False PIR Motion Events - Recently Began. Demon or something else?

Have had a ST network up for years. This particular sensor turns on the light when you enter the room and has been in place for 4-5 years. Recently it began sensing motion events at very regular intervals, 13 minutes apart to be precise. Spooky. Changed the battery, same thing. Pulled out another sensor, same thing. 13 minutes between each alarm? Um, time to move, right?

That being said, downloaded the logs off the device and it averages 12:33 between false triggers. Nothing new has gone into the room, except quite honestly, a keepsake from my grandfather that my dad recently passed on to me. In the interest of science, I have moved it out of the room, still getting the events. Heh. Even put in a sensor from another part of the house that was working fine but it picked up the events as well. It did not however detect events in the new room the keepsake was moved to, again, in the interest of science. No other motion sensor in the house is detecting events except the ones in this room that, on the average when you round up, sense it every 13 minutes. Creepy… I even put two sensors in the room, one facing out to the room as normal and another on the desk, turned around with the motion sensor covered to prevent firing. Only the one facing the room fired, so it has to be SOME kind of motion that thing is sensing, right?? Next step is IR cameras at night, not sure I want to see that footage. My wife told me ‘You guys have fun up there’ when I told her about it. LOL

What, besides Pazuzu or Gozer, would cause this? I’ve unplugged all devices/electronics in the room except the modem and router, kind of need those and they are there for the long haul, cannot move them without a real PITA. Literally everything else is off and unplugged. Even the lamps. I’ve take the picture frames off the walls in case some kind of RF signal was bouncing off of it.

I cannot figure out exactly when it started happening, but nothing significant has been changed/added/ turned on in the last month or so, except of course, the keepsake from my grandfather, an antique collectible whiskey decanter from 1972 celebrating USC winning the national title in football. Nothing too nefarious there, is there?

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HVAC event? Either air conditioning or heat can have cycles like this and the increase or drop in temperature can create false PIR motion events.

Or, of course, a polling event can cause a false trigger.

Other than that, or the paranormal, any chance that one of your neighbors or even your city has a drone operating in the area? Although then I would expect more than one sensor position to be affected.

I thought HVAC but ruled it out when I was looking at the on/off cycles of the AC. Also took it offline for an hour and still had the events logged. It’s day or night, all the time, witching hour or no witching hour. It’s really got me thinking of what it could possibly be. I am sure some kind of very fancy IR camera like a FLIR would possibly help, but they are a touch pricey those things there.

I agree it’s a polling event for sure, just cannot figure out what is triggering it all of the sudden and at that particular interval. I mean, I get 5 minutes or 10 minutes, but 12:33 seconds? Very odd.

Not sure about a drone, we live very close to an international airport and USAF base so shouldn’t be too many of those flying around here. The acuteness of the issue is what is got me. These sensors don’t false alarm in other rooms, just this one and all of the sudden. Very very odd…

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Cue the Jaws music… :shark:

But still… Just one sensor location is much more likely to be microenvironment. Since it sounds like you’ve ruled out polling given that swapping sensors A and B means whichever one is in that room has the error.


Try putting the sensor at the problematic location in a cardboard box at that same location. Not metal. Basically let’s remove the environmental inputs and see if it still alerts.

After that, remember when you had the two sensors in the room, but one turned towards the wall? Turn the second sensor towards the room and then let’s see if they both alert.

Again, we’re just trying to see if there are environmental factors involved.

These sensors are detecting motion regularly but what about the period from active to inactive? Is that also consistent?

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Heh. Yep, did the tiny cardboard box thing. No event triggered.

Took all the batteries out of the remotes in the room, they are IR’s right? Well, 4 IR remotes without batteries, no more events triggered. Testing one by one. With the 13 minute interval, I am giving myself a full 30 minutes between takes. Got a funny idea that it’s the AC remote. It’s the only one with an internal clock. The others are simple remotes, nothing fancy. Let’s see!

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Yep consistent time active to inactive. 30 seconds on the dot between each event state switch during the clearly unoccupied times, such as between 3a and 5a.

Yep. An old LG mini split AC remote was the culprit. Seems that batteries were low and causing some kind of IR pulse that was triggering a motion event? It’s made before the IOT was a thing so there’s no smart connection at all so it had to be some kind of a pulse, right?

Dunno but it’s gone away for now. I did cleanse the room with a white morning dove, raw sage and holy water, so that could have helped as well. The loud screams I heard as I flung holy water on the walls just might have been the trick I needed to tilt this war back to the light. Only time will tell.


Great detective work! Glad you found it. 🕵🏽‍♂️

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