Motion sensors activate with no reason

hi guys,

I have that strange issue where motions sensors activate for no particular reason. I have scene where 3 motion seniors were activating 5 different lights. All was working without any problems for last two years, but for some time light is randomly turning on without any movement in that area. I checked the logs and the sensor activates and deactivates constantly so the light turns on just after it turns off. Sometimes there are no issues for a few hours and when it starts then it's constantly turning on and off. The motion sensor which causes this is random.

Any ideas?

What is your motion sensors make/model?
I have a similar issue with my Xiaomi/Aqara motion sensors when the battery is low.

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I'd also want to be sure it is device events you are referring to in the logs. Open the device page and click on the Event button at the top to check it is actually the motion sensor that is moving between the activated and inactive states. Just to rule out any issues with apps having some kind of delayed response.

A little bit further down the track you may also want to check the status of the mesh that the sensors are part of (assuming it is Zigbee). Could be some issues with comm's and repeaters.

They are all Coolcam Z-wave multisensor

I was thinking about this. All the sensor's battery is around the 30%

I was also thinking about the ghost in my hall :wink:
It's a really old house


Definitely no ghosts, but these false triggerings make the usage of the Hubitat Safety Monitor very problematic...
Replace the battery with a new one at one of the Neo Coolcam motion sensors and monitor it the false triggering will stop or not.
If the Z-wave driver allows configuration of the sensor sensitivity, you can also try reducing it if possible.

This sort of thing happens when battery is low. Ignore the "30%" stuff - battery reports are rarely accurate. Just try new batteries and if that solves the problem that's what it was.


I've mitigated the problem of false motion when I'm away by using Zone Motion Controller to have 2 sensors that must activate in a set time window for the zone to go active. I then use these zones in HSM to stop the house thinking we have intruders.
Just something to consider.

As for false motion, batteries would be the first thing to change as others have mentioned.


I will try the battery replacement first. I will report if helped. Thanks A lot.

Many sensors are powered by lithium batteries. The battery voltage on these batteries stays close to maximum until the battery is close to EOL. Then the voltage plummets, The device drivers predict battery life by measuring battery voltage. Thus, by the time you get to 30% life remaining, you might not have much life left. However, I have some devices that continue to work with only 1% battery life remaining. It all depends upon the specific device and its driver.

Try replacing the batteries in some of the sensors, but not others and see if that makes a difference.

Great advice. I should add because of what you said about the battery, I don't know of any of these lithium run devices use and voltage regulation. They just straight off the battery since it's stable until it's not.

For my smartthings sensors I have, I find 50% and up is fine. After they drop below 50% then it becomes hit and miss if the sensor will even call home. I use the Hubitat notification app to send me a notification when a sensor drops below 50%. I do end to changing some batteries prematurely, but it stops the "ghosts" or just non-working for me, :slight_smile:

If you want to squeeze that last little bit out of the batteries you could try using the device watchdog app by @bptworld, using activity from the device as an indicator for it still working, or not. There are some caveats and nuances to using these indicators, nothing to do with the way Bryan has developed the app, just the way the various elements operate, but the watchdog app provides an easy to use way of tapping into these metrics.


Thanks. I did add that in later and it's been helpful for my moisture sensors that don't report as often or for my Lutron Pico remotes that don't report battery level.

For the motion stuff, Hubitat has schooled the family so far that if they don't trigger motion, everyone sits in the dark. Just not acceptable, hence why I'm ok with swapping batteries! :slight_smile: I do buy the cheapest ones off Amazon, and even at 50%, I get 6-18 months, depending on sensor activity.

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To be honest, I've had a lot of my hue motion sensors for nearly 3-4 years and I can't remember replacing any batteries. Admittedly the cost of the bridge and the sensors themselves may outweigh the battery replacement charge... but even just for convenience and reliability...

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You do not need a Hue bridge to use Hue motion sensors. In fact, it is best not to pair them with the bridge, even if you have one. The sensors are Zigbee 3.0, so they pair quite nicely with Hubitat directly. If your use them withy the Hue bridge, they can only be used to control Hue lighting. If you pair them with Hubitat, you can use them for lots of different things.

I have several Hue motion sensors. Most are older versions, but the most recent is the new generation. They are all paired directly with Hubitat and control things other than Hue lighting. I do have a Hue bridge, but it only controls Hue lights.

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The community developed advanced hue integration and I believe coco hue can receive push notifications from sensors such as these when they are connected to the hue bridge, which is what I have been doing.