A home alarm system can help protect you, your family, and your property from break-ins and other threats. However, though an alarm system is a long-term investment, it won’t last forever. Not sure if your security system is adequately protecting your property anymore? There are some signs that indicate it might be time for an upgrade to your system.

1. It’s Old

A home security system that’s more than 10 or 15 years old should be replaced. Innovations in technology have made today’s security systems more effective, user friendly, and safe than the systems of the past. Plus, with so much time to perfect their techniques, many criminals can now bypass older security systems, making you more vulnerable to break-ins.

2. You Can Bypass It

Has your teenager been able to sneak out and back into the home undetected, even though your security system was active? This is a big problem. If you or a member of your home can speak past your system, so can burglars. Look for weak points that may be exploitable in the system, such as cameras and motion sensors with blind spots.

3. You Get Frequent False Alarms

False alarms will occur every now and then. You may accidentally bump or jar the sensors, making the alarm go off. However, if your system is constantly giving you false alarms for no reason, you should upgrade. This will not only make you take real alarms less seriously, but these frequent false alarms could be an indicator that something’s wrong with the internal circuitry, meaning the alarm may not go off when it should.

4. You Don’t Have the Latest Technology

Older systems make a lot of noise if the alarm is tripped, to alert you to the presence of an intruder, but that’s about all they’re good for. New advancements in technology have led to more advanced security features today. For example, some systems will automatically call the police if the alarm goes off or call the fire department if the smoke detectors go off in the case of a fire. These new notifications may not have been available when your system was set up, but they could just save your life. An upgrade is a smart choice if you don’t have the latest technology.

5. It Only Works at Home

It’s good to know that a burglar is entering your home if you’re sound asleep upstairs. But wouldn’t it also be good to know that there’s an intruder breaking in if you’re at work? Today’s alarm systems are mobile, enabling you to get alerts to your phone. Plus, you can even turn on your alarm from your phone, so even if you forgot to turn it on when you left the house, you can still do so when you remember. This can give you significant peace of mind.

6. Your System Is Hardwired

Hardwired alarm systems don’t offer a high level of protection. They’re easy to disable—all burglars need to do is cut the hardwired telephone line. Hardwired sensors on doors and windows can also be cut, allowing for an easy break-in. If you’re still using a hardwired alarm system, it’s time to upgrade to a wireless system, which is much more secure and more difficult to disable.

7. You Have Low-Tech Cameras

Though you might be able to catch a burglar red-handed on low-tech cameras, the footage may not be any use to law enforcement if the picture is grainy and fuzzy. Low-tech cameras make it more difficult to identify suspects. Outdoor cameras have come a long way, giving you a clear picture of what’s going on outside, even in poor lighting conditions. Plus, many systems allow you to view footage on your smartphone now. Low-tech cameras should be upgraded to the latest technology.

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