Mailbox Sensor help!

I got a garage sensor, placed it on my mailbox door to alert me, when it is opened. It works every time I use it. The problem is the mail person is so “fast” that it very seldom throws the switch…lol
I thought I’d put a window “reed type” magnetic senssor on the door and connect it to the contacts on the the garage sensor (see picture).
Will this “work” so do I need something with a current to trip the contacts in the sensor?

Also just got a Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm, to hook into the contacts of another garage sensor, so I can integrate it into ST…my wife says I’m ready for the Zombie Apocalypse… (mostly it is just I’ve had a relapse of myasthenia, can’t do much physically, and I’m bored…also like to keep an eye on things when I’m in the hospital) lol

I use an older Smartthings contact sensor that lets me know anytime the mailbox is opened. I used double stick tape on the main electronics part and the magnet part just magnetically sticks to the metal door. Works really well but I did have to put in a pocket outlet in the garage to extend my Zigbee mesh to get a good signal to the mailbox. Then using LANnouncer and BigTalker, it will say “You got mail” whenever it’s opened. :smile:

Mine is setup identically to @Jimxenus and it works well for the most part. YMMV based on wind, cold as it does impact battery life and signal.

Pretty cool! Thanks! I’'l go that way if I can’t figure out the reed contact thing. I was thinking something that wasn’t quite as large…and I already have the garage sensor with contacts…

Would love to do something like this, but my USPS guy crams Amazon boxes into my mailbox and will strip these off in no time!


I think I read that someone put a motion sensor in the back of the mailbox and that worked well for him.

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You could set up the sensor on the outside of the mailbox.
They are not waterproof but you can install the electronics part of the sensor in a small waterproof box attached to the mailbox then the magnet on the door

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I have a motion sensor in mine. Never misses a beat, but the battery likes to drain faster in the cold.


That’s why i thought a small reed switch might be better, with a wire running to the sensor in the back. Mine has gotten knocked off once, and I only installed it two weeks ago…lol

Great idea. I like those Iris ones from Lowe’s, juts need to wait for a special. The garage sensor, from Monorpice, I installed still says 100% after 2 weeks.

I have an Iris sensor in mine, but I think I will swap it for an ecolink or monoprice. Those have been at 100% for over a year, whereas the Iris has chewed through a battery in 1 week in this subfreezing temperature.

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Another way is to mount a small 2-pin push button at the door (depending on the mailbox model).
Wire that button to a z-wave dry switch that is installed in the back of the mailbox so it won’t get knocked off when inserting mail or boxes in the mail box.

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So…does anybody know if the reed magnetic switch will work with the garage contacts, or do the contacts require actual current? Guess I could just pull it off the mailbox and check it. The DC-1561 is only DC-1 1 3/32" x 1/2" x 1/4".

I may give this a try once I get my Konnected kit set up and have a couple of motion sensors freed up.

Thanks Robin! Just what I was looking for, much appreciated!

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I have an extra Monoprice motion sensor I just bought on sale. Tried it outside for a driveway sensor but it would “sense” about 20 times on a windy day, other days it worked great. I’ll try that next if this doesn’t pan out. Kinda cold here right now to be fooling around outside! lol

I’m using a Visonic MCT-340 door sensor in my mailbox. I had to add a repeater to get it to reliably talk to the hub which is on the other side of the house. My mailman is also pretty quick about opening and closing the mailbox and it almost always detects the quick change in open/close state. The only downside is it uses a button battery and a recent cold spell is really doing a number on battery life.

The contacts you listed in your first post will need some current, these are usually wired to an alarm system and low voltage current passes through, it’s a switch. They don’t require current but the current needs to pass through to do something. You could use that and wire it to a z-wave dry switch but that will end up costing you more than if you just get a regular door and windows reed switch. You’ll just need to find a way to attach it so it works like on a regular door or window.

As Robin said, put in a picture to give you a clearer idea. A simple Fibaro door/window contact sensor with a reed switch.

Thanks! My garage tilt switch also has “contacts” so I you have convinced me a simple reed switch will work. Then one I posted is super small.