The Best Motion Sensors
Security systems are the bread and motion sensors are the butter–these two come together to give you and your family the enhanced protection that your home needs. When searching for the best motion sensors for your home, it’s important to consider the type of technology and features.
Safety.com’s Top 3 Picks
Best Value Motion Sensor
Why we picked it:
- Easy to set up and pair with your phone
- Immediate alerts sent to your phone through the app
- Can opt for professional or self-monitoring
Best Activity Detection Motion Sensor
Why we picked it:
- See and speak to visitors through your smartphone, tablet or computer
- Get alerts whenever motion is detected
- Features ultra-bright floodlights for clear vision and a siren
Best Motion Sensor for Pet Owners
Why we picked it:
- Detects motion within a 30 foot radius
- Designed with flexibility to be installed on a shelf, wall or in a corner
- Pet-friendly and designed to avoid detecting pets under 50 pounds
A Guide to Buying Motion Sensors
What are motion sensors?
Motion sensors are devices made to detect activity. These can be used indoors or outdoors to enhance your home protection. Whenever an indoor sensor is tripped, a signal is sent to your security system’s control panel or base station, and then your monitoring company is notified. From there, you may be contacted by your monitoring company or the authorities may be dispatched. It’s also important to note that some motion sensors can be self-installed and come with professional monitoring. This gives you the freedom to place them wherever you feel is best in your home.
Different types of motion sensors
These devices come in different types, depending on the use location and technology. The most common type you’ll find are passive infrared (PIR) motion sensors, and this is because they recognize heat signatures. Some PIR motion sensors are designed to avoid pets up to a certain weight, making these great for pet owners.
Dual-technology motion sensors can be more superior to their single-technology counterparts as they can help prevent more false alarms with two types, such as combining PIR with microwave technology. We break down several types of motions sensors you’ll find while shopping below:
- Passive infrared (PIR) motion sensors – These are designed to detect body heat and movement within the parameters of the sensor. This is most common technology used in these devices on the market today.
- Microwave motion sensors – These devices send of microwave pulses, are able to provide more coverage, and are usually more expensive.
- Ultrasonic motion sensors – These sensors emit ultrasonic waves and can calculate the reflection of those waves from a moving object.
- Dual-technology motion sensors – These devices combine different motion-sensing technologies, such as PIR and ultrasonic technologies combine in one sensor.
Reasons to buy motion lights
In addition to typical sensors, there are also motion lights that are designed to illuminate outdoor areas whenever motion is detected. There are several reasons why motion lights are great to purchase for your home as they can provide the following:
- Lighting for outdoor areas after dark
- Intruder deterrence
- An alert whenever there’s activity on your property
Not only can these devices provide you with added security after getting off late or coming home after extracurricular activities, but they can also put the spotlight on suspicious activity and can deter criminals.
10 Best Motion Sensors
1. Kangaroo Motion Sensor
Designed for simplicity, the Kangaroo Home Security Motion Sensor is easy to install and controllable from your smartphone through mobile app. You’ll receive alerts whenever suspicious activity is detected; and with this motion sensor, you can avoid false alarms with its pet friendly design.
- Easy peel and stick installation
- Designed for simple indoor monitoring
- Optional professional monitoring for enhanced security
- Prevents false alarms by avoiding pet detection
Best Activity Detection Motion Sensor
2. Ring Motion-Activated Camera
Engineered for your enhanced protection, this Ring floodlight motion sensing camera will alert you as soon as motion is detected. Includes 1080p HD video,night vision, and a two-way speaker so you can see, hear and talk to visitors. Connects with Amazon Alexa so you can watch real-time video through voice control.
- Designed for monitoring areas of your property
- Ultra-bright LED floodlights to deter intruders and light the outside of your home
- Siren, camera and lights can be controlled by your phone
- Compatible with Amazon Alexa for voice control
Best Motion Sensor for Pet Owners
3. Simplisafe Motion Sensor
Great for pet-owners, this SimpliSafe motion sensor has a 90-degree field of vision, providing full coverage if placed in a corner. Made with flexibility for installation, it can be set on a shelf or even hung on a wall. If you have pets under 50 pounds, this device is designed to avoid detecting them and prevent false alarms.
- Great for indoor monitoring
- Won’t detect pets under 50 pounds
- Provides full coverage with a 90-degree field of vision
- Boasts a 30-foot range for motion detection
4. ADT Motion Sensor
Designed to be pet-friendly and customizable for your furry friends, the ADT Motion Sensor provides coverage for large rooms and spaces and works with your security system to trigger your lights if the sensor is tripped.
- Designed for indoor monitoring
- Provides coverage for a 35-foot to 40-foot area
- Receive alerts by phone or email
- Professional technician can adjust the sensor’s sensitivity for pet owners
5. Mr.Beams Motion Sensing Spotlight
Great for warding off unsuspecting visitors, the Mr. Beams Motion Sensing Spotlight can be installed in around 5 minutes and provide motion detection for a 30-foot range. With automatic shut-off, you won’t have to worry about excessive energy use, and the weatherproof design makes this device great for mounting above your garage, storage shed or another outdoor area.
- Engineered for outdoor monitoring
- Spotlight detects motion within a 30-foot range
- Features two bright, LED spotlights with automatic shut-off
- Sturdy, weatherproof design
6. LITOM Motion Sensor Light
Powered by solar energy, the LITOM Wireless Motion Sensor provides a well-lit environment for outdoor areas of your home. Featuring 24 LED lights, when motion is detected, this sensor will provide lighting for up to 20 seconds. This product can be best used for lighting above your garage, steps, corners and more.
- Absorbs sunlight and converts into electricity
- Designed to illuminate outdoor areas of your home
- Provides lighting for 20 seconds when motion is detected at night
- Waterproof design to protect circuit and battery
7. Fosmon Motion Sensor Alarm
Made for an easy, wireless install, the Fosman WaveLink Motion Sensor is great for letting you know when you have a visitor. This sensor features 52 ringtones, and whenever motion is detected, you’ll be notified by a ringtone. Visual alerts are also available for those with hearing impairment.
- Versatile installation for indoor or outdoor areas
- Features ability to detect motion through your front or back doors
- Alerts you with a ringtone whenever motion is detected within a 16.4-foot range
- Wireless installation
8. WJLING Motion Sensor Alarm
The WJLING Motion Sensor Alarm is designed to detect activity through an infrared sensor and has a range of up to 328 feet for motion detection. This allows you to receive warnings for visitors who even arrive in your driveway. With a wireless design, you can plug the receiver into any outlet and get started with ease.
- Detects motion through an infrared sensor
- Comes with 38 ringtones for alerts
- Can be installed indoors or outdoors
- Durable, waterproof design
9. 1byone Motion Sensor Alarm
Stay safe with the 1byone Wireless Home Security Driveway Alarm that comes equipped with a ring volume of up to 100dB and motion detection within a 328-foot range. This sensor and alarm is expandable for greater coverage and can be combined with additional sensors and receivers.
- Made with a 328-foot communication range between the sensor and receiver
- Features an alarm with a ring volume of up to 100dB
- Uses passive-infrared technology for motion detection
- Flexible installation for indoor or outdoor use
10. Guardline Motion Sensor
The Guardline Outdoor Motion Sensor is built to last with environmental testing through storms and harsh conditions. You can choose from over 30 chimes; and, with multiple sensors, you can set a different chime for different parts of your property.
- Engineered with a of ¼ mile motion detection
- Designed for outdoor use
- Environmentally tested for durability and dependability
- Choose from over 30 chimes for your sensor
Benefits of motion sensors
What are the advantages of home security motion detectors?
Home security motion detectors are a main line of defense with your security system. If your security system has door and window detectors, these serve as a line of defense whenever a door or window is opened. If these detectors, however, are not triggered, then that’s when motion sensors do the “heavy lifting” of detecting suspicious activity and triggering the control panel. This is one of the biggest advantages of motion sensors and even around your home.
Another advantage that these sensors can have is if they come with lighting. It’s easy to find flood lights or outdoor lights that come with motion sensing technology. Whenever activity is detected, the lights are triggered and can provide a well-lit path if you’re arriving home late. As a two-fold benefit, these lights can also deter burglars and intruders as they’re caught in their tracks. Some outdoor motion sensors even feature alarms that will let you know when activity has been detected on your property.
The best motion sensors for your home
Motion sensors play a key role in home protection. They can work in tandem with your security system as an indoor element or standalone as an outdoor element to deter suspicious activity and keep you alert. If you’re looking for other environmental monitoring devices to go with your motion sensor, check out our list of the best smoke detectors for your home. With our list of the 10 best motion sensors, you now have a jumpstart on finding one to help guard what matters most.
Top 5 motion sensors
- Kangaroo Home Security Motion Sensor
- Ring Floodlight Motion-Activated Camera
- SimpliSafe Extra Motion Sensor
- ADT Motion Sensor
- Mr. Beams MB3000 Motion Sensing Spotlight