The Clarity Blog

Why UL-Certified Alarms Are Essential for Jewelers

on Jan 26, 2017 12:44 PM

Using an alarm

Would you drive a car that wasn't crash-tested or inspected to make sure all of its complex parts worked together in harmony?

Hopefully not. The risks would be too devastating to overcome if something went wrong.

Now, apply that same principle and cautionary state of mind to your jewelry business and ask yourself if you can risk not having a UL-Certified alarm.

What does UL stand for?

UL stands for Underwriters Laboratories, and they are an organization that tests everything from alarms to appliances to cleaning products to kids toys.

In fact, they do more than test: they certify, validate, test, verify, inspect, audit, advise, and educate.

You may recognize their mark — it appears on over 22 billion products, including alarms. In addition to the actual alarm, UL also certifies alarm service providers, which is equally important for jewelers to consider.

What makes an alarm and an alarm service UL-Certified?

UL sets minimum performance standards for alarm systems that exceed those captured in an alarm service and maintenance agreement. Among other things, they ensure that:

  • electrical protection circuits and devices signal properly
  • the system is properly installed
  • the system is monitored and maintained according to UL standards

Even if the alarm system is fully operational, it doesn't do much good if the response to an alarm signal is inadequate or completely absent. UL issues certificates for two types of monitoring:

Central Station (CS)

Mercantile (MR)

  • A guard (also known as a runner) is designated for a response
  • Provides supervised openings and closings
  • Provides two-party control over arming and disarming of the alarm system
  • Requires that repairs begin within one hour of the guard's response time (after normal closing time)
  • No guard (runner) is dispatched
  • Supervised openings and closing can be arranged, but are not automatic
  • Requires that repairs begin within 18 hours after the alarm company receives notification 


Why are UL-Certified alarms essential?

Unlike the perils of smash-and-grab robberies and grab-and-run thefts that are primarily only threats to retailers, burglaries are of major concern to jewelry businesses of all kinds.

There have been instances where nearly all of a jeweler's inventory was stolen because the alarm did not produce a signal or there was no response after an alarm signal was received.

Having a UL-certified alarm will give you peace of mind that an alarm will signal and that there will be a response to that signal. Additionally, having this level of protection could help your cause when purchasing insurance. Having a current and valid UL certificate is recognized as a risk mitigator, which means you'll likely receive a more favorable premium, assuming your other risk factors are equal.

To find out if your alarm service company is recognized by UL, visit

UL-Certified alarms are essential, but don't forget about your procedural security!

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