Security & Fire Protection Systems/FA 260 Issue


I just moved into a house with a FA260 system. The previous owner was unable to give me the pass code to the alarm so it hasn't been set since I moved in. I have 2 seperate questions. The first is, is it possible to reset a pass code so I can begin to use the alarm even though I don't know the old code? And second, occasionally the alarm will go off but it's doesn't sound like it's the loud intruder alarm (which shouldn't be possible since I've never set the system) it'll go off and most of the time not even be loud enough to wake me if I'm sleeping but when I hear it I just press the off button and the noise stops for a few hours. Have you come across anything like this before and know how to fix it.

Thank you

Hello Thomas, and thanks for your question.

FA 260 is the model number of the keypad, which can be used with several different control models. You'll need to find the model number of the control, because you'll need the instructions for setting up user passwords and general system operation (for example, interpreting the keyboard indicators to find the trouble that's making the keyboard sound on occasion.

In the meantime, there's a way to retrieve the installer's password from panels manufactured by ADEMCO. First Alert is one of their brand names.

If this procedure works for your system, you'll be able to set up passwords using the instructions for your specific control. If it does not work, then you're limited to finding an alarm vendor who will set up the panel for you.

Here's the generic procedure:

If you power down the whole panel by opening it up and taking off the AC power lead on the extreme left and disconnecting the battery then you can power it back up and get into programming. Power the panel back up by connecting the AC power back up to the extreme left terminal, plug in the battery and within 60 seconds go to the keypad and simultaneously push and hold the * and  # keys down until the display shows "20". If you get this then you are in programming.

Then push the # key and 20. This will display a four digit number one digit at a time. This then is the installer code. You can change this code by hitting the * key then 20 and entering in a new four digit number that you want as the installer code.

Once you know the installer code then hit *99 to back out of programming and you should then have your regular display. You can then go back into programming by entering your four digit code plus 800. After you do that you should get a "20". Once again back out of programming by hitting *99 to get your regular display.


A word of caution... programming these systems can be an intimidating task, and missteps during the process can make things worse than they were before. So be very careful!

Best Regards,


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Dave Neuweiler


The design and application of burglary and fire systems for homes and businesses. Helping alarm owners understand how their system works. Helping to troubleshoot false alarm problems. Questions about monitoring issues.


Over a quarter century in the industry. Experience in installation, service, and monitoring centers. Training manager for a national protective services company; director of education and training for a national trade organization for for alarm dealers.


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