Blame it on my obsession with true crime podcasts, but I am someone who has always been really careful about home security. I make sure windows and doors are locked, and I am often uneasy my first few nights in a new place while I get used to the “sounds” of the residence.
I think many night shift workers are also acutely aware of the fact that break-ins often happen more during the daytime. The house is expected to be an empty, easy target during the times that people would normally be at work. The Bureau of Justice Statistics has an in-depth study that confirms all of these concerns, and makes it even harder for me to rest easy in a new place during the day, even when I come home exhausted from a 12 hour shift.
As we began to move around more in August, I realized I needed to do something to make myself sleep easier, especially when we first get to a new place. I began investigating different ways to keep our home more secure, and decided some sort of door and window alarm would be a good option. Subscriptions to security services often come with contracts and cancellation fees, so I wanted to find an option that was portable as we move between locations.
After scouring Amazon, I came across this Bibene Door Alarm System. It was simple, portable, and affordable. I liked it initially because of the fact that all the sensors connected to one control pad, and the system could be expanded with additional sensors if we lived in a larger space. There is also a slightly more expensive option that comes with a Wi-Fi hub and connects to the Amazon Echo or your smart phone for easier control.
The system came in compact box with easy to read instructions. There are stickers that attach to the sensors, but I ended up using 3M Command Strips on the backs of mine to ensure they don’t remove any paint or damage the doors in our rental property. The main key pad also acts as a sensor, so you get 5 total sensors in the starter kit.
Installing the sensors is incredibly easy. There is a step-by-step booklet, and Bibene also has a YouTube video to help walk users through the set up. Essentially, you just mount the sensors wherever you need them, and they are all controlled via the main keypad. The keypad comes with a pre-set code, but there are instructions on how to change the code within the booklet.
The only issue we ran into was some of our doors are set a little deep from the frame. We had to ensure that the sensors weren’t too far from the security pads, so I had to get creative when mounting them. Because we are moving around a lot, I simply used a cardboard base to line up the sensor with the pad, but you could use something more aesthetically pleasing if you were living somewhere permanent.
Once installed, we tested all the sensors and sure enough, the alarm activated each time. You simply disarm by putting in the pass code on the main keypad, and re-arm by hitting the padlock. There is also a remote that can be used to arm and disarm the keypad. If you don’t want the main keypad to alarm every time, you can also set it to “Door Bell” mode, and it makes a more peaceful chiming noise when the sensor moves.
The alarm is LOUD. Our cat went running to hide each time it went off, and I am sure it would wake me up in the event that I was sleeping during the day and something happened. In addition, I believe it would create the desired effect of scaring any intruder and hopefully causing them to leave in case the alarm was being relayed to a dispatch center.
Overall, I would definitely recommend the Bibene Door Alarm System to fellow travelers. It could work in hotel rooms, campers, or any sort of short-term housing. As someone who sleeps during the day, it allows me to rest a little easier knowing I will be alerted if the worst happens while I am sleeping between shifts.
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