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Author Topic: False Alarms - MS10A  (Read 21255 times)

jondska

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False Alarms - MS10A
« on: September 28, 2006, 09:26:50 AM »

I have had a couple of motion detectors in my cabin and initially I was getting false alarms which I think was due to the summer heat. I moved them to the lower level which is cooler and I haven't had an alarm go off until today. Can the cold temperatures trigger the alarm also? Is there a motion sensor that is not affected by light or temperature? For me, living hours away from the cabin, it is ridiculous to be getting false alarms. Now, I have to try to get in touch with a neighbor to check the place out again and it is like crying wolf. Would have never ordered this system if I had only known. You need a motion sensor that is more reliable and can be plugged into an outlet.
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TakeTheActive

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2006, 12:52:08 PM »

I have had a couple of motion detectors in my cabin and initially I was getting false alarms which I think was due to the summer heat. I moved them to the lower level which is cooler and I haven't had an alarm go off until today. Can the cold temperatures trigger the alarm also?

IMO, not really. My understanding of the operation of infrared (IIRC) motion detectors is that they detect a CHANGE in temperature between the inidividual windows molded into the lens. (Imagine each window as a "laser pointer" / spoke reaching out at a slightly different angle / azimuth.)

...Is there a motion sensor that is not affected by light or temperature?

Based on them being infrared, I'd say NO on the temperature question. ;)

... For me, living hours away from the cabin, it is ridiculous to be getting false alarms. Now, I have to try to get in touch with a neighbor to check the place out again and it is like crying wolf. Would have never ordered this system if I had only known. You need a motion sensor that is more reliable and can be plugged into an outlet.

When did you purchase this equipment?

Read (this snipet of) what another user, tom j, recently had to say:

...Out of this same batch of 8 after getting a few false alarms I placed a few that were setup in the 1 movement mode in an empty room in the back of the house along with my backup console and closed the door I made sure that it wasen't pointing toward any windows or heating source and they all tripped within a few months most well within 4 weeks! The  PMS01 (Pro versions) are much better but there again you still have the problem of false alarms in the 1 movement mode. Maybe if enough of us complain they will come up with a better design...

Reference: MS10A Motion Detector Junk??

I would suggest contacting X10 and asking for replacements. If indeed there was a BAD BATCH recently, more folks will chime in with their experiences.

I've used the DS7000 system for many years. And before that, the X10 beige box system without dialer sold by Radio Shack. I still have two SP554 Motion Detectors (9V Battery) neither of which ever falsed and I have two MS10A Motion Detectors ( 4 AA Batteries) from years ago that have never falsed.  BUT, I did purchase four new MS10As this past June (4-for-1 Sale) and they're all still in their boxes. I'll power one up, put it in a non-traffic area and see what happens.

P.S. I'm going to edit your thread's title to include "MS10A" for the SEARCH Engine... ;)
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jondska

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2006, 01:59:31 PM »

Thanks for the response. My neighbor checked the place after the first alarm but found no evidence of anyone having been there. I did purchase the system in June of this year so it is maybe the same batch that you received. I am going up tomorrow to check the place out and I will see if it is just one or both MS10A's being triggered or what. It started calling me last night and called many times during the night. Hurts the phone bill. Maybe I have a mouse infestation.....Ha-Ha.
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tom j

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2006, 06:57:38 PM »

Thanks for the response. My neighbor checked the place after the first alarm but found no evidence of anyone having been there. I did purchase the system in June of this year so it is maybe the same batch that you received. I am going up tomorrow to check the place out and I will see if it is just one or both MS10A's being triggered or what. It started calling me last night and called many times during the night. Hurts the phone bill. Maybe I have a mouse infestation.....Ha-Ha.

Well actually a mouse could set them off if they are in the 1step mode, try this use the 2 movement mode and place a thin piece of tape along the bottom of the detector so that it cannot see all the way down to the floor. One thing though I have found that the MS10a's don't work very well in the 2 movement mode. x10 also makes the Pro version of these detectors which work considerably better in the 2 movement mode if you request them as replacements make sure you check them out thoroughly. I had one MS10a's that I switched to the 2 position that was so bad that I was actually able to do my vacuuming and it never went off. Radio Shack makes a similar system and if you read the comments they a littered with reviews complaining about these motion sensors. That's why I personally feel the motion detectors are the Achilles heel of the system, no one really makes 1 movement motion detectors just for that reason to many false alarms!!!

Tcj
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tom j

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2006, 07:13:21 PM »

quote from Taketheactive
I've used the DS7000 system for many years. And before that, the X10 beige box system without dialer sold by Radio Shack. I still have two SP554 Motion Detectors (9V Battery) neither of which ever falsed and I have two MS10A Motion Detectors ( 4 AA Batteries) from years ago that have never falsed.  BUT, I did purchase four new MS10As this past June (4-for-1 Sale) and they're all still in their boxes. I'll power one up, put it in a non-traffic area and see what happens.

P.S. I'm going to edit your thread's title to include "MS10A" for the SEARCH Engine...

One other thing I forgot to mention is that I also have two SP554's and in 8 years I never had a false alarm never!! this was in the 2 movement mode I did get some in the 1st position so you might even what to consider getting a couple. Only thing is the battery life and range even in an empty cabin you'll looking at about 9 months or so where as with the MS10a's you could probably go a couple of years with them just basically checking in, that's the only reason I actually switched to the MS10A's the extended battery life. There is way around this would to hook one up to a transformer and skip the batteries altogether, of course if there was a power failure they would be useless. Another thing is range the motion sensors have to be relatively close to the console I would say no more the fifty feet but that's in the city out in the country you could probably do better but as the batteries lose power you will probably lose range. You can find the 554's by doing a Google search I found them for about 50 bucks a piece but I was only able to locate them at one website. Hope this helps!

Tcj
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jondska

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2006, 09:03:45 AM »

OK, I'll have to give it the benefit of the doubt. There was a mouse in the house. According to the phone calls, it must have got in last Wednesday night about 8 p.m. and ran around until it found the trap. Ha-Ha. Poor thing.

I'm impressed if they are that sensitive. Wish I could put it on the main floor though, but there are a lot of windows and the heat fluctuations are extreme.
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TakeTheActive

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2006, 09:33:56 AM »

OK, I'll have to give it the benefit of the doubt. There was a mouse in the house. According to the phone calls, it must have got in last Wednesday night about 8 p.m. and ran around until it found the trap. Ha-Ha. Poor thing.

I'm impressed if they are that sensitive.

Wow! Picked up your mouse and doesn't pick up other folks' pets? Mode 1 or Mode 2?

Wish I could put it on the main floor though, but there are a lot of windows and the heat fluctuations are extreme.

Recall my earlier discussion about the lens and "spokes" - if *ALL* the "spokes" GRADUALLY warm up and cool down, there "shouldn't " be a problem. A while back we had a discussion with a fellow in, IIRC, Florida, who had a MSxx facing his house that wasn't working in the daytime. The conclusion was that a 98.6 degree human walking past a ~100-110 degree house was "invisible". ;)
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jondska

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2006, 09:51:47 AM »

They were in mode 1. As I say, I was getting a lot of false alarms when one of the detectors was on the main floor. Are you saying that the temperature fluctuations shouldn't trigger it? Possible defective unit then?
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TakeTheActive

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2006, 10:12:01 AM »

...Are you saying that the temperature fluctuations shouldn't trigger it? Possible defective unit then?

My understanding is that they trigger when an abrupt change in temperature is detected between adjacent "spokes", perferably horizontally.  Swap some units around and see if the problem "follows ". Try Mode 2 for a while. Make a chart, note the results and look for a pattern.
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jondska

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2006, 10:24:58 AM »

I'll give it a try....thanks.
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Puck

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2006, 11:54:05 AM »

When I first got my DS7000 last December, the kit came with one MS10A motion detector. I too had problems with multiple false detections from it, in both modes.

I even placed it an enclosed box and within an hour it would trigger. So at that point I stopped using it.

Once I started using AHP last spring, and have various ActiveEye detectors (MS16A) around the house, I now use them as part of my security system when I'm not home. I use a Universal Module and a spare window/door sensor to interface to the DS7000.

In AHP, I used a status bit to determine if the motion is to trigger the security or just turn the light on as normal. I use the Lights On / Lights OFF button of the keychain remote (KR10A) to trigger an AHP macro to set/reset this status bit.

Been using this for almost 6 months without a single false alarm.
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jondska

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2006, 12:00:52 PM »

Once I started using AHP last spring, and have various ActiveEye detectors (MS16A) around the house, I now use them as part of my security system when I'm not home. I use a Universal Module and a spare window/door sensor to interface to the DS7000.

In AHP, I used a status bit to determine if the motion is to trigger the security or just turn the light on as normal. I use the Lights On / Lights OFF button of the keychain remote (KR10A) to trigger an AHP macro to set/reset this status bit.



You lost me on this. Could you clarify? What's AHP, status bit, etc?
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Puck

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2006, 12:16:53 PM »

jondska,

AHP = Active Home Pro. It's a software package from X-10 for controlling x-10 products.

http://www.activehomepro.com

The status bits are software flags that can be set/cleared and used as conditions for executing macros.
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Tuicemen

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2006, 12:25:38 PM »

Active Home Pro now has the OnAlert plugin which allow it to interface directly to your security system and it's modules! combines Home Automation with your security! ;)
The software flags are contained in the SmartMacro plugin
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jondska

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Re: False Alarms - MS10A
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2006, 12:38:02 PM »

AAhhh...I see. That would necessitate getting a pc at the cabin, followed by dsl. Then the kids would want cable too. Maybe next year. 
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