What are the Components of a Security System?

Security systems can vary widely in size and scale: from simple home alarms and small business surveillance systems to commercial-grade intrusion and detection systems. One system could even be comprised of enterprise-level networks that stretch across multiple locations.

Understanding the essential components of a security system is the best way to start your search for your home or business's perfect safety solution. We will dive into each one in the paragraphs below.

Master Control Panel

Behind every security system, there is a master control panel, which acts as the brains of the entire operation. It is the central processing unit that houses the circuitry responsible for interpreting and executing the security program's commands.

 For a home security system, the master control panel is located both on your touchscreen alarm keypad and via You can control and access the system from inside or outside of your home. Your cameras, monitors, smart switches, and detectors can be attached to this control panel and associated systems. For commercial uses, there is a security panel that acts as the main hub. This panel is hardwired into your system and able to give you back-end access to this as well.  


The broadest definition of a sensor is a device whose purpose is to detect changes in its environment and send the information to other electronics. Some examples of different sensors include:

•    Passive infrared motion detectors
•    Ultrasonic detectors
•    Microwave detectors
•    Magnetic switches
•    Photoelectric beams
•    Glass break detectors
•    Pressure mats
•    Impact-activated microphones
•    Panic button
•    Security cameras
•    and more
This list goes on and on, and every sensor in a security system has unique features and types of signal transmission to consider. The number of options can be downright dizzying, but it’s worth investing the time upfront to learn about the possibilities and ensure your system provides the right level of protection for your home or business.


Sounding Device

Finally, the sounding device is the way your security system lets someone know there is a problem.

The sounding device for your security system may be designed to alert people inside the home or building that there is an issue and may include things like bells, chimes, horns, strobe lights, or voice evacuation systems. The sounding device could also be used to notify people outside of the home or building that there is an issue by silently alerting an outside monitoring company, triggering a notification to the owner, or even alerting emergency responders. Most security systems use some combination of sounding devices depending on the situation that occurs.

Long-term Investment

A security system is a long-term investment that should last you 15 or 20 years. That’s why it is wise to work with a professional to help you understand the complete picture of what is available to you. There is a plethora of options and features in each component category, and it’s important to consider what functions you want the security system to support both today and down the road. If you would like to learn more, give our team a call at 888-412-5356, and one of our specialists will help you figure out what would be necessary for your needs.

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