Pros & Cons
- Wide Selection Of Equipment
- Landline & Cellular Monitoring
- Smartphone Access
- Transparent Pricing Structure
- Long-Term Contracts
- Limited 90-Day Warranty
- Pricey Cancellation Penalties
Protection 1 is a national alarm provider. While it focuses more on business accounts, its residential home security systems offer excellent value. Its equipment is backed by the Alarm.com platform and it offers access to home automation and video surveillance features. Protection 1 also offers four monitoring plans that range from basic security to advanced home automations.
Signing a monitoring agreement with Protection 1 will lock you into its service for three years. You can get out of the service without any penalty after the initial contract ends, but cancelling isn't always easy. Also, with Protection 1, you never really own the equipment. It is leased to you and you will have to return it once you cancel. Any damaged equipment will have to be paid for. Despite the fact that you don't own the equipment, you still get a limited 90-day warranty. Outside the warranty period, any repair will be at your expense.
Protection1 is a sister company of ADT, one of the largest and most experienced alarm companies in the country. However, unlike ADT, Protection 1 is transparent when it comes to pricing. We recommend Protection 1 to homeowners with long-term security needs. If you also own a commercial property, Protection 1 offers a much higher customer service quality to business accounts.
Equipment & Monitoring Packages
Protection 1 offers four monitoring plans, but whatever plan you choose, you'll get the same basic equipment package. It includes a 2GIG touchscreen control panel, three door/window sensors, a motion sensor, a yard sign, and three window decals. These devices are leased to you, which means once you cancel the service, you must return them in good condition. Otherwise, you'll have to pay for any damages.
If you need more equipment, Protection 1 is more than willing to lend you more. Add-on devices can be added to your system without any upfront cost, but Protection 1 will adjust your monthly fee to include the lease of these items. Like the base equipment package, they must be returned once you cancel the contract.
As for monitoring, you can choose between Secure, Secure +, Smart Control, and Video. All four plans require a three-year contract except in California, where the maximum contract term is two years.
The Secure plan ($34.99/month) offers professional monitoring but nothing more. It can protect you from burglary, fire, natural gas, floods, and freezing pipes. It uses landline for communication, which means a working phone line is required.
If you don't have a working landline, Secure + ($44.99/month)is your least expensive option. It also offers professional monitoring, but it adds in cellular communication and two-way voice. Cellular signal is currently the most reliable communication method, while two-way voice uses the control panel's built-in speaker and mic to connect you to the monitoring center during an emergency.
Smart Control ($49.99) offers a more advanced set of features. Aside from what Secure + offers, Smart Control provides smartphone access via the Protection 1 app. It also enables home automation, although add-on automation devices are required. Finally, it lets you add motion sensors with built-in cameras (a.k.a. Image Sensors) to your system. These sensors can't record videos, but they can capture still images of motion events.
The most advanced monitoring plan is Video ($54.99) It's the same as Smart Control, but it lets you add security cameras to your system. Security cameras can capture motion events and store them in the cloud. You can access and playback recordings anytime using your smartphone. It also lets you program your cameras to automatically start recording when your security system is triggered.
If you're looking to expand your security system, below is a list of add-on equipment offered by Protection 1. Take note that you can only add certain devices if you're subscribed to the right monitoring plan. For example, the privilege of adding security cameras is reserved to those who are on the Video plan.
- 2GIG Touchscreen Remote Keypad
- Additional Analog Keypad
- Door/Window Sensor
- Motion Detector
- Glass Break Detector
- Smoke & Fire Detector
- Carbon Monoxide Detector
- Fire Fighter Module
- Freeze Sensor
- Water & Flood Sensor
- Emergency Button
- Smart Thermostat
- Remote Thermostat Control
- Lighting & Appliance Module
- Garage Door Controller
- Remote Door Locks
- Garage Door Controller
- Indoor Pan/Tilt Camera
- Indoor Camera
- Outdoor Camera
Key Features & Tech
Landline & Cellular Monitoring
Landline and cellular monitoring are two different communication methods used by alarm systems to send alerts to a monitoring center. Landline is an older and less expensive technology that uses your existing phone line. However, it's unreliable because it's prone to phone line disruptions and can be easily defeated by a pair of wire cutters. Only the Secure plan offers this option. Cellular monitoring is much more reliable but it's also more expensive. It uses cellular signal, which is available almost anywhere in the country. Secure +, Smart Control, and Video all offer cellular monitoring.
Smartphone access via the Protection 1 app lets you control, monitor, and configure your security system from anywhere using only your smartphone or tablet. It's a feature only offered to Secure +, Smart Control, and Video plan subscribers.
With the help of home automation devices, like smart locks, smart appliance and light controllers, and smart thermostats, you can make your home smarter and more accessible. Add in smartphone control and you get access to your home's most important appliances anywhere. Smart Control and Video plan users gain access to this feature.
For ultimate peace of mind, Protection 1 offers three security cameras: an indoor camera, an indoor camera that can pan and tilt, and a weatherproof outdoor camera. You can monitor these cameras wherever you are thanks to the smartphone app. Plus, they have the ability to record events in the cloud so you can look back and review important events. Only Video plan subscribers have access to this feature.
Customer Service & Support
Protection 1's customer service is easy to access as long as you're an existing customer. You can call Protection 1's customer service phone number any time, any day. You can also get in touch with Protection 1's customer service through the live chat feature on its website.
According to online customer reviews, Protection 1's customer service can be a hit-or-miss. Because they're accessible, you'll likely get the help you need in no time. However, if you're calling about billing or contract issues, they can be difficult to talk to. Currently, it holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, but there are a number of concerning reviews and complaints filed against Protection 1.
If you become a Protection 1 customer, it's vital to understand their policies. Here are some of Protection 1's most important policies that you should know about before signing up.
All of Protection 1's products are for lease. You can use any equipment as long as you're paying for monitoring. However, once you cancel the service, you must return the entire system— add-on devices included— to Protection 1.
Contract & Early Termination
Protection 1 requires a three-year contract (two-year in California). During the contract period, you can't cancel the monitoring service without paying a termination fee. The termination fee is computed by multiplying the number of remaining months in your contract by your monthly monitoring fee.
Any equipment installed by Protection 1 is covered by a 90-day limited warranty. During the first 90 days after the installation, Protection 1 will repair or replace any defective part or equipment for free. However, after 90 days, any repair and replacement service will be at your cost.
Secure Move Program
If you move to a new house during the term of your contract, Protection 1 will help you move your system to your new location or activate a new security system. Installation and activation fees will apply, but they will provide you up to $150 credit that you can use toward the activation or installation. The catch is that your contract will refresh and you'll be tied to Protection 1 for another three years (or two years if you move to California). Take note that although Protection 1 is a nationwide provider, it doesn't offer services in all areas. If you happen to move outside Protection 1's service are, you can either sign up with a sister company (ADT or ASG) or cancel the service. Early termination fees will apply.
Safety Net Warranty
If your home is burglarized while under Protection 1's monitoring, they will reimburse up to $1,000 of your paid insurance deductible. The same goes for fire incidents. Terms and conditions apply.