Wireless Motion Sensor

Contrary to popular belief, a home burglary is least likely to take place during the night. In fact, 65% of home invasions take place during the day, when you’re at work or running errands, more specifically during 10 am and 3 pm. (A Secure Life)

The odds of a burglary taking place at your home are higher than you think, especially when knowing that one home invasion take place every 20 seconds (FBI). Therefore, when you consider how vulnerable you really are to such danger, it’s better to be safe than sorry. One of the most effective security measures for protecting your home could be to invest in a wireless motion sensor.

If you want to learn what a wireless motion sensor does and how to operate it, then the following information could be useful:

How it Works

A motion sensor by definition could pick up on the slightest unusual movement within its range. If the sensor is triggered, a signal is sent to your security system's control panel or remote device, which in turn alerts you and the monitoring service to a potential threat in your home. A wireless motion sensor may also be useful in other ways besides enhancing your home security. It is designed to alert you if anyone breaks their curfew or if pets or children are about to enter restricted areas, e.g., the basement, etc.

Motion sensors could operate as any one of the following types:

  • Passive Infrared Sensors (PIR)

    The most common type of sensor, PIR refers to the infrared energy emitted by a person’s body temperature and uses infrared wavelengths to detect any movement. Signals emitted could also be ultrasonic waves, which detect motion and send information back to the receivers.

  • Active Infrared Sensors

    These sensors are designed to emit signals that are connected to a light detector, picking up any movement when the beam gets interrupted. Signals emitted could also be waves of microwave radiation.

  • Dual Technology Motion Detectors

    This type uses a combination of the above in order to minimize the chance of false alarms and increase efficiency.

Setting Up

A wireless motion sensor is relatively easier to set up as there are no wires to place behind walls or floorboards.

For effective use of wireless motion sensors, you should survey your home for all the areas that need protection. The sensors when placed at a certain angle are designed to be more effective. You need to know how many rooms need to be covered, their sizes and the blind spots outside of the motion sensor’s range. Placing the sensors in areas such as hallways or the kitchen may also be a good idea

Some tips that can help you:

  • Keep the sensors approximately 10-15 feet away from heating vents, radiators and sunlit areas as the PIR sensors are sensitive to changes in temperature and their alarm may trigger accidentally.

  • Protect the master bedroom or any other room with valuables from intruders by placing the device nearby.

  • Motion sensors also work better if they are placed at an angle where the intruder must walk parallel to them. Walls that an intruder would have to walk alongside are good spots for sensors.


These devices can be upgraded and expanded as they come with home automation capabilities.  Therefore, one device that you may add to your home security system could be a motion detecting camera, that can take pictures (or videos) when the device detects any movement using advanced signal processing.

To prevent pets from triggering false alarms, the device can also be upgraded with sensors that are more “pet-friendly”. However, you may need to adjust the height or angle of the device first.

First Things First!

Before making a decision, you should consider:

  • Looking into various types of wireless motion sensors available in the market; what their prices are and the features they come with.

  • If buying as part of an entire home security system, prioritize those sensors that are approved by your home security provider. Your warranty may become invalid if you try to fit in an incompatible sensor.

  • Reading the instructions if you want to install the sensors yourself as it may have good suggestions for placement.

  • Remembering that motion sensors could be subject to false alarms other than those triggered by pets. Electrical failures, poor application engineering, input error, power surges, and faulty equipment, can make them go off. Reading the instructions will help you avoid such instances.

The need for a wireless motion sensor may be critical considering a home invasion is likely to take place while you or a family member is at home. Therefore, make sure that your family members understand what it means when the sensor’s alarm goes off and how to respond. The presence of a wireless motion sensor in your house may ensure that you have given your home a fighting chance against any intrusion as well as an added layer of protection.



Q:How much electricity do motion sensors use?

A:As most security systems are wireless now, they make use of Lithium batteries instead of a power line. They are generally administered by an alarm panel and do not use a lot of power. The security system's monitoring station will notify you when your motion sensor has a low battery.

Q:My Wireless motion sensor light stays on all the time, what is the problem?

A:There could be a number of reasons why your motion sensor light stays on all the time. If the knob on the sensor is set on 'high sensitivity', it can detect slightest of movements such as wind or pets. Also check if the light goes off, when you put a duct tape on your sensor. This shows that something in your surroundings is triggering the light. Besides, a faulty sensor may turn the light on as a safety measure.

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