SmartThings Community

FAQ: Do you know of an outdoor motion sensor?


(Robin) #104

Are you able to power off the mains?

I use an off the shelf “dumb” outdoor PIR motion sensor which was dirt cheap… It had (just) enough space inside to take a tiny Fibaro Universal Sensor.

(Realy Living Dream) #105

I use monoproce/GoControl Z-wave and ST ZigBee motion sensors in sheltered outdoor locations without any issues ( jynx)

(Joe) #106

I use aeon and works fine outside

(phil) #107

This one works great. Have 4 of them now…Dakota and contact sensor. Have not see a false alarm and has a range of 1/2 mile

(EinarS) #108

Digging in som old posts here :slight_smile:
Could you please post the full device handler you are using for the SP103?
Seems the code in you post is partial, and as long as i am not sure where or the state of the original, i am not able to “save” the handler.

Thx in advance.

(Minollo) #109

This is the device handler I’m using these days for the sp103:

(Greg Ottira) #110

So could I use this dimmable micro controller from Aeotec? I want the lights to be at 30% and if it sees motion go to 100%. Then 5 minutes of no motion go back to %30.

Edit: But after thinking about this more, I think I will still need a 2nd dimmable device. My original plan was to have a ZWN-RSM1 up at the motion sensor and a GE dimmer switch on the wall. Setup ST the when the ZWN-RSM1 turns on from motion trigger the GE dimmer to 100%. Then after 5 minutes of no motion dim to 30%

( Cosmo) #111

Just to double check here, if I use an aeon dual switch:

So functionally it should be like this, correct?
Switch 1 will be flood light portion of the security light.
Switch 2 will be the motion sensor. It will show on any time it’s on (on its internal timer).

Then create rules (or Pistons in CORE) in order to make the motion sensor (switch 2) turn on/off the lights (switch 1):
Smart lighting rule A) When switch 2 turns on, turn on switch 1
Smart lighting rule B) When switch 2 turns off, turn off switch 1

Further question, how hard would it be to create a handler to use on so switch one shows as a switch, but switch 2 shows as a motion sensor? I’ve never written a handler, I couldn’t code to save my life. But is this something that could work, or is it too complex to make a switch show as a sensor?
If switch=ON, display motionstatus=ACTIVE
If switch=OFF, display motionstatus=INACTIVE

Automating existing outdoor motion sensor with relay

I did end up using Dakota alert beams and zwave open closed sensors.


They control smart bulbs and a smart z wave eve light switch. I also like the chime when they’re tripped and I get an alert for front door motion and driveway motion.

(Christopher) #114

Has anyone had any luck integrating the Chamberlain Driveway alarm into ST? I’m looking for something to monitor my driveway since it’s not easily visible from my office. Cheers!

(Christopher) #115

Looks like the Dakota setup does the trick, so I’ll proceed down that route. Cheers!


Most people use the Dakota. But in any case you need to wire the trip beam device to a device with a zigbee or zwave radio so it can communicate to SmartThings.

Detailed discussion in the following thread:

(Christopher) #117

As always thanks for the great information. It looks like the Dakota setup is the easiest since it has the relay outputs. I’m also kicking around the idea of using a Wireless Tags PIR since I’ve got my WST setup and working with ST. Assuming I can come up with a good solution for the driveway, I’m looking to replicate it for my front porch. Decisions, decisions. lol Cheers!

(Dave) #118

Has anyone had any success with connecting a z-wave relay to an outdoor motion sensor like @Byron_Poland referenced in post #76? I have a similar setup using a dual relay (Fibaro FGS-223), but can only make it work if I connect the lights directly to the sensor output (red wire). The sensor I’m using is a Heath/Zenith - I believe the issue is that the sensor output needs to see a load like the connected bulbs produce. When it’s just connected to the Fibaro switch input (S2), it doesn’t see a load and therefore doesn’t switch on it’s output.

I have a cheaper sensor that has a mechanical relay output and this one works. My guess is that the Heath/Zenith sensor is a solid state output that needs some kind of load to fire.

Right now I have my wall switch connected to S1 and the motion sensor connected to S2 and the lights. This is working ok for now and when the motion sensor turns on I can read it in ST. At least I can activate other actions, but it also shows motion if I turn on the lights manually since they are also connected to the Fibaro’s S2 trigger).

Is there anyway to simulate the bulb load on the sensor’s output so it can only be connected to the Fibaro’s input and the lights can be controlled independent of the sensor?


How do you know which Window sensors allow you to add external wires like is done in this video with the Dakota 2500 sensor and kit

(phil) #120

These are the cheapest

I am not sure if there are any others out there but for the price


Yes, the Ecolink are generally the least expensive. The Fibaro door sensors also have dry contacts, Aeotec has a dry contact device, and the Mimolite from Fortrezz has more options for wet contacts. But the Ecolink is the bargain brand right now if all you need are dry contacts.

(Andy - United Kingdom) #122

If you are just looking for an action on two contacts coming together (e.g. Bell push) have a look at water sensors - I’ve used a few of these and they are generally cheaper than contact sensors if you are just using it for this
(Around £10 difference in the UK)


The original post in this thread discussed using motion sensors to monitor the yard for security reasons, and so all the various issues raised will apply to that type of use case.

Just recently, a conversation started in a different thread about a different type of use case, one more in the home automation area, such as having a light come on when you got to the first porch step. A much narrower detection zone than the security use case.

People in that thread have approached the problem by putting a plastic tube on the end of the sensor lens to narrow the detection field. That also addresses two of the common problems discussed in this thread, insects crawling across the lens and direct sunlight falling on the lens as clouds move. There should be much less of both of those when the tube is used. :sunglasses:

Anyway, I thought it was an interesting thread for those who were looking more for a specific “if someone crosses this exact point, I want to trigger a home automation event” rather then the more general “if there’s motion in the yard” security case.

And here is @eric182 's Photo from that thread showing the narrow detection sensor in place.