Broadened Possibilities With Wireless

March 2, 2018
Contactless credentials and advancing technology make for drill-free installations, even in sites with thick walls and glass

Wireless technology continues to open new horizons to security. When the circuitry was miniaturized, the battery performance became reasonable, and the communications got encrypted, wireless became a professional security accessory.

Credentials are pretty much wireless, but traditionally required they be inserted or swiped through a reader; they required contact between the credential and the reader. The next technological advance was only requiring the credential to be near the reader, often referred to as proximity technologies.

Because credentials are typically in a card format, the thickness of the credential makes putting a power source inside the credential difficult. This was true then and it still is true. So credentials have used variations on bar codes or embedded wires (Wiegand) and readers sent visible or invisible light through the credential in order to read them.

Active circuitry was eventually embedded into credentials, and the problem of powering the circuitry was achieved by using readers which generate an electric field from which the credential derives power to operate.

Wireless door/windows sensors

Security turned a corner when security door/window sensors and motion sensors were no longer required to be hardwired to the control panel. Pulling wire used to constitute the largest portion of the labor involved in installing alarm systems. Pulling wire for alarms involved drilling, snaking and concealing it through exterior walls which contained insulation and reinforcements, and above ceilings (in attics and crawl spaces) and below floors (in basements and crawl spaces).

Installation frequently involved drilling through walls and foundations. Commercial wired security installations still involve wire pulling and drilling.

I think the worst walls were those in aircraft hangers, schools and stair landings which had to be core drilled.

One time we got a job installing access control in a school district, and it required a lot of drilling. The buildings were masonry and brick, and over the years many wings and annexes were added, making those walls even thicker.

At first we were burning up drill bits, drills and helpers like crazy. Then someone loaned me their Bulldog drill. This is a SDS-plus rotary hammer drill that uses special drill bits, and essentially ended our struggle penetrating walls forever. The SDS has three modes: drill, hammer & drill and hammer only. They are rotary jackhammers and are amazing. A SDS is a hammer drill on steroids.

These drills are also available in larger sizes, but for the holes we were drilling, for cable, the SDS-plus was perfect.

The one drawback was that these drills left “exit wounds” when the drill bit finally penetrated the wall. We tried drilling from the occupied side of the wall to the unoccupied side; attempted to drill from both directions, and frequently had to patch the walls around the large divot left by the rotary hammer drill where it punched through the wall.

Wireless Pushbuttons

Wireless sensors for security, fire and access control have achieved and continue to gain acceptance throughout the industry.

Wireless pushbuttons were one of the earliest wireless security products. They were used for garage door operators, and wireless panic buttons were a favorite deal sweetener for security systems. Thinking back, these were a pretty big liability for the alarm dealer to be providing at no cost, especially a silent panic. I never had an issue, but could easily imagine a homeowner looking out their window and the house is surrounded by flashing red lights and cops with guns drawn.

Fortunately we always stipulated that the central station call the premises and demand a password before dispatching off any panic signal.

Wireless buttons have greatly evolved.

Installation and servicing of automatic door operators can be a great revenue stream. Every low energy door operator has knowing act ‘push plates’, and they fail and wear out requiring service calls. Most pushplates are wireless because they are less labor intensive to install.

Camden Lazerpoint RF

Camden Lazerpoint RF represents the latest in wireless automatic door control technology. Lazerpoint RF is a completely new wireless solution for automatic door operators. The system introduces the many advantages of 915MHz. spread spectrum wireless technology to the automatic door market.

The Lazerpoint RF system encompasses the widest range of transmitters, receivers, activation devices and switch enclosures available today, compatible with all automatic door operators. Lazerpoint RF receivers use daughterboards (small accessory circuit boards) so they also support 300MHz., 390MHz., and 433MHz. transmitters.

Additional features:

  • Advanced 915MHz spread spectrum (broadband) wireless communications for outstanding range and performance.
  • Multi-year battery life (using inexpensive 'AAA' alkaline batteries) and exclusive 'low battery','gas gauge' and 'stuck switch' audible alerts.
  • New CM-RX90 advanced reciever, with 1 relay, features 3 relay modes (delay, non-delay & latching). Ideal for vestible applications.
  • RX-92 receiver model with two channels plus 6 operating modes; saves time and money by avoiding the cost of buying and installing additional components.
  • Optional plug-in receiver modules provide compatibility with other RF frequencies.
  • ‘PUSH AND LEARN' transmitter enrollment and signal strength indicators, makes LAZERPOINT RF™ the easiest system to install
  • Ultra compact switch transmitter fits anywhere, including jamb box.
  • Ultra compact receivers can be mounted in door operator cabinets.
  • Compact ADA compliant 1, 2 and 4 button key FOBs.
  • Innovative FOB base for wheelchair, visor, belt or wall mounting.
  • Plug-in Lazerpoint RF™ wireless transmitter module for CM-120 series digital keypads and CM-330 series hands free switches

More Info:

 X-10 WM100 WIFI Module

X-10 USES line carrier technology to connect its various control modules. This is a simple plug in unit that connects wirelessly to the premises WiFi router and allows control of X10 from a smartphone or tablet anywhere there is service.

This hub communicates with your home’s WiFi router wirelessly, it can be plugged into any outlet within 100 feet of the router.

Setup is also pretty simple. Simply download the "X10 WiFi" app from the Google or Apple appstores and follow the an onscreen setup. You will be guided to connect the X10 WiFi HUB with your router. Once a connection has been made, you can then start adding your X10 modules. This WiFi hub does work with all your older X10 models as well, so no need to buy new ones!


  • The WM100 is also an innovative diagnostic tool!
  • Control up to 32 of all the different possible 256 X10 codes
  • Organize devices by giving them names instead of just the codes (A1, F3, etc)
  • Control devices with All ON and ALL OFF functionalities
  • Create multiple timers per device
  • Assign Dawn/Dusk timers to turn on/off automatically
  • Organize your devices into “Rooms” for clearer and easier access
  • Control the entire “Room” with the “All Room ON/OFF” buttons
  • Create more complex commands with the “Scenes” tab
  • Access to On/Off, Dim/Brighten and delays to create scenes tailored for you
  • Over the Air firmware updates as necessary
  • X10 Command History gives the advanced user the ability to look at the past 50 commands heard by the WM100, doubling as a great troubleshooting tool
  • Simple setup of secondary devices. After initial setup, other device setup is a breeze
  • Multiple users can control the WM100 simultaneously

The WM100 has an active ‘sense’ technology that will adjust the status of the devices in the app regardless of if the signal was sent from the WM100 or any other source (like a hand remote).

The built in memory means the WM100 retains its settings (devices, timers, etc) even if the unit is not powered.

More Info:

SECURITRON R100 Wireless Reader

What a terrific feature for installing a cardreader where wiring is not desirable, unsightly or impractical. I’m thinking of the herculite full glass lobby doors, or historical landmarks, or brick and masonry walls where a wireless reader would have been the perfect solution.

The R100 surface mounted wireless reader with Aperio® technology offers an elegant way to extend access control to glass, stone, granite or marble entryways. It requires no drilling or pulling of wires and can adhere in minutes. glass entryways can now integrate robust access control while maintaining a clean, wireless appearance.

Product Features:

  • Adheres to glass surface without any connecting wires
  • Online transaction audit trail capabilities
  • Low battery signaling and reporting
  • Green status LED indicator
  • Shortened wire pull from panel to hub provides cost benefit to installation
  • Fully-encrypted AES 128 wireless communication
  • SecuriCare three-year, no fault warranty

Another innovative wireless product is the Securitron PowerJump ICPT which ports power contactlessly and invisibly across the door gap to run electrified hardware on the door.

Installed on the latch side of the door, it transfers power without pins or wires, eliminating points of vulnerability and wear.

It also eliminates the need to cross drill or snake wires through the door

Wired hinges are expensive, and they eventually wear out. There are no moving parts to wear out with the Securitron PowerJump ICPT


  • Transfers power wirelessly across door gaps of up to 3/16
  • Flexible mounting: can be installed on hinge side, latch side or top of frame
  • Dual Voltage output 12VDC or 24VDC field selectable
  • Continuous or intermittent duty
  • For fail secure devices (it does not transfer power when the gap increases)
  • Use with electrified locks, latches or other door hardware requiring up to 6
  • watts (0.5A@12VDC) of power
  • Adhesive backed templates for accurate installation
  • MagnaCare® lifetime replacement, no fault warranty
  • UL10C fire-rated: 3 hour

More Info:

About the Author

Tim O'Leary

Tim O'Leary is a security consultant, trainer and technician who has also been writing articles on all areas of locksmithing & physical security for many years.