Wireless Alarm Keys Demystified

I successfully programmed an Ademco wireless keyfob transmitter today, and figured I’d document the process.. My panel is a Vista-20P and the transmitter is a 5804BD.

  1. Program an RF house ID into the panel. The house ID needs to be a number between 0 and 31. On the Vista-20P, this is done in location *24:

    Enter programming with 4-digit installer code + 800
    Enter *24
    Enter 2-digit house ID
    System chimes to confirm entry

  2. Install batteries in the transmitter. When prying the case open, hold the transmitter with the buttons facing down; otherwise they’ll all fall out when you pull the case apart.
  3. Program the house ID into the transmitter per the instructions. It must match the house ID programmed into the panel.
  4. Program each button individually using zone programming (*56). On the Vista-20P, zones 49 through 64 are reserved for keyfob zones. The following example will program button 4 to disarm the system:

    Enter *56 to enter zone programming
    Enter 1 at Set to Confirm? prompt
    Enter 49 to program zone 49 (or whatever)
    Enter * at summary screen
    At zone type prompt, enter 22 (disarm)
    Enter 1 at partition prompt
    Enter 0000 at report code prompt (no report)
    Input Device type will default to “Button type RF”
    Enter the device serial number at the prompt
    Enter 4 as the loop number (corresponds to button 4)
    Press button 4 on the keyfob at “Xmit to Confirm” prompt
    System confirms that the correct serial number was transmitted
    Review summary screen and press *
    Press 0 at “Program Alpha?” prompt

    Now, exit programming and assign a user number to this button: Enter master code + 8 + user number + #4 + zone number. For user 04 and zone 49, you would enter

    master code + 8 + 04 + # 4 + 49

    Keypad will chime to confirm.

    That’s it; button 4 on the keyfob should now work to disarm the system. The process should be repeated for each button on the fob (each button corresponds to a separate loop number).

Next step is to hook one of the buttons up to the garage door opener. It appears that I need to program the button as zone type 23 (no alarm response), then go into device programming and define an output function to activate the appropriate relay when the zone trips.

This weekend I’ll install the 5800TM transmitter so that the fobs will be able to display system status. I’ll also test the range to see if I’ll need a repeater. Hopefully I won’t.

Followup 4/22… I’ve programmed both keyfobs and everything worked as expected. I’m pretty impressed with the range of these things.. it seems to be pretty close to the advertised 200 feet. It’s looking like I won’t be needing a signal repeater. Haven’t gotten to the 5800TM yet, and may not this weekend, but the fobs don’t need it to work. I’ll use this week to test them out, and assuming they continue to work well, I’ll put the 5800TM in next weekend.