Combining RING Security Alarm system with Cameras

I have several ring cameras and the video doorbell which I have used through the app. Recently I also added the security system to the mix. I’m a little confused how they all tie together though. This is my understanding, am I correct?:

_The cameras I control and monitor through the app, and the Modes. _

The security system is controlled through the keypads, that I activate when I enter or leave the house.

The cameras and the security system (base station, keypads, motion sensors) seem to be two separate systems I think? Cameras for monitoring, Security Alarm for break-ins and emergency services.

And I activate them separately? I set up all the motion sensors through the app yes, but for the security system is there any further control done in the app?

I’m playing around with it trying to get familiar and I’m not sure what is happening with the security system when I change between Modes. I think it is arming but I’m not sure why. It’s a little terrifying actually.

I have also found this to be a very tricky - and fragile - set of products to use. My internet went down for a couple days and my entire RING security/camera set up was offline and totally useless. I don’t understand how the cellular data plays in, because no cellular back up kicked in while my internet was down (Is that how it is supposed to work?)

Thanks for any feedback on managing these systems together.

Additionally, when my internet came back I had to reconnect every device and it took half a day. Honestly the whole thing is a total pain in the a** to manage in my opinion.

Hey @Solaris. Happy to help answer your questions here! You can learn more about Modes and how Modes works in our Help Center Articles here for your cameras and here for the Ring Alarm. I think this will explain how Modes works very well for you and what happens when you’re changing in between modes. After reading this, if you have any follow up questions, let me know.

In regards to the Cellular Backup, this is only for the Ring Alarm Base Station, as there is a SIM card in the Base Station to help keep it connected to the internet so your home is still protected and monitored. The cameras are wifi enabled cameras and do not have Cellular Backup, so they will fall offline without internet and not function. If offline for awhile, you may need to manually reconnect them as you have once before.

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@Solaris , To just add you what @Chelsea_Ring has already provided you, when you said, "The cameras and the security system seem to be two separate systems I think? Cameras for monitoring, Security Alarm for break-ins and emergency services." YES YES YES! That is the best way to think about it, for the most part. And that these two separate systems just happen to share one single Ring App.

The heart of the Alarm system is the Alarm Base Station. It is the main brain and hub of all the Motion-sensors, and Contact-sensors (doors & windows), and Keypad, and other alarm devices. All the sensors and alarm devices ‘talk’ back using a Z-Wave frequency to the Base Station.

The alarm sensors and devices and never OFF. They are always Z-Wave ‘chatting’ to the Base Station whenever they have a change in their status. You can even eavesdrop on this chatting by looking just below the 3 major Mode Icons (Disarmed, Home, Away) on the main Dashboard. You’ll typically see “All sensors cleared” until a sensor ‘chats’ a status change to the Base Station.

The Base Station then can communicate to your Ring App through the Internet (using either Wi-Fi to your router or direct Ethernet cable to your router). Once you set up each alarm sensor to your desired settings, that include “Notification Alerts” (text-type Alert messages that ‘push’ to your App) and the “Chirp Alerts” (the sound Alerts that you hear on your App, Base Station, and Keypad), then you control the Alarm system via your 3 Alarm Mode button icons on your App. You can customize how each sensor is utilized in each of the modes:

DISARM MODE: Base Station will not trigger an alarm (except in unique cases, like through the Keypad buttons, Panic button, Fire/CO device, etc.).

HOME MODE: This mode can trigger an alarm. Used mostly to secure the perimeter of your home via Contact Door & Window sensors. Allowing you to be roaming around safe inside.

AWAY MODE: This mode can trigger an alarm , for when nobody is home and the perimeter and interior motion-sensors can trigger the alarm.

You Video system does surveillance and communicates to your App by using Wi-Fi. Because the Alarm system ‘listens’ through Z-Wave for triggering information and the Video system only ‘talks’ using Wi-Fi (can’t ‘speak’ Z-Wave), so it can never trigger an alarm response! The Video system is primarily controlled via individual Camera App settings and then Alarm Modes can then modify the camera’s behavior in each mode.

So for the most part, consider the Video system and Alarm system as pretty much independent, but complementary systems with each other. :slight_smile:

When your Internet Wi-Fi goes down, so does your Video system. But the Z-Wave chat continues and with battery-powered sensors and battery back-ups in the Base Station and Keypad, you still have an Alarm system. Communication between your App and the Base Station uses Wi-Fi, so you cannot ‘talk’ to the Alarm system that way. Use the keypads. If in HOME or AWAY and a sensor triggers the alarm, the Base Station can go off and use the cellular back-up to call for the Cavalry! :slight_smile:

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