commonly in basements, bathrooms and kitchens.  If ANY GFI in the building trips and your alarm happens to be plugged into another GFI on the same circuit it could cause the A/C fail indicator to show up.  The system will operate for hours, sometimes days, on its back-up battery. 

Low battery:   The battery power is decreasing (not dead).  The battery may recharge in a day or two.  This is a condition to be aware of, but not an emergency. You can still operate your system normally after clearing the trouble by viewing (* then 2) or resetting it by holding down 9 on the Napco MA.  If the battery does not recharge within 2 days, remember to call us to get your battery changed.  Panel batteries are only $35 plus tax from us, installed if you are a monitored customer.

Telco fail/ Communication failure/ loss of connection.  Your system may have tried to send a test signal and it failed, or it may have detected a loss of your landline dial tone.  Check your phones and see if they work.  If not, more troubleshooting is needed.  If you have had recent work done on your phones, or changed phone providers, that may be the cause.  Call to set an appointment.

 


DSC

Hit * then 2 on your keypad. This shows you what the trouble is. use the right arrow button to scroll through and read all of the trouble signals. then hit # to return to the regular display.

If it tells you you have a low battery, call on the next business day to see about having it replaced. The main panel battery will recharge within 48 hours unless it is getting too old (usually 5+years). Batteries in wireless motion detectors or door switches may need replacement as often as 1-3 years.

Note that if your power (AC FAIL) or phone service is out (sometimes the cause for COMM FAIL), there isn't anything for us to do-- the trouble will clear when the service returns and the system sends a signal to the central station. Your system has back-up power which will usually keep it up and running for over 24 hours. If there has been a short term or intermittent issue with communication such as "Comm Fail" you can call the central station. put your system on test and intentionally trip the panic to test a signal through.

If you don't have keypad with the readout, make note of which numbers display and call for service. 


HONEYWELL

Your keypad will show in words what is wrong. Note that if your power or phone service is out, there isn't anything for us to do-- the trouble will clear when the service returns and the system sends a signal to the central station. Your system has back-up power which will usually keep it up and running for over 24 hours.

Note that if your power (AC FAIL) or phone service is out (sometimes the cause for COMM FAIL), there isn't anything for us to do-- the trouble will clear when the service returns and the system sends a signal to the central station. Your system has back-up power which will usually keep it up and running for over 24 hours. If there has been a short term or intermittent issue with communication such as "Comm Fail" you can call the central station. put your system on test and intentionally trip the panic to test a signal through.


NAPCO

Keypad says "P" and making noise:  To clear a "P" from your keypad display and silence the tone:  enter your code. (NAPCO only)

Keypad FLASHING LIGHTS:  If your keypad is flashing numbers, note which ones.  If it is flashing lights, note which ones.  If it is flashing 3 lights AND numbers at the same time (Napco/Magnum Alert) hold down the 9 button for 5 seconds.  Then look at the list below to troubleshoot.

1- AC Fail

2- Low battery

3- Communication Fail (You can hold down the 6 to check for dial tone and possibly clear this trouble. If that doesn't work, you need to test a signal through.)

4- Transmitter trouble

5- Wireless battery low

6-9 call for service

Note that if your power (AC FAIL) or phone service is out (sometimes the cause for COMM FAIL), there isn't anything for us to do-- the trouble will clear when the service returns and the system sends a signal to the central station. Your system has back-up power which will usually keep it up and running for over 24 hours. If there has been a short term or intermittent issue with communication such as "Comm Fail" you can call the central station. put your system on test and intentionally trip the panic to test a signal through.


DIY system test instructions

All security and fire systems require periodic testing.  Manufacturers recommend weekly tests.  In reality, the frequency of tests is solely up to the alarm owner.  Our technicians are available for thorough security system testing for $50 minimum (includes first hour.)  Instructions for doing limited testing yourself are here. 

The instructions here apply to DSC, HONEYWELL, and NAPCO alarms, specifically.  More troubleshooting help can be found in the manuals.

These instructions will guide you through a self-test of your security system, with the exceptions of: cellular phone back-ups, power supplies, glassbreak sensors, smoke detectors, heat sensors, CO detectors, tampers, water sensors, temperature gauges, trip wires, and foil. To have any of these item tested, please call our service office at 816-436-3000 to schedule a thorough inspection from a Rampart Security Systems technician. (NOW ONLY $50 FOR RESIDENTIAL SECURITY SYSTEMS)
Before you start, make sure you have a copy of your zone list (found in your manual or written on the keypad), a pen, and a watch with a second hand with you. You might also want your house keys (just so you don’t get locked out) and some earplugs.
1. Call Central Station (816-921-9600). Tell the operator your name, password, and that you are going to test your alarm system. Expect a small delay while they look up your account. They will tell you that your system is “on test”. There will be no response to your system’s signals for three hours, or until you notify them to take your system off of test mode.
2. You should now inform anyone on the premises that you are testing the alarm.
3. Proceed to the keypad. All zones must be closed for the test. If the green light on the keypad is on, the system is ready. If it is flashing or off then there is an open zone. Close any open zones and proceed.
4. Take your land-line phone off the hook. This is to test for “line seizure.” It will go dead during the test if your system is connected properly to the phone line. If you have had phone work done since your installation, it may no longer be connected
properly.
5. At the keypad closest to an entry door, enter your code to arm the system. Do not bypass any zones. The red light labeled armed should be on.
6. Once you have armed the system, open and shut the door. Wait motionless for 1 minute at the entry door. Open the door. The keypad will sound, indicating your entry delay. Keep motionless and allow the sound to continue. The siren will sound after the entry delay expires. If you have an outdoor siren or strobe, step outside and make sure they are working,
7. Now walk through your motion detector(s) and open all doors and windows hooked to the system. While making the rounds check your phone—is it dead? If not, make a note. Hang it up.
8. Trigger any other devices on the system. Don’t forget wireless panics and shock sensors. Allow 15 seconds after tripping the last item before going to the next step. This will ensure that any zones with a delayed reporting feature send the signal before
you disarm.
9. Now enter your code to disarm the system.
On Magnum Alert keypads (Napco): You should now see a flashing light and/or flashing red numbers. This indicates the alarm has an event in memory. To view which zones were tripped during your test hold down the alarm bypass button and keep holding as different numbers appear. Did you trip all of the zones? Make a note. Hold down the 9 button for 5 seconds to clear the alarm memory.
On Security Partners and DSC systems: You can view the alarm history on your LCD keypad by following the instructions on the LCD screen. Make a note of which zones tripped.
10. Call Central Station (816-921-9600). Tell the operator your name, password, and that you are calling to check what zones sent signals. Expect a small delay while they look up your account. They will read the signals to you. Make notes.
Remember to tell them that you are done testing.
11. Check your zone list—did any zones fail to send signals? On zones with multiple items did you get separate signals through for each door, window, etc.? If not, retest those items one by one. If they fail, call us for service. We will come and address
the specific problems your alarm has.
Service calls for maintenance are no charge M-F 8am-4pm; parts are not included unless still under manufacturers warranty. Acts of God and willful damage are excluded from our free service policy. We also have to charge for weekend, after-hour, and holiday service call visits. A full system test by our technicians costs $50 (M-F 8am-4PM).