ADT Alarm Won’t Set (Troubleshooting)

ADT Keypad with digital screen on.ADT Keypad with digital screen on.

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The ADT alarm is designed to provide multiple options for keeping your home and property safe. Whether arming the panel for away or home, these protocols give you the security you want for your family around the clock. But what if your ADT alarm won’t set?

Certain issues, including loss of power to the ADT panel, sensors that are not ready, and weak signals, can result in your ADT alarm not setting. Resolving these issues and possibly resetting the system can help resolve this problem and get your system armed.

It can be frustrating to be ready to head to bed or out for the day and find that your ADT alarm will not set. Several issues could be causing your system not to arm. Keep reading to find out the ways to troubleshoot this issue and get your home armed again.

Reasons an ADT Alarm Won’t Set

When your regular protocols for setting the ADT alarm are not working and the system refuses to set, there are some common issues that could cause this to happen. Next, we will look at the possible causes and ways to rectify them quickly.

The process of setting your alarm is often directly tied to the model number of the panel that you have. ADT has a comprehensive guide for the models they offer, so you can find the correct steps for the panel you own.

Wrong Alarm Code

If your system does not arm while using the panel, check to ensure that you enter the correct information. There are slight variations in how each panel arms your home. The most common setting combinations can be found here. Often, entering the wrong combination of numbers or pressing the wrong button can prevent your system from arming.

Sometimes, being unable to recall the system access code happens. When this occurs, you will be unable to set your alarm. In this case, you will need to reset this to continue arming your system.  You cannot reset the code and obtain a new one for security purposes if you do not know it. Contacting ADT customer service, verifying your account information, and letting them know you cannot arm your system due to forgetting the code will allow them to assist you with getting a new one.

Breached Sensors

When attempting to arm your system, it is important to ensure that the sensors that are a part of your security system are working properly and secured. If there are unsecured areas in your home, including open doors and windows, for example, this can prevent your home from arming. Check to ensure that the items with sensors in your home are secured, and then try the arming procedure again.

No Internet Connection

Seeing “Status Unavailable” on your panel could mean a loss of communication with your system. Start by checking your internet connection to ensure there is a signal and ensuring that your system is plugged in and that there is enough battery power to your device, depending on your system. After checking these connections, try arming your system again.

If this doesn’t work, you should contact ADT to get further troubleshooting assistance.

The System Needs a Reset

Occasionally, when replacing door and window sensors, you may need to reset your system to ensure the system is refreshed and sees the sensors back at full strength. Putting your system into test mode will ensure that there are no false alarms during this process.

If you are unsure about how to do this, you can contact ADT, and they can put your system into test mode for you. After the batteries are replaced, you can reset the system by removing the panel from test mode and restore the panel to full working condition.


ADT is a reliable alarm system that provides you with complete security coverage for your home and property around the clock. When your alarm does not set, trying the troubleshooting options above to fix the problem will give you peace of mind knowing your home is well-protected.

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