Simple and Secure
Dallas/Ft Worth Keypad Access Control
One of the simplest ways to implement a secure access point within your business is to install a keypad system. These systems can range from simple code locks to pads integrated within a full access control system. Depending on the needs of your business, you’ll probably benefit from one of these options, but you might wonder how sophisticated a system is your best fit?
Both traditional keypad and touchscreen pad options are often simple to operate but can provide a high level of security for almost any business. Depending on different variables, the level of sophistication you need in your system can vary. Marlin helps you choose the keypad access system that’s right for you in the most effective and affordable ways.
What are the types of keypad systems?
A keypad system replaces the traditional lock and key with a touchscreen or push-button code entry system. The basic science behind the keypad reader is that when the user enters a pre-programmed code, the lock system will release and grant the user access.
Keypad systems can vary in complexity. You might choose one of the following system options:
- Self-Contained Systems: A self-contained system is simply a keypad and lock combined into an All-In-One unit. These keypads offer a very simple access control via code. Some self-contained keypads, such as certain models of Trilogy locks for example, can accept cards as well. This means you have the option of code or cards. Utilizing a code and card simultaneously will allow you to enable dual-factor authentication. Some all-in-one units offer software that gives you access to audit trails, allows you to see what is being programmed, and generally makes programming easier as you do not have to go through a series of button sequences to make changes.
- Stand-Alone Systems: Stand-alone systems are independent of each other and do not offer communication with other keypads or systems. These keypads operate similarly to self-contained systems in that there is no software or GUI, graphical user interface, to visualize what is being programmed. The major benefit to using a standalone keypad over an AIO (All-in-One) is that they allow you to choose your locking hardware. For example, an AIO would not be compatible with frameless glass doors. A standalone keypad will allow you to use the appropriate hardware for your door without having to go into a full access control system. These keypads often offer multiple outputs and have the capability of alerting when the door is propped or forced open by sounding an alarm.
- Full Access Control Systems: Keypads attached to a full access control system, where software is involved, offer a great deal of flexibility in terms of what you can control within the system and how access is granted. Keypads are most commonly used to simply allow code access. However, keypads can be used to set control of various protocols in the systems. A few examples: lockdowns where all the doors are locked and inaccessible until the lockdown is cleared. They can be used to set alarms within the system. A keypad can even tell the system to lock or unlock doors in other parts of your facility. One of the most useful benefits of a keypad on a full access control system is the ability to set up dual-factor authentication or dual custody. This means that a card AND code are both required to be granted access. Please visit our (insert dual authentication page name here) page to learn more about dual-factor and dual custody access control.
Should I use a stand-alone keypad, a self-contained system, or one that is integrated with a complete access control system?
If you need a simpler access control system, then a self-contained or stand-alone system might be best for you. This is also a good idea if you have a lot of people who patronize your business from day to day. However, by integrating keypads into your full access control system, you’ll have a higher and more complicated degree of security.
One of our experts is happy to work with you to determine which of these systems to help you install in your operation.
How many relays does a keypad offer?
This can be complicated to answer as it is dependent on your system. Standalone keypads typically offer 2 physical relays. This means a single keypad can be used to operate a door lock and a doorbell, two individual door locks, or to create a latching relay that allows you to enter a certain code to put the door in passage mode. Passage mode is where the door stays unlocked until you enter the passage mode code again. This is useful for lobby doors where guests are free to enter during business hours but require a code after hours.
A keypad designed to work with a full access control system does not have an independent relay built into the device. The keypad acts as an interface to control the system without using the software. In theory, this offers unlimited relays as you can assign different functions within the software.
What conditions can the keypad report?
Self-contained keypads vary depending on the manufacturer on model. However, our preferred AIO, Trilogy by Alarm Lock, offers audit trails up to 40,000 events. Once 40,000 events have occurred, it will remove the oldest event and replace it with newer events.
Standalone keypads will often offer door prop alarms or doorbells. A door prop alarm is where an alarm will sound if the door is held open for a certain amount of time that you can determine. With auxiliary inputs and a secondary relay, we can offer various status lights or alarms to indicate various statuses.
A keypad connected to a full access control system offers tamper alarms, where if somebody tampers with the keypad it will sound an alarm on the device itself. Some keypads offer tamper wires to report to the software if someone has tampered with the keypad physically. Beyond that, these keypads generally can only report when access was attempted at what date and time. The software will then offer a full audit trail including who tried to enter or if it was an unknown code, meaning it is not programmed into the system, as well as whether or not the person was granted access. Other hardware components are required to offer door prop alarms and more extensive audit trails.
Can a keypad be used outdoors?
Many of these systems are weather-resistant and can be used outdoors. Many keypads are equipped with wireless or radio transmission capabilities and are made of heavy plastics. Therefore, they are both weather resistant and can be securely placed outside in discreet, unobtrusive areas.
Additionally, most keypad systems offer wireless capabilities, which greatly cut down on the inhibitions posed by running wires or cords to a central control box. Many systems also include remote control features to allow you to unlock the gates from a distance.
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We would love to hear from you. Not sure what type of system is best for your needs, let our experts come out for a free assessment.
3044 Old Denton Rd. #111-186
Carrollton, TX 75007