A site survey and a full test should be done by the systems integrator before installing any device. Every location where wireless devices are wanted should be thoroughly investigated and documented on plans for devices and receivers to optimize the signaling. The site survey should also consider other wireless devices such as networks for wireless computers, telephone systems, alarm systems and CCTV. This important upfront work assures there will be no harmonic overflow to create problems with other wireless devices.
Every situation has its own requirements. Sometimes wireless, sometimes wired is best for specific access points. For a highly secured door a wired system may be better, with wires and reader wires installed in conduit, a backup for life safety issues and automatic communication with a burglar alarm and/or CCTV system tied in.
A wireless system may be better in areas where wire cannot be run for aesthetic reasons or the area is highly secured or wiring is simply not in the budget, but you do want to control public and perhaps employee access. This is where the wireless or standalone virtual locking system may be most appropriate for the situation.
Michael J. Mahon is senior vice president for Salto Systems and has more than 25 years of security industry experience. He is an ASIS member, a participant of NACAS and NACU in the education area, and has served as an instructor for the Institutional Locksmiths of America.