So you’ve made the decision to install a security camera system for your home or for your business. Good choice. Now comes the important part — making sure you get the most out of your security investment — and your security camera system installer.
More often than not you’re going to receive a lot of “run-of-the-mill” sales pitches as to why you should go with “Company A” over “Company B”. Several of these security camera sales people will sound the same, with the main differences being the price and recommended size of the system.
To help you identify the best security camera system installer for your needs, we’ve identified 5 key questions you should be asking them, along with the answers to these questions you should be hearing.
Any good surveillance system installer will have no problem giving you a list of references you can speak to about their camera systems. Make sure that they are not family members or close friends — these, of course, may be bias sources for information. If anything, look for business references, even if you are getting a system for your home. Business owners often are not bias with their assessment as they are not closely tied (at least personally) to the installer. Also, look for a client list on the security company’s website — this will help you know if the company is trusted and has a good reputation.
It’s one thing to see pictures of how the security cameras “may look” and quite another to see a live feed of ACTUAL cameras at work. Pictures on a brochure or website don’t often represent the true quality of a security camera system feed. We, at Charleston Security Systems utilize iPads to show you, our potential client, the true demo of our systems. This ensures that you know exactly what kind of quality to expect after you install a security camera system.
Just about any surveillance system nowadays will include some kind of web interface that will allow you to access your security camera system’s feed anytime, anywhere you have internet access. If the installer either doesn’t know about this, or seems unfamiliar with this concept — move on to the next installer. Make sure you install an up-to-date system to take full advantage of your investment.
In case of a robbery or break in, you’ll always want the ability to playback the on DVR (which records your camera’s feed), the event to help you identify the criminal. Of course, if you don’t know how long your DVR records for, the event may have already been recorded over by newer footage, as this is common practice for nearly all DVRs.
As with any kind of professional electronic equipment, there is always a chance for break downs or system failures. These tend to be caused by natural occurrences like lightning strikes and water damage, which, of course, can’t be controlled by your installation company. Any good installer will include a warranty on parts from 1 to 3 years, depending on the size of the system. Also, some installers will include a service contract for a small amount per month that will cover parts, labor costs and monthly check ups, no matter the magnitude of the damage. This is the best route to ensure that you will have a fully functional system at all times.
This list doesn’t necessarily cover ALL the questions you could ask your installer, but these will cover the major points to make sure that you will be getting the best and most complete security camera system and service for your money.