How to Reset Your Security System

Home security systems are like palace guards. They quietly standby 24 hours a day to keep watch and protect us. Over time, we come to rely on their steadfast, flawless care taking. However, machines – like humans – have their problematic moments.

Your security system centers around a server. Like with all computers, software malfunctions may occur with time, for no apparent reason. Just as you would with your laptop or home computer, you may occasionally need to reset your security system with a re-boot.

However, security systems don’t restart by clicking the start button followed by a “restart” command. You actually have to cut all power to the system.

The first thing to do is find the system’s power source and disconnect it. For a wireless system, you’re probably looking for the battery pack. In a hardwired system, you’ll likely have to switch off the circuit breaker which affects the security system.

This is the moment of truth when you know your security system’s backup power is working. If all is as it should be, you’re system will still have power and your task will not be complete.

Next, find the battery pack for the back-up power supply. This is usually located in the main control panel itself. You will need to disconnect both battery leads very carefully.

Go five minutes without power to the security system. Afterward, carefully reconnect the backup battery leads.

Now, here’s where it takes two people working together to make this happen. One person needs to reconnect the primary power while the other stands at the main control panel.

As your security system is powering up, simultaneously press both the # and * keys on your main control panel. Hold them down for at least five seconds.

Then control panel should then ask for your installer code. These vary by manufacturer and if you don’t have it in your security system handbook or paperwork,  then you may need to contact your manufacturer or home security system provider. Once you enter the code, you should reach the data screen in which you can check all system information. This screen will also allow you to reset your password.

Every security system has a command code that will reset it to factory settings. If you need a complete reset, this stage is when you enter the code. For some systems, including Ademco/Honeywell ( models, *97 will do the job.

Keep in mind that security systems are complicated creatures and if you feel uncertain, it’s probably best to call a professional to diagnose and treat them. If you have a home security system provider like ADT (, then it may be best to have them come and service your system.

Photo via Thomas Rotger
Posted on Thursday, September 16th, 2010 by editor

Categories: Security Systems

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Home Security Statistics

Every 14.6 seconds, a burglary takes place in the US. ±
Average loss per burglary: $1,725. ±
Homes without security systems are about three times as likely to be broken into than homes with security systems. ±
Favorite items: cash, jewelry, electronic equipment, silver, guns and other items easy to sell. ±
± Washington Post, 2007 (link)