Security & Fire Protection Systems/Alarm system will not shut off


Hi I returned home the other day and when I opened the door my alarm system went right into alarm mode (no delay) and I was not able to shut it off at either keypad. I had to shut it off on the panel (switch on the side). It is an old system FBI XL 1218. I tried resetting the system (unplugging it and the back up battery) to no avail. The glass fuses all look okay, I swapped some of them around to see if it made any difference and it still would not work. I tried entering the code, fall back code etc... Nothing has worked. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Hello Dave, and thanks for writing.

From what you describe, I'd suspect that the panel has failed and will need to be replaced.

However, there are two things you can look into -- but neither explains why the panel alarmed with no entry delay as you mentioned. On the other hand, either of these conditions would explain why the alarm is sounding when the system is restarted, or when it is apparently turned off.

First, your panel is equipped for a panic alarm. If a panic button is depressed, it doesn't matter whether the alarm system is armed -- it'll go off. Now, it could be programmed for silent operation, but I can't tell that without seeing the programming of your system. So if you have panic buttons, make sure they are not activated.

Second, your system is equipped for fire protection. This too will sound an alarm regardless of the armed-disarmed status of the panel. So if you have heat or smoke detectors connected to your system, verify that they are not tripped.

Finally, you mentioned moving the fuses around. I'd just point out that fuses 1 and 2 are the same (1 ampere), but fuse 3 is different (3 ampere). Fuse three is the bell/siren output, and if you use a 1 ampere fuse there, it'll likely blow.

I wish I had better news; sometimes these older panels -- as reliable as they've been over the years of service -- just give out.

I hope this helps!

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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