Mailbox Detection

Yes - you can simply peel it off and reapply.

Have you looked at using a contact sensor as shown in the post below? If you have a similar style mailbox, this is a very discrete solution that will not be influenced by passers-by.


Expanding on @ogiewon suggestion. This Iris contact sensor has worked flawlessly for over 2 years now and it’s simply mounted underneath the mailbox with double sided tape. No protection other than the mailbox itself. It works so well I have 5 neighbors subscribing to my “you got mail” alerts because our mail delivery is so unpredictable :joy:.

Here is my rule that notifies me. It only fires once each day by use of the rule private Boolean. Then I also have a virtual presence sensor flagged so I can check if one of my kids got mail before me.


I do remember reading that it is “illegal” to put anything inside a mailbox (except mail :joy:) and that is one reason why I’m going with sensors on the bottom outside.

My sensors are small, and you sort of have to bend down to see them, so I’m thinking they won’t attract a lot of attention. Plus I’m on a dead end street, so not a lot of traffic.

I tried that, but I couldn’t get it to work.

I noticed the mail carrier pulls the door open just a little and quickly throws the mail in.

I couldn’t get the spacing between the sensor and the magnet where it needed to be to work correctly.

My option my not work for you, but posting for others as an option. I have a metal box. I use an Iris v2 motion sensor inside the box with an Iris outlet plugged in outside on the front porch to act as a repeater. Without the repeater the signal would not make it in the house at all, with the repeater it works fine.

What type of magnet are you using? One supplied with contact sensor or something else? You will see a picture in @ogiewon’s post above of mine where I use a small round rare earth magnet purchased at local box store. In other words it doesn’t have to be the supplied contact sensor magnet. I simply stuck it to my metal mailbox door and moved it around until it worked. All I have to do it barely open it and it alerts me.

Have you considered a pair of these?


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Is there a driver available for that? :grin:

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There's a driver, only he's in that snowplow that knocked the mailbox into the ditch.

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I tried a z-wave motion sensor in the mailbox, with a z-wave repeater under the overhang of my roof, but the signal still couldn’t get through. I went with z-wave because supposedly it has a greater range than Zigbee.

Maybe I should try Zigbee?

Are those Z-wave or Zigbee binoculars?

I'm impressed with the distance SmartThings (zigbee) arrival sensor works.

LOL...I think we should be more worried about batteries than protocols. :wink: Those things look like they must need some serious juice.


Honestly I don’t know if zigbee will work better. I never tried it with zwave.

fwiw, I painted the outlet black so it wouldn’t be noticeable. The motion sensor just sits in the back of the box attached with mounting putty.

This works well for me. I do have an Aeotec repeater in an outdoor receptacle to help my mesh extend to the road. Without it, my mailbox would drop off frequently.

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Don't know where you ended up with this project...but thought I'd offer the following for anyone with similar objectives.

I found that trying to rig anything with the standard mailbox was going to be fraught with issues. Changing out to a more secure mailbox like below (available at Lowes and elsewhere) opened up a lot of options.

I have a Zigbee contact sensor (Visonic MCT340E) stuck to the inside wall of the box with the magnet on the underside of the pivoting door. Nothing can be seen from the exterior, door open or not.

Unbelievable to me this has worked THROUGH the metal side of the box to a repeater ~50' away. Furthermore, the dang box heats up to 120F in the sun. I think I've had to change the battery once a year!

Expanded information per community request: View is looking up into the unlocked bottom door of the box; sensor on left wall, magnet on bottom of the pivoting mail drop door above (slightly opened for this picture to show magnet separation from sensor). Sun had heated the metal box so hot it hurt to hold that drop door open for this picture. I'm still amazed this sensor survives these extremes. Been at least two years now.


This looks interesting... but of course would definitely be visible.

Whatta hoot !

I'll note that I have not limited the notification window as "someone pulling that door" has been notification of everything from a neighbor dropping something off to middle-of-the-night mailbox checking which I want to know about for mail theft attempts or "casing" purposes.

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Could you indicate on your mailbox picture where you have the magnet and the sensor?

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Download the Hubitat app