When the term ‘vessel monitoring’ comes up, most boaters think of these great little apps that display and alert you to other marine traffic. Some go so far as to provide the registration of that particular vessel and often even a photo for easy confirmation. That’s not what we’re going to talk about in this article. Today, we’re speaking monitoring YOUR vessel, while your away. Boat alarms have come a long way from the days of two bare contact points lying in your bilge, ready to sound the alarm if they contact water.
Today’s boat alarms are more than just electronic products, but intricate systems using computer technology, the Internet, and smartphone integration. We review three of them below.
The remote boat alarms providers mentioned here rely solely on GSM mobile cellular technology and GPS to communicate between vessels and their owner. You can monitor a wide range of things such as shore power connection, fridges, pumps, battery levels, as well as keep an eye out for intruders in real-time, wherever you are. You are also notified if your boat’s location has changed. More functionality can be managed remotely by accessing your web page via text, or app. You’re alerted and sent reports via email on any of the channels as mentioned earlier. These remote boat alarms are very convenient, quick, and provide 24/7 services. In this review, we shall take a closer look at Boat Command, Boat Warden, and BoatGuard alarm systems to help you make an informed decision.
Boat Command, a U.S. based company, allows the user to get real-time alerts and remotely monitor various items from wherever they are. This system’s App can be installed on any Android or Apple devices. You can also access it through any common web browser. Alerts are sent from the system via email or text messages. It is very small and has a detachable multi-conductor wire harness for all the inputs and outputs. Its GPS and cell phone antennas are built-in to the main unit.
With Boat Command, you can monitor your bilge for leaks; the sensor can be a simple float switch, and when triggered, Boat Command will send you an alert. You can also check on your security; Boat Command offers a trigger that is wired to a magnetic door switch which sets off an alarm when moved.
Its output control has three connections that allow you to turn on/ off any items of your choice. Using its bilge pump connection, you can track your pump on and off events as well as each run duration. Alerts are sent to you based on specified thresholds.
Other notifications that can be sent to you are; battery levels, temperature (you can receive actual local temperature, pressure, humidity, and wind speed from any public weather station near your vessel location via the Boat Command temp sensor), and your boat’s position.
Boat Warden is an SMS phone controlled remote boat alarm system. Just as other remote control systems mentioned, it begins with a base unit that you are free to add functionality through an al-a-carte system of sensor add-ons including lights, or bilge alarms. It has some pre-programmed commands for simple operations such as control system, turning on pumps, and turning off lights. The user is also able to send an SMS to your Boat Warden to run your bilge pump for 2 minutes.
The Boat Warden App is available for free download for all iPhone and Android phones. You can check your boat’s location, battery life, weather, security, turn on/off lights, temperatures, and much more from anywhere in the world. Boat Warden has no monthly or annual fee. All you need to do is buy this unit and a pay-as-you-go SIM card, and you are ready to go.
The Boat Guard alarm system is very simple to use. It can map and track your boat position by sending alerts to you. Just like the other two mentioned systems, it has helpful functions such as temperature, fire, humidity, air conditioning operations, and intruder alarms services. This item also has a base system with extension modules, each one allowing for up to eight sensors and actuators.
BoatGuard monitors your boat’s battery level, bilge pump status, GPS location, and bilge water levels. You can switch off devices that you accidentally left on or even turn on some devices including your deck lights, fridge, air conditioning, etc.
Boat Guard allows you to track and monitor your precious asset in real time from anywhere, anytime, as long as you have your Boat Guard App installed on your Android or Apple device, or just use your laptop to access your boat’s information.
It is up to you to decide which boat alarm system suits your needs. From a functional, technical, and dependability perspective, these systems will not disappoint. Any of these vessel monitoring systems will allow you to monitor and protect your boat with just a click of a button.