‎Sequence of events after an alarm | SimpliSafe Support Home
johnrisken's profile

Wednesday, December 8th, 2021 9:50 PM

Sequence of events after an alarm

++also posted to reddit++

We are just getting ready to replace an old system with SimpliSafe and I've been trying to develop a detailed sequence for what happens after a smoke detector triggers. I've talked to three different people in support and gotten three partially different responses.

If you're an old hand at this, please tell me what's right and wrong.

Scenario: a smoke detector with a custom (not a drop-down) name triggers somewhere in the house.

  1. The detector starts wailing.

  2. The base station and extra sirens start wailing.

  3. The keypad (a) does or (b) does not wail. And
    a. It shows the custom name of the detector. OR
    b. It shows the serial number of the detector
    The keypad asks for my PIN and allows me to cancel. OR
    The app
    a. shows the custom name of the detector. OR
    b. shows the serial number of the detector
    and then lets me cancel without asking for the PIN OR
    The keyfob lets me cancel without asking for the PIN

  4. Cancelling stops the siren from the base station and from the extra sirens

  5. The detector keeps wailing until its button is pressed AND the smoke, if any, has cleared

  6. But I didn't cancel in time and so SS calls me. They know
    a. the custom name of the detector that fired OR
    b. only the serial number of the detector that fired.

  7. OR I couldn't find the keypad, the keyfob, or my phone with the app and so SS calls me, I give them my safe word and they are able to shut off my sirens remotely (not the detector) remotely.+

Community Admin


5.3K Messages

2 years ago

Hi johnrisken,


For a Smoke Detector or Carbon Monoxide Detector alarm (they're the same alarm category, under Life Safety, so the Monitoring sequence is the same), this is what happens:

  1. Only the device that is triggered by something in the environment is triggered. All other Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors will not sound a siren until they are also triggered.
  2. The Base Station, and Wireless Sirens, will also sound.
  3. The Keypad will show an alarm event warning, showing which sensor was triggered. IF you want to cancel sirens, you must enter the PIN on your Keypad.
  4. The Smoke Detector and Carbon Monoxide Detector will trigger again at any point if they detect more smoke or CO.
  5. IMPORTANT: There is no Grace Period for Life Safety Alarms. A Monitoring operator will always call. And the only way to stop dispatch is to answer that call and give your Safe Word passcode.
  6. The operators are only given info on the type of the alarm, not which unit and where. However, if you have Visual Verification enabled, that will also send footage from your SimpliSafe cameras, so the operator can see if there is an active fire within view.
  7. Also IMPORTANT: The operator will only call the first Primary Contact, even if you have a second one. If you are not able to answer, they will move on to your local Fire Department.
  8. The Monitoring operator is not able to control your system in any way, so they can't cancel the sirens at your location.
  9. However, the Monitoring operator is able to put your Monitoring account temporarily on hold, so that no further triggered alarms will result in possible dispatch.

2 Messages


That answers a couple of questions, but these are still unclear:

1. Does the keypad show the custom name of the device that was triggered? Some of your people say 'yes' but some say that if it has a custom name only the device's serial number will be shown.

2. Can I cancel the event with the keyfob?

3. Can I cancel the event from the app? And does the app show the custom name of the device?

4. Can I silence the device (if the smoke has cleared) by pressing its button?

5. If I have cancelled the event on my keypad before your dispatch operator reaches me, does that effectively keep dispatch from calling my fire department?  

6. In other words, is the following accurate: a) device triggers, b) I cancel with keypad or keyfob or app, c) even if dispatch does not reach me, they do not call my fire department.

7. And finally, your own manual says that the safeword is not required when I respond to your dispatcher's call. So what is correct?


When a Life Safety sensor is triggered (Smoke and CO), the monitoring service will only contact the first Primary Contact  as time could be critical. The safeword is not required to cancel dispatch for a Smoke or CO alarm, you just need to pick up the phone and tell them it is a false alarm. If dispatch occurs, the Fire department will be sent to the property. 

Thanks for your help in understanding all this.  I need to convey the correct information with the others in the household.

Community Admin


5.3K Messages

@johnrisken apologies, you are correct. For Smoke and CO alarms, a Safe Word will not be required.

Using your app, Keypad or Keyfob to disarm the system will only stop the sirens, not cancel dispatch. This is true even if you stop the sirens before you get a call from Monitoring. The only way to stop dispatch is to answer your phone and verbally confirm with the operator that you do not need assistance.

Yes, the Smoke and CO Detectors can be silenced by pressing the button on the face. However, they may trigger again, if actual smoke or carbon monoxide are present in the detection chamber of the device.

And yes, when an alarm happens, the exact name of the device is logged in the Timeline.

New to the Community? Get started by reading our Welcome Post.