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shiherlis's profile

Tuesday, January 30th, 2024 1:26 PM

SS3 Key Fob Life (It is all over the place)

I upgraded to SS3 in early 2018 (I previously owned SS2). I read concerns about the Key Fobs not having a replaceable battery (as SS2 did). All replies were, "Don't worry, if the Fob fails, we'll send you a new one free of charge." (That is not verbatim but was the standard response and narrative at the time so many were voicing their concerns). I purchased two, and one (rarely utilized) failed precisely four years later. The other (used often) failed five months after that. SimpliSafe replaced both with new products. Fast forward to last week, and the often-utilized Fob died – just one year and five months after replacement. No one ever dropped it, and it was well cared for. Today, I received the replacement Key Fob and was surprised to find it refurbished. I never buy refurbished products and am rather unhappy as no one told me the replacement would not be new.


Additionally, I could understand SimpliSafe's initial claim that the Key Fobs last "up to 5 years, depending on usage." The system (SS3) was new, and thus there was no actual customer usage data. Now, that should be more accurate. If the rarely used Fob lasts four years, and the other utilized almost daily lasts five months longer, that shows a high variable for inconsistent battery life. Add to that the new (condition) replacement that only lasted one year and five months, which signifies a problem with the product's batteries.


I understand many no longer use the Key Fobs, but if SimpliSafe sells them, there is a market/customer for them (I am one of them). I am posting this to hopefully trigger some follow-up testing now that SS3 has been available for 6+ years. You now have solid data (as opposed to hypothesis) to stand by or reword/change the life expectancy of specific products offered. For instance, how many replacements does SimpliSafe send out, and how many customers return dead Fobs? What percentage is that, and how many years on average are they lasting? Is it to the point where there are no more new products to replace mine with? I know that happened (understandably) with SS2, but I highly doubt that is the situation with the new SimpliSafe system (unless a new system is coming and production is ramping down).


As someone who never purchases refurbished products for a reason, I do not know how long the replacement will last. More importantly, though, solid data is now available. In my personal experience, the Fobs' battery life expectancy is vast and much broader in range (i.e., shorter) than the company lists for this specific component.


P.S. When replacing new components with a refurbished product, please state that clearly to the customer in the future. I was quite displeased to see it was.


Thank you.



5.9K Messages

6 months ago

@shiherlis Your post was interesting as it was timely.  Got my SS3 when it first came out but passed on the key fob as I would use the phone app. Here we are years later and I just purchased a key fob about 2 months ago, for those quick neighborhood jaunts and the convenience of just hitting one button and sticking the fob in my pocket. (Yeah, I am lazy).  Other than the battery not being replaceable (never did figure out what the genius who designed it was thinking) I am counting on SS's commitment to replace it when the battery dies. In my case, I think I use it max 2 times a month, so here's to a long, carefree life!

All of that said, I do believe in the fine print SS does state it can replace defective equipment with reconditioned ones. Possilby Emily or Davey can confirm and provide details.


730 Messages


I would be curious to see how long the battery in your Key Fob lasts. I have always found them very handy (none of the four I had for SS2 needed their batteries replaced).


After receiving the replacement, I went to Amazon to see if there were supply issues (i.e. if they were not in stock) - they were out. Having a brand new Fob that lasts only one year and five months does not feel normal. The first one lasted nearly four and a half years and was kept in the same place and utilized in the same manner as the second. If it happens again, I must use the app, but I will always need one Fob for guests. I could see replacing a Fob every 4-5 years, but not every one and a half. The one thing I would have to do is purchase another Panic button. Since the Fobs already contain one, I only have one of those (as a standalone component).


Thank you for the refurbished/recondition heads up. I usually read through everything once, but I must do so again since the response from Emily did not directly answer that.


(Although today marks the end of January, Happy New Year to you and yours! I hope all is well!)

Community Admin


3.1K Messages

6 months ago

Hi @shiherlis, 

The battery life of the Key Fob does depend on its usage as you mentioned, but if there is any interference at play that could also impact its battery life. If there are many heavy appliances or walls between the Base Station and the Key Fob when it is used to arm or disarm your system, that could cause the Key Fob to work a little harder and use up its battery power a little faster.

I will bring this to our internal teams though for further discussion.

In an effort to be environmentally conscious, refurbished devices are sometimes used for replacements. There should be no difference between this refurbished Key Fob and a new one, though!

730 Messages


Thank you for the response.


I could accept "a little faster," but to go from four years and five months to a replacement lasting only one year and five months is not typical (at least it is not, in my opinion). For the internal teams, they were used precisely the same, and they were kept in the same location. Additionally, both Fobs (different users and usage) are stored approximately six to eight feet apart. Both are used to enter the residence – meaning normal usage of the front door and one wall as interference. If they were/are ever used to arm/disarm from inside, then a wall is the only structure between the Fobs and the Base Station.

983 Messages

3 months ago

Technically the battery is not supposed to be replaced BUT there is a video on YouTube on how you can do it but need to be careful not to break the case but it can be done, never tried it as I don't use them though. 

730 Messages


Thank you for posting this, as the refurbished replacement has already died (I had a feeling it would not last long, and here we are, three short months later). I will order a new Fob from Amazon but will use the replacement as a test to see if I can replace the battery. Since it is no longer working and I will not send it back, it will not hurt if my attempt fails.

983 Messages

@shiherlis​ I finally had enough of the fob and got rid of them and just use the app 99% of the time. 

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