Brinks Home Security Review 2021

Brinks security systems have standard equipment with thoughtful monitoring features
Overall Rating 4.5 out of 5
Advanced alert technology
Video cloud storage included
No innovative equipment

If you’ve ever questioned the responsiveness of your home security monitoring service, we suggest trying Brinks. Brinks has a bunch of extra safety features wrapped into its monitoring, creating multiple fail safes in the event of an emergency. And, because the monthly price includes video storage, it’s cost-effective too.

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Protect America
Brinks acquired Protect America’s contracts after the company chose to end its services.
Brinks overview
ProductPriceContractHome automationLearn more
Smart Security$39.99/mo.

Yes

Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Z-Wave
View Plan

Data effective 04/15/2021. Offers subject to change.

Brinks pricing, contracts, and fees

Brinks is champion of middling home security prices

For a Brinks alarm system, you’ll pay anywhere from $200 to $700.

The $200 gets you a five-piece system that’s comparable to a Ring starter kit in terms of equipment. On the other end, $700 is more than a base Vivint system costs, but the Brinks package comes with two cameras, which makes the price seem more reasonable.

If you customize your Brinks security package with extra equipment, your price will go up.

You can choose to finance Brinks equipment if you don’t want to buy it all at once.

Brinks pricing
ProductPriceContractLearn more
Brinks Home Security$39.99/mo.

36 mos.
View Plan

Data effective 04/15/2021. Offers subject to change.

Brinks requires a 36-month contract, which is an industry standard. Security contracts are growing increasingly outdated, but if a company requires a long-term commitment, two or three years is much better than, say, five years. (Yes Vivint, that is a callout.)

Also, Brinks only has one flat monitoring price: $40 a month. That’s $10 to $20 more than popular DIY systems’ monitoring, and it’s about $10 more than most professional systems’ lowest tier.

But the fee also includes smart home connectivity and video storage costs, so it is a better deal than it initially appears to be. Plus, the Brinks professional monitoring service includes a bunch of emergency features, making it one of the more carefully designed monitoring systems out there.

Fees

If you choose to cancel your three-year contract early, you’re on the hook for the rest of the money as a cancellation fee—unless you cancel within the 30-day trial.

Brinks doesn’t have installation fees unless you choose to have a professional install your system. (More on that later.) The company doesn’t share a flat installation fee on the website, though, which makes us suspect it may vary based on the equipment installed.

If you get the Ultimate package, your professional installation is free.

Brinks equipment

Brinks equipment is mostly average, but there’s a lot of it

A lot of Brinks equipment is from Alarm.com. It’s not anything special, like Vivint- or Cove– or SimpliSafe-exclusive equipment. But it’s still reliable stuff used by systems like ADT and tons of local security providers.

Brinks also utilizes equipment from other brands, like its SkyBell doorbell or the Qolsys IQ panel that serves as the heart of the Brinks system.

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Google Nest Secure
Brinks used to sell and monitor the Google Nest Secure system, but it’s no longer an option as Nest Secure has been discontinued.
brinks equipment

Source: Brinks

Brinks says you can add up to 119 security or smart home devices that will connect with your control panel. You don’t necessarily have to get all those from Brinks, but the company does offer a ton of different devices.

Brinks equipment:

  • Control panel
  • Touchscreen keypad
  • Keychain remote
  • Door sensor
  • Window sensor
  • Motion sensor
  • Glass break sensor
  • Garage door sensor
  • Freeze sensor
  • Flood sensor
  • Carbon monoxide detector
  • Smoke detector
  • Video doorbell
  • Indoor camera
  • Outdoor camera
  • Smart lock
  • Smart switch
  • Smart dimmer
  • Smart plug
  • Smart thermostat
  • Backup battery pack
  • Window sticker
  • Yard sign

Packages

You can get three different basic equipment packages with Brinks. And if Brinks sells something that doesn’t come in your package, you can also buy it on the side. You just have to call Brinks directly for customization instead of buying online.

Brinks packages overview
Brinks packageBasicsSensorsPriceLearn more
Smart Security Essential1 control panel
1 yard sign
Window stickers
2 door sensors
1 motion sensor
$199.00View Plans
Smart Security Complete1 control panel
1 yard sign
Window stickers
2 door sensors
1 motion sensor
$349.00View Plans
Smart Security Ultimate1 control panel
1 yard sign
Window stickers
3 door sensors
1 motion sensor
$699.00View Plans

Data effective 04/15/2021. Offers subject to change.

Like many home security providers, Brinks doesn’t provide its prices immediately. But happily, you don’t have to give the company sensitive information to get a quote. All you have to do is select Buy Now, and the checkout page will show your final price.

Cameras

Brinks sells a few different cameras. They are as follows:

  • Indoor camera
  • Outdoor camera
  • SkyBell Slim Line Video Doorbell
Brinks camera specs
FeatureIndoor cameraOutdoor cameraSkyBell doorbell camera
Price$199.00$249.00$199.00
Video quality1080p1080p720p
Field of view112° horizontal, 100° vertical88°180°
Night vision

Yes, up to 20 ft.

Yes

Yes, up to 8 ft.
Motion detection

No

Yes

Yes
Local storage

No

No

Yes
Cloud storage

Yes

Yes

Yes
Learn moreView PlansView PlansView Plans

Data effective 04/15/2021. Offers subject to change.

The following points are of particular interest to potential buyers:

  • The outdoor camera’s field of view is quite limited, so it will miss a lot.
  • The night vision on all cameras is minimal.
  • None of the cameras have two-way audio because the IQ 2.0 control panel has two-way audio (meaning you can’t address people at the door unless you’re viewing the camera footage through the panel itself).
Brinks doesn’t charge more for cloud storage.

Also, in an unconventional but awesome move, Brinks doesn’t charge more for cloud storage. But the only camera you can automatically get local storage with is the doorbell.

Some reviewers are saying you can get local storage for the indoor and outdoor cameras  as long as you have a DVR. However, Brinks’s website isn’t clear on that. Either way, with the free cloud storage, fewer people would probably want local storage anyways.

Overall, for the cost, these cameras leave a lot to be desired.

Emergency features

Brinks equipment has quite a few emergency features built in.

Emergency button

Both the control panel and the remote keychain sport an emergency button.

Duress code

When you set up your Brinks system, you’ll create two codes. One is your typical disarming code. The other is a duress disarming code.

You can use this code if someone ever forces you to disarm the security against your will. It will disarm the system, but it will also let Brinks know that you need help.

ASAPer

ASAPer is a Brinks home security system feature from one of its associated companies, MONI.

This technology not only sends alerts to the monitoring center and your emergency contacts, it also quickly and automatically connects you with all of them through text or email. And it makes it easy for you to cancel false alarms as soon as possible (thus the product name).

Brinks home automation

You can connect quite a few smart home products with Brinks

As far as home automation goes, Brinks connects with the Amazon Alexa and Google Home smart assistants and the Z-Wave protocol. That means that you can connect Brinks to a wide variety of smart devices through both direct and indirect channels.

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Kwikset smart locks
Like Vivint, Brinks sells several Kwikset locks as security add-ons.

App

Smart home products that work directly with Brinks connect through the Brinks app, creating one go-to spot for all smart home control.

When we say “Brinks app,” we actually mean “Alarm.com app,” as Brinks uses this generic app for its smart home needs. There’s nothing wrong with that—the app is highly rated—but know that you could get the same app experience with a smaller, local company.

Brinks installation

Professional and DIY installation in one go

Is Brinks a professionally installed system? Is it a DIY system? It’s both.

If you get an Essential or Complete package, installation is your responsibility. But you’re not alone; the company provides phone assistance to walk you through the installation. And if you don’t want to DIY it, you can also arrange for a Brinks tech to come and install it for you.

If you get the Ultimate package, professional installation is included.

One thing to note: unlike most professional installers, Brinks doesn’t offer a home security consultation beforehand. So it’s up to you to choose the equipment you think you’ll need.

Brinks customer experience

Brinks reviews are mixed

A lot of recent Brinks reviews are positive, especially regarding the reps who help users install and troubleshoot their systems. But there are plenty of negative reviews in the mix too.

Many negative reviews suggest that Brinks has some communication issues with its customers, possibly because the company seems to be involved in more takeover of other security companies than typical. It sounds like a lot of customers don’t like their new provider compared to their old ones.

Either way, know that you could have a potentially frustrating experience with Brinks customer service.

Recap: Is Brinks good?

Brinks doesn’t stand out as much, but it’s not a bad system

Brinks is a pretty unassuming offering. It’s not expensive but it’s not cheap, it’s not overly innovative but it’s not entirely behind the times—and it’s not flashy in any way. The only thing that really sets Brinks apart is that it offers a lot of useful monitoring features.

So if you want to get the most out of your monitoring, you and Brinks will get along like nobody’s business. But if you’re more into gadgets, or you want something flashier, you should look elsewhere.

  • Pricing: Brinks’s prices are reasonable, especially considering the video storage and emergency monitoring features.
  • Equipment: Brinks offers equipment from other manufacturers that gets the job done, and there are a lot of different options.
  • Home automation: You can create a nice smart home setup with Brinks compatibility, which includes Amazon, Alexa, and Z-Wave.
  • Installation: Install it yourself, or don’t if you want help. Brinks offers both sides of the installation spectrum.
  • Customer experience: Brinks has a few kinks when it comes to customer service, especially surrounding communication.

If you’re still mulling this one over, visit our Best Home Security Systems for some expert comparison.

Is your house ready for Brinks?

Modern home security systems often use the internet and your phone to create a smart security experience. See if your services are up-to-date.

Recommended internet plans

Would adding a security system and cameras overload your current internet connection? If the answer is yes, consider getting faster Wi-Fi.

Recommended internet plans for Brinks
ServicePlanPriceDownload speedDetails
Xfinity Internet - WestBlast! Pro$80*300 MbpsView Plan
Verizon Internet - Fios GigInternet 400/400$59.99/mo.400 MbpsView Plan
AT&T FiberAT&T Internet 1000$60/mo.940 MbpsView Plan
Data effective 11/04/20. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* For the first 12 months with a 1-year agreement.
w/ Auto Pay + taxes & equip. charges.
Ltd. avail/areas for 12 mos, plus taxes & equip. fee. Autopay & Paperless Bill req'd. $10/mo equip. fee applies

Recommended mobile plans

You’ll get the most use out of your security system when you can check up on it from anywhere. To that purpose, we suggest unlimited data phone plans.

Brinks FAQ

Stick around while we answer questions about Brinks.

How long has Brinks been in business?

About 160 years, sort of.

Brinks’s history is more complicated than you might think. In 1859, it started as an armored transportation service for valuable goods (including the Hope Diamond).

In 1983, a home security branch was added.¹ Eventually, Brinks joined forces with MONI and LiveWatch, creating the system as we know it today.

How do I get out of a Brinks contract?

If you’ve tried a Brinks security system and feel it isn’t for you, but you’ve exceeded the trial cancellation window, you’ll call Brinks up, state your intention to cancel, and sign an electronic form.

The cancellation will take 30 days to be official, so you may receive another Brinks bill before the service expires.²

Our recommendation is to cancel Brinks monitoring 30 days before your contract expires. That way, you won’t have any remaining contract balance to worry about.

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After the contract
We’ve heard some varying responses about how Brinks contracts work. We’ve heard that your contract will automatically go to a 12-month commitment after its initial run, but we’ve also heard that it will go month to month. We suggest checking with Brinks as your initial contract expiration date draws near, just so you know what to expect.

Does Brinks offer video monitoring?

No.

If you live in an area that requires visual confirmation of an intruder before you can sound the alarm, you might be on the lookout for professional video monitoring. Unfortunately, Brinks does not offer this service at this time.

Sources

  1. Wikipedia, “Brink’s,” March 1, 2021. Accessed April 16, 2021.
  2. Shay McElroy, Brinks Home, “How to Cancel Your Brinks Home Security Account,” June 22, 2018. Accessed April 19, 2021.
  • Mike Junkins

    Just hope you do not live long enough to need to cancel your contract with Brinks Home Security. I have a fulfilled contract I have been working on cancelling in advance of its expiration, and I have 15 days and 5 hours on the phone and still it is not cancelled. I cannot believe the idiotic hurdles they have created to keep you from cancelling. I am not the giving up type however, I will complain into eternity and dispute my card charges. I have decided that I need to stand agains this kind of trickery. A substandard company trying to ride on the coat tails of a good name from the past – in my opinion.