Brinks Home Security Review
Brinks is one of the best known security companies in the business, with more than a million subscribers. Brinks not only offers home alarm monitoring, but it has also developed a patented ASAPer technology to quickly connect you with family members in case of emergencies. It’s been offering security services for around 150 years and is well-known for quick response times and for its advanced technologies.
Not only does Brinks provide monitoring to those who install a full system, but Brinks has also partnered with Nest. Nest Secure users who install a DIY home security system using the Nest family of products can sign up for monitoring with Brinks.
Here’s how we graded Brinks:
- Hardware: 5 out of 5: Reliable equipment with battery backup and cellular backup earns Brinks hardware a top grade.
- Customer Service: 3.5 out of 5: Brinks customer service representatives were responsive when our Security Nerd called with questions and the company got fairly good reviews from existing customers.
- Pricing: 4 out of 5: Up front equipment prices are reasonable and so are monitoring fees, but you do need to sign a long-term contract.
- The Mobile App: 4 out of 5: The Brinks app gives you control over not just your security system but also smart home devices. The downside is that it doesn’t always work flawlessly.
- SmartHome Capabilities: 5 out of 5: With your Brinks system connecting to more than 100 smart home devices, the Smart home capabilities can’t be beat.
|Home Complete||Home Complete With Video|
|Installation Fee||$0 for DIY installation; professional install costs vary||$0 for DIY installation; professional install costs vary|
|Installation||DIY or Pro||DIY or Pro|
|Smoke and CO Monitoring||Yes||Yes|
|Smart Home Integration||Yes||Yes|
|Contract Length||3 years||3 years|
|Warranty||2 years||2 years|
|iTunes app rating||3.8||3.8|
|Google Play app rating||4||4|
Brinks gives you the option of choosing a Brinks Complete system or buying Nest Secure products.
Your Brinks system can act as a centralized hub for 119 different smart home devices. You can control your security system with your Apple TV, with Amazon Alexa, with Google Home and with top-rated mobile apps.
The Brinks Alarm Response center operates 24/7 and is staffed by trained professionals who quickly notify appropriate first responders such as medical authorities, fire or police if something goes wrong. Brinks also has a patented ASAPer system that allows you to choose who gets alerts, turn off false alarms and chat with emergency contacts directly from the Brinks app.
Brinks systems connect your system to the Alarm Response Center via cellular and WiFi. Cellular backup and battery backup ensure monitoring will not be interrupted if your network is down or if your power is out.
You don’t need to worry about running wires to get your security system up and running.
While you can sign up for month-to-month monitoring with Brinks if you go with a Nest Secure system, other plans including Home Complete Systems require a long-term contract that lasts at least 36 months.
Brinks and Nest systems are designed to ship out to you for a DIY installation. If you do need a professional to come out and install the equipment, it will cost you extra. Brinks Pro Install services will cost $199 upfront or you can spread out the payments at $10/month.
Customers complain about pressure to extend contracts and problems with equipment.
Equipment available from Brinks
Brinks provides professional monitoring for Nest Secure customers and also sells its own security equipment called Home Complete.
The basic Nest Secure package is $399 but they often run promotions (such as a $100 gift card at the time of publication) which brings the system price down. This package includes:
- Nest Guard (the hub of the system)
- 2 Nest Detects, which detect different things depending on where in your home they are installed.
- 2 Nest Tags, which allow you to control your system with a tiny tag on your keychain
- Yard signs and stickers
Brinks Home Complete is a bit more expensive at $499. However, you’ll also qualify for promotional discounts for this system. With Brinks Home Complete you will be responsible for $29 monthly monitoring costs and will need to commit to a 36-month agreement. The package includes:
- Brinks Home Touch: A touch screen control panel
- A wireless motion sensor
- Three wireless door sensors
- Yard signs and stickers.
Brinks Home Complete with Video comes in at $599. Monitoring is $39 per month with a 36-month agreement if you choose this package because you’ve added on video monitoring as well. The package is the same as the Brinks Home Complete, but adds an indoor camera with night vision as well as a video doorbell.
The Brinks mobile app
The Brinks mobile app received a
- 3.8 out of 5 stars in the Apple App Store
- 4 out of 5 stars in the Google Play Store
The app has lots of features including:
- Control over your security system as well as linked smart devices including thermostats, lights and garage doors.
- Video feeds from compatible indoor or outdoor cameras or from your compatible video doorbell.
- The ability to receive notifications, respond to alerts and false alarms and to talk with emergency contacts directly from within your app.
With the Brinks app, you have almost complete control over many devices and systems in your home depending which smart home devices you’ve purchased.
Brinks smart home capabilities
Some of the smart home capabilities you can use with your Brinks system include:
- Lighting and appliance control: Add GE in-wall dimmers, smart switches, plug in light and appliance modules and more to control the lights and appliances throughout your home.
- Temperature control: Smart thermostats such as the IQ Thermostat give you control over your home’s temperature whether you are at home or away.
- Smart locks: Control who can come and go to your home or unlock your door with the touch of a button.
You can also use control your Brinks system with your Apple TV, Alexa, or Google Home devices.
Brinks customer service
Customer service from Brinks gets mixed reviews. We noticed more than a few customers reported having a negative experience with the company. Customers have complained of rude responses from customer service agents; being pressured to sign long-term contract extensions; hardware issues; and more.
To test customer service, the SecurityNerds tested each of the following processes:
- Sales: Called customer service to ask about installing a security system. Sales staff were responsive but not pushy.
- Design: Used the Brinks website to customize a security system design. Prices were readily displayed and it was easy to compare packages.
- Customer service: Called Brinks to see how long it to speak with a human. Responses were timely and our Security Nerd was satisfied with her experience with the Brinks representative.
Brinks covers the following areas
Brinks systems are available in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.
Brinks pricing and packages
Brinks pricing depends on the package you select. Key costs to consider include:
- The upfront cost of equipment: This varies depending which package you select. Prices for the Nest Secure, Home Complete and Home Complete with Video are posted above. You’ll want to figure out what you need for your home and whether or not you want to be tied into a contract — these two factors will impact what you dish out upfront.
- Installation costs: Installation costs vary. Some systems and components, including the Nest Secure system, are meant for DIY installation. If you must contact a professional installer, you can expect prices to be several hundred dollars or more.
- Professional monitoring costs: Monitoring is $29 per month with most plans if you sign a contract, or is $39 per month if you sign up for Nest Secure with no contractual commitment.
In addition to the package pricing, you can also buy individual security components or smart home devices through Brinks. Here are some examples of prices for these items:
- Brinks Home indoor camera: $199
- Brinks Home outdoor camera: $299
- SkyBell Slim Line video doorbell: $199
- IQ Smoke detector: $79
- FireFighter: $59
- IQ wireless garage door tilt sensor: $39
- IQ wireless carbon monoxide detector: $79
- IQ wireless food detector: $49
- Window glass break detector: 79
- Keychain remote: $29
Nerd Rating: 4 / 5
Brinks is well-known for its responsiveness and it offers the flexibility customers need with a choice of no-contract plans if you choose Brinks monitoring through Nest Secure or long-term plans with Brinks Complete systems. WiFi, Cellular, and backup battery ensure your system is always working and Brinks long-established reputation ensures you’re in good hands if something goes wrong.
Brinks is available throughout the United States and is one of our top picks. If you don’t mind signing a long-term contract or you’re OK with using the Nest system to gain access to Brinks monitoring, it’s a solid option for homeowners.
About the Author
Christy Rakoczy has been a full-time writer for more than a decade. She has a law degree from UCLA School of Law and a degree in English, Media & Communications from the University of Rochester. In addition to writing for the web, she has also written textbooks and educational content and has served as a subject matter expert for online course development.