Re: Window Sensors

First of all, who ever did the pre-wire, didn't have a clue about what
he was doing. I don't know if you've considered it, but if you went
through a builder for the pre wire, have you contacted him and asked
him to make
good on the poor job or at least get some compensation for your
upcoming and ongoing troubles with your alarm system? What did he
say? If you contracted it directly, have you pursued it with the
contractor and what did they say? Did you ask either of them what
their plans were for the ? inch holes in the sills? Or perhaps you
just bought the house "as is"
The house came pre-wired at no cost to me when I built it last year.
I do not think I have any recourse to contact the installers directly,
as after looking at a neighbors house that had his alarm "activated"
by the company that did the pre-wire, all of the windows have a push
button type switch that goes under the seal and into the sill. First
off, I didn't like how this looked, and secondly the info I read about
the internet has lead me far, far away from these types of switches if
they are to be exposed to the elements. To me, I'm not sure if
contacting the pre-wire company makes any sense since if they did this
bad of a job in the first place, I don't think I want them mucking
around with my windows and make it any worse.

No one has said this, but DO NOT use any kind of push button switch in
the sills of windows. They will inevitably jam with debris, grit,
paint .... you name it.
Got it, thanks.

No one has mentioned that GRI also carries 1/4 inch rare earth magnets
that may align with the ? inch recessed contacts. Even though the ?
inch switch is larger than a 3/8s inch switch does not mean that you
need a larger magnet to make it operate. Generally speaking you can
pretty much count on the fact that now days, most switches use the
same size reed contact and require the same amount of magnetic pull to
activate them. You'd have to experiment, to be absolutely sure, but
I'm betting that the 1/4 inch rare earth mags, drilled beside and on
the inside of the weather strip, would be strong enough to close the ?
switch. GRI has two sizes .... 1/4" dia by 1/8" thick and 1/4" dia by
1/4' thick. The latter being the stronger of the two. If you've got
enough meat in the bottom of the sash to drill a 1/4 inch deep hole
with a brad point bit .... to recess the magnet, then I have no doubt
it would pull in the ?" switch.
I've found a good source for the switches as well as the "button" type
magnets that have a hole in the middle of them to be screwed to the
bottom of the sash. So you're saying there needs to be a drilled out
hole for the buttons to sit in? I believe the window is the newer
style hollow core type that is entirely made of plastic and metal with
dual panes with an insulation layer between.

I'd have to actually see the window and how and where the holes were
drilled, but if I were looking at the job, I would try to evaluate if
the wires could be redirected so that you might be able to consider
using surface mount contacts on the inside window sill, rather than
messing with the ? contacts that are going to be at least partially
exposed to the weather. ( ie the part of the switch that's on the
outer side of the window seal.) I'd bet there's a possibility that
with an experienced installer with a practiced dill hand, a small wire
hole could be drilled between the inner window sill or ( if the window
has a raised lower lip on it) the inside edge of the window. A small
surface contact could be used instead of an ill placed, partially
exposed contact in the outer sill. Once the wire was re-routed, hole
plugs could be used to fill the ? holes, then caulked and painted.
Now days, there are many surface mount contacts that are so small as
to be almost unnoticeable.

The wires may be able to be re-routed to another hole drilled in the
right place in the sill, that would accommodate a 3/8 inch recessed
contact also. Again .... sealing up the ? hole.
Would you like to see a photo? I can put one on the net tonight. I
had thought about using surface mounted contacts but the look doesn't
appeal to me. But, at the end of the day I want functional perimeter
detection, so the surface mounts may be the way to go. I'd just have
to figure out how to get the holes lined up since most of the pre-
drilled holes are nowhere near the outside edges of the sill. The
only way I could see doing it is to route a channel into the sash with
a dremel and run the wire in there, then covering it up with putty and
painting. Sounds like a lot of work though!

With regard to the doors, I don't use the roller ball or roller wheel
switches. Eventually they will need replacing and they will likely jam
and you'll think the door is protected .... when it isn't.
I noted this too, and putting in reed switches isn't that hard, so I'm
going that route.

There are ? recessed magnetic contacts that are made specifically for
metal doors. Actually they are normal ? contacts with heavy duty
magnets. Some/most(?) have the switches and or the magnets spaced so
that they are as far away from the metal as possible.
I found those too, thanks again.