Motion Sensors - Differences, Detection Angles, sensitivity?

I'm currently using a lot of x10 RF motion sensors for my automation. They actually work pretty well, but have to be programmed every time you change the battery, which is often, and they're not the most attractive.

Staring to look at zigbee and zwave sensors - I've gotten a thirdreality sensor, Centralite, and the new Aeotec (which I think is rebrand of the ST motion sensor?).

I wondered if anyone knew how they compare regarding horizontal and vertical angles of reception, sensitivity, etc.

I have a motion sensor on my front porch for turning on the light on the stairs. It took some serious work on the X10 sensor window with tape to get it to trigger when someone comes up the front stairs but NOT every time a car drives by or someone walks past the house.

One other question - has anyone successfully waterproofed any of the indoor sensors? I did pick up a hue outdoor sensor, but it's a bit pricey, and also rather large. I was thinking of trying to seal around the sensor with silicone sealant and some silicon tape where the units open.

Just a thought - but too late to be useful to you as you no longer wish to use battery models. But if anyone is having trouble with their sensors picking up people in the street, the solution is to place it somewhere in the front garden facing your house instead. I've done that with some of my cameras and now I don't get false alerts from those.


Didn't say I didn't want to use battery models. Just that I'm switching from the X10 sensors because their batteries don't last long and have to be reprogrammed each time they're changed.
However, not sure how I could place a sensor in garden . What do you have it attached to? It's a good idea but not sure how that would work unless I hung it around a plant. :slight_smile: Also it would get constantly sprayed by my irrigation so would have to be EXTREMELEY water resistant.
The good thing about the X10 sensors is the sensor window is large, so it's a bit easier to mask off portions vertically and horizontally. Trickier with the small dome-shaped sensors on newer devices.

I have one of mine disguised in a birdhouse, and one disguised as one of those soilpipe vents. They get wet, but they're advertised as being outdoor cameras.

Oh I see - right, you did say cameras.

That's a good idea though - I have some landscape lights I could attach one to! Just have to figure out how to weather proof one of the small ones. (Or just live with the outdoor rated X10 models for now).
I might try sealing one of the third reality sensors - cheap enough that I could afford to lose one. They take AAAs so I could substitute lithium batteries for outdoor use - will see if they operate on the slightly lower voltage.

Thanks for the suggestion!

I don't remember a good summary of those specs, but maybe @bertabcd1234 has a better memory than me. (He does have a better memory, I keep forgetting that.) :wink:

For outdoors the Hue outdoor motion sensors are quite nice, I've found them reliable and pretty much issue free. They are more expensive, so I use them in fully epxosed positions, and simply use indoor motion sensors that I have mounted under eaves and other outdoor protected spots. Have had no issues w/using indoor sensors outside as long as I don't have them exposed directly to water.

There have been some motion sensor threads lately that should be generally useful to you:

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Thank you - this was too good for just a "like". Much appreciated!!!

Right now, I have about 8 or 10 of the outdoor X10 sensors in place. They're really pretty good in a lot of ways. At the moment, I'm making this work via my primary automation software Home Control Assistant, which talks to HE via Maker API. It's a bit of a kludge, as I have to create both a virtual motion sensor in HE AND a virtual switch to go with it, since HCA can't set the state of the virtual motion sensor (not sure if that's an HCA issue or a Maker API limitation). Apart from the proliferation of virtual devices that works fine, and the X10 sensors are pretty reliable when combined with a WGL RF receiver.

Download the Hubitat app