Have you given up on any of your New Year’s Resolutions yet?

We have a great suggestion on a resolution you can stick to AND Esscoe can be your partner who can do all of the work for you. That’s the best kind! Next January, you’ll be feeling pretty good about making this one stick, year in, and year out! A few questions for you:

  1. When was the last time you replaced your commercial access control systems batteries?
  2. Do you know when your security systems batteries are scheduled to be replaced?
  3. Do you have any battery-operated wireless intrusion detectors?
  4. In a power outage, how will credential holders gain access to your access control protected facilities?
  5. Are any of your CCTV, Access Control Servers or other security systems powered by Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) systems in your IT rooms?

If you don’t know the answer to some of these questions, then make a new resolution this year to find out and get a plan in place to ensure that you don’t have a preventable failure of your enterprise security system. Esscoe can help you manage this New Year’s Resolution with a regular preventive maintenance plan for you Access Control, Intrusion and CCTV systems.

Unlike fire alarm systems and battery operated smoke alarms, Access Control and CCTVSystems generally do not provide a supervised way of notifying you that your Door Controllers or Camera Power supplies are operating with a degraded battery until it’s too late, and even if they did, waiting until that time it’s usually too late and a failure may be imminent causing loss of recording, access to your facilities and a lot of unwelcome attention from staff and outside visitors.

Taking a page from the fire alarm industry, it is common knowledge in that industry that fire alarm batteries are to be replaced typically within 4-5 years from date of manufacturing. Regular inspection, testing, and maintenance (ITM) that needs to be completed to ensure that the secondary power supply is reliable. Batteries need to be inspected semiannually to confirm that the connections are tight and there is no corrosion on the connections. The batteries and charger need to be tested semiannually. Tests include measuring the temperature to ensure that the battery is not 18° F (10° C) above ambient temperature; measuring the voltage to ensure the battery and charger are still operational; measuring the voltage at each cell of the battery to confirm each cell is greater than 13.26 volts; and measuring the internal ohmic value of each battery and comparing it to previous tests to ensure that the battery does not have 30 percent or more conductance or 40 percent or more resistance or impedance than previous tests, or that it is outside the manufacturer’s acceptable ranges.

Every three years the batteries need to either be replaced, or a load test needs to be conducted. Load tests are conducted by putting a known load (which can be obtained from the battery manufacturer) on the battery for a given time.

With Security Systems, there are several key factors that will affect the life expectancy of a battery including:
• Temperature cycling
• Operating temperature
• Thermal runaway
• Shelf life
• Rate of charging and rate of discharging
• Deep discharging
• Physical damage
• Overcharging
• Memory effect of the battery

Basically, it’s extremely hard to predict security system battery life expectancy with any real accuracy. A weak battery
that’s capable of supporting a small 2-door controller 12 months won’t be capable of supporting a 4 or 8 door controller for 6 months.
What also is hard to predict during a power outage?
• The number of door openings
• Camera motion detection events
• Intrusion sensor activations

Our last questions for thought:
• So, do you have time and resources to manage this for all of your connected access control and CCTV camera supplies at all of their locations within all of your facilities?
• Do you have the tools to load test these items properly and document them?
• Do you have access to the right suppliers for all the different battery sizes, terminal typesand UPS power supply cassettes from all of your different equipment manufacturers?
Esscoe can tailor a security service maintenance plan for you and your facilities. Whether it’s regularly scheduled Inspection, Testing and Maintenance, or regularly scheduled battery replacements, or a combination thereof, we can design a simple, regularly scheduled program to manage this for you, every New Year! Give yourself permission to substitute this regular program of maintenance provided by Esscoe for that diet you really don’t want to stick to anyway…