Correct height for mounting motion sensors

Looking for some advice of how high everyone mounts their motion sensors? I've seen multiple places that say mount them 6-8 feet and others that say 4-5 (which seems weird to me). I have 10ft ceilings and want to avoid a ceiling fan setting off the motion sensor.

@bertabcd1234 will no doubt give you a more concise answer. My input, where it works, and the WAF is not negatively impacted. :laughing:

EDIT: I just tested mine which is up high (on a book shelf 8 feet up). It does not detect my ceiling fan on high as motion.


Most of these work via IR detection, not literal "motion," and so a ceiling fan is not likely to affect them (it won't look like a "person"-shaped moving IR signature to a sensor). The few manufacturers I have seen comment on this usually say not to install it too close (to these or other concerns like hot air registers, light fixtures, etc.), but more than a few feet away and you should be fine. If your documentation for the sensor has any advice, I'd heed that, otherwise these general recommendations may be good enough.

Personally, almost all of mine are about a foot or so below the ceiling, many of them sitting upright on door or window trim because I can't decide where to really put them (I've been here two years :joy:). I've also used some on the ceiling before, even if they aren't specifically intended for this (someone recently asked a out this in a different thread). If you want to experiment, Command Strips (by 3M) work well and are easily removable after short-term installion if you follow the directions--maybe check the event history on the device once in a while and verify you aren't getting "false positives" for motion with your placement if that's a concern.

I have yet to see a window, floor, or ceiling fan affect mine, but most of mine aren't too close. I have seen large windows with (automated) blinds opening or closing do this, and until I blocked off part of a Lutron sensor, my (large) hot air registers appeared to continue to cause them to think there was motion, even if I left the room. So you might need to experiment but suspect this won't cause much trouble and could be resolved if you do.


@bertabcd1234 Super detailed response, I appreciate it. I too was thinking of mounting temporarily to see how it works out but I wasn't aware it worked via IR detection.

Debating on putting it right above the door to detect when someone first walks in, or on the opposite side of the door. I'll test it out and see how it works.

Most of these motion sensors use IR detection in fan shaped “beam patterns”. You get faster detection when crossing the beams so your detectors should be placed so that they are not pointing directly at the target area but rather pointed across it.
You can usually mask or restrict the detection area by creating small physical barriers like insulated sleaving or cardboard tubing over the lens.

That would explain why my Wyze motion sensor was showing as active when I was testing it near my Wyze cam. Turned off the lights and the IR sensors activated for low light. This triggered my motion sensor :rofl: :rofl:

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For my downstairs rooms I am using the SmartThings motion detectors and I mounted these at the top of the wall so roughly 9'4" high, and upstairs I have 1 GoControl motion sensor which I mounted right over the top of a door frame which is a little over 8'

Both positions seem to be working great, activity is noticed immediately when I walk into a room and the ceiling fan doesn't seem to have any impact on either.

Thanks for the advice all!

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