Need help automating a detached garage.


Senior Member
I have a coworker that wants to monitor his detached garage and I need some help here. I've never used or installed a security system and he doesn't want to spend the money that the ELK costs. So to start with I've recommend that he go ahead and mount the contacts on all doors and windows while I search for an affordable alarm system (may be DSC). First question is about mounting the window contacts. He has access from the sides of the windows and wants to use the "hidden" mounts. How are these installed? the stubby mounds look too deep for windows. Is this what the rare earth magnets are used for? Like here:

Also what "mechinism" can he use to connect his garage alarm information to his house that's about 150' away? I'm sure x10 will not work. All he wants is maybe a light in his bedroom to be lit if one of the zones are breached (at first). TIA
Sounds like an ideal use for an Elk EZ8 and maybe some Caddx wireless. By the time you spend a few hunfred on a basic alarm, it is foolish to not spend just a few hundred more for something that gives you the capability to do your automation and grow with you. The Caddx would likely carry the 150' so he can use wireless sensors in the garage back to the main house.

W800, ACRF plugin, DS10's, MS13's and HS should do the job (and of course you for support !!)

You can do this !!

My garage - detached, 75 feet from the house - is steel, walls and roof. And the insulation is backed with foil. So wireless would never get out. The construction of your friends garage is very important if you consider wireless sensors. The ITI/GE/Caddx, which also work with the Elk Security Panels, are very good sensors.

In my case I bought some direct bury telephone cable and ran it underground from the garage to the house. I divided my security system into several partitions or areas so the garage can have it's own user list and can be armed when the house is disarmed.

I would suggest your friend run hardwire to the house and use inexpensive wired contacts and sensors. He can connect them to just about anything at this point and he will have a good base for a more elaborate system if/when he decides he needs/wants it.
Are multiple zones needed in the garage? Or just a simple indicator that something is open someplace in the garage? How do they wish to arm/disarm the garage? do they really want an alarm system or just a bare bones door/window monitor?