Harbor Freight driveway alarm WORKED

This is a discussion on Harbor Freight driveway alarm WORKED within the Home (And Away From Home) Defense Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Never thought it would happen to us. Sound familiar? Well it happened to us. My wife and I have lived in our home since 1979. ...

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Thread: Harbor Freight driveway alarm WORKED

  1. #1
    Member Array PilotAlso's Avatar
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    Harbor Freight driveway alarm WORKED

    Never thought it would happen to us. Sound familiar? Well it happened to us.

    My wife and I have lived in our home since 1979. We've never had any problems here. In fact, we've never felt the need to lock doors until last month after someone decided to steal some expensive tools out of my truck. The truck was parked in our driveway.

    I can't describe how disappointed, pissed, unsettled, violated, we've felt on top of the financial hit we took replacing the Milwaukee power tools.

    Anyway, I decided to try to prevent future incidents. We now keep doors locked on our vehicles and the house. It's a pain but is a must in today's world. I also purchased a Harbor Freight wireless driveway alert on the chance the burglar would come back.

    The driveway alert cost $15.00 (with coupon) so I wasn't expecting much. I was pleasantly surprised when I set it up. The outdoor sensor picked up anybody coming near the cars. I've religiously turned the unit on each night since the purchase.

    It's alarmed a few times when neighborhood cats strolled but last night was different. At about 12:30 AM, the alarm sounded and awoke us from a sound sleep. I grabbed my flashlight and Kimber UC and went to investigate. Looking out the front window, I saw a slight movement between my truck and my wife's car.

    My first thought was "wow, this is for real". I slowly opened the front door which overlooks the driveway. At that time I saw the burglar at the back of my truck. He didn't see me nor did he suspect he'd been made. I lit him up with my flashlight while covering him with my Kimber and checking to see if there were any accomplices.

    His reaction to the light was priceless. He surely crapped his pants as he jumped a mile and took off running faster than I've ever seen anyone run. I'd bet he'd have given an Olympic sprinter a good go.

    I checked for damage or loss and found none. I'm sure the alarm saved us more headache. I'm very happy to have it.

    thoughts:

    The cheap alarm worked great
    The burglar (looked like a skinny high school kid) has to be wondering how he was outed.
    I doubt he'll be back (especially if he knows what's good for him).
    Burglars can look real funny when they're caught unexpectedly (boy it was comical watching him trying to get out of his own way)

    IF he had made an attempt to draw a gun or made a threatening move toward me with a knife or other weapon, he would have been shot. I'm glad it didn't come to that.

    Both incidents have been reported to the PD.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array adric22's Avatar
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    That's great. I have wondered about some kind of drive-way alarm. How does it work? Can you explain how it is installed and how it detects a person and how it alerts you? I might have to get one of those for my house. We don't ever leave cars outside... well, I guess we do on a rare occasion. But mostly, I figure if we had a burglar in the middle of the night, chances are they'd drive their car up into our driveway. I say that simply because I figure anyone planing to rob my house is probably planing to take a carload of laptop computers away with them. So I doubt they'd be on foot and I doubt they'd park in the street. And obviously if they come in the middle of the night, they would probably be expecting us to be home and asleep and would most likely intend bodily harm/death to us before robbing the place. I've already put several safeguards in place to give us a few seconds headstart should somebody try to break in at night, but it sounds like a drive-way alarm would give us even more advance notice, maybe as much as 30 seconds. The would be an invaluable amount of time to prepare for a break-in.
    "Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws." -Plato

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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    Glad everything worked out great but next time call 911 first. People will tell you should have not opened the door. I might have hit the panic button on the remote to get horn and lights flashing. As much as I would like to think they will not be back but as things get worse they know there are tools to be sold.

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    FWIW:

    An immediate 911 call would have been somewhat premature based on having the occasional stray cat (and skunk) setting off the alarm. Once I determined it was a burglar, I wasn't going to hide inside and wait for PD arrival while my vehicles were possibly being damaged from a forced entry attempt.

    I certainly considered sitting still but I had the advantage on him and used it. A calculated risk which turned out well. Given the same scenario I'd do it again every time. Situational changes might alter my actions.

    Sounding the car alarm would have been pretty much fun also but I hadn't thought of it :-) although I doubt it would have had the impact of being lit up and yelled at.

    As far as the alarm and how it works:

    Its a totally wireless system with an outdoor sensor and an indoor alarm. Both are battery operated. Some people have reported years of battery life on the feedback comments at Harbor Freight.

    I placed the sensor on a decorative milk pail near the driveway. Installation was simply placing it where the infra-red sensor could see the area I wanted to protect. It took five minutes of walking around in front of the device to ensure coverage.

    If you want to check it out got to the Harbor Freight website and find the "wireless driveway alarm".

    Wireless Driveway Alert & Driveway Alarm System

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    VIP Member Array sgb's Avatar
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    Awesome job
    "There is a secret pride in every human heart that revolts at tyranny. You may order and drive an individual, but you cannot make him respect you." William Hazlitt (1778 - 1830)

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    I'm a big fan of these devices. My experience with battery life is that battery life on the receiving units is very long-- but on the sending units the 9v batteries seem to last 3-5 months.

    The will pick up animals and moving leaves and birds, and aren't that great for outdoors though you can learn to just ignore some of the false alarms. The real thing will have a repetitive nature to it that a single hit doesn't produce.

    I think you came out OK but also came out lucky. He could have been armed and faster than you are.
    If the Union is once severed, the line of separation will grow wider and wider, and the controversies which are now debated and settled in the halls of legislation will then be tried in fields of battle and determined by the sword.
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    It would have sucked, had it not been a noob and he would have shot back at your light.

    'Just a thought...
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    Quote Originally Posted by WHEC724 View Post
    It would have sucked, had it not been a noob and he would have shot back at your light.

    'Just a thought...
    If he could have drawn a weapon, focused on his sights while facing a blinding flashlight (Legion II, SST 50), and made the shot, I'D have been SCREWED.

    I'll take the odds when I've already got him covered while he's unaware of my presence and I can see his hands.

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    Member Array PilotAlso's Avatar
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    The more I think about this little alarm, the more I'm liking it.

    We will be driving from Wisconsin to our Florida house soon.

    I've always felt a little uneasy sleeping in a motel room. Even with my pistol nearby. It would be easy to sleep through an unauthorized entry into the room until too late to react. If I had this alarm set up it would sound an alarm during the quietest entry attempt.

    Once in Florida, I will use it to guard the rear doorway to our house which is down a hallway and not visible from the family room.

    I might buy another one to put in the garage. Just in case.

    Such a neat, inexpensive home defense tool.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PilotAlso View Post
    The more I think about this little alarm, the more I'm liking it.

    We will be driving from Wisconsin to our Florida house soon.

    I've always felt a little uneasy sleeping in a motel room. Even with my pistol nearby. It would be easy to sleep through an unauthorized entry into the room until too late to react. If I had this alarm set up it would sound an alarm during the quietest entry attempt.

    Once in Florida, I will use it to guard the rear doorway to our house which is down a hallway and not visible from the family room.

    I might buy another one to put in the garage. Just in case.

    Such a neat, inexpensive home defense tool.
    Since they sometimes can be found for as little as around 12 bucks with a coupon, get a couple. The expensive part is the 3 C cells and the 9 v. My garage is protected by two. They are helpful for more than just intrusion by strangers. I can't hear the garage door open when Mrs H drives in, but I'll hear the alerts and know its time to go bring in the groceries or antiques or whatever she found on her outing.

    Harbor Freight also has very inexpensive glass break detectors. They are loud, sensitive, don't give false alerts (high wind doesn't set them off). I'm quite pleased with this item too.

    Sabre has a combo pepper spray and door alarm package. "College Combo #1: Keychain Self Defense Spray with Practice can, Plus Gatekeeper Door Alarm
    Model #: College1 with some pepper) " that you could also put under the hotel/motel door.

    You need to go to their main site and then scroll down quite a way to find the package; not expensive.
    If the Union is once severed, the line of separation will grow wider and wider, and the controversies which are now debated and settled in the halls of legislation will then be tried in fields of battle and determined by the sword.
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    Member Array PilotAlso's Avatar
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    Hopyard,

    Thanks for the ideas and references. Good stuff

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    Member Array thephanatik's Avatar
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    Did someone just buy one off Amazon by any chance? I was reading this thread, decided to buy one, by the time I read 2 reviews and added it to my cart, someone bought the lowest price one.

    Thanks for the tips by the way.
    Your number one Option for Personal Security is a lifelong commitment to avoidance, deterrence, and de-escalation. - Rule #23 in the USMC rules for gunfighting.

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    Distinguished Member Array DefConGun's Avatar
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    I would've loved to have seen the look on his face when he was busted!

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    Member Array Buckj's Avatar
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    I need one of these alarms as my front gate is about 100 yards from the house & with my house so tightly insulated most of the time i never hear approaching vehicles....my 2 dogs do not bark ...one is a bird dog the other a great pyrenees cross...yeah the white dog will chase coyotes away from my property but wont bark at humans and the bird dog would lick folks to death

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    VIP Member Array Sticks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PilotAlso View Post
    Never thought it would happen to us. Sound familiar? Well it happened to us.

    My wife and I have lived in our home since 1979. We've never had any problems here. In fact, we've never felt the need to lock doors until last month after someone decided to steal some expensive tools out of my truck. The truck was parked in our driveway.

    I can't describe how disappointed, pissed, unsettled, violated, we've felt on top of the financial hit we took replacing the Milwaukee power tools.
    So tell us...Insurance? Did they cover it 100%? Still having fun filing the claim? Deductible? How much are your rates going up for the next 3 years?


    Been there, done that, got the T-shirt and some discomfort sitting down for a while.
    Sticks

    Grasseater // Grass~eat~er noun, often attributive \ˈgras-ē-tər\
    A person who is incapable of independent thought; a person who is herd animal-like in behavior; one who cannot distinguish between right and wrong; a foolish person.
    See also Sheep

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