Why Your Tech System Is “Broken”
We regularly ask potential customers, “What do you have that either does not work, has never worked, or frustrates you when it does work?” Many honestly believe that their system is bad or broken beyond repair when in all actuality you believe your tech system is broken due to a some possible oversights.
After years of asking these questions, we have found a few common points of dissatisfaction.
With today’s technology and standards (UL, NFPA, ANSI, ISO, and many others), most equipment is made well for its intended application, use, and lifespan. However, if the equipment does not work has it gone bad or is it broken? The good news is, it can be repaired or replaced and most often it’s not bad or broken at all.
How to Know What’s Truly Wrong with Your System
For starters, there is a possibility that the system was sold in a bad or “stretch” application. A “stretch” application is when a different product is used in place of what should be used in hopes that it will work in the same way. The problem is that it usually does not have a long lifespan. From time to time, unqualified dealers or installers don’t pick the right equipment or installation methods and materials which then causes problems for the end user.
For example, you may have had expectations for a fully functional security system to be installed, but an inexpensive combo burglar and fire alarm panel is what was actually provided to you causing your expectations and the equipment to not match. Another example, could be an instance where an indoor rated cable was used on the exterior or a non-gel filled outdoor direct burial cable was not used in an outdoor application, causing significant changes or upgrades to then be required.
Another instance, could be that the system was not installed properly whatsoever. Similar to the example above where the wrong cable was used, this occurrence could also include cable, cable installation, and installation practices that later cause grounds, shorts, opens, and intermittent operational issues. This type of scenario requires senior field experience, testing, and clean up. Often times, a complete re-installation of the product is required. Technology is often implemented, but the software programming was not properly completed or tested, and regular maintenance such as the upgrading of patches, versions, and OS upgrades has not been kept up with. These systems work meet minimum requirements, but their performance is limited.
Lastly, software training is minimal due to the rapid rate of turnover in personnel and system maintenance and repair is too expensive. However, this misconception often comes from vendors who provide “proprietary single-source products” so that they can lock you into feeling the price of software support is too expensive. Knowing how to properly operate your system is vital if you’re hoping to receive all of the benefits that the system has to offer and what often may appear as a single-source product can easily be upgraded through software updates or changes in hardware in order to give you other support options.
Upgrading for The Future
It can sometimes be hard to explain why a specific type of tech system is bad, broken, or somewhere in the middle. The answer usually lies somewhere within the infrastructure or installation; the good news is that it can often be fixed with a few improvements. Whichever the case may be for you, understanding where the problem is half the battle.