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Key Fob Access Control Systems: What are they and How do they work?

Nov 11, 2021

Key fob access control systems are becoming more and more popular across apartment communities and even residential homes. Because of the way a Key Fob Access Control System works they can be integrated seamlessly in home life and in commercial properties. They make things both convenient and safe for residents and employees. 

The system itself is easy to understand but for first-time users, they may wonder what’s behind a key fob access control system. As with anything, there are pros and cons so we are going to break down this security system from head to toe. 

Let’s take a look!

What is a key fob access control system?

Key fob access control systems have the main component in their name. They allow easy access for either residents or employees to the property, or parts of the property they are entitled to. A key fob can be described as a small circle and is usually a plastic-encased magnetic receiver that grants access to a panel box. 

These systems can be very simple or a bit more complex depending on the level of security needed for the building. Likely, when using a key fob, the electronic receiver will have a red light until the correct key fob is held up to it. When it grants the users access, the light will turn green signaling they can go. 

Benefits of a key fob access control system

The benefits of a key fob access system are limitless but the main points can be broken down into efficiency and security. Within these categories, we can further look at specific benefits that residents or commercial entities can take advantage of. 

Save Money

Compared to traditional keys, the key fob access over time can save a residential community or company quite a bit of money. For starters, any time that a traditional key is lost, it costs money to replace it. That issue becomes more complex when it’s a key to a community many people have access to or an office. In this case, it costs a lot more to get all the locks changed. In the case of a key fob access control, it can just be replaced and the key can be deactivated from the electronic box. 

Appropriate Access

Benefits Of Card Access Control Systems in South Florida

Key fobs are great because they can personalize access for users. We see this most happen in businesses where higher-level employees need to have access to rooms where they don’t want lower-level employees to have that same access. That is one way a key fob comes in handy.  

It’s also great when workers leave the company because again the key can just be reprogrammed and you don’t have to worry about collecting keys or changing the lock combinations. 

Simple Set-Up

Some security systems can be quite complicated when it comes to set up. The key fob access control system however is not making it easy to implement into any home or property. It just requires some basic wiring of electronic boxes set up in the perimetres you wish to have them. 

An Addition to Other Security Systems

Even the fob access control systems likely will be wired; they can also run on Bluetooth and be paired up with other security features. This is important because something like an alarm would be able to alert authorities in the event that someone is trying to break into the system and get past the access control. 

How Do Key Fob Access Control Systems Work?

We briefly mentioned that the systems can be wired or run on Bluetooth. But how do they actually work? Well for starters all the correct electronic boxes need to be installed in all the areas that you would want users to have to be granted access. After that key fobs can be distributed to those who will be granted access. Each key kob can be programmed a little differently to grant different areas of access to people depending on whether this is a commercial or residential property. 

When a user approaches an entry point they will take their plastic key fob and hold it up to the electronic box for it to receive the message. Once the message is received and it is the correct access, the lock will be unlocked and the user may hear a beep or see the color change to green to signal all is good. 

Key fobs are also great because you may only want to let certain people have access to areas like pools and fitness centers during certain times. These key fobs can be programmed to be activated or deactivated at any point of desire. 

How to install key fob access control systems


When it comes to installing a key fob access control system you will need to work with an expert security company. While the process is easy you want to make sure it is done right so you don’t run the risk of having a security issue. 

Here is what you can expect during the install process.

  1. An initial meeting to discuss the security needs throughout the property such as how many access points, level of security, pairings, etc. 
  2. An employee will come out to the property to confirm the plan and finalize any suggestions or possibilities with the security. 
  3. Depending on the complexity of the installment such as how big the property is and what wiring needs to be done, there will be either a day or few days of installment.

The installment process is easy for the client because they can sort of sit back and allow the security team to do what they do best. 

Risks of having key fob access control systems 

Having a key fob access control system has a lot more benefits than it does to possible risks. Having said that with any security system there comes risks even with the old-fashioned key and lock systems. That’s why we take this section to let you know what you could possibly go wrong after installing a key fob access control system.

Active Lost/Stolen Fobs

Fobs that get into the hands of wrong people certainly can cause a problem. IF it was intentionally stolen the problem becomes even larger. So you don’t run the risk of having a security breach. You always want to make sure that you are aware of where your rob is and stress to other users that if they lose theirs to alert security. That way they can be deactivated and no threat can occur. 

Poor Set Up

A poor installment can lead to a number of things. One of them being malfunctions. When a key fob access control system doesn’t work properly then you once again run the risk of having a lack of security and the possibility of someone entering the property who shouldn’t. In general, poor quality systems can malfunction which is why it’s also important to use top-notch products that have great firewalls that can’t be hacked. 

Power Outages

If a key fob access control system is in fact hard wired then you run the risk of being locked in or out during a power outage. Hard wired systems run on power and sometimes this is a main security issue. What is more prevalent today to combat this issue is that some systems can run on battery-operated functions until the power is able to return. This requires changing the batteries on occasion. 

Key Fob Access Control Systems FAQs

You may start to feel like you like the idea of having a key fob access control system set up throughout your property. However, it’s natural to still feel hesitation with new technology and have a lot of questions and concerns. That’s why we dedicate this section to the most frequently asked questions about key fob access control systems. 

What other systems can be paired with Key Fob Access Control?

Technology has really changed the security scene when it comes to integrating your home services with each other. Depending on the type of product you go with you can pair your key fob access control system with these other different types of security. 

  • Security cameras
  • Alarm systems
  • Window alarms
  • Smartphone compatibility
  • Two-factor identification
  • Etc. 

Something that you will need to check with your security team representative is what products work together and what products don’t. Sometimes you will need to buy from the same brand to make integration in your home a lot easier. Likely, this will be brought up with your security company upon installment talks. 

Is key fob access control systems the best security system for everyone?

Not necessarily. Key fob access control systems are simple and great security systems that can work seamlessly in residential or commercial properties. While key fob access control systems can work in every scenario they may need some additional security measures when it comes to more intense businesses like financial institutions or tech/medicine niches. 

Key fob access control systems are great for any area that can be commonly used by either residents or by employees. This is why we see a lot of fitness rooms, pools, or other common areas have a key fob access control system. It’s an affordable and safe way to keep an area secure for those who are entitled to using it. 

Helios Product Showcase 

The importance of working with a good security company ensures that when you spend the money and the effort to install a key fob access security system, the company you work with does its part. Here at Helios, we want to be there with you every step of the way from the initial consultation to the install. That’s why we offer some of the best products to choose from with high-quality brands so that you can feel safe everyday. 

We also have a team of highly-experienced professionals and technicians that can install those same products on your property so you don’t have to worry about malfunctions or breaches of security. 

Start the Process Today!

There are so many different security systems on the market that it can feel unbelievably overwhelming to know which direction to walk in. The great thing about key fob access control systems is they can be kept simple or go for a more elaborate and high-tech approach. Because they offer easy access by pairing a plastic key fob with an electronic box, you don’t have to worry about lost keys and replacing locks. 

Sure every once in a while you may deal with a lost key fob but security isn’t an issue because all you have to do is deactivate that key. You can all secure certain areas by programming the key fobs differently or setting certain access hours to different places. This gives you maximum control with hardly any effort. 

But all of this is only worth it when you work with a licensed and professional security company. There aren’t a lot of drawbacks but one of them is when the install is done poorly. You can deal with the loss of money and poor security when this happens. That’s why you shouldn’t wait to call us today at Helios! We can walk you every step of the way until the job is done!



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