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Alarm Wiring Info

Before we get in to basic wiring information, I'd like to say a little bit about the wire types and gauges we offer. You may have noticed that we sell 22 AWG wire in 4 conductor only and do not offer it in the 2 conductor variety even though a few devices do only require 2 conductors. Here are our reasons.

First, more devices take 4 wires than that take only 2. Second, there is barely any difference in the cost of 2 conductor over 4 conductor in this small gauge. Third, some devices like the power transformer and sirens call for 18 gauge wire. Since these devices only take two wires, you can double up the two pairs and meet this requirement.

Basically 22/4 is the best all around wire choice and saves you from having to buy different types of wire. It can be used for all detection devices and interconnects except possibly fire devices. Electrically it will work fine for those too, but code calls for 18 ga. red jacketed fire wire for fire alarm devices.

Device Wiring Requirements

Below is a list of common alarm devices and components that we sell with each devices wire requirement.

Keypads = 3 or 4 wires depending on brand
Modules = 3 or 4 wires depending on brand
Door and window contacts = 2
Motion sensors = 4
Audio glassbreak sensors = 4
Glass shock sensors = 2
Smoke detectors = 2 or 4 depending on model
Heat only detectors = 2
Gas and CO detectors = 4
Sirens = 2
Strobes = 2
Power transformer = 2

For fire detection devices you are supposed to use 18 ga fire wire. Though it varies by local code, you are generally required to also use fire wire on all sirens, strobes, power transformer and keypads when you have any fire devices on the system. If your system is burglary only you do not have to do this.

Wire runs for detection devices

As a rule each device should be on its own zone. The exception is smoke detectors and perhaps windows. You can of course loop multiple "like kind" devices to a single zone but it is really not considered good practice and can make troubleshooting more difficult should you have a problem later unless you can separate the loop.

Two wire type smokes of course always have to be daisy chained out from the panel from one to next. Four wire smokes should be done this way too, though I recommend having a separate chain for each floor (if you have multiple floors) so you can and possibly the fire dept. can get a more detailed location of a possible fire should they ever trigger.

Though individual windows can each be ran to their own zone, I generally prefer to group them on a per room basis. I do recommend you do this one of two ways though. Unlike smoke detector runs, either run a wire from the panel to an area near the room that you will always have access to such as a gang box, then home run each window in that room to this same point also and loop them there in series. Or the second method is to simply home run each window back to the main panel. You can them loop them in series there as you wish.

As mentioned previously, all other devices should be home run on their own line back to the main panel. This includes sirens and strobes.



Protech Systems
division of Secure Systems Plus, LLC
P.O. Box 2523
Columbus, IN 47202

Toll Free: 1-888-811-0727
Fax: 812-392-9994

Selling Home Alarms / home alarm systems direct to do it yourselfers since 1997! Call the Home Alarm Pro's today!