In 2020 I was on the search for a new Alarm company. Our then alarm system was monitored by Verizon, Which has ZERO coverage in my area. It was a pointless system, without any motioning because of the lack of signal.
I found Cove Smart, Which at the time offered AT&T Cellular monitoring, which has excellent coverage where I live. We bought and installed a system and after some basic testing, I was happy with the system. I have been using the system from Cove for 3 years now, without issue. Its been a reliable system, and I’ve never had any issues with false alarms or anything..
Naturally, When I came into another home, I wanted to get a monitored alarm system for it. At the time the home was not occupied, so I wanted to have some sort of system to monitor freezing temperatures, Water leaks, and Smoke. All while also monitoring for burglary.
I ordered another Cove System for the new house, and given my previous experience with the system, I already knew what to expect. I received the system, and installed all the sensors, Tested them, and was enjoying the system.. For about a day..
I started to have issues with the system almost immediately. I noticed after about 24 Hours the system would throw a “Panel Communication Error” and it was would show there was no Cell Signal. Cove does not offer any alternative method for monitoring such as a Landline (Which i do have) or WiFi (which i also have). Its relying entirely on the cellular connection.
I came to find out after the next few weeks that this would be a daily error, Which would fix its self after a panel reset. But with the house unoccupied, I couldn’t come there daily to reset the panel and HOPE that it would work when I needed it to..
Some other issues we had, Was the panel triggering a false alarm.. Specifically a “Smash and Grab” alarm. Apparently, (I found out) a Smash and grab alarm is where the panel reports to the monitoring center that the door was opened, and the entry delay was started, but it never reported back that the alarm had been disarmed. Again, related to a communication issue. These errors resulted in 2 occasions of the police showing up to my house, due to false alarms.
After doing some research on the matter, This issue started with newer panels, and Cove was aware of the issue. They still sold the system to new customers knowing it wouldn’t work.
In one of my calls to the tech support center at Cove, They instructed me to take the screws out of the back of my system, to pull the battery out and do a full reset. When i opened the panel I found the problem! A Verizon SIM Card was installed. They admitted that they moved to Verizon about a year ago (Coincidentally when all the issues started with everyone’s panels) and told me that getting an AT&T Sim Card was not an option. They even went so far to say that my current Cove system would eventually be switched to a Verizon Sim card and there was nothing I could do about it.
While my main residence gets NO Verizon signal, My secondary gets some. Which would explain why it intermittently worked. Cove would give NO other options to this problem, and expected me to continue paying for the system with it being as unreliable as it was. Cove was adamant that the issue was with the panel, but “Couldn’t replace it due to supply shortages”.
I waited All of December, and Half of January for a new system to be mailed to me, which it never was… As a test, I spoke to a potential customer in Early January, who ordered and received a new system one week later, while i was still waiting on a replacement. It became apparent the “Supply shortage” was only a problem for current customers.
Mid January I finally made the call that Cove wasn’t going to do anything to fix the problem. I ordered a return label, and ordered a SimpliSafe system instead..
SimpliSafe rushed me a new system, with all the sensors I wanted. (They currently aren’t offering Carbon monoxide sensors though, which was disappointing). I installed the system, and Although SimpliSafe also uses Verizon, they also have the option to use WiFi. Our Internet connection is battery backed up, and pretty much always on, and in the off chance that its not i can expect Verizon to intermittently work as needed.
I installed the SimpliSafe system, Tested it, and left it. I didn’t have to come back daily to do resets to keep it online. I was able to get detailed status checks straight form the app, and daily check in’s from the system to show its still online. I was satisfied that it was going to do exactly what I wanted it to do.
While we aren’t in the house, we do have the heat on set to 65. We have to leave the heat running to keep the water pipes from freezing. We had a cold spell hit, and temperatures hit single digits here. At 5AM on a Saturday morning, while i was getting ready for work I get a call on my phone from SimpliSafe. The freeze alarm has triggered. My dad is also on the account, so he got the call as well. He got straight up and went to the house. It was 41 inside, and the furnace had overheated so it cut off.
He was able to build a fire in the fireplace, and get the temperature up, to prevent the pipes from freezing.
In that single use, The alarm paid for its self. We’ve been using it for over a month now, and couldn’t be happier!
This pas weekend it called again to notify me of a water leak, Which was actually the flooring people who were installing new floors put the sensor on the counter, where there was a drop of water and triggered it. Water and Freeze sensors are just owner notify only alarms. They do not contact any authority. So not surprise police visits.
Fast forward to present day. I have YET to receive a refund from Cove for the returned system. They claim they issued a refund to my card on 1/30/23, but its not shown up yet.. I’ve worked with Credit Card Processors for years, it does not take 14+ days to issue a refund. I’m confident the refund was never issued.
Today I Filed a chargeback with my credit card. Its sad i have to go to that length to get the money i am owed back..
So far I am very pleased with the SimpliSafe setup, and when Cove forces my original system to switch off of AT&T i will likely switch to SimpliSafe on that one as well!
I am going to highly recommend SimpliSafe, and provide my sponsor link if you found my review helpful before you order!